Shamanic dance maneuverers, killing the ego and LSD addled musicians turning up unannounced at practices that eventually become members of the band. All this and more await in this interview with Dominic Rose of Fake Turins. And you thought you’d only be getting some short blurb to incite you to watch the latest Margo’s Living Room Session … this guy really has quite a bit to say.
Hey Dom! Cheers for agreeing to this interview. In a few short words, what is the song all about?
Dom: For me ‘False Sympathies’ is about the conditions of ego all people bear and struggle with. It’s the shifting parameters between our communities and ourselves.
Is there any past circumstance in your life that led to that conclusion?
Dom: It’s mainly born from my own experiences of ego-death and catching myself acting in ways I don’t abide. Those moments truly make you reflect upon the struggles of validation that we all crave. Something that’s encouraged by our greater social networks.
Some artists are embracing this stance. At the risk of doing a Paxman, I’d be keen to find out the specifics circumstances of your awareness. Elaborate on your statement of ‘acting in ways I don’t abide’.
Dom: Well, I think it’s safe to assume we’ve all acted out of what we presume is the character of ourselves. I know I’ve been caught out more than once seeking validation from the position of a toxic mindset. I know I also have deep narcissistic wounds that mean I’m left with a lot of anger. These are things that can get left by the wayside when we try and give an assessment of ourselves.
Music is a space to explore these innermost existential questions of self – what makes us and what type of person we are.
In this song, I try to do it through the universal “you know what’s right”. At points, it’s a particularly aggressive picture painted in the lyrics, but it’s all in effort to get these unconscious unconscionables to the top.
There comes a moment where one really has to give up seeking that validation, and I’m glad that your music has been allowed to act as a vessel for such thoughts. Is there a deeper significance to the physical performance you give? Does it relate to the song’s theme?
Dom: The performance is something that pervades all aspects of the project. It’s my attempt to reach higher states through frenetic movement. I got heavily invested in trance ritual and the way people buy in so bodily to the trance state of mind – often solely through repetitive rhythm and uncontrollable motions. I also enjoy the work of Pina Bausch quite a lot, so for me coupling her bodily vignettes and the somewhat otherworldly frenetics of trance is my invitation for the viewer to enter in & liberate themselves in the same way. Everyone wants freedom through music (and performance), so I’d like our assorted bunch of misfits to help with that.
Intriguing. Does each movement have a specific meaning following where you’re at in the song, or is it more free form?
Dom: Typically, I work from a collection of small movements. I guess you could even think of them like GIFs. They’re freely chosen from, depending mostly on the dynamic of everyone else’s movements, but they are all a type of representative motion. I believe in this video, I use one of the motions that to me represents “the continuing story” and “the many sides of the self” at the same time. Offering the idea that each side of the self tells the proceeding chapter of the story. Of course, they’re intuitive though, so it may mean something very different to another viewer.
Would be good to get a timestamp for each of those moments for hardcore fans that my wanna spot them. I must confess, seeing how close you are to your fellow players was heart-warming. Tell me more about your warm-up process with the band? That was a theatre exercise you all did, right?
Dom: Yeah, that’s a series of exercises we’ve been using to get us all on the same page. It works both as a bonding moment and to also try to balance out the sounds – with eight to ten people it can get quite rambunctious unless we can all count in the same time! It also works to liberate us, if we aim to bring joy, then we gotta feel it too. I do love the team a lot, I’m grateful to be working with them.
Regarding the time stamp, 1:21 is the specific movement I was referencing.
They’re such a solid group of musicians, two of them from the now-defunct but not forgotten Venus Lyx. I also remember you saying that they were in character? Some kind of situationist idea in regards to how they were to respond to you in performance?
Dom: Yeah, that’s right – we work with archetypes and therefore each has “character ideals” that we work with. For me, this is more of a drama piece, and therefore, we build in stories and characters. The world is a manifest of this innate story and our stage is merely a platform that serves to reflect that. Of course, on top of that, we desire these character interactions, so yes, it can very much work as a wordless play.
The Venus Lyx to this day are still one of my favourite groups, I hear there may be rekindling of a fire once thought out in the not too distant future…
The return of The Venus Lyx? Now that’s a scoop. Can you tell me why one of your members is masked?
Dom: That’s Pinball. He wandered into our practice one day after taking some acid. He asked to plug in his pedals and made a heathens racket. Pretty much hasn’t missed a show to this day.
I can neither confirm nor deny a Venus Lyx reunion but should it happen you will find me at the front of every show.
All hail the mighty Pinball. Anything you’d care to plug courtesy of this blog? Tell us of your next release.
Dom: We’ve got a single release of ‘False Sympathies/Star Child’ on the 27th of September which we’re extremely excited about! To kick it off we’ve got a show that night at The Victoria in Dalston with Club the Mammoth. Simeon Rodgers in support and Cheekbones to open. I’ll be honest, I haven’t looked forward to a gig more. We’ll be in full force with possibly more than 12 members in the band.
Well, I think it’s safe to say that I will put that date in my diary. Thanks again for the chat and I hope you have loads of happy fans checking out the video we made. Peace x
Dom: Absolute pleasure to chat with you as always John, thanks for your passion!
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