Altin Gün im Interview
Wir haben Altin Gün bei ihrem Konzert in der Esslinger Dieselstraße getroffen und die Chance für ein paar Fragen rund um die Entstehungsgeschichte der Band, deren Einflüsse und weitere Inspirationen gesprochen.
Zum Interview nach dem Konzert in Esslingen, (bei dem das Publikum die Band euphorisch abfeierte) trifft kulturpegel.de die Sänger Erdinç Ecevit und Merve Dasdemir, Gitarrist Ben Rider und Percussionist Gino Groeneveld.
Kulturpegel: I’ve seen you guys really busy at the moment. You’re constantly touring across Europe, have 2 weeks off in July and then start off to a North-American Tour. Is this the first time, you’re playing in America?
Merve Dasdemir: We’ve been to Canada last year. We played Montreal Jazz Festival and a couple of other cool festivals there. We were there for two weeks, I think.
Ben Rider: We did a lot of shows in France, too, that’s why we have connection with the radio and stuff there (in Canada, Anmerk. d. Red.). So that went really well. So we hope that it will go well in America, too.
Kulturpegel: I heard a lot of good thinks about the French Radio and their support for new, upcoming artist, like you.
Ben Rider: Yeah, thats right, they’ve been playing our songs a lot.
Kulturpegel: It appears to me, that this is your time right now. A lot of people are talking about you these day, while you just got your second record out. Your first release was in 2018 („On“). right?
Merve Dasdemir: No, it was 2018. The first single is from 2017 („Goca Dünya / Kırşehir'in Gülleri“), the album came out 2018. We did 2 Albums in 2 years.
Ben Rider: That was all during last year?
Merve Dasdemir: Exactly.
Ben Rider: I can’t believe it. I have no concept of time, I don’t understand.
Merve Dasdemir: Everything becomes like a blur, you know (laughs).
Ben Rider: We’re really busy. I think around the first album I noticed some kind of hype. Cause I`ve been in bands before and usually it takes a few years of playing and stuff, but this was like instant, very quickly. And then the second album has been accepted quite well.
Merve Dasdemir: The pre-orders (for „Gece“) have already been insane, before the album came out.
Sänger und Multi-Instrumentalist Erdinç Ecevit gesellt sich zur Interview-Runde dazu.
Kulturpegel: Hello Erdinç, nice that you join us. Really impressive show, I must say.
Erdinç Ecevit: Thank you!
Ben Rider: It was a good one today.
Merve Dasdemir: Yeah! And mostly Turkish attendees!
Kulturpegel: Yes. I noticed your reaction on stage.
Merve Dasdemir: Yeah, I did both languages.
"They get everywhere, you know, the Turkish people. Everywhere."
Kulturpegel: Is this happening in other cities like that (that the majority of visitors are Turkish), as well?
Merve Dasdemir: Normally, in Europe, it’s like 20 %, sometimes a bit more, but tonight it was exceptional!
Merve Dasdemir: Yes, sure.
Gino Groeneveld: Certain German cities have a high concentration of Turkish people. There was this other gig, I don’t remember where, where it was about 80% Turkish people and we sold about 800 tickets.
Merve Dasdemir: Oh, Düsseldorf…
Gino Groeneveld: Yes, Düsseldorf.
Merve Dasdemir: That was during our previous tour.
Ben Rider: They get everywhere, you know, the Turkish people. Everywhere.
Kulturpegel: But in this area (South) it’s probably more that in the North of Germany, I don’t know. A friend of mine was attending your show in Rostock and she was really blown away.
Ben Rider: We heard a lot of weird stories about that place, Rostock is pretty like ..
Merve Dasdemir: … racist and stuff..
Kulturpegel: I think I know what you’re talking about.
Ben Rider: There was some building that caught fire or something an then they didn’t do anything to help the people, I don’t know, whatever.
Merve Dasdemir: We heard some strange stuff, but you know, it was nice, the show was nice.
Kulturpegel: Your current success and all the touring, is this a big change in you life, did you quit your jobs or something?
Merve Dasdemir: We sort of started and then immediately started touring.
Kulturpegel: Did any of you play together before?
Ben Rider: Yes, me and Jasper, the bass player, were in a band before this.
Merve Dasdemir: And our previous drummer..
Ben Rider: We were together in a band for about four years.
Merve Dasdemir: When we first started the band, Ben, Jasper and the drummer they had already been played together for along time.
Ben Rider: But that time we were starting to get less shows, so Jasper was sort like: „Let’s do something new!“ And then we made this band and then it’s been pretty much just this.
Kulturpegel:: I read somewhere that he was doing like a public announce to find you?
Ben Rider: On facebook, yes. Looking for Turkish Musicians. And then we pretty much started the band.
Kulturpegel: And when was the moment when you discovered, that you’ve got you own, unique sound?
Merve Dasdemir: The first rehearsal, I guess.
Ben Rider: Well, we were copying exactly covers or covering covers basically, at the beginning. And I think it was actually later, that we found out, we had our own sort of sound.
Merve Dasdemir: Well, actually after the first show the set was changed already. Remember? Like there are songs, that I remember we never played again (laughs).
Ben Rider: I think, how it happened or when it happened, you can’t pinpoint it, it just happens sort of. And than the next rehearsal you play again and you’re like:“Oh yeah, it’s already sort of done.“ I don’t think so. So it’s hard to say, that I has this realisation moment, like this is when it happened, I can’t.
Merve Dasdemir: It happened gradually I guess. Like fast, in our case.
Kulturpegel: But you had like a feeling, that this will work, or something?
Ben Rider: That was from the very beginning
Merve Dasdemir: The first six songs we went in the studio with, that was that!
