There’s more to life than music. In our Show & Tell series, artists talk us through some of their other interests. Ibiza-via-Leeds duo Audiojack discuss alternative comedy, space and drug decriminalisation.
Matt Berry – Wild Love
Jamie: This video is a double-edged sword as it encapsulates both my love of nature and alternative comedy. I’m a big nature lover and not only enjoy watching things like BBC documentaries but, even better, seeing it in real life. I’ve been on jungle treks in Thailand and through national parks where I sat for hours at a watering hole (with a box of red wine) watching all manner of beasts from elephants to rhinos, lions and such visiting to whet their whistles.
Where we live in Ibiza is slap bang in the middle of the countryside, in the middle of farmland where we have not only farm animals around but also lizards, the odd snake and little ‘campo’ rats (which once you can get past the tail are actually quite cute).
The flip side of this video is my love for alternative comedy, which I force-fed to people at our extended after-parties back in Leeds. Stuff like Garth Marenghi’s Dark Place (featuring Matt Berry), Look Around You, Nathan Barley and slightly more mainstream The Mighty Boosh. I tend to like my comedy how I like my electronic music: weird and intelligent. Watching comedy has taken a back seat these days now though, since we’ve been living in Ibiza; who wants to be cooped up inside when you can be out looking at nature!
Ethan Nadelmann: Why we need to end the War on Drugs
Rich: TED talks give a fantastic insight into other people’s perspectives and experiences and this is probably one of the most insightful. In May we were at a panel at IMS in Ibiza hosted by BBC Radio 1’s B.Traits on this same subject. A medical expert explained how the constant banning of different combined substances as they come to market puts a great strain on hospitals, because just as medical staff are getting used to the effects of one substance and learn how to treat casualties it gets banned, and so up pops another combination which they don’t know how to treat, then that gets banned six months later and they’re back to square one again.
Regardless of whether you are pro or against recreational drug use, the only thing that should really matter is the facts. Unfortunately, the fact is drug prohibition kills more people than drugs do. ‘The war on’ anything always fails; opposing something that already is only causes more friction. Portugal decriminalised all drugs in 2001, changing it from a legal to a health issue, and the results are astounding. I recommend Googling and seeing for yourself.
As Human as Possible
Rich: Ableton produced this great insight into the world of Cocoon artists Minilogue, and there are a lot of similarities between their mindset and ours. We also have our studio in the countryside, share an interest in mindfulness and try to achieve a healthy mind and body balance. These guys are a few years ahead of us, so watching this is maybe a bit like looking into our future… live jamming is something we’re really getting into at the moment, and the balance of peaceful nature with only our studio noise is something we really appreciate every day.
Star Size Comparison
Jamie: I’ve always been fascinated with both the concept of size and the universe in general. When I was a kid I always pored over the Guinness Book Of Records to see what was the biggest of everything. You can’t get any bigger than the things out there in space, and of course the universe itself is the biggest thing we currently know. I love to think deeply about the concept of infinity and the possibility that reality as we know it can extend forever into the far reaches of space and down to smaller than the smallest entities we’ve discovered to this day. The concept that the more advanced our technology gets to see smaller and smaller or further and further, we’ll never get to the end. This has also given me a healthy passion for sci-fi and I love films like Moon, Blade Runner, Primer, Alien and so on, and books by authors such as Iain M Banks and Neal Stephenson. I think it also has an influence on the music we make as well, as we can include otherworldly sounds and imagery.
Eckhart Tolle – The Power of Now
Rich: Like many people I can be my own worst enemy. When we first moved to Ibiza I thought this was the factor that would finally make me happy. I’d tricked myself into this false ideal twice before: first when we were starting Audiojack, and secondly before I met my wonderful wife. “When I get there, everything will be alright.”
So, one day I was sitting in our house in Ibiza, birds tweeting, sun shining, and I was staring out of the window, as miserable as hell and totally exasperated at myself. “How can I still feel this bad? I’ve done all the things I ever dreamed of.” Then I had a realisation. It must be me! My mind is the problem, none of these external factors make any difference. A friend suggested I listen to the audio book of The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle, and it’s not an understatement to say it completely changed my outlook on life. In fact, it changed my life.
My personal view now is that we aren’t just one entity inside, we’re a combination of learned behaviour passed down through genes from our ancestors, experiences from childhood, our recent experiences and a projection of where we see ourselves in the future – and these are often contradictory and conflicting. Learning to manage these different personalities and their requirements, and learning to live in the now, and accept everything that happens to you as if you chose it, has had a huge impact on my life enjoyment, and how I affect those around me.
For anyone who can relate to this story I strongly recommend buying the audio book – it’s on iTunes. Probably the best £7.99 I ever spent.
This summer marks the five year anniversary of Audiojack’s Gruuv imprint. The first instalments of the 5 Years Of Gruuv compilation are out now, with more EPs to follow throughout the summer. Find Audiojack on Facebook and SoundCloud.
for those who care…
Very interesting article, especially since I share in some of those interests too. I think as artists and creators we always need to be pushing the boundary of ideas, and learning more about the world around us, which will ultimately reflect on the quality of our work.