RADAR MEN FROM THE MOON | Aristocrazia Webzine


Band: Radar Men From The Moon
Translation:  LordPist
Line Up:

  • Glenn Peeters – Guitar
  • Jan-Titus Verkuijlen – Bass
  • Tony Lathouwers – Drums
  • Niek Manders – Synth and Effects

They reached the third album mark and Aristocrazia has been following them for a long time, they are Radar Men From The Moon.

Welcome to our website, how are you spending this hot summer?

Tony: Drinking beer, enjoying the weather and working on new material for the next project (super secret).

Let's start by telling something about yourself, how did the band start and why did you choose this name?

RMFTM started out early 2011 as a three-piece instrumental rock band. Our singer in a previous band decided to quit because he didn't want to make psych music. So eventually we started making music without vocals and came up with Radar men from the Moon. The name itself is quite cheesy, and we took it from a list of old 50s sci-fi movies; this was the ugliest film we could find. At the moment we like to pronounce the name as RMFTM.

The third album is often a watershed, marking a band's full ripeness; what was it like to give birth to "Strange Wave Galore"? Have you changed anything from your work on "Intergalactic Dada And Space Trombones" and "Echo Forever"?

Yes we always kind of want to re-invent ourselves as artists. After "Echo Forever" we decided that "Strange Wave Galore" needed to be something new, yet sound familiar to RMFTM fans. And as opposed to "Echo Forever", some of the songs were written during the recordings in the studio. Which gave us more freedom and options to experiment with.There is obviously a huge difference between the first record and the last one, the next record is going to be different as well; hopefully in a good way (you never know).

What do you think are the best ingredients for the making of a good record?

What makes a good record? Good music right? It's all subjective to the listener really. Every time we come up with something new, we treat it like something we would like to listen to. So in that way, every new piece of music becomes the best one in our own eyes/ears during that moment of creation. However we also take lots of inspiration from other bands we admire.

Why have you chosen an entirely instrumental approach for your works?

Mainly because we don't believe music needs vocals. This means that composing music is more abstract and gives you more room to think about it. Our music isn't bound by lyrics, but relies on abstract ideas and concepts throughout a record. This doesn't mean we are never going to use vocals by the way.

Effects and electronic music have expanded their influence throughout your career, may I ask what kind of equipment you have used to record "Strange Wave Galore" (in terms of instruments, pedals, and so on)?

We use quite a lot of effects these days, it is pretty hard to remember all of the effects we used during the recording of "SWG". But there was one piece of equipment which had a significant importance for "Strange Wave Galore"; the roland Chorus tape Echo. Other than that, delay, delay and delay again.

Do you always use the same set of instruments when you play live, or you change it according to the setlist you decide?

We usually have the same set of instruments, although we keep adding new synths and effects as we go. We even got our bassplayer to use effects, which took him quite a while.

I have read that you have curated the Eindhoven Psych Lab, could you please explain how did that performance go and how it is connected to your project?

Eindhoven Psych Lab was really great. Obviously Eindhoven is our hometown and we are very proud to have our own psych party. The Effenaar (the venue) had the idea to hold a psych fest and we helped them to curate the event, and made a list of bands we wanted to see. As an organisation, Eindhoven Psych Lab then decided it would be good to collaborate with Liverpool Festival Of Psychedelia, especially for esthetics and the artwork surrounding the event. Anyway, the first edition was a great success and we're going to do it again next year.

Tell us something about one particular performance you remember with pleasure.

