When did your career in music begin?
LM > I'm not sure when my so-called career began, but I started making noise tapes when I was in my mid-teens, in 1990. I kept doing a lot of stuff, and it slowly snowballed into what I guess could be called a career.
Could you tell us about your earliest recordings?
LM > They were very rude recordings done on cassette recorders. Basically just me screaming and making body noises into the small microphone and then making cut-ups. For the first years I didn't have any instruments or effects. Just the cassette recorder.
What was it like collaborating with Merzbow?
LM > It was really nice. I assume you're referring to my recent album with Merzbow called "Mer Mar". I have known Masami Akita for many years, but this was the first time we had recorded together in a studio. We did it all in one day in GOK Sound studios in Tokyo. We had hours of material, then we edited it down to the 40 minutes you hear on the LP. Merzbow is great. He is the master. There can never be too many Merzbow records.
You have worked in many genres - jazz, metal, etc. What is your favorite genre?
LM > Noise, of course.
Could you name some of your influences?
LM > Growing up in the rural north of Norway is probably my biggest influence. I started making noise music as a way to escape the boredom of life there. It had a much stronger impact on my music than anything else.
Are you a fan of Norwegian Black metal?
LM > No, not really. I like some of it, like Enslaved and early Darkthrone, but mostly it's not what I'd listen to. I prefer '80s black metal, like Celtic Frost, Bathory, Sacrofago, Tormentor and bands like that. In metal my taste is mostly heavy and thrash metal. Right now I'm into this danish band called Witch Cross, which did only one album in the mid '80s called "Fit for Fight". It's very melodic, with a strong NWOFBHM-influence. Amazing to find out about them after all these years.
Are there any writings (books) that inspire you as well?
LM > Everything you enjoy to do in life influences you to a certain degree, and I read a lot, but I wouldn't say that I have any direct literary influences. My work is sound and visuals, not words.
Are there any particular noise records that you have come across recently that have become favorites of yours?
LM > The most amazing release to come out of the noise scene recently is Phil Blankenship's "Sex Magic" CD - it's really brilliant. I also like Aaron Dilloway's "Modern Jester" double LP quite a lot. Those guys have been going for a long time, but I feel they've reached their peaks with these new releases. There's also new and interesting artists like Lettera 22.
Are there any favorite Merzow albums that you like - what is your favorite period for his music?
LM > I would say any Merzbow-era has it's ups and downs, but I especially like the 1989 to 1995 period, when his sound was at the most dense. Fat, psychedelic, cosmic waves of electronics. There's plenty of gold from these years, but if I had to recommed one today it'd be "Artificial Invagination" from 1991. But if you asked me tomorrow I'd recommend you another title.
Photo by: Peter Gannushkin