We start a new weekly column focused on bands/artists from Eastern Europe, possibly with the help of The Eastern European Synth & Post-Punk Community FB page, introducing Bedroom Talks, the West Ukraine-based DIY minimal electronics solo project of Jin Kei, a former member of new wave outfit Cold Comfort.
Bedroom Talks has just released his new single “Machines Know No Love” on limited orange vinyl 7″ via German label Holy Hour Records, 2 tracks oozing with sad, cold, visceral, hypnotic and danceable dark analog electronic music that explores the most emotive corners of a haunted soul.
Thanks so much for the interview. Let’s trace back to your personal roots, your earliest inspirations and influences that drove you to became a musician and form a band
Maybe it’s funny, but my first band was playing depressive black metal. And we even released one album in the USA. So I have a good metal background) But I also listened to The Cure, Sisters of Mercy, Lebanon Hanover, The Chameleons, Pink Turns Blue. And in 2012 I was talking with my friends about post-punk, goth music which we like to listen and how it’s cool, so it was the beginning of Cold Comfort band. It was something new for the Ukrainian scene, there were articles where we were compared to a Ukrainian version of She Past Away. We were like fresh air. In 2016 I have left the band for some reasons, but we still all good friends and communicate with each other even if we are in different cities or even countries. After some rest, I decided that it’s time to start making music by myself.
What were the trigger factors that lead to starting your project? Did you already have a set idea of how you wanted the band to sound or has it been a gradual process of discovery?
You know, it was a long way to this decision. After I left Cold Comfort band I was thinking about how can I make music for my own, music which I like. Then I’ve bought my first Electric 2 and like a child, I was playing with this powerful device for about one year. In 2018 I had my first material with a clear understanding of what exactly I want to play. All started at home, home sweet home, my friend gave me a speaker, another friend provided me a mic and in such a way, in my bedroom, Bedroom Talks started its way. First few months I was playing with my friend Denis, he helped me with bass guitar. I have never sung before Bedroom Talks. I was afraid of this and too shy for this, so at first, I even couldn’t sing when my friend was playing with me. I remember my first show, I thought I will die when saw all those people that were waiting for the show. It’s very hard to do things you are afraid of. So it’s like a therapy for me. Now I can normally sing on the shows, I even had few lessons with a vocal teacher, and I’m planning to continue, cause results are great, and it’s inspiring.
How you describe your sound?
I prefer analogue devices, so I still use my Electric 2 and Micro Korg for some synth parts. You know, when you inspire by a lot of different music styles, bands, as a result, you have a mix of all you like. So it’s hard to describe Bedroom Talks as just in one genre, you can find there goth atmosphere, cold wave, the energy of post-punk in some songs, minimal synth, good German/Belgian EBM influence, some notes of new sweet Denmark pop scene, even some techno influence. I just make what I like and how I feel this.
Tell us about the music scene of your town and in general of Ukraine
I don’t like the music situation it the city I’m living now. It’s like the center of culture without any culture. There is no interesting musicians who play electronic music. Yes, there are a lot of DJs, and a few metal bands(2-4), but that’s all. I even can not provide examples of good bands, or artists from my city which I like, and it’s sad.
Music situation in general, in Ukraine, isn’t better. There are only a few projects which I like: Edgy Point, Karr and Kurs Valut, and my biggest love – Cold Comfort (which are not active anymore). And that’s all. There were some trying to make music, or maybe still, but all was boring and not interesting from what I have listened. I think it’s not enough just to play some sounds. Maybe I’m too critical, but it’s my point of view as the musician with experience. Hope that the list of Ukrainian electronic artists will be longer in the future
How do you feel playing live?
For me personally it’s very emotion and exiting. It’s not when you just sing using playback, it’s a live performance, it’s motion. It’s very nice to see when all are dancing and happy. Music unites us and makes us happier even if music in its mood is darker. On my last show I was wearing leather BDSM bandage)
Tell us about the process of recording the songs and writing the lyrics?