One of our first shows in Italy. We played at a place called Rock Valley Festival in Pavia, Brescia. We got there early in the afternoon, drank some beer, ate some pasta, set-up our gear and did a soundcheck. The promoter showed us to our hostel to check in our stuff and take a shower, everything seemed fine really. So at that point I remember we sat on the balcony chilling out and seeing this big black cloud coming over the valley. We didn't really think much of it, but when the storm suddenly started to shift we emmediately thought of our gear that was still standing on stage. We got everyone out of the showers, jumped into the van, drove down-hill (even-got stuck in the mud for a few minutes in the pouring rain) and eventually we arrived at the festival and jumped out of the van A-Team style. Everyone was so cranky because of the gear, Glenn was humming the A-Team theme song and no one could laugh about it; really funny now yes. All our gear was soaked and damaged. The PA was broken as well, so the promoters of the show wanted to cancel the festival. Leaving the bands without any money, which sucked because we needed the fee to drive back home. Eventually we dried up the drums with towels and the amps with hair-dryers. In the end we convinced the organisation to let us play inside and share the backline with the other bands. The evening was totally crazy, the audience went wild, and we had a very fun night after all the stress. Last year we got hit by another storm in North Italy, but we learned from our mistake and quickly moved the gear inside.

Are there any funny stories that have happened over all these years performing around?

Last year we had this summer tour for fourteen days. Our regular van broke down and our sound-tech couldn't come with us. So literally a day before we began the tour we arranged another van and asked some random dude on the street (at a bar) if he wanted to come roadie for us, and he did. Pretty funny guy, slept for the whole tour and drank all our beer.

What are your next live shows? Where can we have chance to enjoy your music?

We're busy writing new stuff, so we are not really bound for touring at the moment. We do play some one-off shows here and there, but most of them would be in Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium and the UK. Once the new project is finished we'll definitely go around Europe again.

The psych-space music scene is particularly active, what contemporary bands do you enjoy the most?

We don't neccesarily only listen to psych-space music, but we do enjoy experimental contemporary music in a broader sense; Shit & Shine, Nissennenmondai, Gnod, Woken Trees, The cosmic dead, The ZZZ's, The Oscillation, Earth, Oneida, Pharmakon, Led Er Est, A Place To Bury Strangers, Ceremony (not the hardcore band), Zombie Zombie, Antrophroph, Berndsen, Yvette, HEALTH and a lot more! Yeah, we're music geeks.

If a label proposed you a split release, what band would you like to work with?


Ten albums you consider as fundamental for your musical background: how have those particular albums influenced you?

My Bloody Valentine – "Loveless": beautifully hypnotic walls of noise, amazing songwriting and unprecedented production; essential. The Swans – "The Great Annihilator": more accessible than their previous work; nothing less cathartic; "The Great Annihilator" is a great piece of art. The Police – "Regatta De Blanc": amazing chorus and flanger sounds used on pretty much everything; massive pop songs, great dub influences. Iron Maiden – "Powerslave": heavy metal at its finest, timeless music; singing a long and fist pumping to Iron Maiden in a van driving to a gig can't be beat. Kraftwerk – "The Man-Machine": a lot have tried, but nobody has ever come close to Kraftwerk; pure in its simplicity, although its execution is far from simple; essential electronic music. Joy Division – "Unknown Pleasures": honest and clean sounding; heavier than anything. The Fall – "Hex Enduction Hour": repetition; repetition; repetition… and Mark E Smith. The Cure – "Pornography": darkest and most danceable album The Cure ever put out. Motörhead – "Overkill": Motörhead plays rock'n'roll. Lustmord – "Heresy": Lustmord offers the emptiness we all seek; master in low frequency information, use of field recordings and psycho-acoustic phenomena such as infrasound; whatever you do, you will never go as low as Lustmord.

Who are Radar Men From The Moon in their everyday life?

Glenn: guitar, effects, autonomous visual artist. Tony: drums, effects, communication/management. Titus: bass, effects, worker bee. Niek: synths/baritone, lots of effects, sound tech.

Do you think it is possible to live off music?

No, impossible. Unless we're playing at wedding parties maybe.

What are your interests apart from music?

Glenn: art, literature, poetry, absurdism, Belgium beer and raw sex. Tony: art, movies, games, Belgium beer and tender love. Titus: mathematics, Belgium beer and make up sex. Niek: cartoons, movies, art, Belgium beer and nihilistic sex.

What are the latest record you have bought, the latest movie you have seen and the latest book you have read?

Shit & Shine – "Küss Mich", meine liebe Throbbing Gristle – "Second Annual Report", "Wayne's World 1" and "Star Wars: A New Hope", Albert Camus – "The Myth Of Sisyphus".