I'll start this off by thanking Die Sektor for agreeing to an interview. You look to be riding on the crest of a wave. How are things?
Edwin: - "Things are good. Hope you are doing well Nick. We are super busy which is always good I guess. Scott and I are here to answer your questions. From the looks of the questions this should be an interesting interview."

I think it's fair to say that the release of 'Applied Structure in a Void' was memorable, if nothing else. There's been a real divide between fans of 'To Be Fed Upon'. It's clear immediately that both modern and older Industrial influence helped to mould this CD. The layering, mixing, and references to old-school Die Sektor make a clever and intricate release. For those people who haven't given 'Applied Structure in a Void' a fair chance yet, what would you say to them?
Scott: - "While working on 'Applied Structure in a Void' about half way through we definitely realized the album was a little out of the comfort zone of some of our more Terror EBM fans but to me writing strict Terror EBM all the time and the same Trance inspired Industrial with pitch shifted vocals over and over again just got a little old. Don't get me wrong, we still love and use that old sound; we just use it more sparingly and in key moments in the arrangements. When we were working on the music of 'Applied Structure in a Void' we set out to try to combine as many different influences and sounds as possible and still keep it Die Sektor, which if you really give the album an entire listen through I think you can hear that.
Edwin: - "If you were to just listen to one or 2 songs you might think we have done away with all of the 'To Be Fed Upon' sound. However, with a full listen you will hear many instances of the 'To Be Fed Upon' sound. Now that the album has been out for a few months we find that a majority of the people that liked 'To Be Fed Upon' like this album as well. But yeah I would say at least give the whole album a chance. It was made to be a real full length listening experience. It's not just a bunch of random club singles like most electronic releases since the beginning of the iPod era."

I made the above mistake myself. It's no secret that I infamously published a review of 'Applied Structure in a Void' on this site, and ripped it apart. I'm man enough to eat Humble Pie and apologize for that - the most unprofessional thing a reviewer can do is to write an article with preconceptions in mind. I didn't listen loudly, or with headphones. To that extent, I missed the layering, and almost everything that makes 'Applied Structure in a Void' special. It really does appear that cheap and inferior sound systems and PC speakers make the album much harder to understand. I've been told that a small number of people have also noticed this. Was this ever bought to your attention?
Scott: - "There was a lot of sound layering in 'Applied Structure in a Void'. Most of our songs have about 90 tracks. We brought Daniel in to do the mixing because he's really good and there was no possible way that Edwin, Alan and I could have done it ourselves and have it turn out as good as did. When we handed the tracks to Daniel the mixes were a state of complete chaos and discord. It took almost a year of just mixing to actually complete the album and I think because it relies on more technical programming and beats rather than catchy melodies it makes it harder to appreciate on a weaker sound system."
Edwin: - "The review you did was not a big deal to us originally. The whole firestorm our fans started afterwards became a big deal, but the review itself wasn't that bad. Lots of people have told us they liked the album for some of the same reasons you did not like it in the review. Wasn't the first bad review and won't be the last. Just part of the biz once you decide to start putting yourself out there for an audience. I mean I read a review on your website about the KMFDM greatest hits album where it was only given a 5 out of 10. Look at how many fans they have and the success they have had with their music. Yet an album that showcases the bands career gets a bad review. It happens. You can't expect the reviewer to understand what they are hearing 100% of the time."

Also on the subject of my initial review, as regular readers will recall, there was some drama and unpleasant rumours circulating on various forums. These rumours painted both Die Sektor members and certain labels associated with releasing the album in a very negative light. Suffice to say, that all parties involved are completely innocent of this. It saddens me to see so much drama surrounding Industrial music in this day and age. As a respected band, do you have any thoughts you'd like to give regarding these issues?
Edwin: - "Yeah we still don't really know what happened. I woke up one morning to see the drama all over the internet. People were saying we were attacking people blacklisting people all that kinds of crazy. We do know there are a few creeps out there who had some kind of anger towards us because their band never got off the ground and they made Die Sektor the target of their frustration for whatever reasons. There were some attacks to our Wikipedia page that got deleted as result. Wouldn't surprise me if the same person or persons tried to sabotage us in regards to the drama you mention. The unfortunate thing about the "drama" that started is that it created an environment where people were choosing sides on if they liked the first album or the second. Our idea was just to give the fans a different angle to Die Sektor and we still loved all our fans from the first album. We were not trying to make people choose sides. Just make some new tunes for people to bump in the cars or whatever."

