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
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 http://anders.hultman.nu/album/al/microdisko-20040401 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 (www.powerfx.com), 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
http://technopolitan.se/~crazyq/ 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. ( http://technopolitan.se/~crazyq/mp3 ) A lot of them are recorded
from chiptunes, will your new site feature the SNDH or even better the XXX/SSD
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
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
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!
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