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Alive 9
IRC Live Interview

with CrazyQ

cxt: Hi, some of  us associate your nick  with a Swedish YM  chip-composer while
others might also know your real name, which is Christian Källström. I am pretty
sure there is much more to tell. Take your time to introduce yourself.

CrazyQ: Well, I'm 26 year old  guy who lives in Stockholm, Sweden.  I'm probably
most known as Crazy Q, the YM/MOD  composer, but I also do non-chip music in  my
own Studio. I like to listen to  hip hop (dirty hip hop like the  madlib stuff),
House (French house, and  Deep stuff , like  Alan Braxe, Naked music  etc.), old
80's stuff (like  Giorgio Moroder, Booby  Orlando etc.) and  of course Chipmusic
(like YM-Rockerz, Mad Max etc.).

cxt: What are you doing beside music, I mean what's your profession?

CrazyQ: I work in a music store that sells studio Equipment, so I have music  in
my head 24 hours a day.

cxt: Ah that's nice, you are still working for ESTRAD MUSIK Stockholm then. I am
almost sure you can arrange some "crazy deals" for our readers :) 

CrazyQ: Of course I can!!! Just drop a mail!

cxt: Hehe,  guys you  heard the  man. Make  sure you  use that offer. What's the
origin of your nick? (Crazy Question eh?)

CrazyQ: Well, I was 12 and it sounded cool and I'm also "crazy" in love with  my

cxt: I heard you are a member of  YM Rockerz and Creators and joined DHS at  the
LCP  party. While  Evil /  DHS has  already made  a huge  announcement it  seems
Mermaid / Creators still needs to update  the Creators site a bit. When will  we
see any new demos of these groups featuring your music?

CrazyQ: DHS is  taking up some  stuff that never  got finished under  my time in
Timebomb. And Mermaid is helping me set up my c64 so, some sid/ym/mod tunes from
me is on its way!

cxt: Cool, since you are also supporting Alive it seems you will be pretty  busy
over the next time.  Anyway I heard you  are also doing graphics  with DPaint on
your Amiga. Is there  something finished you would  like to show us,  or are you
just practicing a bit?

CrazyQ: Well, at the moment I am still learning.

cxt: A pity, I was  hoping to get the next  cover picture for Alive from  you ;)
Anyway that Amiga leads to another unavoidable question. I know you own a Falcon
MKX, an Amiga 1200  and possibly a Mac,  which other machines could  we possibly
steal from your place?

CrazyQ: Maybe I will do a picture for  you for the next Alive :-) But to  answer
your question: In addition  to the machines you  mentioned I own  a 1040STE (1MB
and 4MB), a Mega 4 STE, a 520 ST, a 1040 STF, a C64, an Amiga 500, an Amiga 600,
an Apple  G4 and an Apple 8500 (G3 processor upgraded).

cxt: Nice collection, I know you are hunting old Synthesizers as well, is  there
something else you are after?

CrazyQ: Ohhh,  you seem  to know  a lot!  Well at  this moment  am looking for a
SEQUENTIAL CIRCUITS STUDIO  440. It would  be nice to  have one since  I already
have the Akai MPC3000 and EMU SP-1200.

cxt:  Wow,  the Grand-Daddy  of  Sequencing/Sampling Drum  and  Music Production
Machines :)  Well if  anybody still  has that  12 bit  sampler gathering dust at
home, make sure to ship it ASAP  to Stockholm :) However I guess the  halfmeg of
RAM inside the SCI  will just make it  an additional drum-machine nowadays.  Are
you also collecting other stuff like game consoles for example?

CrazyQ: Yes  I do!  Currently I  have 2  GBC, 2  GBA, Atari  2600jr, NES,  SNES,
Megadrive, 2 Dreamcast, PSONE, XBOX, and the Atari joystick with built in games.

cxt:  Hell, you  must have  a huge  flat :)  Can you  name your  top five  games
including the platform and tell us what makes them special to you?