The most obsessed fans (and various downloaders) have heard your initial demo 'Scraping the Flesh' and a compilation of unreleased tracks. I am one of those people who hasn't heard this material, sadly. With the increase in popularity that you have bought, is it possible that one day this material may re-surface?
Scott: - "Daniel and I have actually been going back and doing some re-engineering and mixing on the old 'Scraping the Flesh' tracks. We are definitely going to re-release those along with one or two other older tracks from that time period. It will probably be after the release of our next full length."

Die Sektor as a live unit is gathering some serious momentum, and I understand that you're in huge demand in the USA. One of the songs that I expect you play live is "Accelerant". I absolutely love the technical and musical structuring of this song, but can't physically imagine it being played live. Does any of your new (or old) material make itself difficult to perform?
Scott: - "When I was working on 'To Be Fed Upon' I had very limited live experience. It was only a year after 'To Be Fed Upon' that I decided to play live drums and in doing so it gave me a different perspective on playing shows. So 'Applied Structure in a Void' in my mind was written more with playing a live show in mind. But that's really only from a drummer's perspective... I think Edwin might think differently."
Edwin: - "We are starting to get shows lined up and we hope to bring our show to as many people as possible this year and the next. We will play Accelerant as part of the show. Accelerant isn't as hard as some of the songs like Heaven Sent Hell Embraced. There are long long strides where I am switching up my vocals styles rapidly. It's not easy but I love doing some things other people would not be able to pull off. Lot's of practice. Lots and lots. Actually the first time I showed Scott my idea for "Accelerant" I performed it live over the top of the music Scott had written so far. So it was recorded pretty much the same way I performed it the first time."

I'd like to turn the spotlight onto Edwin Alter (Die Sektor's new vocalist, and Internet representative). Edwin, you probably had one hell of a start with your career as a Die Sektor member. It took some time for people to really get used to you, but it has to be said that you've portrayed yourself as someone who has been there since the beginning. I've heard huge compliments about your contribution to the band. For those who haven't really heard the story, please introduce yourself, and explain a bit about how you got to be involved in Die Sektor. Also, how did you find learning the material from the earlier albums?
Edwin: - "I have been friends with all of the Die Sektor guys since around the time 'To Be Fed Upon' were getting ready to be released. So I have a good knowledge of Die Sektor's history from an inside perspective. To make a long story short, I had another musical project that Alan and Scott were working on with me and I in turn was helping them with some of their side projects and some ideas if and when they were going to do another Die Sektor album. They tried a few other vocalists but eventually they decided offer me the position after I showed them my ideas for "Accelerant" and after they got to see me perform live with my previous project. There is not much to say about me personally. Pretty much anything worth knowing about is in our songs and lyrics. That's great to hear that there are people out there that appreciate what I do. I and the band appreciate each and every single person that enjoys our artistic output. It was a source of stress originally to learn the material from the last album but I started to really enjoy performing the early songs and they are some of my favourites to play live because they are fresher for me."

On a more material note, Die Sektor has a knack of making some of the best album covers and inlays I can recall seeing. Fans that purchase digital material are truly missing out. I'd like to invite you to talk about the cover art for both albums. 'Applied Structure in a Void' is one of the most beautiful CD covers I can recall seeing, and 'To Be Fed Upon' is so powerful and strong in its aesthetic when you possess the CD. Do you set out with the intention of making the package as much a part of the release as the music itself?
Edwin: - "We really try to put as maximum creative effort into every aspect of Die Sektor. It was really important that the album covers match the theme and the title. We didn't want to follow the recent trend of just throwing a girl on the cover in some goth outfit. We wanted to try and think a little bit harder about all these aspects. If people are paying money for our album we wanted it to be professional and hold up to music industry standards as a whole but on a goth industrial budget obviously. Having said that 99% of the credit should go to the artist we worked with on both album covers. They were able to take general concept and make it into something real and deserve all of the credit really."

