Heidi Mortenson is a multiple , sizle beats, effect fist, strong and beautiful warm voice from Denmark. She has been producing 4 albums since 2005 on her own label Wired Records and stands as one of the Electro icone of Berlin. WakaWaka welcome to Heidi Mortenson on Wrangelkiez !!!
You have created your own label Wired Records in 2005 , you have been releasing EP and Compilation of berliner or exberliner artists such as Kevin Blechdom, Mosh Mosh, Miss Le Bomb and Noisy Pig. Is it necessary to be an independent artist in the music industry today?
It’s a good idea if your music is digestive to a wide audience. And especially if you have a name. I dropped the label last year cuz it was too much work and too much of a time consumer. I couldn’t afford to hire people to run it. Actually I sold it all to my mum for 100 kr.
Was it important for Wired Records to break the fences between art and music?
What the releases have in common is that it’s electronic music with vocals. The art work similarity of the releases if any is a coincidence. I know that some labels have a concept when it comes to aesthetics. I’m not much of a concept thinker. I’m more a go-with-a-feeling kind of person. I have a thing for spontanity and improvisation and not until afterwards do I see the red thread.
You spend a lot of time in your studio in Berlin, are you working on an album?
Yes I’m putting the final touch on a double album. It’s a cover album and I’m very serious about it. I decided not to compromise on this project, I focus on every sound to be just how I pictured it in my head. And different to my other releases this album will be mixed by a pro. I have also opened up for collaborations. F.i. I have two music friends who come into the studio and listen with fresh ears and point in directions or make suggestions. This is a very useful and recommendable exercise for the solo artist. So one CD features some of my favorite current artists who cover some of my songs and the other CD is me covering songs of more or less well known artists from various decades.
If you were doing an outdoor performance where would it be?
Well I dunno if it counts as a performance but last May I went to Ilulissat in Greenland and shouted out to the icebergs.
It’s where the inland ice gets pressed out through the fjord and then crack off as icebergs and float out to sea. The echo between those icebergs is the most amazing acoustics I’ve ever experienced. Immediately I wanted it as a plug-in. (a reminiscant sigh)
You have a very free and personal approach of beat boxing; do you explore sound art as well? What is your experimentation playground?
Yes well I don’t really see myself as a beat boxer as I don’t practise it as much as I probably should. I beatbox walking down the street or on my bike or you know in a kind of waiting position when I’m off by myself. Microphone techniques are different to that. And also I’m not at all competitive about it. I do it cuz I need drums in my live set. Handling a drum machine or a computer doesn’t appeal to me right now as I’m doing everything 100% live and very very intermistic.
I’ve experienced a lot with my voice and acoustics. I’ve re-built my parents old telephone receiver which I use as a microphone live. I’ve recorded my voice inside a washing machine and so on. Basically I’m into experimenting as this is how mistakes happen and mostly they are interesting cuz they’re unpredictable little surprises which come out of the blue and either deliver or lead me onto a new path.
You have been travelling a lot recently, do you have a recommended place to do field recording?
Oh well I did a lot of field recording in Greenland, but it’s mostly silent there. Apart from the huskies that howl a lot, you hear some water running and a few birds. But the acoustics are fascinating if you provide the sound yourself. The crackling of ice though is quite lush. A couple of years back some scientists who were out monitoring earth movements in Antartica found a singing iceberg. Sound waves from the iceberg had a frequency of around 0,5 hertz, too low to be heard by humans. But by playing them at higher speed, the iceberg sounds like some eerie songs. Tracking the signal, the scientists found a 50 by 20 kilometers iceberg that had collided with underwater peninsula and was slowly scraping around it. The water pushes through its crevasses and tunnels at high pressure and the iceberg starts singin. You can find the audio file on the internet and hear it yourself.
Do you have a muse?
I find break-ups to be a strong inspiration cuz it’s a turbulent time where strong feelings need translation and an outlet . My friend Kevin Blechdom once said that she always regarded me like a kind of electronic blues singer. I love soul music from the 60s probably cuz I can be quite melancolic and I use my sensitivity a lot in terms of comprehending things and situations. Probably I use my intuition a lot more than my rationality which also makes me a bit of a romantic. And now I guess we’re back to spontanity.
Kevin Blechdom and Heidi Mortenson
Is human beat boxing a form of language?
Eh, not to me it isn’t. I mean, not more than the feelings you put in it, which can be a lot or not so much.
What is rhythm?
Rhythm is timing and consistancy I guess. Rhythm has moods and either plays off a character or provides the backdrop setting.
Because of the importance of timing and consistancy I think rhythm has a lot of similarities to time in general.
What is love?
Wauw big questions you have. I don’t think I’ve ever heard a full explanation of this term. I think I would explain it as a crossover between insanity and amazing profound and positive energies that can heal and bond and make people feel alive, or the oposite. Love is probably the most important thing in the world.
What is art?
A fart without the f !?
To jump into Heidi Mortenson’ sound I recommand to click here on her web site !!!!!
or on her mother’s label WIRED RECORDS