DJ Kitty Lectro mixes Gothic Rock, Industrial, Darkwave, Deathrock, New Wave, Post Punk, Minimal Synth, Dark 80s, Dark Alternative,  and more. Αt the same time she also presents a number of outstanding remixes of names like Siouxsie, Kommunity FK, Strap on Halo, Lestat, ANKST, Angels of Liberty, Andi Sex Gang, March Violets, Still Patient, and many more, that are always spectacular and very well accepted by the dedicated media and the whole dark alternative tribe worldwide. Her latest glory is the ‘Nocturnal EP’ which was inspired by the s/t song by the legendary post-punk outfit The Membranes. Due to this release and on many other things too, she granted us a very interesting interview. Here is the Dj/ Remixer Kitty Lectro!

Hello KITTY LECTRO, we recently saw your name involved with The Membranes in the ‘Nocturnal EP KITTY LECTRO Remixes’. As we are well aware, The Membranes are true legends in the punk and post-punk realms, forming back in 1977, the year that punk broke. What led you to remix that specific song, which was initially included in their latest album? 

Nick Clift (Ski Patrol / Folk Devils), who heads the Definitive Gaze label, contacted me about remixing a dancefloor version of ‘Nocturnal’, but even though the song was chosen by John (Robb) and Nick, it is also the song I would have chosen. My schedule is very nocturnal. I reside on the edge of a forest and I walk the area at night. I often see bats and owls and other night creatures.

You’ve worked on and finally presented two different versions of the song. I am pretty amazed on how an original Post-Punk song turned at first into an Electrowave / EBM oriented track as in the ‘KITTY LECTRO Remix’, and then you rebuilt that same song as a darker and more Industrial sounding track, the ‘Meow Meow Money Mix’. Was the original music that pushed you to these 2 new adventurous tracks, or did you discover things in it while you started remixing it? What happened? 

It is some of both. I imagine most remix producers discover new things within every new project, such as Vocal or Guitar nuances which are normally obscured by the other instruments. The original version of Nocturnal is very frantic, but it is also quite spooky, so that energy was already part of each mix from the very beginning. I had been wanting to produce another Darkwave Dance track with an edge, so I was excited when Nick sent the song to me. John’s vocal was perfect for what I wanted to do. As for the Meow Meow Money version, it is very much tongue in cheek. I will elaborate more on this in a moment.

Your collaboration with Beauty In Chaos is also remarkable – several remixes on the recently released ‘Beauty Re-Envisioned’ album and also a special collaboration with BIC and Wayne Hussey, frontman of British Post Punk legends The Mission. Can you tell us about your work with BIC mastermind Michael Ciravolo and such a giant as Hussey?

Michael Ciravolo is an absolutely amazing Guitar player and musician. This is the foremost reason why so many acclaimed artists from entirely different genres of music agreed to the initial project. Michael is an incredibly friendly person, and his list of contacts is overwhelming, but if he did not have such prowess on the Guitar any of it would have happened. My involvement with this is all very surreal to me, even now. Having Simon (Gallup)’s Bass tracks and Wayne (Hussey)’s Vocal tracks on my desk and being told I have carte blanche to create whatever I wish is an indescribable feeling.

 

Can you share any news with our readers? What are you remixing next as KITTY LECTRO?

Hopefully, something you enjoy.

You are fairly considered among the most luminary remixers in the world. This is what your work shows but also the reception indicates such! You are a very skilled and experienced engineer and I’d like to ask you what is it, in your opinion, what makes for a good remix? 

I do appreciate you saying this, I truly do, but there are so many remixers in the world of music and many of them are very brilliant. I am only a novice compared to a lot of them. As for what makes a good remix, I believe this is subjective, just like all music is. I have enjoyed remixes which stay fairy true to the song’s original format, and have also enjoyed remixes which are drastically different from the original song.

In your opinion, Is a good remix best suited specifically for the dancefloor or is a good remix born out of respect for the music itself, regardless of its final destination (dancefloor, home or car stereo, etc.)?

Again, what makes music good is a matter of one’s taste. Each of the scenarios you mention has its place.