1. IK+ (Atari ST) The original Beat'em up, lots of fun!!!

2. Dead or Alive 3 (Xbox) Kasumi Rules!

3. Shenmue 1+2 (DC/Xbox) the only game that made me cry!

4. ChuChu Rocket (Atari) I prefer this one instead of the DC Version!

5. Bust-A-Move 4 (PSone) I love to play this with my girl!

cxt: Nice, IK+ placed 1st. It was  a funny game for sure, I remember  playing it
for hours against a friend of mine. I must have been very close to the  purchase
of my first Atari, long before I started pixeling and coding demostuff. I  think
I remember your favourite demo is  "The Cuddly Demos by TCB". Which  other demos
do you like and what do admire most about this type of programs?

CrazyQ: Yes, "The Cuddly Demo" is my favourite demo, but I also like, Posh,  Odd
Stuff, Breath and  many more. What  I like about  demos is the  design, and that
demo makers make the Atari to do amazing things!

cxt: Was the Atari ST your 1st computer?

CrazyQ: No, it was an old IBM thing  that my dad took home from work in  1988 or
89. Hercules graphics, 5.25 inch discdrive ... My first Atari computer was a 520
STFM. It was sold by Atari bundled with 20-30 games.

cxt: Since you have started to draw, there is just one other ability missing  to
start your own projects. Have you ever thought about learning to code?

CrazyQ: Coding!! Yes I have, but I'm too stupid to learn that stuff ... ;-)

cxt: I wouldn't say that, but it usually  takes some time to get into it. I  saw
you  posting at  the YM  Rockerz Board  in fall  of 2002.  You have  done some
contributions to  the YM  Rockerz demos  "popstars" in  April and  "warryorz" in
December 2003. Since May  you are listed at  Atari Forum and some  month ago you
started visiting the #atariscne channel on IRC quite frequently. I haven't heard
much about you before, so where did you stick around before that?

CrazyQ: I  was mostly  checking DHS  Hompage and  tried to  get Timebomb on feet

cxt:  Since you  mentioned Timebomb  earlier, would  you please  explain to  the
unaware masses what hides behind that  name. You might want to mention  some URL
where we can learn more about it?

CrazyQ: Well, Timebomb was a lame demo crew founded in 1993 maybe. We made  some
x-rated slideshows with famous babes called "The naked Truth".

cxt: 1993? Well that explains why  I haven't heard anything about them.  I think
it was 1993 or 1994 when I quitted the scene.

CrazyQ: I am  not really sure,  we were like  the same group  but we changed our
name quite  often! He,  he, he!  We wanted  to have  a cool  name! We  also used
"Bionic Brains", "Y Crackers", "Crazy Crackers", ...

cxt: Hehe, Crazy  Crackers sounds like  a snack :)  But since we  are talking of
talking of names: Could you name the other members of Timebomb?

CrazyQ:  LOL, here  comes the  member list:  Brainiac (concept),  Mr. Jimp  (mod
music), Crazy Q (ym/mod music), Black  Adder (gfx). Black Adder was also  member
of the Syndicate. Black Adder joined to the group very late. It was just  before
the end of Timebomb,  so he didn't make  any graphics for a  production. I first
meet him in Spain on my vacation.

cxt: I think I remember you said  once, that DHS will resurrect some of  the old
Timebomb  projects. What  can we  expect, another  "naked Truth"  slideshow, or
something completely different?

CrazyQ: Well ... no slideshow, but some music related stuff ... !!  ;-)

cxt: Tell me more :)

CrazyQ: Well, I think I can tell you what it is as I think it's going to be  out
anyway when this  nice interview is  over. Its the  last Timebomb project  I was
working  on: "The  Beatbox Sample  Disc", that  features some  REALLY nice  old
Beatbox, sampled by me.

cxt: This brings us back to the  maybe most important part of your life:  Music.
:) You  mentioned somewhere  that you  attempted to  merge an "oldschool feeling
with a  modern touch"  within your  tune "Outlaw".  This seems  to be  a general
concept for a lot of the music you compose. Also a lot of modern "Popsongs" seem
to be riding the retro wave, combining songs and sounds from the past (ATM  80th
and 90th) with modern  elements. Is this a  general trend and what  do you think
about it?

