Lethargy
EBM and modern Dance scene duo from Spain. Keith Elcombe catches up with this new band, to get their views, and find out where they are heading.
(November 2003)

1. Hello. Care to tell us who you are and where you are from?
Hello !! We are Mayte Cruz // vocals, synthesizers, & programming
Julio Tome // programming, production & synthesizers
. Julio is from Bilbao in the north of Spain and me, Mayte, was born in Germany but my family is from Spain and I´ve lived many years in Madrid.

2. How did the band Lethargy come into being?
Julio used to work as a d.j in some many different clubs in Bilbao , but he move to Madrid to be involved in the electronic scene of the capital. Before we meet each other in a club , we have been working one by one with different projects. Both of us used to have synthesizers, sequencers … When we created lethargy in 1998 we started joining our energy ,ideas, knowledge with a very big understanding from the beginning

3. Was it a conscious effort to have a male/female setup, or did it happen by chance?
It happened because our relationship started being friends and couple at first, and then we decided we didn’t need none else in the band, two was ok.
Anyway, it is not a typical male/female setup where there is a girl that sings and a boy after the instruments ( it only happens in the live act ). Because during the creation process we work together and apart from lyrics and melodies for the vocals, I supply my ideas and feelings as well. Julio works very hard with the structure of the songs, he knows more about programs , midis, production and processing of the sounds. Both parts are very necessary for our sound , that’s maybe why it is cold and warm at the same time, because it has the male/female part.

4. Where do you see your music fitting into the alternative music scene?
Anywhere it is welcome is ok for us. What I mean is that we don’t like to be enclose in any determinate style or genus, we play electronic music but we fell free to use all the elements that we have close to us, and it doesn’t matter if one track is near to techno and the next one is dark trip- hop.
The same is for the audience, we think that there are not frontiers in the music. We fell like” two” in the middle of any city, any place around the world transmitting our frequencies through our music to the person on the other side.

Who are your biggest influences, both musically, and culturally?
Our roots are in all the music that we have listened and lived it. And that is from the 80 ´s till now ; Anne Clark , Bauhaus , The Cure, The Cramps , Massive Attack, From 242 ,Underworld, Nine inch nails ,Crystal method, Orbital, Letfield, Lamb , Radio Head ,Recoil, P.J, Death in Vegas, Dj Hell ,Björk and all the good music that arrives to our ears. We are very open with our music likes, but all that we like is inside a quality and deep line. Culturally, we´ve always been searching for the advanced and deep concepts in films, writers or any style of creation that can make you feel alive.

5. Is ‘In-Macula’ your first album release? If so, how did you find the whole album production process?
. In-macula is not our first album , we have “escapa “ that was edited in Spain in 2001 and that was realised again in April /03 for the international market by Ubahn records & Alfa-matrix (Belgium). But in any case, the album production process is very important for us. A big part of the production is already finished before we arrive to the big studio.
We also pay attention to the mastering. This time we have done the mastering at Zipaudio Studios ( Burdeaux ) .

6. What instruments/hardware do you use to cerate the Lethargy sound?
Akai MPC 2000
Sequencial Circuits Six tracks
Korg N5
Roland MC 303
Casio RZ1
Voiceprism ( Helicom )
Alesis Microverb
Fostex DMT -8, etc

7. How did the deal with Black Flames happen? Had you approached/been approached by many labels before Black Flames?
A Spanish promoter agency send to Black Flames our first cd and they contact us to do the international release of “Escapa”, but we had already chosen to do it with Alfa-matrix // Ubahn.
Black Flames proposed us to do the next one and we decided to achieve it with them, after having approached to others labels.

8. What has response been to ‘In-Macula’, both in your native Spain, and internationally?
We are in this moment having the first reviews about the album.
In our country, we have a good support on specialised radios, press , webs, TV. In the rest of Europe we are answering a lot of interviews for magazines, webs… But fortunately, both in Spain and the rest of Europe we are having a really great response by the media. We have to say we are really proud about this.

9. How did the cover version of Bauhaus’ ‘She is in Parties’ come about?
We have decided to put one cover in every album. In the first album was a cover in Spanish from “Sleepers in Metropolis” (Anne Clark). And for this one we decided at the same time that the cover should be a song from Bauhaus, and our favorite was “ She is in parties”. We love the original track and we never pretend to do a better version of the song; it is only a new vision with the novel available elements .

10. Are there any other tracks you would like to cover in the future?
At the moment, we are working on a cover of the song “Pictures of you”, for a tribute album to the Cure that is going to be released in a German label.
But for our next cover, we would like to choose a hit from the 90´s , but We haven´t chosen which one yet.

11. What about tour plans? Are you playing many live sets in Spain, and do you plan to bring the Lethargy sound over to the UK at all?
In these days, we have been doing the live act promotion for “In-macula “ in Madrid. We are also planning concerts for the big cities in Spain. In February, Black Flames is preparing a tour in Poland, Germany and maybe Russia. Apart from that, we’d love to play in the U.K!!.

12. What are your plans for the immediate future – what direction do you see the band taking?
We hope to reach to more people with our new album, and start to play lives in the rest of Europe.
We also have started working on production for other bands, we have made remixes for Neikka r.p.m, Glis , Technology, Aiboforcen and two other more bands in our country (Biotribe and Doctor Martín Clavo).
We also have 3 tracks in a Spanish film called “La Ouija “, which is going to be the premiere in the International Festival Cinema of Sitges (Barcelona); that’s going to be in December.

13. When not being ‘Lethargy’, what do you do to pay the bills?
Julio works middle day as a hair dresser and I work 3 days a week as drama teacher in a school. Apart from that, we also work as djs.

14. Finally, if there was one wish you could have come true, what would it be?
Keep working really hard on our music in order to find a place in the international scene.
We hope to be soon in front of the English audience, thanks a lot for your support.