David Brieske is the man behind the Fsik Huvnx project. It’s high time you got to know this artist, and we believe that the following interview, should be the best way! You can call it ambient, ethereal…whatever…This is music to get lost and dream with…
Hi David. Could you please introduce yourself to Last Day Deaf readers regarding your Fsik Huvnx project? What does the name mean?
I’ve been doing things as Fsik Huvnx for about ten years now. I had started working with sound and creating compositions, much like musique concrète. Being a visual artist first and foremost, I saw this music as an extension of that work and complementary to it.
The name means nothing and there is no specific way to pronounce it. It came about haphazardly, but I chose to use it because it will appear foreign to anyone because it’s not in any language, therefore making the project a bit of an enigma.
What is your musical background? Which artists have mostly influenced your Fsik Huvnx sound?
I don’t really have any musical training except for the music classes that I had in grade school. I’ve never taken lessons on any instrument and I’ve just started to teach myself how to read music in the last month.
I’m a really big fan of the collaboration of BJ Nilsen & Stilluppsteypa, along with David Jackman’s work as Organum. I’m sure there are some Eastern influences in there somewhere.
Back in 2012, ‘The Temple’ was supposed to be released on Iki Jime Owen Meany Records, but plans were aborted. What were the reasons? Finally, you digitally released it on bandcamp…
I don’t know the whole story, but the guy running the label just decided to call it quits. We had it mastered, the design was ready, but it never happened. I really like that album and will have it out someday in a physical format.
‘Sarmoung’ was released on cassette format by Other Electricities. Are you satisfied with this release regarding the label? Which other artists from this label would you suggest to our readers?
I was really impressed with what we did with ‘Sarmoung’. The packaging couldn’t be better. Emile from Other Electricities runs her label well. Everything is very professionally done. I have a record by Steven Hess & Miles Tilmann which is such a gem.
‘Sarmoung’ is like a maze or a puzzle. It is the soundtrack to discovery that leads to even more mystery. Would you like to help us solve this puzzle then? Would you like to leave it to the listener?
In a way, I was trying to create a soundtrack for an imaginary film. The album really just put itself together as I would find older recordings I had forgotten about, and added new material from improvisations. The titles came from things I had been researching or books I was reading at the time, all of it mostly based around philosophies. I really don’t like to divulge much information about my work, leaving the listener to discover things on his own, much the way David Lynch stays silent about his films.
In what way does sound on ‘Sarmoung’ differentiate from ‘The Temple’?
I’ve never really thought about it. I think they both go well together. ‘The Temple’ definitely has more sounds to it on the first side. I was really experimenting and putting a lot of things in there. There’s a lot of layering. But I didn’t have a synth at that time, which really dominates ‘Sarmoung’, sounding like an organ.
As far as I know, you are leaving for India for a period of time! Is it a professional trip? Would you like to share some information about this?
I’ll be in India for most of April. The trip was kind of planned on a whim, but I’ve always wanted to go there and airfare is cheap right now. I’ll be making field recordings there, along with plenty of pictures. No agenda, so far, but there are some cities in Rajasthan I’d really like to see.
Which are your favorite ambient and field recording musicians and why?
It’s one thing to just make field recordings, and another to be able to take those recordings and manipulate them in a way so as to give them feeling with the addition of musical elements. I really think Loren Chasse does this well under his project, Of. (Try to Google that one!) As for ambient music, Elodie can do no wrong.
Please name 3 desert island records, books and movies.
For music, it would have to be ‘Yasimika’ by Jali Musa Jawara, ‘Rocks Will Open’ by Of, and maybe ‘The Sky’s Gone Out’ by Bauhaus. But I’ve travelled quite a bit in desert areas and really appreciate the silence where I could be reading anything by Paul Bowles, ‘Klein und Wagner’ by Hermann Hesse, and ‘A Happy Death’ by Albert Camus. Not a huge film buff, but I could watch ‘The Sheltering Sky’, ‘Beach Café’ over and over. Maybe a Béla Tarr film.
You are also known as a visual artist. How do you combine both arts?
I haven’t done much visual art in the last three years. Occasionally I think of beginning a painting, but it never happens.
What are your future plans as Fsik Huvnx? Are you going to continue creating music under this alias?
I don’t have any plans to end the project. Actually, I have been working on a new album. Fsik Huvnx may go through some transformations and become something quite different from what it is now, I’m not sure. I have a lot of ideas, it’s just being able to realize them that’s the hard part.
Photo credits: Ringo Jimenez (first one), Janese Weingarten (second one)