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The Peace & Freedom Magazine Attrition Interview
Interviewed by Paul Rance for Peace & Freedom, No. 2, Summer 1985.
Attrition are a band who are establishing an ultra-good reputation for themselves. If you're a regular fanzine reader and haven't heard of Attrition what have you been reading dear friend?
Martin answered the following Qs.
The band appear to have had good reviews in most of the music press; does this please you or do you take it with a pinch of salt?
We've had some reviews - usually good or at least O.K. - yet it pleases us of course - I prefer a constructive description and criticism (if needed!) to just a rave "this is great" or whatever, it's far more interesting and useful. The national press is really just an advert for what you are doing so the more space (photo!) the better, really - it's hard to get anything!
Do you have a healthy regard for "chart" bands?
I don't judge a band by whether they are in the charts or not - just on the sound, the result must stand on its own. Most "chart" material I dislike, "Art of Noise" is great, though, there are exceptions!
Who, if anyone have been your over-riding influence?
Well, there's no one person, there's music and artists, films, books - a selection may be... The Velvet Underground, Salvador Dali, Roxy Music with Eno, Pop Art, Dada, Wire, early Banshees, Joy Division, Cabaret Voltaire, Kraftwerk... the first "Flux of Pink Indians" single made me vegetarian!!
The band seem to be cropping up in several fanzines - how useful do you think they are?
Fanzines are great! (I used to do one, 1979-81.) They are a way that people can express themselves easily and a way music can be spread without the national's, so more can exist and grow.
Stereotype question, how did the band get together?
The original Attrition started late 1980. There's been a few line-up changes since then - I'm the only original member left. It started for fun/to experiment/to learn. It still is.
Your music has, as has been described, an eerie quality in places. Is that evocative of the sound you're trying to produce?
The unknown is frightening. We are looking at those areas that most people find it easier to ignore. With a horror film or with music like ours, sometimes people can explore the things that frighten them, yet remain unharmed. You can learn from that too - but try it yourself sometime!
How did the name evolve?
ATTRITION is erosion, is abrasion, is wearing away - slowly breaking things down. This can be slow progress or virtual futility (the good and bad sides). Take what you want (it seemed to fit!).
How many tapes and records have you released thus far?
One L.P. - "The Attrition of Reason" (Third Mind - Aug. '84). Three 12"s:
Various compilation L.P.s:
...Dozens of compilation tapes!! The best...
Where do you think you'll all be in five years time?
Still working through artistic expression - music, art, visuals, records, production, etc. We must always have new challenges and make improvements on our way. More people will know about us by then!
What are your plans for the latter part of '85?
The second L.P. proper later in the year, our first video release later in the year, another European tour in autumn (toured Holland/Belgium in April), contributions to various compilation L.P.s and various U.K. gigs, building up our studio to 8-track... there's always something!
Thanks to Martin. Attrition also released an L.P. of their music from '81-83 in June and are featured on THE BLACK HOLE compilation tape (two trax).
Attrition are: Chryss, Martin Bowes, Alex Novak, Ashley and Alan Rider.
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