CrazyQ: Yes I think so, and I always liked the sound of the 80's! I was  growing
up at that  time, and I  danced a lot  to Breakdance and  stuff. The sounds, and
melodies are a big part of my  productions and that's why I collect old  synths:
Mainly to get  the old sounds.  I think that  the retro sound  in the commercial
market is a direct result  of most VST plugins -  you get today - sounding  like
the old synths.

cxt: At  we can find  some
pictures  of  you and  other  musicians at  MicroDisko.  It seems  ancient  game
consoles and computers found their way into todays music. Despite the fact  that
most of use love chiptunes,  a lot of people aren't  too fond of the blipps  and
blopps from  these early  machines, what  audience are  you aiming  at with your

CrazyQ: I do music  mostly for my self,  If I like my  music, then I don't  care
what other say,  as long I  can stand up  for my tracks,  but If people  like my
tunes, that makes me happy, then I now that other people understand my thoughts.
I also think that music is universal and that a good tune is a good tune, so  it
doesn't matter if it's a chip tune or an orchestral score!

cxt: Hehe, tell that to my girlfriend :) Have you ever thought about becoming  a
fulltime musician,  or would  you like  to stick  to your  current life and stay
independent from the commercial music biz?

CrazyQ: Of  course I'm  aiming to  do music  full time.  Music is  my passion! I
already made sample CDs for  a company called PowerFX (,  and In
the near future, I will make a YM-sample CD...

cxt: Hehe, maybe we  can speed things up  a bit. :) If  I get you a  good record
deal, which percentage can I expect from your income? :) 

CrazyQ: He, he, he! How much do U want?

cxt: I would say 95 percent for me and 5 percent for you :)

CrazyQ: He, he, he! I would give you 10 percent max...

cxt:  Lets  get  honest again  :)  and  take a  look  at  the situation  in  the
professional music biz. A  CD on the shelf  of a music store  goes for 15 to  25
EUR, which is much too expensive if you ask me. The Artist receives maybe 1  EUR
for each CD sold. If  we use 19,95 EUR as  the retail price that’s merely  5% of
the price. Ok there are costs not included into this calculation like  producing
the CD or printing the booklet, shipping  the stuff etc. But if you cut  out the
middleman you could offer the CD or a download for much less and possibly sell a
lot more this way. I wonder why musicians don't distribute their songs on  their
own. All you need  is the web as  an advertising and sales  platform. What's the
reason nobody dares to make that step?

CrazyQ: That's the way I like.  It's the YM-Rockerz philosophy: Fuck the  Record
Industry, and do it yourself! If you look at the Techno/house scene, most of the
artists have their own record label! I 'm thinking of starting my own label too,
but a label needs time, and at the moment I don't have time...

cxt:  Is  lack   of  time  also   the  reason  for   your  website  located   at to lack textual  content? When will we  be able
to read more about you and your projects?

CrazyQ: Well, at the  moment yes... but expect  an update of the  site in really
near future! And btw, it will have a new address.

cxt: Since you are a musician nobody will be surprised to find some mp3 files on
your website. ( ) A lot of them are recorded
from chiptunes, will your new site  feature the SNDH or even better  the XXX/SSD
files too?

CrazyQ: Some SNDH might come up really soon! I think I heard of another guy  who
is about to release some or all of my songs ;-)

cxt: You seem  to like XXX  (TripleX :) a  lot, what makes  this editor superior
above others and possibly explains your bias for it?

CrazyQ: Yes I dumped SSD, and went for the MIGHTY Triplex! The fist time I tried
it I was like really irritated  about the non-scrolling pattern! So I  went back
to SSD. Later, I heard Dma-SCs "Spring Party". This track blew my mind away!!! I
tried TripleX again and I noticed  it has the same commands as  PRO-Tracker, and
it sounded soooooo good!!  I started to like  the non-scrolling patterns. Now  I
use  Damos  version  of  TripleX  (and  guess  what:  I  miss  the non-scrolling
patterns). It's a KILLER! The sound this baby produces is awesome. It has a more
"airy" sound than SSD and even more SID like! A big thing for me with TripleX is
that it is easy to make shuffle!

cxt: IMHO the drums in TripleX sound  a bit weak, especially hi hats. Is  that a
flaw in the editor or just the laziness of today's composers :)

CrazyQ: To be honest I  use the drums from the  demo tune, so I'm lazy.  He, he,
eh! U can call me "Lazy Q" ;-)

cxt: Ok, "Lazy Q" ;) and now for something completely different :) If you  would
get an invitation to STNICC 2015, would you get your rusty wheelchair moving  to
attend it, or  would you prefer  to stay at  your nursing home  slurping blended
baby food from your feeding cup :) ?