With 'To Be Fed Upon', the concept seems to very much be about self-harm. If the CD cover didn't quite get this one across, the lyrics do. The same could potentially be said about "Scraping The Flesh". If I'm not mistaken, 'Applied Structure in a Void' is based around overcoming your problems, fighting your inner problems, and breaking the chains of self-despair. I'd be interested to see what Die Sektor has planned for future releases. Are there any plans you can reveal?
Edwin: - "Theme wise the next album seems much darker to us. I feel it will come across to the listener as heavier, darker and angrier. Much of the theme of the next album is a sarcastic and negative comment on the times we live in. From a music perspective we feel it is less sporadic than 'Applied Structure in a Void' and is maybe a bit more focused and should do well to define the Die Sektor sound. It was written from the beginning with everyone involved so it is much more deliberate."

Your collaboration with Deathwatch Asia and Noitekk has enabled a host of excellent remixes from acts on the labels. One particularly interesting remix is the exclusive one on the Deathwatch Asia album 'VA311 - Direct World Action for Japan'. This is a remix of "Accelerant" by upcoming act Xiescive. The contrast between this remix and the original is something quite overwhelming. You effectively flipped the coin when you did a remix of Detroit Diesel's "All Lost Before Dawn" - Die Sektor's new sound is certainly inspired. Can we expect more songs of this delicate nature?
Scott: - "I have always enjoyed and drew inspiration from softer more melodic styles of music. Plus I really find it difficult to be pissed off and evil at all times, so I always try to keep an open mind when working on Die sektor related tracks. Die sektor is my time to experiment and just write whatever I feel like writing. So yeah, I think there will always be a more gentle and melodic side to our music."

In closing, I'd like to personally touch upon my own concerns regarding Die Sektor. I think you have found yourselves, and the new material is nothing short of essential. You have raised the bar enough to make it nigh-on impossible to continue making albums of this calibre. If anyone can, it's likely to be you guys. With the new sound, and the gaining (and sadly, possibly losing) of fans, are there any ideas in place to change your sound again, or revert to an older style?
Edwin: - "It's impossible to see where our muse will take us several years from now but in the immediate we are more focused on refining our sound rather than changing it. We had to "rip the bandage off" with 'Applied Structure in A Void' but from this point on the changes will be less drastic unless of course we take another 4 years off. The next album is a little heavier on some of the 'To Be Fed Upon' ideas but it is still going to be much closer to 'Applied Structure in A Void'. We are in deep space now and there is no going back."

An interview wouldn't be an interview without a platform for the recipients to stand on. I personally extend huge thanks and gratitude to Die Sektor for agreeing to this interview, and for being highly professional. Die Sektor, this last question is simply, yours. Say something to your audience.
Edwin: - "Thank you Nick for the interview. You and I have been talking over the last few months and I really appreciate the feedback you have been throwing my way. You are tops sir! All I could say with any merit to our listeners is in the music out now and the album we will deliver next. We hope people will continue to discover our works and look forward to seeing many of you face to face on the road. For updates on the band I suggest checking out our Facebook page for the latest news and info bits. If you have not yet, please pick up a copy of 'Applied Structure in A Void'. It is available in three flavours. NoiTekk, Deathwatch Asia and COP int. Each purchase brings us one step closer to stomping in your city".

-For this interview, Die Sektor was Edwin Alter and Scott Denman.
Die Sektor interview
May 30, 2011
Brutal Resonance

Die Sektor

May 2011
I'll start this off by thanking Die Sektor for agreeing to an interview. You look to be riding on the crest of a wave. How are things?
Edwin: - "Things are good. Hope you are doing well Nick. We are super busy which is always good I guess. Scott and I are here to answer your questions. From the looks of the questions this should be an interesting interview."

