He might be one of the youngest experimental/noise artists around but he is, nonetheless already creating experimental music and noise that is far above what one would expect for such a young man. The name has changed but not the creativity. So let’s look beyond that. After all, he has looked beyond the boundaries of noise and experimental music. He’s already amassed a sizable and diverse discography. Check out the bandcamp links below for more information.
We are grateful to the artist formerly known as Jjoosseepphh for his time in answering some of our questions.
So you’ve already built up a little bit of a discography. Why the decision to change the name and what is the significance of the new name?
I was talking with my mum a few weeks ago about my name while in the car. I was telling her how she could have named me any name imaginable. Amadeus or Gonzalez or something cool like that. But instead she calls me Joseph because I’m a Christmas baby. I told her this and she says to me that I could named my artist name anything I wanted to name it, but instead I named my self my normal name twice. So I went home and I thought long and hard about my chosen name. 10 minutes later I came up with Rodney “Honkey Tonk” Vita. The name doesn’t really mean anything to be honest with you, I just thought that if you say it just right, then it might sound cool.
What were the first noise-related recordings that inspired you to create your work yourself… that still resonate with you today?
I’ve always been a fan of weirdo music. I used to love rain dogs when I was just a little bab. Dissonance in music has always been way more interesting to me than normal stuff. In recent memory though, I can’t really think of any particular noise groups that inspired me to make noise. It just sort of happened when I started dicking around with all the equipment that I had already used to make my normal music with.
I used to borrow my cousins guitar amp, hook up my microphone into it, crank it up to 11 and scream into the mic and smack it against my drums. I was basically doing a really bad Massona impression before I ever knew that noise existed.
Massona is my favourite noisemeister at the moment now. Some of my other favourites are Emil Beaulieu, Tunnel canary, Kazumto Endo, John Wiese, Sutcliffe Jugend, nurse with wound, Controlled bleeding, C.C.C.C. and almost all japanoise. My favourite genre is post punk by the way.
What work do you feel you are most proud of at this point and why?
My best stuff is unreleased. I plan to release a dance noise album pretty soon which I think that you’re going to love.
My favourite album of mine released is probably Music By.
How has your studio set-up changed over the past couple of years? How do you envision it changing in the future?
My studio hasn’t changed once. All my stuff on BC was made with the one laptop I have. It’s been acting up pretty badly as of late, I’ll probably have to replace it.
Can you talk about any collaborations you have been a part of?
JJOOSSEEPPHH/ABU GHRAIB was a collaboration with this really cool dude from Lowell. He messaged me sometime a few months ago after I got back from a disco. He said he liked my stuff and then I listened to his and then after all that stuff the tape was released. 20 minutes of my stuff and 20 of his. I was really like his noise, I think that it’s all no input but I can’t recall if that’s true. I’d like to someday start making no input music, I love Onkyo. His newest three way split is brilliant.
Another guy who I’ve done stuff with is GETTOWORKBB. We’ve been talking on and off for a while now. I’ve sent tracks to him that he has remixed and messed with to make his own stuff. He’s also made some neato noise tracks too.
And the last collab I’ve had was with Danshoku Dino. My side is pretty bad, but I love their stuff. Their music is like a better version of Wolf eyes to me. If you ever want to know want to know what sort of humour is shared universally by noise artists, just take a look at their label KV & GR recs. Those guys crack me up.
Why do you think people listen to noise/harsh noise walls etc. in the first place?
I really don’t know. It allows for complete freedom to make whatever sort of sound you want. As for why people listen to it, I just think it’s fun to imagine the person making it loving the noise they are making.
What plans do you have for the rest of 2018 and 2019?
I have a few things in the works, that dance noise album being one of those things. I just recently did my first gig and I enjoyed it so much that I think I want to start hosting my own.
If you were offered a spot to perform live with one of the noise legends… same stage, with your equipment along side of theirs, with whom would you perform and what do you bring a long?
Probably Merzbow, just to get some hipster cred. I’d play stuff that sounds like music by while he does his usual knob-twiddling. It would be like that one live set with Milan Buricin and Justice yeldham, except much much much worse.
Your last release, Music By is radically different from previous work and features structured beats as opposed to noise? Why the radical departure and is this a sign of things to come?
It definitely is a sign of what’s to come. I’m thinking of making a sequel to it with the same crappy 90s computer sound. I feel as though I’ve made enough noise at this point using my set up. I’m still open to do splits and stuff like that, put I think I might have a bit of a noise detox for a while.
Situation: You’ve received a huge commission to create a piece of work giving an experimental music/noise soundtrack to any piece of artwork you choose. What work and what equipment do you choose for your creation?
I just recently visited the tate modern in London. I absolutely fricking loved it. Almost every single piece of art made me imagine a different sort of music to go with it. My friend reckons that I have synaesthesia, but I think I think that I’m just good at imagining these things.
My favourite sort of art is uncanny valley creppy digital media.
There was this one performance exhibition at the tate with this manga character that was bought out by some company that was sent to loads of different artists who used this character in their pieces. For some stupid reason I am unable to find a single bit of information on this piece.
One of the pieces featuring this character had her in three different videos basically mocking the viewer. I can’t remember exactly what she was saying in these videos, but after watching them I felt like my head was going to implode. It filled me with such a sense of dread and disgust for ages. Imagining a future where people can have a full conversation with their fucking iPhone fills me with such rage and hatred for technology. I can’t really explain why though.
I’m being a little hypocritical right now, seeing as I spend so much time online dilly dallying on forums and what not. But I’ll get to the point.
If I were to make a soundtrack for film, installation, whatever, I would like to score a piece focused on those ideas of digital takeover by simulated people and stuff like that. It would sound like my music by stuff obviously, seeing as that album is the audio equivalent to that digital paranoia for me.
If any artists who make art like that need a soundtrack, but up my gmail.
If no artists like this exist, then I’d like to start making art like what I just described. I make art the odd time on my ancient copy of graphics gale with that sort of feeling. I would fancy myself as being a pretentious artist who makes art like that honestly.