Who’s that slightly-built man performing on the main stage of this new Amsterdam-based festival? It’s clear that a festival appearance isn’t a routine gig for him. In a way he symbolizes the success of SSFB’s first edition – the festival capable of drawing a curious crowd to a main stage, led by a mystery man from Ghana that goes by the name of Ata Kak.
Your favorite DJ’s favorite DJ – Robert Bergman, known for his solid selections and contribution to labels such as Dog In The Night, The Trilogy Tapes and his new Brew project – stayed over at my new place in London the other night. Robert and I first met when we invited him over to play at one of our BAKK parties a few years ago. We’d heard stories about a guy who started working at Rush Hour and wasn’t afraid of telling people how it’s supposed to be done. The kind of attitude we like in our DJs. Since then Robert and I became friends and he debuted his first vinyl release on our label. He played at plenty of our parties and did an insane live set during a BAKK and Bunker Records collaboration in Guy Tavares’ Dystopia.
Robert was in London because we went to check out his buddies Nosedrip and Phuong Dan at The Waiting Room. After a night filled with lads, pints, women with short skirts in the rain and all of the other UK clichés that one runs into during a night out in London, we slowly segued into the next biggest cliché and best hangover treatment: an English Breakfast. I took him to Wetherspoons, a gross yet lovely and typical UK pub franchise that serves beer and English breakfast from early in the morning.
A true “place of the people” one could say. I was going to do an interview but because we were still drunk and we started breakfast with beer, things went a little different. We ended up with a slightly absurd, out of place, yet perhaps essential top 10 of life’s soundtracks. Pretty relevant if you ask me.
So Robert, what would you like to hear…
…when you’d wake up hungover on someone’s couch?
That’s totally up to whoever’s couch it is. I’m usually not big on sleeping elsewhere.
If I do, it’s probably because the night before was extra special and I went all in.
It’ll probably be what I played this morning when I woke up on your couch – Jay Dee’s take on Marc Moulin. It’s great as you can cry to it, but also lean back and just enjoy it for a minute – which are usually the only two options after waking up hungover on someone’s couch.
…when you’d just finished eating a horrible English breakfast at Wetherspoons?
I feel sick and confused, but my hangover seems cured. Yet, Wetherspoons really got me craving for an emo session. I’m aware that “She’s Lost Control” is supposedly about a girl who’s having an epileptic seizure. However, it’s uncanny how much the lyrics would apply to the other patrons at Wetherspoons too.
…during an alcohol fueled knife fight? (Robert insisted that this question be part of the interrogation)
Even though it seems very likely, I’ve never actually had one. I could see myself having some kind of showdown after a session at a saloon in a western town of sorts. It will be a high energy showdown as depicted in those 80’s action films. “Secret Life” will be great for action sequences.
…if you were in outer space and you knew your days were numbered?
It’s rather hard picturing myself in such a situation. Surely years of watching movies will be sufficient preparation to make it out there? I mean if I were on a vessel and we’d been invaded by an alien life form, it might be a different story but then it wouldn’t matter if we would be in space or not. Just for the sake of this hypothesis, going out with Creation Rebel’s Starship Africa seems fitting. It’s a great dub record originally released on 4D Rhythms in the early 80s.
…during boot camp?
There’s no way I’d ever participate in any sort of boot camp! I’m way too out of shape for those sorts of activities. If there were a dystopian future in which I was forced to undergo such a treatment, I’d probably kick it with “Witness the Fitness” as some sort of twisted remnant of the glory days.
…when your neighbor complains about the noise?
Everyone should love their neighbors, so I want to give a shout out to mine. No noise complaints yet, but if I had one I’d probably get really sour about it and play something that’s really meditative to me. One of my favorite records usually works when I need to channel frustration or when I just want to go for it – This Heat’s “24 Track Loop”. PLAY IT LOUD!
…when you hit your pinky toe?
I don’t think there are songs that would fit the agony caused by hitting your toes. So it’s best just to focus on the recovery, however short it may be. “Meltdown”.
…during a tsunami?
I definitely need to avoid all the sharks that are riding the tsunami wave and out to eat human flesh, which is probably very rare/exotic/good for them. So I’ll need a power record going that’ll boost my arms like Tyler The Creator’s “AU79”. It’s good but still chill enough to enjoy riding the wave for a bit.
…during peak time?
There’s only one record that can be played at peak time, of life, and that’s Medusa’s “Temptress”. Soak it up.
…if the internet would disappear forever?
I’m not sure if I can truly imagine such a world, so something sounding super alien would be a fitting theme for such a joyous/weird occasion. Maybe “Earth”? The title seems appropriate if we were under siege by aliens who would limit our usage of communications by shutting down the internet. Not sure if there are a lot of other scenarios which could lead to the end of data.
Thanks for your wonderful insights Robert!