I think it's fair to say that the release of 'Applied Structure in a Void' was memorable, if nothing else. There's been a real divide between fans of 'To Be Fed Upon'. It's clear immediately that both modern and older Industrial influence helped to mould this CD. The layering, mixing, and references to old-school Die Sektor make a clever and intricate release. For those people who haven't given 'Applied Structure in a Void' a fair chance yet, what would you say to them?
Scott: - "While working on 'Applied Structure in a Void' about half way through we definitely realized the album was a little out of the comfort zone of some of our more Terror EBM fans but to me writing strict Terror EBM all the time and the same Trance inspired Industrial with pitch shifted vocals over and over again just got a little old. Don't get me wrong, we still love and use that old sound; we just use it more sparingly and in key moments in the arrangements. When we were working on the music of 'Applied Structure in a Void' we set out to try to combine as many different influences and sounds as possible and still keep it Die Sektor, which if you really give the album an entire listen through I think you can hear that.
Edwin: - "If you were to just listen to one or 2 songs you might think we have done away with all of the 'To Be Fed Upon' sound. However, with a full listen you will hear many instances of the 'To Be Fed Upon' sound. Now that the album has been out for a few months we find that a majority of the people that liked 'To Be Fed Upon' like this album as well. But yeah I would say at least give the whole album a chance. It was made to be a real full length listening experience. It's not just a bunch of random club singles like most electronic releases since the beginning of the iPod era."

I made the above mistake myself. It's no secret that I infamously published a review of 'Applied Structure in a Void' on this site, and ripped it apart. I'm man enough to eat Humble Pie and apologize for that - the most unprofessional thing a reviewer can do is to write an article with preconceptions in mind. I didn't listen loudly, or with headphones. To that extent, I missed the layering, and almost everything that makes 'Applied Structure in a Void' special. It really does appear that cheap and inferior sound systems and PC speakers make the album much harder to understand. I've been told that a small number of people have also noticed this. Was this ever bought to your attention?
Scott: - "There was a lot of sound layering in 'Applied Structure in a Void'. Most of our songs have about 90 tracks. We brought Daniel in to do the mixing because he's really good and there was no possible way that Edwin, Alan and I could have done it ourselves and have it turn out as good as did. When we handed the tracks to Daniel the mixes were a state of complete chaos and discord. It took almost a year of just mixing to actually complete the album and I think because it relies on more technical programming and beats rather than catchy melodies it makes it harder to appreciate on a weaker sound system."
Edwin: - "The review you did was not a big deal to us originally. The whole firestorm our fans started afterwards became a big deal, but the review itself wasn't that bad. Lots of people have told us they liked the album for some of the same reasons you did not like it in the review. Wasn't the first bad review and won't be the last. Just part of the biz once you decide to start putting yourself out there for an audience. I mean I read a review on your website about the KMFDM greatest hits album where it was only given a 5 out of 10. Look at how many fans they have and the success they have had with their music. Yet an album that showcases the bands career gets a bad review. It happens. You can't expect the reviewer to understand what they are hearing 100% of the time."

Also on the subject of my initial review, as regular readers will recall, there was some drama and unpleasant rumours circulating on various forums. These rumours painted both Die Sektor members and certain labels associated with releasing the album in a very negative light. Suffice to say, that all parties involved are completely innocent of this. It saddens me to see so much drama surrounding Industrial music in this day and age. As a respected band, do you have any thoughts you'd like to give regarding these issues?
Edwin: - "Yeah we still don't really know what happened. I woke up one morning to see the drama all over the internet. People were saying we were attacking people blacklisting people all that kinds of crazy. We do know there are a few creeps out there who had some kind of anger towards us because their band never got off the ground and they made Die Sektor the target of their frustration for whatever reasons. There were some attacks to our Wikipedia page that got deleted as result. Wouldn't surprise me if the same person or persons tried to sabotage us in regards to the drama you mention. The unfortunate thing about the "drama" that started is that it created an environment where people were choosing sides on if they liked the first album or the second. Our idea was just to give the fans a different angle to Die Sektor and we still loved all our fans from the first album. We were not trying to make people choose sides. Just make some new tunes for people to bump in the cars or whatever."