My main device in Bedroom Talks is Korg Electribe 2. I always use it for creating songs and alway find new features, new variations of sounds on it. I don’t know why, but I always start from the drum section, after this I’m trying different bass lines. You never know how the song will sounds. You just playing, writing, listening, re-writing, and when you have structure you start working with sounds, synth melodies. Every detail is important. Lyrics are very intimate for me, not in sense as pillow talk, but in sense of emotional intimacy, things which are well known for us all, close for us, even painfully close. My lyrics are the ones of an emo teenager. All about love, with its emotions, sad, misunderstanding. But it’s our life, our experience, our emotions, it’s like a stipple chase.
Could you give us an in-depth insight about your upcoming debut 7” EP?
At the end of 2018, I’ve recorded my first 3-track EP with the title ”Machines know no love”. I have sent it to a lot of different labels, which release bands I like. A lot of labels just ignored me. Few wrote something like, sorry I haven’t time to listen to it, don’t disturb me. I thought it’s a job of labels to listen to songs and find new good bands to release. If every label says that I haven’t time, and don’t disturb me with your songs, I think it will be the end of the music industry, and everyone will be like a DIY anarcho-punk band and will release music by their own. Some labels wrote to me that they are full of releases for the whole of 2019. And when I received mail from Klaus, owner of Holy Hours Records, I was surprised and happy as a child. He wrote that he wants to release me on 7inch vinyl. It was the best news for me, the first release of Bedroom Talks. It took much time, but about a month ago I’ve received my part of vinyls. It was like a birthday present, even better. I was happy, full of emotions and I really appreciate that Klaus believed in me and gave a chance to be released. Hope new will cooperate in future again)
Which new bands do you recommend?
You know there are a lot of new bands, some of them are cool, some are the same as the rest thousands ban you have heard before and it’s not interesting for you anymore. I have discovered few new bands, but maybe not new in general, but new for me: Antipole, De Ambassade, Das Kelzer, Dehet Sinn, Twin Tribes (you know they are really cool), Our Broken Dreams, Blind Delon. It’s not possible to listen to all new bands, but I am always trying to check what is new from different resources.
Which bands would you love to make a cover version of?
I am not a fan of making covers, but I think it would be a cover on some black metal song but in Bedroom Talks style)
Were there any pivotal records or live concerts that changed indelibly your perception of music?
I am not a very social person. And visit concerts not so often. We have great organization Worn Pop in our capital and these guys organize cool concerts with really cool bands, projects from all over the world. But I’m living far from the capital and haven’t the possibility to visit these concerts. My best shows I think was a concert of Selofan and M!r!m.
Make a list of your 5 albums of all time…
It’s hard to choose just five albums when you like a lot of music and a lot of different music. But I’ll try to choose my best 5 from what inspired me:
– Lebanon Hanover “Why not just be solo”
– Boy Harsher “Lesser Man”
– The Blaze “Dancehall”
– The Cure “Pornography”
– She Past Away “Belirdi Gece”
What are your plans for the future…
I have completed a new EP with a title “La Solitude” which includes 4 tracks and one remix on my song by Kurs Valut and hope that will have one remix from the owner of Pincet label. Maybe this EP will be released on cassettes on Pincet label. Also, it would be good to release it on 10’vinyl and cd too. Hope that this EP will be released at all).
Also, I have recorded a new song with the title “Non existent promise”, which will be as the title song to a new EP. To be honest, I have a lot of plans, I am also looking for the possibility to have some shows in Europe, Scandinavian countries, and will appreciate any help with this.
Many thanks for being our welcome guest, just the last question: Is there anything I forgot to ask you and would you like to say?
Thank you guys for good articles about Bedroom Talks and that you are mentioning me in lists of bands, I appreciate this a lot. Hope that someday we will meet on a live show)