Classical IV: Strings is a festival that challenges our preconceptions of classical music. No performance lives up to this theme more than iNSiDEaMiND. Their sound is often described as “listening to a movie” and their cinematic sensibilities have been geared towards four successful releases as well as soundtracking films, television and theatrical performances. This Friday they will be performing a piece called “STRUM” that they created specifically for Classical IV: Strings. “STRUM” is a stunning collection of film and photography showcasing worldly stringed instruments from a unique perspective. There will be string music. Spun from turntables. You need to see it. iNSiDEaMiND talks about turntables, classical music and STRUM in our interview below.
Can you tell us about STRUM?
We will be debuting “STRUM” at Classical IV. It’s a stunning collection of original film and photography showcasing worldly stringed instruments from a unique perspective.
What drew you to scoring old silent films? What’s the process of telling their stories with your music?
It’s seems that by nature our sound tends to be very visual. You could say we’ve been scoring imaginary films since we started iNSiDEaMiND back in 2005. Our first official live score of a silent film was at the Tiff Bell Lightbox in 2011 where we added our unique turntable driven warps and scratches to a Buster Keaton film called Sherlock Jr.
The pops, clicks and wobbles fit so perfectly with the texture of old film and it’s also fitting that the tool we use to create our music is one of the oldest forms of recorded mediums. In addition to scoring silent films we also create our own short films which is what we did for Classical IV.
People may be surprised to see turntables on the stage of a Classical Music festival. How would you respond to people who associate DJing more with club music than symphony halls?
Funny enough turntables are now considered classic tools. It’s something we’ve had to explain since we started but is quickly made clear once we perform. We truly use our turntable as an instrument to create original sounds, sounds that can be played next to any musician. For us it’s not about playing popular tunes for people to dance to but create an unforgettable experience.
The theme of this years festival is exploring what is “classical”. What is classical to you?
Classical is standing the test of time and remaining as important now as it was in the past. Our turntables are classical instruments because they’re still relevant.
What’s next for iNSiDEaMiND after Classical IV?
In the immediate future we will be playing alongside the Evergreen Contemporary Gamelan at two festivals. It will be our third collaboration with them. The future looks bright with more live scores and other experiences to come.