This past Saturday, we had a live band join us for the first time in Mister history. And thanks to the great talents of Brooklyn trio Archie Pelago, it was a smashing success. We got to talking with our new friend, Bika, who gave us her thoughts on the relationship between electronic and acoustic music. Her friend and coworker Matt joined in the conversation, and her Polish friend Nika (who arrived to New York just one week ago) snapped the shot.
MSN: Is this your first time at a Mister party?
Matt: It was a couple of months ago… and I came with Bika once, but we couldn’t get in because it was too packed!
Bika: This is my first time at a Mister Saturday Night. Last summer I went to a Mister Sunday party outside, at this place with a bridge by the water…
MSN: The Gowanus Canal.
Bika: Exactly! Yeah, I loved it. It was so nice.
MSN: Yeah, it’s beautiful over there.
Bika: Well, not exactly beautiful, but…
MSN: Well, just don’t swim in the water!
Bika: Haha! Exactly. I always wanted to go to the regular party at night but never managed to until now.
MSN: Where are you guys from?
Matt: From all over, but I live in Bushwick.
Bika: I’m originally from Slovenia, but I grew up in Vienna. I live in Soho now. My friend Nika and I lived in Austria for a long time. I also lived in London for a little while, and London has almost the same problem as New York – it has a very weak electronic scene. It has that contradiction of the best DJs or the best “acts” come from London and New York, but in the city itself, it doesn’t have a proper base or scene. Let’s say you’re in Vienna or something, and are sitting around bored, and you hear that a DJ from New York is coming, it seems like a big thing. But when you come here, it’s not a big deal. Like, where is everybody? It seems that there only a very few parties that are appreciated properly.
MSN: And you’re a fan of Archie Pelago?
Bika: Yeah, I found out about them through the MSN email list. I was at work when I got the email and I decided to listen. It’s exactly the kind of music I’m into – between electronic and classical influences. It’s so hard to find that kind of music.
MSN: Are there other artists that you are into that combine these elements?
Bika: I mean, Aphex Twin is classic, but he’s the predecessor of mixing these two genres. Most parties I’ve been to are more for fun, but tonight was different. It’s hard to describe… like it felt a bit deeper! And I have a friend, Leo, who plays viola da gamba. It’s like a small cello. He’s really into Baroque music – a completely different world – and I’m into electronic music, and it’s like we live in two different times. But tonight it was almost as if the music was a combination of these two different things. I had Leo listen to Archie Pelago, and he loved it – someone who is only into Baroque music was turned on to electronic music this way.
MSN: And what are your jobs, interests?
Bika: Uh-oh! [laughter]
Matt: We’re architects.
MSN: Is there anything particularly interesting that you’re working on?
Bika: What’s interesting in relation to partying and music, is that I listen to music all day when I’m at work. So I have all this music in my head, and I get so eager to go out. But it’s almost like [the] wrong translation from the headphones to the parties!
Matt: So basically what we do is pretty shit, we just need to get out. It’s like a way of dreaming to go somewhere else!
Bika: It goes from the music, to my headphones, to the 3D model!
MSN: Does the music influence the way you design architecture?
Bika: Oh yeah!
Matt: Yeah, of course! It definitely does.
Bika: I have a question – do you feel like there are many non-New Yorkers at these parties?
MSN: We definitely get a lot of people who are just visiting NY, a lot from Europe.
Bika: I feel so too! Because last night, I went to a house party in Bushwick, and I went with a friend who I met through partying. She’s from New York. And the whole party was only New Yorkers! The music was… well, the place had two floors – the upper floor was some kind of hip-hop, and the lower floor was rock. It was super fun. I mean, it was an actual house, and it was kind of small, and they had free beer, so it was fun in that sense. But I just couldn’t connect to the music.
MSN: Well, a lot of Americans, let alone New Yorkers, haven’t been exposed to electronic dance music as much as Europeans. The summer parties are a bit more mixed in a lot of regards – a lot of people who work 9 to 5s can come because it’s in the afternoon, so people who live and work in New York are able to party along with everyone else.
Matt: So what is this place, House Of Yes?
MSN: It’s an aerial studio. You know, how people flip around on ropes and stuff from the ceiling. That’s why the ceiling is so high. They also host performances, music, theater, and of course parties.
Bika: No way! That’s awesome! That’s what I was wondering, because I we saw this girl dancing next to the DJ booth, and she had these great moves.
MSN: Oh yeah! That’s Kae, she’s one of the ladies who runs this place. She’s really cool! Anyhow, any last words?
Matt: We’ll be back!
Bika: Yeah, we’ll definitely be back.
photo by Nika