This exclusive Faithless interview was conducted by The Future Tense as part of the ON/OFF project.
Each artist was asked the same series of questions relating to the live music experience, before being photographed just before and again immediately after performing.
Venue: O2 Arena, London
Date: December 11th 2010
What is your most memorable live moment as a fan?
(Maxi Jazz) Out of thousands of live shows I’ve seen, two in particular pop into my head. The first is KRS-One at Brixton Academy, which is special anyway as he rarely tours outside of the US. The Academy was packed like I’ve never seen it before, and everybody knew every single word. The other was the Prince ‘Lovesexy’ show at Earls Court. I don’t think I will ever seen anything like that again.
What is your most memorable live moment as a performer?
(Sister Bliss) Playing Glastonbury before Stevie Wonder in 2010 was very special. Glastonbury as a whole is a very special place to play, not just because it’s Michael Eavis’ home, but because of the creativity and consciousness raising aspects of the event. Glastonbury always has that extra dimension for me. We also played Mexico City for the first time in the same year, and the warmth of the crowd actually bought us to tears a couple of times, way beyond the usual ‘up for it’ audience.
Have you had any disasters on stage?
(Sister Bliss) Maxi did some impressive improvised Cossack dancing in Norway once. We were playing at the top of a ski slope and it was -5 with horizontal snow falling, and the stage was covered in patches of ice. We were about to go on and some guys came in with a load of shots of schnapps. Then while he was dancing he slipped on the ice, and went down on his bum but instead of getting straight back up he started kicking his legs out like a Russian dancer in an attempt to look like he meant to do it. As you can imagine our laughter kind of gave the game away!
Do you have any live performance aspirations?
(Sister Bliss) Wembley Stadium would be great – we’ve done Wembley Arena but I’d love to play the Stadium too.
(Maxi Jazz) Also going back to Puerto Rico would be cool – we had a fantastic gig there last time and I love the place.
Any pre/post performance rituals?
(Maxi Jazz) I do a lot of punching and kicking, like I’m about to have a fight. Basically try and get that fight or flight mechanism kicking in. I saw Liam Gallagher once, and he was just radiating this kind of aura. And then I got it about an hour later – the guy is just angry, all the time, and it makes for a great live performer. So now I get myself angry before going on stage!
A full list of featured artists and interviews can be found here.
Dates: 2009 to 2014
Photographer: Tom Oldham
Curator: Ed Bartlett (The Future Tense)
Featured Artists: Arctic Monkeys, Basement Jaxx, Beady Eye, Beth Ditto, Chase & Status, CSS, Duran Duran, Editors, Ed Sheeran, Elbow, Faithless, Flying Lotus, Friendly Fires, Grimes, Janelle Monae, Jessie J, The Kills, Labrinth, Lana del Rey, Lykke Li, MIA, Muse, My Chemical Romance, Mystery Jets, Paul Weller, Plan B, Primal Scream, Prodigy, Pulled Apart by Horses, Rizzle Kicks, Rudimental, Snoop Dogg, Suede, Swedish House Mafia, Take That, Tinie Tempah, The Vaccines, Warpaint.
Partners: War Child, Pledge Music