Gino Groeneveld: Also with the first show we played, which was at Pacific Parc, Amsterdam. After that show right away some friends of mine that played with me in a band were like:“ This is so amazing!“ And right after that we got our manager, he was already there at the show.
Merve Dasdemir: It just happened that the bookers were at our first show and started working with us afterwards.
Kulturpegel: How did you come to do music with original Turkish influences?
Ben Rider: For me it’s very different, very new. Before this band we were already touring, and we went to Istanbul and we discovered a lot of cool new stuff there. And then it became really naturally.
Kulturpegel: So when Jasper was reaching out or you, you were all located in Amsterdam?
Merve Dasdemir: In Arnheim, in the Netherlands
"I think for „Anlatmam Derdimi“ we recorded the most takes."
Kulturpegel: You already released quite a lot music within a rather short period of time. Do you prefer studio work or „live“ playing?
Merve Dasdemir: Playing „live“of course, we are a live band for sure!
Ben Rider: Yes. When we record, we are trying to do that, too. To play „live“. The feeling of it just has to be good, so there’re still some mistakes on the record, you can hear some.
Merve Dasdemir: Yeah, but it was just one take sometimes.
Ben Rider: The thing is, the feeling was good, the atmosphere was good. And then we just take that.
Merve Dasdemir: Ok, how many takes did we do, like maximum, do you guys remember?
Gino Groeneveld: So, we did quite a few takes….
Merve Dasdemir: Yeah, but what was the maximum…
Gino Groeneveld: … thirteen or something….?
Ben Rider: I think for „Anlatmam Derdimi“ we recorded the most takes.
Merve Dasdemir: Yes, I think that’s right.
Gino Groeneveld: If you make a lot of takes, suddenly the energy gets lost, it might still be tight, but, you know..
"The more you play together, the tighter it gets."
Kulturpegel: So since you`re talking about record takes already. What about the fundamental instrumental parts, like the rhythm section on the new record „Gece“?
Merve Dasdemir: It’s all „live“, played together.
Gino Groeneveld: As much as possible.
Merve Dasdemir: We’re playing music in a room together.
Kulturpegel: It wasn’t an overdub session?
Merve Dasdemir: Some very tiny percussion like extra shakers and stuff like that.
Ben Rider: And no computers, we just had a tape machine.
Erdinç Ecevit: The first one (record, „On“), we did ourselves and it was recorded digitally.
Merve Dasdemir: The more you play together, the tighter it gets. I mean I just can’t count how many times we were playing a song, must have been hundreds of times.
Gino Groeneveld: Yes, and also we maybe play some of the songs meanwhile even tighter than at the recording session.
Merve Dasdemir: About those tiny mistakes we don’t care, unless the vibe is really nice. The human aspect is important.
Kulturpegel: So there was no editing used on the recording session of „Gece“?
Ben Rider: Just on the vocals and some percussion. And for the mixing we have a sound guy, which is also named Jasper (Geluk), his company is „tone boutique“. And he is magic. He used a vintage mixing console and a lot of cool outboard gear, like echos and stuff like that. He’s kind of a scientist. That was cool, really cool.
Kulturpegel: Do you figure out some new ideas, when you’re on the road?
Ben Rider: Soundchecks can be quite creative moments. Sometimes we’re just trying out and jamming a little bit. We have a rehearsal space in Amsterdam and sometimes we go there to work and focus on some things, but to be creative and make new stuff, the soundcheck is actually a good time to do that.
Gino Groeneveld: I think a few days ago we had a litte jam and Daniel (Smienk, Altin Gün’s drummer) recorded it and put it in the Whatsapp group that we have.
Ben Rider: And we have some little snippets of jammings, maybe seven.
Merve Dasdemir: When on the road, you don’t have the time to set up all your gear and then play together, so soundcheck is the only way to do such things.
Ben Rider: For the making of the last album, the pre-production process, we went to a house on the countryside of Holland. Ten days were we could rehearse, record and sleep. Me made 15 songs within that 10 days and i the end we used ten of them for the recording of the album.
Merve Dasdemir: And then actually we went on a tour and already started playing these new songs. We just got better with these songs and after the tour we went on to record them in the studio.
Kulturpegel: Let’s get back to your current tour. What was the best place that you went to?
Merve Dasdemir: Sold-out shows..! (everybody laughs)
Gino Groeneveld: Everything is different, man!
Merve Dasdemir: Yeah, like today! I was surprised to be honest.
Ben Rider: And we really loved being in Australia.
Merve Dasdemir: We’ve been to King Gizzard’s ( and the Lizard Wizard) Festival. They invited us, to play at their festival, the Gizzfest.
Kulturpegel: Mentioning „King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard“, when I put on your new album for the first song, the theme of „Yolcu“ immediately reminded me of them a little bit.
Merve Dasdemir: Yes, they got inspired by Turkish music a lot. And the guy also detuned his guitar.
Ben Rider: He even changed the measure of the frets on his instrument. I just detune the d and the g string, the ones in the middle. And then I can pay normally und the high and normally on the low strings and between I can play the out of tune stuff.
Kulturpegel: Your music is joyful and spreading such good vibes and above all the music is very danceable, is there any additional message, you’d like to spread with your music?
Merve Dasdemir: Exactly, what you said.
Ben Rider: Good vibes and dancing. We wanna make a party always, have a good time and bring people together as well. It Wasn’t our initial plan, but we found out that our music brings different people with different backgrounds together. So you have all these Turkish people, you know, who know music and then there’s all these like maybe German people, you don’t know, but they’re hanging out together, dancing and stuff and that’s cool. People ask us about politics, we don’t care about that stuff, when it comes to the music, it’s just about that and having fun.
Kulturpegel: Thank you guys for talking to kulturpegel.de and all the best to you and good luck with your tour!