Explosion Extra Ordinaire

The interview with Herbert Noord
by Robert Rhoden

The title explains all?
In a way, it does. The story goes as follows: We did a gig in a little town up North. Rinus who is also a recording engineer had brought his equipment just to check out a few new microphones he had just bought. It was not a set up for an official recording. Pierre and I didn't even know that he should record the concert. After a couple of months Rinus phoned me and exclaimed: "I just listened to the tapes and the music is ‘buitengewoon' (translated: Extra ordinaire). That explains half the title. The other half of the title came from me when I listened to the music. The music gave me the impression of an explosion.
This is the first live recording of Advanced Warning?
We did several live recordings in the past, but this is the first one that satisfied all three of us.
When I hear that you listened to the tape a couple of months after the concert I get the impression that it wasn't a concert that struck your mind.
Oh no. The music did strike my mind. I was just confused. Both Rinus and Pierre wanted to experiment. The music went to all directions like a flight of pigeons that has just been released from their cages. I had not the slightest idea how the concert would develop. But it was great doing it! Pierre is always recording our concerts on a small walkman. When Pierre and I drove home, we listened to his tape and we were convinced that it was interesting stuff, but far out. I had to take a certain distance to be able to judge the material.
How was the reaction of the audience?
Joke, who was with us was completely flabbergasted. ‘What was happening?', she asked during the intermission. Anyhow, a lady from the organization came to me and asked if we could play a little bit more accessibly.
Yes. The audience was confused. The thing is that Advanced Warning is always playing unexpected music. We just start playing and follow the mood of the moment. At this occasion we were really investigating all the corners of the musical spectrum. After the break our search was finished we played a couple of our own standards but in a complete new setting. The whole concert after the break was one long piece of music with our songs as Miou Miou functioning as small little isles, just for a rest and then the music went on.
Little isles?
Yes, that's how we call them. We start off with a theme but then the music is leaving the borders of the scheme and we are swimming together. The next moment one of us sees a familiar isle (= a theme) that fits in but also gives a different feel and direction and so on and so on.
The three of you are doing a great job. Who really astonished me was Pierre.
Pierre is one of the best kept jazz-secrets of the past century. Since the first moment Pierre and I met, something Rinus arranged, I knew that he was the drummer for me. Every time when we play together he surprises me. He's constantly developing his skills and always sharp. The solo's he plays on this recording are great. Most times when you hear a drum solo on a recording there is suddenly a gap. One of the reasons you don't hear that much drum solo's on recordings. When Pierre gives a solo there is no gap. Amazing.
What did you mean when you said that Pierre is one of the best kept jazz-secrets?
Simply that only a very few people know what a fantastic jazz-drummer Pierre is. Most people know him from his period with Focus and Brainbox, but that was almost thirty years ago. At that time Pierre was already playing jazz but became well known as a pop-drummer. They glued the label ‘pop-drummer' on his forehead and that was it. When Pierre should be labeled, and please don't, it should be in the first place as a great musician and in the second place as a drummer.
After finishing this project, any further plans for the future?
This was a project that came in between really as a big surprise. Advanced Warning had just recorded a couple of new tunes but I was not quite pleased with the results. At the moment I am busy with developing more new songs. Hopefully we can finish another recording session before the end of the year.
I missed Advanced Warning on stage last year. Will we see more of Advanced Warning on stage in the near future?
I don't think so. There might be a change in the future but at the moment I am fully concentrating on developing music and not on performing on stage. The people who like our music are more easily reached through Internet and cd's then by giving concerts. Inventions as mP3 make it easier for us to reach our audience. In the nearby future there might be even a possibility of direct broadcasts. We are working on it.

Amsterdam 23.3.2000

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