Electronic music was dead, you thought. Well, all that one thinks needn’t be true, and just because they are not visible on the top radio stations or on the hit lists does not mean they have their takers. In fact, electronic music, electroclash & seedier versions of electroclash like electroporn, electrocrap etc have continued to be popular in spite of Peaches’ mainstream decline, not that she is the only ambassador for the genre. In an age where artists are expected and implored to be politically correct to suit the tastes of a bland mass audience, electroclash, electroporn and other sub-genres of electronic music are surprisingly popular, if one just looked around.
Garbage for instance was one of the most famous alternative rock bands to experiment with electronic noises, and sounds. That inspired several musicians to try their own versions of electronic music, and Junksista is a promising band in this genre. Hailing from a small town in Southern Germany, Junksista (the lead singer goes by this stagename, apart from Junksista being the band’s name) grew up listening to Garbage and was heavily influenced by their electronic beats and bass guitar riffs. A stylish electro-porn sound, sexually explicit lyrics, heavy bass and synthesizers and a sprechgesang lyrical style have ensured that Junksista will grab the attention of those who love electronic music.
Grab attention, she surely did. With their first EP ‘Click Me’ and with the album ‘Cunt Rock’, Junksista has got quite a cult following of her own, and she works with her long time friend, band-mate and producer, Boog. Boog is not only the producer of the band Junksista, but also helps with fine tuning music, and plays the guitar. “Gaywhorebourhood,” inspired by a weekend trip in Amsterdam could just be one of the most popular tracks by Junksista so far, and is reminiscent of kinky people dancing away in gay clubs dressed in tight rubber, PVC and collars. Junksista does not like to carry the baggage of writing about how life sucks, or how life is unfair. While she acknowledges that life can be truly unfair through her dark guitar riffs and industrial beats, she also makes music fun with pornographic lyrics.
Perhaps, electroclash can bring porn and music together, and finally give them both a space they deserve in the realm of art. At the basis of every song is ridiculous humour, and a tendency to ‘not care about anything’.
In this interview, Junksista, aka Diana S. reveals her plans to take over the world, make the next album, her views on electronic music and music industry in general, and how badly she wants to perform live at a Garbage concert.
JC: Much of your music is heavily influenced by Peaches’ version of Elctroclash, and Garbage’s version of sophisticated and stylish electronic music. With Garbage’s new album coming up, we are not really sure what the sound is going to be. However, one could say that electronic music is dwarfed in popularity when compared with other dance music genres that are currently popular. Do you see that your style of music could revive electronica?
Junksista: Obviously I´d love it if we could revive electronic! Haha, wish us good luck with that! Yeah dance is everywhere! I mean even RnB artists converted to dance music…WTF? It seems to be the best way to sell music these days. That explains why all these recent dance songs sound, like they were cooked according to the same recipe. And it will be going on until someone brave comes along with something new and then everyone else will copy it. I think there still is really great electronic music out there. You just won’t find much of it in the charts and on the radio.
JC: How relevant are musical trends to you, especially when you are growing as a musician? It goes without saying that the journey uphill can be nerve-wracking and difficult, to say the least.
Junksista: I don’t give a flying fuck about trends.
JC: Many 90s musicians have begun to produce and record music on their own. This is mostly because the mainstream record companies find it difficult to market what they consider isn’t popular. Would you ever ‘tone’ down your style of music to make it more appealing to the larger market? An album name like ‘Cunt Rock’ definitely would attract the bashers.
Junksista: I don’t know if that would help to reach a larger market. If we tone down our music, won’t it be more random then and drown in this ocean of random music out there? So far our experience is, that we’re reaching exactly the kind of people we wanna reach. Just not enough of them so far!
JC: The kinky and explicit lyrics are honest, and straight from the heart. Was it difficult for you to be yourself, and did you meet resistance from the mainstream groups?
Junksista: I don’t think the lyrics are straight from the heart – they are straight from somewhere else, if you know what I mean! Haha!
The thing is – I am having fun writing those lyrics. I rarely feel like writing deep and meaningful stuff – leave alone political content.
Life is unfair and love is a bitch, at least music should be fun!
JC: Describe an incident that made you more skeptical about the way things are, in the music industry.
Junksista: I could write a lot about this, but basically it comes down to this: right now we are spammed with so much trashy, unoriginal music and it’s a result of the fact that the music industry doesn’t care if something is original or artistic. They consider artists and music as a productand rate it by how well it can be sold. It’s a shame that many talented artists are starving out there cuz they simply can’t find a way to reach a larger audience.