The most obsessed fans (and various downloaders) have heard your initial demo 'Scraping the Flesh' and a compilation of unreleased tracks. I am one of those people who hasn't heard this material, sadly. With the increase in popularity that you have bought, is it possible that one day this material may re-surface?
Scott: - "Daniel and I have actually been going back and doing some re-engineering and mixing on the old 'Scraping the Flesh' tracks. We are definitely going to re-release those along with one or two other older tracks from that time period. It will probably be after the release of our next full length."

Die Sektor as a live unit is gathering some serious momentum, and I understand that you're in huge demand in the USA. One of the songs that I expect you play live is "Accelerant". I absolutely love the technical and musical structuring of this song, but can't physically imagine it being played live. Does any of your new (or old) material make itself difficult to perform?
Scott: - "When I was working on 'To Be Fed Upon' I had very limited live experience. It was only a year after 'To Be Fed Upon' that I decided to play live drums and in doing so it gave me a different perspective on playing shows. So 'Applied Structure in a Void' in my mind was written more with playing a live show in mind. But that's really only from a drummer's perspective... I think Edwin might think differently."
Edwin: - "We are starting to get shows lined up and we hope to bring our show to as many people as possible this year and the next. We will play Accelerant as part of the show. Accelerant isn't as hard as some of the songs like Heaven Sent Hell Embraced. There are long long strides where I am switching up my vocals styles rapidly. It's not easy but I love doing some things other people would not be able to pull off. Lot's of practice. Lots and lots. Actually the first time I showed Scott my idea for "Accelerant" I performed it live over the top of the music Scott had written so far. So it was recorded pretty much the same way I performed it the first time."

I'd like to turn the spotlight onto Edwin Alter (Die Sektor's new vocalist, and Internet representative). Edwin, you probably had one hell of a start with your career as a Die Sektor member. It took some time for people to really get used to you, but it has to be said that you've portrayed yourself as someone who has been there since the beginning. I've heard huge compliments about your contribution to the band. For those who haven't really heard the story, please introduce yourself, and explain a bit about how you got to be involved in Die Sektor. Also, how did you find learning the material from the earlier albums?
Edwin: - "I have been friends with all of the Die Sektor guys since around the time 'To Be Fed Upon' were getting ready to be released. So I have a good knowledge of Die Sektor's history from an inside perspective. To make a long story short, I had another musical project that Alan and Scott were working on with me and I in turn was helping them with some of their side projects and some ideas if and when they were going to do another Die Sektor album. They tried a few other vocalists but eventually they decided offer me the position after I showed them my ideas for "Accelerant" and after they got to see me perform live with my previous project. There is not much to say about me personally. Pretty much anything worth knowing about is in our songs and lyrics. That's great to hear that there are people out there that appreciate what I do. I and the band appreciate each and every single person that enjoys our artistic output. It was a source of stress originally to learn the material from the last album but I started to really enjoy performing the early songs and they are some of my favourites to play live because they are fresher for me."

On a more material note, Die Sektor has a knack of making some of the best album covers and inlays I can recall seeing. Fans that purchase digital material are truly missing out. I'd like to invite you to talk about the cover art for both albums. 'Applied Structure in a Void' is one of the most beautiful CD covers I can recall seeing, and 'To Be Fed Upon' is so powerful and strong in its aesthetic when you possess the CD. Do you set out with the intention of making the package as much a part of the release as the music itself?
Edwin: - "We really try to put as maximum creative effort into every aspect of Die Sektor. It was really important that the album covers match the theme and the title. We didn't want to follow the recent trend of just throwing a girl on the cover in some goth outfit. We wanted to try and think a little bit harder about all these aspects. If people are paying money for our album we wanted it to be professional and hold up to music industry standards as a whole but on a goth industrial budget obviously. Having said that 99% of the credit should go to the artist we worked with on both album covers. They were able to take general concept and make it into something real and deserve all of the credit really."

