B L I N DººC O Y O T E

Drem Bruinsma (Blind Coyote) started out back in the mid-1970s experimenting with two ARP 2600 modular analog sythesizers, a modified Philips electronic organ and two Revox taperecorders. In 1983 he released with minimal means “Tribute to a Threadbared Bridge”, which could be re-released this year by Minimal Wave, if all goes well. That same year 1983 he moved from the Netherlands to Brussels, Belgium, where he set up a project recording studio. There he wrote scores for video, dance, theatre, did commercials and session recording, and collaborated with the individual members of Tuxedomoon, amongst others. Early nineties two albums were released: “Six Reels Of Joy” (Materiali Sonori-Italy), followed by “Eros Déletère” (MSI-France), while he appeared as guest musician/co-author on albums by a.o. Sussan Deihim & Richard Horowitz, Minimal Compact and Steven Brown.



FAULT: You describe you sound as Alternative / Electronica /
Experimental. How do you keep your sound so unique?

BººC: First off, having to describe my sound in certain given categories and substyles sprouts forth from the consequencial need, when opting for digital music release-only, to classify your own productions, by selecting from a given list a number of tags, for obvious reasons: people are like that more able to find you with ease under category. But these tags often fall short in relation to the musical content, and it doesn’t make me feel easy being “labelled”-down.

This said, I spend a lot of time shaping, shaving, adjusting, combining and pre-mixing the sounds and instruments I use, and always in relation to its role in a composition: as a rythmical structure, a lead, a pad, a hook, a layer, a counterpoint, break, effect, supportve arrangement, whathaveyou…. Another, entirely different reason could be the fact that I have been working as a sound engineer for ENG (Electronic News Gathering), which made me enthusiastic for field recording. Many of the sounds, pads, soundscapes and phrases I use in my work are coming from original field recordings, later sampled and truncated and processed to be embedded in the overall mix. I try to avoid factory presets and library sounds (or tend to deconstruct them). They may be processed with quality studio equipment, perfectly mastered with high dynamics etc., but they are made available for a wide array of applications and thus often lack personality. I’d rather make do with the technical possibilities I have, which are for sure limited. It is important for me to occupy a specific niche in the broad offer of electronic music and related substyles. Part of that musical intention can be translated in focusing on your source material, next to, ofcourse, your own typical approach to composing and structuring, of building a piece. And then there is the mixing stage, where a personal stamp consists basically of the combination of your creative choices.

FAULT: What does the word Minimal mean to you?

BººC: Not following the typical song structure verse-chorus-verse-fill, etc.

Leaving out rather than filling in. Imagining what could be there. Replacing a lead by a blanket, or giving the lead to a bassline. Or dumping the lead alltogether.

You can translate this imagining an empty, pristine landcape: it doesn’t NEED man-made constructions, urban sprawls, highways lined by industrial parks….littering visually the otherwise unbroken line of the horizon.

FAULT: Who did you grow up listening to?

BººC: When I was an early teenager I discovered the Canterbury Scene and this captivated me instantly: The Soft Machine, Robert Wyatt, Hatfield And The North, Egg, Kevin Ayers, National Health, the Henry Cow. A bit later I found electronic music from Germany inspiring: Tangerine Dream, Edgar Froese, Klaus Schulze, but also The Can, Karl-Heinz Stockhausen, krautrock, then onwards to Steve Reich, Terry Riley and John Cage. I listened a lot to jazz and to progressive rock bands during the late 1970’s and later to ethnical music from Southwest Asia and the Magreb…also discovered the bass lines of Bill Laswell, the blues of John Lee Hooker, film music of Bernard Hermann, and lots of marginal, rare stuff that nowadays doesn’t ring anybody’s bell.

I never got stuck on one musical style, taped late night radio programmes so I could look up those artists newly discovered in my favorite neighborhood record store, where I spent nearly all my savings on LP’s.

FAULT: Do you come from a musical family?

BººC: My granddad could entertain the whole room with his mouth harmonica but that was about as far as it went. I have an aunt and uncle who were both professional opera singers, and my brother Dirk is an active composer, member of Blast 4-tet and Brown vs. Brown…he is commisioned to write a piece which will be performed live at this year’s edition of North Sea Jazz festival.

FAULT: You are a Composer as well as a Musician, would you ever
consider creating a film score?

BººC: Yes , that is one of the things that have been on my mind for long. I would love to collaborate with a film director who has a clear vision of how his story should take form and shape, both visually and sonically. My inspiration is rather visually oriented, so I guess it would be a challenge to develop a fitting score based on someone elses storyboard. Up until now I wrote the score for a B/W 16mm production, did the music for various inhouse video productions, and made one experimental short film, for which I also did the soundtrack, entitled Kalkar, China Syndrome Pleasure Dome, on a nuclear breeder plant that never went online, now turned into an amusement park.

video: Kalkar, China Syndrome Pleasure Dome

Furthermore, I wrote scores, and collaborated on scores, for theatre and dance performances, of which some were released on CD.