 

photo by Kitty Lectro

From your remixes of Siouxsie’s ‘Red Light’ to Strap On Halo’s ‘It’s All Over’, and from ANKST’s ‘Salem’ to other bands like Angels Of Liberty, Still Patient, and Kommunity FK, what intrigues you enough to want to touch and work with a song?

The magnetism must be there. There has to be something about the structure or content of the song which entices my attention. Often I will hear melodies and other rhythms in my mind while I am listening to the original version of the song. The opposite is also true. I decline requests to remix a song if the song itself does not captivate me to want to rework it. But it is not because the song is a bad song. Not at all.

 

What is the Rubella Ballet x Kitty Lectro ‘Vampire Wedding II (The Honeymoon Sequel)’? I am asking because it sounds like the strangest work I’ve heard of yours and because it seems pretty unique and peculiar track. 

Tongue in cheek. To the chagrin of pretty much everyone, the term “Goth Rap” has been used in regard to various Rap releases on SoundCloud and similar websites. Everyone wanted the term to go away because it has zero connection to actual Goth music. Zero. Regardless of this, the term seemed to take hold. Instead of being irritated I decided to flip the tables, so to speak, and have some fun by making a Rap version of an actual Goth / Post-Punk song. Zillah (Minx)’s vocals fit perfectly with that type of beat because her vocal flow in the song is very similar to Rap. Sid (Truelove) is still telling me how much they love the version and play it loudly all the time. It is all very tongue in cheek but it worked out. This is similar to what led to the Meow Meow Money version of the Membranes song. I sent a demo version to John (Robb) and Nick (Clift) as a bit of a giggle. They told me they liked it and wanted to release it.

 

Please tell us about the gear that you currently use when remixing a song?

These days I still use a lot of hardware, much of which is vintage. Synthesizers, Guitars, Drum Machines, Samplers, Sequencers, even Casio and other “toy” keyboards. I use a computer for some of the arrangings. Every song is different and I often change my setup to accommodate this.

As a DJ, what do you prefer the most – the creative privacy of your studio or spinning music for a groovy audience?

Both. The way I play a set does not differ much between the two. It is certainly nice to have an audience but I’m also comfortable in my own company. When I mix a set in the studio I turn the lights down and I turn the sound system up loudly.

KITTY, how did it all start with you creating remixes? What inspired you to become a music producer?

Mostly from DJing. I’ve always been experimenting with music but I became more serious about producing remixes because I wanted extended or unique versions of songs for my DJ mixed sets.

Are you fond of any other remixers’ work? If so, who are they and what do you like about their creations or approach? 

Mark Gemini Thwaite, of course. Fantastic producer and musician. The MGT collection of remixes speaks for itself. Mike Textbeak is a master of Industrial Glitch, but he is so much more than that. I could easily see Textbeak as a top act on the WARP Records roster. Reactive Black’s heavy yet very dancefloor-friendly remixes are very very good. Also, Raymond Ross from the bands ANKST and Sine Division, in particular his Synthesizer programming.

What are your current top-5 music choices for playing at home or in the car? We can probably find them all on your Mixcloud, but why not also tell our readers about them too? Maybe you can indulge us by telling us something about each of them? 

My top choices change often and are all over the map musically. Some days I listen to nothing other than my old Punk and New Wave records. Some days I listen to a lot of Asha Bhosle and Lata Mangeshkar type music and also newer Asian sounds. I could listen to Reptile House era The Sisters Of Mercy just about anytime. Same goes for the other Leeds bands; Red Lorry Yellow Lorry, The March Violets, and the rest. However, if you will allow, I would really like to use this moment to shine a light on some artists; The Ghost Of Bela Lugosi, Double Echo, Masquerade, Dr. Arthur Krause, The Cemetary Girlz.

KITTY LECTRO, thank you very much for this interview and to Shauna at Shameless Promotion PR for setting it up! Is there anything else you’d like to share with our readers? 

Thank you for inviting me, and thank you to all of the bands and music fans who are keeping Darkwave, Goth, and Post-Punk undead.

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Interview by Mike Dimitriou

 

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