Hello what’s your name and how do you feel right now?
Hi Izioq, I’m Cyborg Jeff and i’m completely overbooked in my crazy life right now, as I’m waitin’ my 4th child !
Anything else about you that you’d like to share (age, country, favorite food, shoe size, etc.)?
Yep. So I’m… arf… 37 years old! I live in Belgium and for sure I eat Belgium Fries and drink special beers… No. In fact, I prefer drink wine and eat a barbecue with many friends! Gosh, In my young time my parents bought me shoes size 47. I hate that so I always lost them… Now, after a long work, I can buy size 44!
Well, for now I don’t have spoke about music, but that’s also my real life where music is just a part of all that crazy things I do like professional photo and video, playing old video-games and trying to be a Super Daddy!
What’s your last release and do you have something special to say about it?
My Last CD album was “Super CJ Land” and was released during Xmas 2013. It was around my 30 personnal albums… wow it’s incredible! And that album includes more than 30 tracks. It was a long, long project. I thought the first idea of this album came from 2004. At that time, I especially wrote Electro Dance/Trance music. But I already liked what we called Chiptunes Music for fun. I had in mind to do a new album around the idea of the oldschool Pixelised theme of “eMail to Elise” with a CiJibastian Bach using a crazy chipinstrument…
That folder stay many years on my computer and I’ve added and removed some new stuff from time to time. But “Electro Dance” was still the genre I mostly made till my first child was born. At that time I needed to change many things, and then during few years I didn’t wrote any music. Then in 2010 I came back, but only on a minimalist music style that realy fitted to this project.
So I wanted to change the concept of the album to “Super CJ Land” that really fitted to my new passion of oldschool video games. So I’ve asked my friend the talentous graphist Tohad to think about that for the cover while I was trying to finish to write songs and find an idea to create a whole ambient for the 30 songs (in fact, at first, there were 50 tracks !)
What software, gear, setup, etc. do you use to make music?
This album have something really special because the older track was written in year 2000. So I’ve used a patchwork of softwares. Impulse Tracker, Open Modplug Tracker, Schism Tracker, Jeskola Buzz Tracker, Goat Tracker and a Demo version of Renoise. I’ve often used just “samples” like the demosceners but I’ve also had fun with 8bits VSTi like Farbrausch V2, 4KLang, and Plogue Chipsound.
How would you describe your music, with words?
Super CJ Land : Welcome to my TinyWorld is not just a simple album about Chiptunes nor an album composed with GameBoys: this is a trip in Cyborg Jeff land with all those simple sounds and miniaturation competition from that universe. Tools have changed during this project! You’ll hear tracks wittten with the FM synthesizer well known in Demoscene world but also mood of the mythic C64 of my childhood… or some tracks sounding more Amiga and Nintendo Video Games. So I hope this diversity will be enjoyable! It’s fresh and happy !
What inspires you ?
For sure there are many things that inspire me, especially in this album that have many many references during those long years. There are inspiration coming from the great Commodore and Amiga compositors : Alister Brimble, Barry Leitch, Chris Huelsbeck, Jeroen Tel, Rob Hubbard or Laxity.
There are also an important inspiration coming from the Demoscene World like Bzam, Dubmood, Zus, KB, Rez, Ultrasyd, Maf for instance… and some of them are also now compositors for Indie Video Game like Frédéric Motte and Jake Kaufmann.
There are also just simple moments, like Xmas mood, like Fukushima fears, like discovering the Pix’n’Love books or some melodies from Owl City at the radio…
Finaly there are also people that have given to me some special power to get inspired from. My Brother Pype and his Bilou video game, my friend Pierrick who teached me how to make music with a computer, Zavie and LLB from CTRL-ALT-TEST that waked me up to write music again, my wife, my children,…
Any musician, famous or not, we should check?
Well, about other musicans, there are 3 new artists I’ve discovered and they would be my forthcoming inspiration: Lindsey Stirling, Caravan Palace and “Les Déménageurs”…
I could also invite you to listen to the last album of Zus, izioq (ed.: thanks! ^^) and Ben Landis if you’d like to hear something in the mood of Super CJ Land. All of them have written kwel chiptune albums:
Tell us about a movie, a book or a video game you liked recently…
Oh yeah, I read a lot of books about old video games. I’ve read a lot Pix’n’Love and for now I’m reading “Le Petit livre des Jeux Vidéo” from Marabout Edition. I though it was not interesting, but there are a lot of games from the seventies and early eighties I’ve discovered!
I can speak about “Player One” from Ernest Cline that was for sure my favorite book till I’ve finished Harry Potter! It’s a story about Virtual World and a quest for Atari’s artefacts. You should read it!
For now I’ve just bought a Master System, so I’m discovering some 8bits Sega games !
Please describe your actual haircut.
Hehe… I’m realy proud of my haircut. Vegeta and Sangoku have tried to do the same… but mine is better!
Any other links you’d like to share here(youtube, twitter, etc.)?
Well till 2000 I’ve seed my CD albums around the web… there are a lot of free CJ’s music on Jamendo and Bandcamp… One day, there will be a quest to collect all the 1200 tunes I’ve written on big open massive game… or not ! You should may be start it now?
Thanks Izioq for your interest about my work. For now I’ve a lot of ideas in my head… But I don’t have the time to give them birth… see you soon!
Interview by izioq