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Interview with

Bon Harris and Jason Payne of Nitzer Ebb

What a fantastic gig at the Trafo House in Budapest on 12th January! The three guys from NITZER EBB turned their small gig into the best show of their current tour! Just one day after performing as a support act for DEPECHE MODE’s “Tour of the Universe” at the Budapest Arena, the EBB really rocked the house! I had the opportunity to interview Bon and Jason after the show.

Reflections of Darkness (RoD): Were you satisfied with the Hungarian audience? What’s your opinion about your headliner gig in Budapest?
Bon Harris (BH): Very satisfied. We think it's one of the best shows of the tour so far, US or EU. Really great show!
Jason Payne (JP): We all felt that Budapest was one of the best shows so far on this tour.

RoD: Jason, how did it feel to share the stage with your old band mates again?
JP: It feels great playing with them again. It actually feels better than ever.

RoD: What happened to you after the end of the “Big Hit Tour”?
JP: I played in various other projects, did some sound design for theatre and T.V. and generally just lived my life.

RoD: Can you believe it has been 15 years since you have played with NITZER EBB in Hungary? Do you have any memories of Budapest?
JP: It's crazy to think it's been that long! I remember that show well. It was at Petofi Hall and I remember it being one of the best from that tour as well. So in conclusion, Budapest is apparently one of the best cities for us!

RoD: Your new CD will be released in Europe January 22nd, featuring 12 brand new songs, 4 of which the fans already knew from different soundtrack albums. I think that it’s probably one of your strongest albums to date. It’s great to listen to Douglas’ voice on this record and hearing him growing as a vocalist. One of my favourite tracks is ‘Going Away’ - it’s a beautiful dark ballad. Whose idea was it to compose a song like this?
BH: The song came from an improvisation on piano, I played chords and the basic structure and Douglas added lyrics. After that I re-orchestrated the song for synths, and that's what you hear on the album.

RoD: There are some danceable, almost pop-tunes too like ‘Hit You Back’ or ‘I Don't Know You’. Did you write these more mainstream songs consciously or by accident?
BH: We acted spontaneously whilst writing, so that was the unconscious part. After that, when you have the basis, then the development is very conscious.

RoD: Which track is your personal favourite?
BH: Different songs on different days, ‘Once You Say’ and ‘Going Away’ are regular faves.
JP: My personal favourites change from week to week. I love playing them all live. Some of the tracks we haven't been playing live like ‘My Door Is Open’ is one of my favourites.

RoD: The German version of ‘Industrial Complex’ is featuring a remix, did by Alan Wilder. Who asked him to remix the song ‘I Am Undone’?
BH: We asked him to remix a track, and he offered a trade - we did a mix for him, and he did a mix for us.

RoD: Your former label, Mute Records is releasing your back catalogue on a 5-disc set. Is there any news on the release of a NITZER EBB DVD?
BH: Not yet. We have decided to continue filming on the 09/10 IC tour. After that we'll look to edit everything. 

RoD: Now, you’re on tour with DEPECHE MODE. How is the mood at the backstage compare to the “World Violation Tour”?
BH: Different… and very good. Times have changed, everybody is in a different place, for the better it seems.

RoD: What will you do after finishing the tour with DEPECHE MODE?
BH: More shows. More music. NE and otherwise.
JP: After the tour I will rest for a couple weeks, and then Bon and I will be working on a side project for a live Theatre show in Las Vegas.

RoD: Will you carry on with your solo-projects this year too?
BH: Depends on time. NE will tour for most of the year. Jason and I have theatrical project to develop the music for, after that we'll see…

RoD: There are ‘Industrial Complex’ release parties. What’s your message to your fans?
BH: Enjoy the release. We hope you have as much fun listening as we did making the album. We put a lot into it and we hope you get a lot from it. Thanks for the great support.
JP: Thank you all so much for being so supportive! We truly do appreciate it!

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