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Interview by Rotwang, Part II

Rotwang: Do you dream?

Roger: Oh, of course. Who doesn't? Everybody dreams, but not everybody remembers them. Daydreaming is a different story, but I do that, too.

Summer: Yeah...

Rotwang: What sort of dreams do you have, whether they be night time day dreams?

Roger: Well, I guess daydreams include things like "When in the hell is work going to be over, so I can go home and relax?!" I guess night time dreams take me into other locations and put me into other locations. For me, they're very real. They're aren't very many of the really "warped" dreams. They jump in between stories in sort of a warped, weird way, but I don't go really into these really odd worlds. So, I guess that even in my dream state, my brain still clings that is very realistic.

Summer: I have nightmares about impermanence; of change and upheaval. I like my world to be very consistant and calm. I tend to have dreams where my world is falling apart or in a state of upheaval, where things aren't as permanent as I would like them to be. I daydream about art and music, being home, or being in someplace other than where I am. I usually don't daydream in a place where I am really or where I really want to be. I really only daydream if i am not real excited about where I am at that particular moment.

Rotwang: That is interesting how you mention an aversion to change because when you listen to your music, the idea is constantly changing; the musical form and musical type is always changing from song to song.

Summer: It is, but that is a different sort of change than the change in my life.

Rotwang: Change is good, so long as you are in control of it...

Summer: Yeah, I like having control. I'm definately a bit of a control freak.

Roger: Me, too...

Summer: Music that is always the same and that never changes gets really boring to make and really boring to listen to. I get bored very easily with a lot of the "Top 40" music that comes out that all really sounds the same and doesn't really change.

Roger: It's like, "How over-produced is this song?"

Summer: Exactly! They seem to use a formula, and then write like ten songs with that formula. It's never really a different song, it's always the same song. I think that bands like Faith and the Muse and Rosewater Elizabeth really embody that diversity. I can't tell you any two songs from those artists that sound even remotely the same. They're always expanding. As I mentioned earlier, I tend to be like an octopus: always extending my tentacles in different directions to reach different kinds of feelings or moods or just different musical experiments. I don't think that any of our music stops growing. People who really like the first EP will probably like the CD, but I think they are also going to be a bit surprised at how different it sounds, just the difference between the two releases.

Roger: The first EP is really diverse, and I think the new CD is even more diverse, but it is diverse in even another direction. At the same time it still sounds like The Machine in the Garden, and I think there are a couple songs on there which will remind people of the past and a lot of songs which will give people a clue as to what we're becoming. It's almost a timeline unto itself.

Rotwang: Summer compareds herself to an octopus. Roger, do you have an animal that you can relate to?

Summer: That's definately not an animal that I relate to, by the way...that image...

Roger: I don't know... Summer, any ideas?

Summer: I don't know! I'm a primate freak...Roger tends to like my cat...

Rotwang: How about an amoeba, constantly changing shape?

Roger: I don't know what I change into. Summer is a primate freak and she's going through school studying primatology and anthropology.

Summer: I also hang out on a trapeze, which makes me feel like a primate.

Roger: True. I was raised around animals. I love them, but I don't know which one I can relate to the most.

Rotwang: Don't discount the octopus right away. They are the by far smartest of the invertabrates and can even solve problems. I once saw a documentary on The Discovery Channel.

Summer: Well, we definately love The Discovery Channel. And Animal Planet. Of course, I'm biased. I like the shows with primates in them.

Rotwang: Tell us about the label that you have started running.

Summer: Rule #1-Don't ever start your own label!

Roger: Well, there's the alternate rule to that, which is DO start your own label because there is no such thing as a good record label. If you want it done right, you need to do it yourself. Granted, that has been kind of cool how it's worked out, but at the same time, the amount of work that we've had to put into it has been enormous. We haven't had a life for the past two or three months, now. Just because, when we get home from work, its like, "Okay, band stuff..."

Summer: Yeah, we're doing the band thing and the label thing. Just being a band is hard enough on its own. People don't realize how much work it really takes to be in a band. And then doing all the label stuff on to top of it is real hard work. But it's addictive, to a point. I'm to the point now where I just want to start over again, and do it all over again.

Roger: To do it right next time.

Summer: To do it right next time! We know where we are going now, and what works, what doesn't; how to run this whole thing. I actually want to incorporate other bands into this. At this point, we really don't have the money, although we'd love to be able to do it. We have one band that we are kind of taking under the label and helping them record. We're not going to be able to finance them like a true label. It's definately an incredible learning experience, but an icredible amount of hard work with having a job and going to school.

Roger: And dealing with people who are supposed to print our booklets who are complete morons. Oh, correction...the people who are printing the films for the booklet. We are on our second group of people who are attempting to output our artwork, and it's been hellish.

Summer: These people don't know about deadlines. You have to set a release date that is like a year ahead of what it should be. Nobody else understands your deadlines like you do.

Roger: And nobody else cares.

Summer: They're just doing their jobs, and they don't care if they have it done in time. And we are paying them plenty of money to it. You can't really trust anybody to do it, and you can't do everything yourself. We're very busy! Plus we are recording that other band, Wish, which has to be done, because they are just so good, they have to be heard. It has to be done, and they don't have the resources to do it without our help. It's crazy. And expensive.

Rotwang: Where do you see The Machine in the Garden going in the future? What goals do you have, both individually and mutually?

Roger: I don't know. I am in this for the music. I enjoy the music and don't really care about becoming famous or well known.

Summer: I really want to go on a small tour.

Roger: I think that would be a lot of fun, too. I think that some recognition within the scene would be cool, but not to the point of being some sort of MTV star. That would kind of suck, actually.

Summer: We just want people to accept and enjoy our music. And to enjoy us as performers. Most people who talk to us say that we are really approachable and that we are really easy to talk to. We get approached by people after our shows to talk to us and we try to be as open. We really enjoy talking to people who enjoy our music. I really love it. I really love meeting the people who we've affected in some way or another. That's what it's about for me. There are so many others who've deeply affected me, who've moved me with their music. If I can do that for somebody else, I feel really engaged. I really enjoy talking to people who find something within our music. That's really important to me.

Rotwang: If people like the art, they will tend to want to find out more about the artist behind the art. If the artist has succeeded, the observers of the art will try to seek out more information about the personality of the person who creates it...

Roger: A lot of times you get interviews that only ask about where the band is going. You don't really get anthing from the people.

Summer: I always like to know about the people behind the music; what they are doing and what makes them tick, what interests them. It's kind of hard because some people hide behind their music like a mask. They are a totally different person from when they're making music to who they are in real life. I think that we are pretty down to earth that way, pretty real. We are not trying to embody something that we really are not.

Roger: We are not trying to be rock stars. We do it because we love it, and that's it.

Rotwang: Have you thought about film composing? Many serious musicians turn to film music after their "band" years because it allows them to be creative musically, without worrying about fame and prestige, while being quite lucrative.

Roger: My thesis...

Summer: Roger did the soundtrack for his thesis, which is really incredible. We got asked by a guy, who we haven't heard from in a while, to do music for a film in Oregon. He doing an indie film. We did some techno pieces for a local film, which was an intersting thing to do, although we didn't get paid for it.

Roger: We did it out of the kindness of our hearts.

Relevant links...

The Machine in the Garden Homepage

Roger FracÚ's Personal Page

Summer Bowman's Personal Page

Deus ex Musica Website

Images from The Machine in the Garden Homepage.