LazyQ: I will oil up my wheelchair and get my lazy ass to STNICC 2015!!

cxt: Wise  choice! Otherwise  I would  have called  you "Lady  Q" ;) What do you
think about clones and accelerators  for Atari machines? Will they  be necessary
to  keep the  scene alive?  Do you  like them  or do  you stick  to the  classic

LazyQ:  Ahhhh,  well I  like  the clones!   I'm  really looking  forward  to the
Coldfire, I heard the MinT kernel already runs on it.

cxt: What's your opinion on emulators like STEem or SainT Do you use them or  do
you prefer real hardware?

LazyQ: :-) Well  I use STEem  on a friend's  laptop when I  am travelling, so  I
think it's a good thing!

cxt: Its time for the unavoidable  Alive brainstorming Test, I am sure  you have
already heard about it. I think this  weirdo STS invented it, and it seems  I am
still sticking to it. However, name the first thing that comes to your mind  for
the following letters. It might also  be interesting to add a short  comment for
each word.


C: Crazy Q (my nick)

H: Hentai (xxx)

R: Respect (word to the scene)

I: IRC (chat, chat)

S: STE (big love)

T: Tits (BIG love)

I: Infogrames (mixed feelings)

A: Atari (endless love)

N: Nathalie (my sister)

K: Kung Fu (smack my bitch up)

A: Amiga (old enemy)

E: Enigma (fresh Amiga group)

L: Lamers (I used to be one)

L: Lawyers (strange)

S: Sexy (like my girl)

T: TripleX (my main Tracker)

R: Robot (man machine)

O: Otari (REAL)

E: EMU SP1200 (phat dirty bearts)

M: Manga (like it a lot)

I: Ice (cool as ice)

S: Snake (snake style! Kung Fu style)

C: Christian (me)

R: Road kill (ehhhe)

A: Algebra (ehhhe)

Z: Zebra (funky animal)

Y: YM-Rockerz (da crew)

Q: Quincy Jones (da man)

LazyQ: Ha ha ha! This was funny!!! :-) Moore!!

cxt: And  finally the  crazy question.  If your  life would  depend on it and in
order to save it you would need to spent the night with either Courtney Cox, Uma
Thurmann,  Pamela  Anderson, Robbie  Williams  or Tom  Selleck.  Whom would  you
choose? (I had to include the latter one, since somebody in this issue said guys
with a moustache make him horny :))))

LazyQ: I would say Uma Thurman if she wears the yellow outfit from Kill Bill!!

cxt: Really? I might have chosen Courteney Cox, she looked incredible  in "Crime
is  King" :) Anyway, finally we are  through :).  Feel free to great  anyone you
want or tell the world your "final words" because this interview is about to end

LazyQ: Oki! Final words: I like to say thanks to all Atari sceners that kept  me
going on! I  feel so much  like a brother  in the Atari  family!! Keep the Atari
vibe alive!!

cxt: Thanks a lot for your time and patience to answer all this stupid questions
:) Good luck with your future  productions and welcome aboard the Alive  team. I
am pretty  sure the  scene will  love your  songs for  Alive 10. Stay real, stay
fresh, stay Atari!

                                                      2004-08-18 Cyclone/X-Troll

Demoscene related Releases:

2004-08-01 Swingers Club / Winner tune at LCP 2004
2003-12-16 Outlaw (SSD) / contained in YM Rockerz - Warryorz
2003-04-20 Phat & Phunky Part 1 / contained in YM  Rockerz - Popstars
199?-??-?? N.N. / contained in Timebombs - The Naked Truth Slideshow

Alive 9