The Record Stache

INTERVIEW: Anton Newcombe Talks SpaceFest, Pure Phase Ensemble and BJM


Hello Anton. I think it’s really exciting to hear you will be leading the fun this year with Pure Phase Ensemble because some years for this project are more interesting than others and it’s sure to be something special with the involvement of yourself and Emil Nikolaisen.

Thank you and I want you to know that it is my goal to help grow this festival in certain ways.one of them will be to be apart of something that is worthy of being respected…that is not to say I don’t respect Lætitia Sadier or Mark Gardner, etc. because I do…I just want to push myself and help grow this in everyway. and I want to create some polish music if we can…

Will this be your first time at SpaceFest?

Yes indeed and I am excited!

Considering all the people you’ve worked with within the scope of The Brian Jonestown Massacre itself and collaborations with Tess Parks and others, I’d say you’re among the most qualified choices for leading such an international collective of dynamic musicians. Do you have any expectations or hopes in regards to Pure Phase Ensemble 6?

My plan is to bring no ideas other than Emil and a way of communicating my desire to make something incredible for the musicians and the audience to share.

I want to create an ephemeral moment and at the same time several works in polish of such a quality that they will not only be respected in Poland, but that people will enjoy internationally forever.

I want to bring many of the elements of music that I love into the mix and hopefully convince everyone, all of the players that with order and vision they will all have a chance to be a part of something greater than just a random group of people “jamming”. That can happen too but I will challenge any group of any musicians anywhere to jam free form vs me saying ‘what if you did something like this as a starting point…and then you something in this range to that, and you like this and so and so…. now key change, now quiet…now psychotic’…etc.

You seem to have a very great relationship with numerous artists. Earlier, we wrote about your mini-tour with The Veldt, which covered several cities on the U.S. east coast.  I really appreciate their work and attitude, and was really impressed by their latest EP. I’m curious to learn whether you might end up touring with them again sometime in future or even collaborating? Would be great to see you both here in Florida.

I would rather record them to be honest and do something that transcends our age or their visions… something greater than the parts… I just feel like I know how to get things done and at the same time when to say “fuck it” its crazy. That may sound like shit, but there is magic there…let’s not wreck it. 

You have a specific style and taste that appeals to so many people on an international level. Would you ever think about setting up a festival along the lines of Lollapalooza or even just a one-off event, with bands hand-picked by yourself and whoever else you’d like to involve?

Haha my manager sort of basically made Lolla happen. Anyway, I like Alex Maas and Black Angels and how that thing works when it works… I would like to see several festivals combine and share acts and resources… I don’t want to get involved with agents and bullshit…its way out of hand and every festival is the same as every other… I’m happy to help, but every time I suggest shit to my friends it doesn’t happen for a few years because I am ahead of the curve…also, just because I know something is great doesn’t mean other people understand it and everybody can swere by jeasy or some shit and I don’t need it. Fuck it.

What about a compilation through your label? Or have you already been involved with projects like this?

Compilation records don’t sell and Spotify is one big compilation – I’m interested in making records happen but everything takes forever…I need to have 3 studios and more gear and engineers and sort of float back and forth…

that would be good.

Would you ever consider writing a book about your experiences or really anything you feel strongly enough to put a pen to paper about? How do you feel about someone else potentially writing a book about your rich eventful back-story?

I’ve been asked by publishers…and the truth is only I know the stories…and there are a zillion and I’m honest and good at telling them…but then there’s the part about my relationships with people on a very deep level…and it’s not exactly right for me to go into that shit, because it’s their story without their side of the story… 

Taking this one step further (my imagination could get carried away with me), if someone were to create a film about you, can you envision anyone in particular able to play the role of yourself? Or does this whole idea seem ridiculous?

Well once again only I know the stories… I’m not done living and in fact I visualize a super important event in the future and at that time, movies won’t be so important to anyone.

I realize that the album that Pure Phase Ensemble 6 will release will be released on CD in mid-2017. What is your preferred format for releasing BJM material – vinyl, CD, cassette, digitally? I see a lot of relatively new bands get hung up on this question regarding their own output – any recommendations for them in this regard?

If it’s good, fuck CD’s. I will want the masters to cut vinyl. I’ll discuss this with the right people at the right time, but if we fail its pointless to discuss.

Thank you so much for your time Anton and the best of times to you with Pure Phase Ensemble and SpaceFest! Really looking forward to hearing this music in half a year’s time.

I hope it rules because I can think of some great people to take my place in the future.

One response to “INTERVIEW: Anton Newcombe Talks SpaceFest, Pure Phase Ensemble and BJM”

  1. looking forward to this event, he really can move it to something very interesting

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