FAULT: What are you currently experimenting with?

BººC: I am in the process of recovering and remixing old recordings with current audio techniques. This implies the use of a.o. the Tenori-On, which is an unusual controller and sound generator in one, an old Oberheim analogue synthesiser module and lots of plug-ins, all fed into my DAW.

FAULT: You have lived and worked in Netherlands, Brussels and
Belgium, what is your favourite city?

BººC: There are many cities that I can consider favourite, but they all link to a certain period of my life, when I submerged in those cities for a specific reason or with a certain goal. It would be all different now, going back after many years. Cities change with the progression of the times we live in, just as much as people individually grow, change, transform. It could be a deception going back to those places where there once was a productive synthesis, an inspiring and creative base for someone who works on an artistic career. But I enjoyed Brussels a lot in the late 1980’s, and New York in the second half of the 1990’s. All-time favourites are Amsterdam, Istambul, Roma and San Francisco. Fact of the matter is that, now I have moved out to the countryside, surrounded by mountains and wide vistas, there is no city whatsoever that could tempt me to trade this in for a urban lifestyle again. I like to get up in the morning, walk out the door leaving it open, and go check on the blooming fruit trees with birds singing and my dog trailing behind me. It is a give-and-take compromise: for socializing and culture and stuff you got to drive those 30+ miles into the nearest town, otherwise your only link to civilization is via the web. And there are days that you don’t see a single soul…

FAULT: Are you inspired by your surroundings?

BººC: Where I live now I’d say the natural environment is a huge source of inspiration: the Mediterranean, the foothills, the mountains and valleys, the pinetree forests, the old, winding country roads, the 500 year-old oaktree next to a forgotten spring as a landmark, the everchanging light, timeless space and silence….But this has been true for many projects I did in the past: I observe and absorb and transform impressions and experiences directly linked to the setting I find myself in at a given time. So I recently released a concept album that was inspired by, and recorded throughout a four-year wandering about the American Southwest:

BlindººCoyote: Ear Travelogue (The U-turn Chronicles)

FAULT: You have appeared as guest musician, many times, is there
anyone you would like to work with?

BººC: Right now I would really enjoy collaborating with my friend Bernard Szaijner. He was a pioneer in modern day electronic music, but now entirely focused on visual arts and digital media production. What also often results fruitful is to do sessions with my brother Dirk, who is deep into his active musical career, and who has a very radical approach to his bariton saxophone. Other appreciated musicians I’d like to experiment with are e.g. Geir Jenssen (Biosphere) or Holger Czukay (The Can), or a male or female western or non-western vocalist/songwriter open to changing lanes. And it doesn’t necessarily have to be a musician’s collaboration…I am open to doing projects with video artists, choreographers, poets, multi-media artists, both live or in the studio.

FAULT: What do you think of modern day Electronica?

BººC: In the more commercial, dance-able segment there is a tendency to become entirely the domain of self-producing DJ’s. It is a rather repetitive image, dictated by the musical instrument manufacturers’ releases of new gadgets, sound effect generators and controllers pushed onto the market. I don’t see here a very inspired phase, mainly because the musical output is functionally supportive to the location it is performed in: the club. Yet on the experimental side of the scene there are very interesting things happening, cross-genre collaborations, circuit benders, and very personally inspired projects.


FAULT: Who is overrated?

BººC: Who am I to judge?  Besides, the established music industry and related media bombard us with lots of fabricated, marketed, pre-packaged products. If you are able to easily pinch a hole into these stars, starlets, bands, singers, stage-acts, etc. you know who is for real and who is not. Also, time will tell. Some won’t even last during their career launch!

FAULT: Who is underrated?

BººC: Gosh, so many. The real great spirits of these times don’t get airplay, lack the help of promotional mechanisms, and they don’t usually shout very loud so you gotta listen carefully, or go discover them. Off the beaten tracks you might find pearls and diamonds.

FAULT: What is your FAULT?

BººC: Haha, I knew this one was coming up as a trick of the tail! I have many faults, and I consider myself rather remote from the ideal, balanced, social and sociable human being. But many of my moods end as abruptly as they came down, and generally I succeed in trying to be a loving, caring and friendly person. My main problem is being rather receptive to outside signals, read: what is happening in this troubled world, that is after all the only one we got, and this can make me gloomy, also envious and angry at times. On the other hand I try to convert that gloominess into a creative process, so at the base of a number of my pieces there is at times suffering being tackled by kind understanding and acceptance.


digital releases BlindººCoyote

B L I N DººC O Y O T E  on MySpace