While studying “Architecture”, I started admiring scenography, heavy sound systems and designing space with sound. Electronic machines therefore were a great start. I started exploring my music on machines, loopers and synthesizers. During my research in order to find a path in this unlimited world, I joined the Tunisian orchestral and got the chance to be on stage with over 100 hundred musicians sharing the same passion.

8th instalment of the project features an audio-visual set by an outstanding North African artist: Katerina Lenoir.

 

Releasing two albums earlier this year ”Ausgang" and "Undisclosed", now on the preparation of the third one "Beton Atmen”, Katerina is a Cyborg type B-147, queen and frontline soldier, half vampire half war machine.

 

We also had the chance to talk about the Queer-techno scene in Tunisia opportunities/struggles and the limitations by the state authority on the scene.

NCOUNTERS:  In which city did you grow up? How did you form your early musical aesthetics and how did they evolve?

Katerina Lenoir: In 1993 I was born in a North African country called “Tunisia”. I remember when I was 7 years old; I started enjoying “The Beatles” and “The Rolling Stones” which were my parents’ favorite bands. At the age of 9 years old, I got my first violin and started classical music classes. At the age of 17 years old, I got my first guitar, and in 3 years of practice, I became the lead guitarist and vocalist of my first rock band “Morphine” composed of 5 talented musicians. With them I got the chance to tour around the country, experience different stages and frequenting a lot of musicians, producers and sound workers. In the meanwhile, while studying “Architecture”, working with different event organizers, I started admiring scenography, heavy sound systems and designing space with sound. Electronic machines therefore were a great start. I started exploring my music on machines, loopers and synthesizers. During my research in order to find a path in this unlimited world, I joined the Tunisian orchestral and got the chance to be on stage with over 100 hundred musicians sharing the same passion. Finally at my final years of Architecture Studies, I got attached to this particular style of construction called “Brutalism”, solid blocs of concrete, straight lines, small windows and heavy unfinished looking materials and surfaces. I felt as if this architecture reflected exactly my personality. In order to translate this into sounds, and influenced also by of one of my favorite clubs in the world, “Tresor – Berlin” ,  I started composing EBM, drum and bass music, and Techno. Now with influences also from the Russian underground scene, the Cyberpunk movement in Tokyo, and local LGBT scenes, I finally released 7 singles and 2 albums “Ausgang” and “Undisclosed”.

 

 

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NCOUNTERS, 2020

We have actually growing underground scenes and movements here in Tunisia, very talented musicians “DJs, producers, performers..” and successful record labels. However this is still a 3rd world country, with radical religious people in power, closing our clubs, shutting our parties, locking our youth in prisons. Rules are very strict around here. Drug use, drinking alcohol in public, same sex love, a simple kiss outside can lead us to several years of hard jail time that will for sure destroy our physical and mental health and in many cases, our future.

How is your experience on your local scene? Do you see any effects of the political situation on the scenes of Brussels and Luxembourg?

We have actually growing underground scenes and movements here in Tunisia, very talented musicians “DJs, producers, performers..” and successful record labels. However this is still a 3rd world country, with radical religious people in power, closing our clubs, shutting our parties, locking our youth in prisons. Rules are very strict around here. Drug use, drinking alcohol in public, same sex love, a simple kiss outside can lead us to several years of hard jail time that will for sure destroy our physical and mental health and in many cases, our future. The lack of clubs and safety is definitely destroying rave culture every day in here. “We feel like strangers in our own hometowns”, that what most young people will tell you about our country.

What are the challenges/opportunities that you go through in your local scene? Can you point out some problems and things that you want to change?

Even though we’re still fighting for our rights as human beings every day, the road is too long. An intellectual revolution is exactly what we need right now then we can discuss changing rules, opening new clubs, and giving better opportunities to the young generation.

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NCOUNTERS, 2020

As an engaged artist, I have the obligation first of all to transfer our message as young Africans to the world, and music could be a great way. Our daily struggle is definitely my first source of inspiration, and me trying to compose and build a new future for us all is where I’m heading.

Do you see any (dis)advantages of your particular identity such as gender/sexual orientation/ethnicity/political view or so when you find space for your art?

Since the current situation in here doesn’t really allow me to show up in public, perform and represent my art, I decided to work on small gatherings and private parties. This is the safest way to do it for me and for my public.

What is the source of inspiration for you? How do you locate your art and artistic perspective of yours?

As an engaged artist, I have the obligation first of all to transfer our message as young Africans to the world, and music could be a great way. Our daily struggle is definitely my first source of inspiration, and me trying to compose and build a new future for us all is where I’m heading.One of the resolutions that I’m currently working on is to build a new cyber world called “Cyklic”, a virtual world accessible via VR headsets, where I can gather the community, launch our parties there; where we can explore our dreams and fantasies.

 

What are your future plans?

 

For now, I’m planning to complete the design of this cyber world and put it into work. I’m also working on my 3rdalbum that I hope to release by the end of this year in a virtual rave party inside this world “Cyklic”.

Text Editor: Erol Görür

Video Edit: Tolga Sögüt

Graphic Layout: Can Hatunoglu

NCOUNTERS, Berlin (2020)

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