JC: Your musical and lyrical style could make you an alternative gay icon almost immediately. Do you think electroporn/electroclash music would find popularity among the mainstream? If it did, would it defeat the purpose of being ‘alternative’?
Junksista: In a perfect world, it would be mainstream and everyone would listen to Junksista all day long. Haha, but seriously, we don’t waste any thoughts on the question “Are we still alternative enough?” “Can we do that song, or will it sound mainstream?”. Hipsters can torture themselves with these questions and decisions but we just do what we do best and we hope that as many people as possible will enjoy it. If that would make it mainstream, I´d be fine with it. We won’t rest until our music is played in every gay club worldwide!
Junksista: Oh my god, Cuntsista…I should have thought of that!! Of course I needed a name related to Garbage. And let’s face it – Junksista sounds cool. It was also my DJ name.
JC: Tell us about other bands, musicians that you like and those who have influenced you.
Junksista: As trashy as it sounds, but all this 90s Eurodance influences me a lot. Stuff like 2Unlimited or Culture Beat. It was the music of my teenage years and I just can’t stop loving it. I am also a huge fan of (obviously) Garbage, Björk, Goldfrapp, Simian Mobile Disco and The Kills and some 80s bands like the Bangles, A-Ha, Billy Idol and Cyndi Lauper. Boog, the other half of Junksista is a true rocker and unbelievably great guitar player. He is into stuff like Trivium, Killswitch engage and many 80s rockbands. I still think it’s amazing that the two of us can actually work together and agree on the result!
JC: Which unknown, struggling musicians would you like us all to listen to?
Junksista: Well I don’t think they’re struggling, but hey – everyone should check out the Vinyl Black Stilettos! It’s mega catchy, really well produced and the singer is super-hot! We found each other on Twitter and I stayed in touch with front Lady Laura D.! We remixed a song for them and all of us like liked the result so much, that we decided to record an EP together. That’s actually the next thing we’ll release and I am very excited about it. We´ll play a gig together in London on the 8th of October and we’ll play one of our new songs together.
JC: What’s your second album gonna be like?
Junksista: It might feature more guitars! When we recorded the first EP, we didn’t even plan to play live. Now that we know we will, we want it to rock more!
JC: What do you think of the famous ‘noir’ incident that Shirley Manson endured?
Junksista: If you mean that Geffen Records turned her down cuz her material was too noir then this is what I think: either the material wasn’t that good, or it was and Geffen Records just didn’t think it would sell well. But I guess we’ll never know. Also she could have released it on her own. That’s what many musicians do these days.
JC: How excited are you about Garbage’s new album, and what do you think the sound is going to be like?
Junksista: I am mega excited! And I have no idea at all what it will sound like, Haha! I am trying not to expect anything, just be open to whatever they’ll present us!
JC: It is clear that you love Garbage, and that you want to perform with them. Which Garbage song/songs would you like to cover, and what would you play if you got an opportunity to open for them?
Junksista: I will make a statement now: Junksista won’t ever cover anyone. When I like an artist or a song, I just want to listen to it – I don’t feel the need to prove that I can also do this song or even improve it. When I heard Placebos cover version of “running up that hill”, I thought “Gimme a break!” I am not saying that it`s always bad and wrong to cover – I heard a great version of a “The Knife” by Gossip and I usually like it when Marilyn Manson covers a song. Also I´d probably be up for a parody of something that is already shitty.
If we’d open for Garbage we’d simply play this cool show we’re preparing now. We added lots of guitars to all the songs which make them just bigger. I don’t know any electro band with a guitar player like Boog in them, so I think we’ve got an advantage there!
Of course I’d be thinking the whole time “Holy fuck, are we really opening for Garbage right now?”
Watch out for more on Junksista, and the next time around, it is going to get only more exciting! Meanwhile, do join the ‘Junksista for Garbage Support Act Group on Facebook’ that’s been screaming for attention from the evil people in Garbage to let Junksista open for them. Or go ahead, and Tweet till Butch Vig, Shirley Manson and other darklings get the message that Junksista is here to stay, and that she and her fans will do anything to open for Garbage.
About Shirley Manson’s debut album being too ‘noir’, she gave away many of her songs on her Facebo0k for free, and they were all gems. That makes many of us think that her debut album was not commercial/mainstream enough for the record companies to package, market and sell.