With 'To Be Fed Upon', the concept seems to very much be about self-harm. If the CD cover didn't quite get this one across, the lyrics do. The same could potentially be said about "Scraping The Flesh". If I'm not mistaken, 'Applied Structure in a Void' is based around overcoming your problems, fighting your inner problems, and breaking the chains of self-despair. I'd be interested to see what Die Sektor has planned for future releases. Are there any plans you can reveal?
Edwin: - "Theme wise the next album seems much darker to us. I feel it will come across to the listener as heavier, darker and angrier. Much of the theme of the next album is a sarcastic and negative comment on the times we live in. From a music perspective we feel it is less sporadic than 'Applied Structure in a Void' and is maybe a bit more focused and should do well to define the Die Sektor sound. It was written from the beginning with everyone involved so it is much more deliberate."

Your collaboration with Deathwatch Asia and Noitekk has enabled a host of excellent remixes from acts on the labels. One particularly interesting remix is the exclusive one on the Deathwatch Asia album 'VA311 - Direct World Action for Japan'. This is a remix of "Accelerant" by upcoming act Xiescive. The contrast between this remix and the original is something quite overwhelming. You effectively flipped the coin when you did a remix of Detroit Diesel's "All Lost Before Dawn" - Die Sektor's new sound is certainly inspired. Can we expect more songs of this delicate nature?
Scott: - "I have always enjoyed and drew inspiration from softer more melodic styles of music. Plus I really find it difficult to be pissed off and evil at all times, so I always try to keep an open mind when working on Die sektor related tracks. Die sektor is my time to experiment and just write whatever I feel like writing. So yeah, I think there will always be a more gentle and melodic side to our music."

In closing, I'd like to personally touch upon my own concerns regarding Die Sektor. I think you have found yourselves, and the new material is nothing short of essential. You have raised the bar enough to make it nigh-on impossible to continue making albums of this calibre. If anyone can, it's likely to be you guys. With the new sound, and the gaining (and sadly, possibly losing) of fans, are there any ideas in place to change your sound again, or revert to an older style?
Edwin: - "It's impossible to see where our muse will take us several years from now but in the immediate we are more focused on refining our sound rather than changing it. We had to "rip the bandage off" with 'Applied Structure in A Void' but from this point on the changes will be less drastic unless of course we take another 4 years off. The next album is a little heavier on some of the 'To Be Fed Upon' ideas but it is still going to be much closer to 'Applied Structure in A Void'. We are in deep space now and there is no going back."

An interview wouldn't be an interview without a platform for the recipients to stand on. I personally extend huge thanks and gratitude to Die Sektor for agreeing to this interview, and for being highly professional. Die Sektor, this last question is simply, yours. Say something to your audience.
Edwin: - "Thank you Nick for the interview. You and I have been talking over the last few months and I really appreciate the feedback you have been throwing my way. You are tops sir! All I could say with any merit to our listeners is in the music out now and the album we will deliver next. We hope people will continue to discover our works and look forward to seeing many of you face to face on the road. For updates on the band I suggest checking out our Facebook page for the latest news and info bits. If you have not yet, please pick up a copy of 'Applied Structure in A Void'. It is available in three flavours. NoiTekk, Deathwatch Asia and COP int. Each purchase brings us one step closer to stomping in your city".

-For this interview, Die Sektor was Edwin Alter and Scott Denman.
May 30 2011

Nick Quarm

info@brutalresonance.com
Writer and contributor on Brutal Resonance

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Started in spring 2009, Brutal Resonance quickly grew from a Swedish based netzine into an established International zine of the highest standard.

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