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Bionikworld - Preset to Filth Funk n' Electro Disco Dirge!!

Author: Chloe Burke
Wednesday, September 10, 2003
It's been a big year for Melbourne funksters Bionikworld, a healthy dose of live performances, a critically acclaimed album, overseas interest and best of all, an overwhelmingly positive response from those right here at home. TranZfusion caught up with T-rek to find out just how chuffed Bionikworld are.

The last time I spoke to Bionikworld they were pretty close to completing their debut album 'preset 001', a project that involved countless hours (a year's worth to be exact) of hard work and frustration. It has however been a venture well worth the anguish, for no one it seems can get enough of Bionikworld's blend of rhythmic bass lines, robotic funk, wavering beat box rhythms, and splintered breaks. In fact the level of support that T-rek and Caine have received during this past year has kept them in Australia a little longer than expected.

"Things are definitely starting to pay off. While we were working on the album we were planning to head overseas not long after completing it, but the response from the Australian market has been so positive that we decided to stay here until early next year and make the most of it."

The success of 'preset 001' has also had a positive effect on other Melbourne artists.

"We are surrounded by hugely talented musicians, producers and DJ's, and have begun working closer with them since the albums completion; we have had tracks from the album remixed by Melbourne DJ/Producers Nick Coleman, Ransom, Dee Dee, and Nick Thayer. For certain live shows we have expanded to include up to 4 other live musicians playing with us."

When it comes down to it Bionikworld are essentially a live act and with over ten years of experience behind them, there is no fakin' the funk, but that's not to say of course that there is nothing left to learn, as T-rek explains.

"It's kind of like DJing, in that the more you perform with your material in front of an audience, the more you realise what works as far as dynamics go. We constantly re-write and re-work the music to keep it entertaining for ourselves and the crowd. Although we play live pretty much constantly, we still manage to write at leat one new tune before every show."

In recent times 'Ministry Of Sound' described Bionikworld as "Australia's answer to the Chemical Brothers" a reference that is flattering no matter how accurate it may be.

"That quote came from a review of our live show. We are huge fans of the Chemicals and they were an early influence on our production, but I don't think anyone listening to our material would think that we sound particularly like them. It's a flattering comparison, although I think we have a lot more disco in our sound than they do."

As progress would have it, Bionikworld are a topic of international interest, and early next year they will be heading off to Paris to experience the food and fashion - and they may even sign a record deal or two.

"We have always had the intention to head overseas as soon as possible. The other half of Bionikworld, Caine has always been heavily influenced by French club music, and through a family connection of his, we have been offered 3 months accommodation which is an offer just too good to refuse."

"Our label Rubber Records has secured distribution for our album through 'Chronowax' in France, and we are currently working on booking shows in France and other parts of Europe for mid 2004."

Needless to say there will be a gaping hole left in Melbourne's live scene when Bionikworld depart our shores, so I put the onus on T-rek to recommend me to some alternative live acts.

"The last live thing I really enjoyed was Dee Dee of 'Teriyaki Anarki Saki' fame. I also have a heap of respect for guys like NuBreed and Infusion who are turning out world standard live performances and productions, although there music isn't really my cup of tea."

It would seem that everything is falling quite nicely into place for Bionikworld, which leaves me with the question