Please Support Kreative Kontrol on Patreon

I’m wading into crowdfunding to keep my own show sustainable. If you enjoy the Kreative Kontrol podcast and want to support it with a monthly pledge, please visit You can pledge $1 a month, or $4, $10, $30, $50, $100 a month—whatever you like. There are gifts and incentives to pledge but more than anything you can keep this show going. There’s no other revenue stream for this podcast; I’ve been doing it for my own fulfillment and to contribute to culture but it’s time to see if I can generate some kind of salary from all of this work. So, if you appreciate Kreative Kontrol, again, please consider pledging a monthly amount. All of the info you need is at


p.s. there are now shirts available to those who pledge at least $10 a month! Visit the Patreon page for details.

Kreative Kontrol t design by Gillian Wilson

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Ep. #285: Chicago Underground Duo

Chicago Underground Duo consists of two very notable musicians: Rob Mazurek (also of Exploding Star Orchestra, Starlicker, Pulsar Quartet, Rob Mazurek Octet, São Paulo Underground) and Chad Taylor (also of Marc Ribot Trio, Side A, Digital Primitives), who formed the group in 1997. When asked to describe their work together, they suggested their music is “an organic mixture of African, Electronic, Coloristic, Jazz influenced life supporting systematic, non-systematic feeling from two humans trying ever to expand outward and inward for the people and ourselves.” The duo’s seventh album is called Locus, which was released by Northern Spy Records in 2014, and Chicago Underground Duo played the 2016 Guelph Jazz Festival this past September, which is when we caught up for this conversation. Here, we discuss why Rob thinks Guelph is friendly and full of free hamburgers, playing small cities with cool music scenes, Peterborough New Hampshire, Ajay Heble and Julie Hastings and the Guelph Jazz Festival, how some festivals go safe, when B.B. King would play at jazz festivals, open-ended and creative music, opening for Stereolab, what indie-rock might mean these days, what 20 years ago was like for outsider musicians, social music networks, music marketing and music media that can’t figure out story angles, jazz and intellectualism, the origins of jazz as a process, the relationship between niche and big budget, general audience festivals, Esmerine, competition and cultural cores, the future of the Guelph Jazz Festival, underground culture will always thrive, Mike Reed in Chicago who founded the Pitchfork Music Festival, Rob’s fascination with the Underground, when 24 year-old Rob encountered 16 year-old Chad, Chad’s history with classical guitar playing, how both attended jazz school in Chicago, Henry Threadgill, Steve McCall, Fred Hopkins, and Air, a personal meltdown at a recital, jazz and authority and parameters and freedom and improvisation, trouble with a lower case ‘t,’ playing drums and hearing Marc Ribot play guitar, introducing electronics to CUD and musique concrete, Chad’s resistance, ‘no fear,’ samplers and modulators, the windy city, when Rob and Chad each left Chicago, gentrification and displacement, how Chicago was designed, poor communities have been pushed further out of the core of the city, the vilification of Chicago and its correspondence with the terms of President Barack Obama, when Tortoise discussed their experiences with gun violence on this show, living in Sao Paulo, the proliferation of fear in American mass media, the surreal U.S. election and its lingering impact, Bernie Sanders and the Clintons, Chad’s grandmother and declining wages, the Chicago Underground Duo record Locus, a Chicago London Underground record with Alexander Hawkins and John Edwards that’s coming out in January, the new São Paulo Underground record, Cantos Invisíveis, which is out now via Cuneiform Records, Rob’s new record with Emmett Kelly, Alien Flower Sutra that’s out now, the Chicago Underground Duo song “Yaa Yaa Kole,” and then we went underground.

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Ep. #284: Vic Berger

Vic Berger is a talented video editor and satirist based in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. Currently employed by the online video and production company Super Deluxe, Berger has made a name for himself with his surreal video creations, in which he re-edits existing news and pop culture footage to highlight their most odd and socially awkward moments. While he’s been at it a while now, both independently and in collaboration with the ingeniously uncompromising comedian Tim Heidecker, Berger’s profile has risen considerably since he began producing clips that tweak the 2016 U.S. presidential election, its various debates, and, in particular, the Republican ticket of Donald Trump and Mike Pence. Here, Vic and I discuss growing up and living in Bethlehem, little cities and big success, working from home for Hollywood, perogies all day, his degree in music and songwriting, the Beatles and Beach Boys, DIY independence but also well-adjusted socializing, playing in a band in high school before going solo, getting into music again someday, current faves like Of Montreal, Foxygen, the Lemon Twigs, raising kids and finding time for music in one’s life, going to Philly, no more movies, background music, growing sick of this negative U.S. election campaign, Donald Trump and Toronto Mayor Rob Ford, catering to the alt right movement and its key figures, The Daily Show remote segments with Trump supporters, disappointment with people more than the candidate, Hillary Clinton hatred, dealing with Trump’s inconsistencies, immovable bases, obfuscation and deliberate voter suppression, political engagement, political engagement prior to 2016, what he’s learned about the media, a lack of substantive news reporting, CNN, Giuliani the goldmine, music therapy and election stress, therapeutic Vines and YouTube videos, comedic communication and coping, making music videos and fooling Tim Heidecker and On Cinema at the Cinema into thinking he had real expertise, comedic influences like Tim & Eric, the BBC version of The Office, awkward and uncomfortable comedy, six political degrees of Larry David, vicariousness, nihilism and civilization, Curb Your Enthusiasm, giving Trump too much credit, insult comedy, the horrifying ‘Hillary should be in jail’ comment during the second presidential debate, gaudy style over meaningful substance, the stylistic trademarks of his videos, saturating Trump, digital zooming, Jeb Bush tries to seem cool, diminishing powerful people’s power, the Jimmy Fallon/Trump’s hair clip, maybe Jimmy wasn’t onboard, comedy shows held to the same standards as news shows, humanizing Trump, the air horn, Melania says “Hello?”, how he made the video sending up the recent Town Hall debate between Clinton and Trump, what works and doesn’t work, telling stories in his videos, what to expect from the third and final presidential debate, nastiness, how he thinks the election will end up going, Trump’s horribly dangerous and intimidating Election Day instructions for his supporters, divisiveness and healing, upcoming projects and people to cover, “Jeb is a Mess,” the Bush family, and that was paaaaaaaaaaaaaaamp!

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Ep. #283: Dylan Moran

Dylan Moran is a highly esteemed and award-winning Irish comedian, writer, author, actor, and filmmaker whose work has been compared to that of William Shakespear and Oscar Wilde. In a four-star review, The Guardian once said, “His comedy takes on an existential dimension, as tubby, nicotine-starved, emasculated Moran comes to represent the struggles we all wage for meaning and connection.” After a successful tour of Europe, Moran brings his Off the Hook tour to North America, including Canadian dates in Toronto on October 14, Ottawa on October 15, Halifax on October 17, Calgary on October 30, Vancouver on November 2, and Victoria on November. Here, Dylan and I discuss life in Edinburgh, Brexit and the E.U. and Scotland, how inflamed xenophobia impacts an artistic mind, yearning for darker times, no more white filters and tribalism, the frightgeist, keeping up and comedy, getting out of bed, Off the Hook, having fun, feel and winging it, a whole other show, a world with no mirrors, articulating what you’re doing while you’re doing it, what we know about Ireland and what some people know Canada, Dublin’s different, Irish syntax, the Great White North, stock taking, and that was it.


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