Set up in 1992 by the Hannover duo Lars Felker – Martin Bodewell, Orange Sector would rapidly conquer the EBM community. They got signed on Zoth Ommog and released the astonishing debut album “Faith” (1993). One year later they stroke back with the impressive “Flashback”-album. Lars finally left the band and Martin went on releasing new works while experimenting with some pop elements. Orange Sector finally stopped all activities at the end of the 90s, but came back alive in 2005 for the compilation “Here We Are (Back Again)”. Lars Felker and Martin Bodewell joined hands again and started to release new albums. They moved back to their hard and original EBM sound. “Alarm” released on Infacted Recordings is their newest work featuring René Nowotny (Ad:Key, Rector Scanner) as extra member. I got in touch with the band’s main machinist Lars Felker.
(Courtesy by Inferno Sound Diaries)
Q: “Alarm” is your twelfth full length album. What makes this work different and maybe ‘special’ from the other ones?
Lars: The biggest difference is that ORANGE SECTOR now has three official band members. ORANGE SECTOR was Martin and me while René Nowotny was a live member during the time I stopped playing live shows. At the end of 2018 we played our first gig together as a trio. It was amazing on stage. René is now the official third member of Orange Sector and will play shows again. We also worked together on the new album. This is what makes it special.
Q: “Alarm” has been announced as one of your most ‘political’ works to date and it clearly reflects some ‘hot items’ our society is actually going through. What did you want to express and what’s your personal perception of our ‘world’ today?
Lars: It‘s our personal way to express what we feel and music is a good way to let things go and ‘clean’ thoughts and feelings for ourselves. We know that our music will not change people and not change the world. But I felt that I have to talk about the shit in the world and make my personal statement and show what Orange Sector stands for. People fought years and years for freedom and equal rights and now we made lots of steps backwards.
Q: While you’re dealing with ‘serious’ themes, your music remains an ultra-danceable composition. Don’t you think it sounds a bit contradictory talking about serious subjects and seeing people dancing on it?
Lars: I think it’s not a problem at all. Music for me is about feelings and freedom. When you dance to an agressive song with lyrics about something that keeps you busy…..it‘s liberating. The right lyrics make the song becoming your own song so you can get deeper in it.
Q: I already experienced your previous album “Night.Terrors” as being one of your hardest works, but “Alarm” is even harder and filled with rage! Both albums remind me to the early years of Orange Sector; straight forward and pure old-school EBM. Do you see similarities with the early period and how do you see your own evolution throughout the years?
Lars: Yes, there’re a lot of similarities. We wanted to go back to the early period and make a record like this. It was really fun and this is Orange Sector. Life show us how an album has to sound, it‘s like a mirror. Our life is the biggest influence in our music. That‘s the reason why some records sound different. Orange sector is now much better than in the early years; we tried different things, but we are still the same band and each record sounds like Orange Sector. I think we found our own sound throughout the years.
Q: I noticed an interesting post on your Facebook-page mentioning that you built a bridge between NZ and Infacted Recordings. What’s your link with NZ and is there a kind of EBM friendship between artists? What are your experiences here?
Lars: I didn‘t met them because I didn‘t play shows for some years. But Martin and René met them and I heard only good things about the guys. It‘s a kind of EBM friendship and I hope I will meet them the next time. We met lots of cool bands and are still in contact with them. Orange Sector is a relaxed band and we are uncomplicated, but we do this for more than 25 years right now and we decide with which band we go on tour or not. We don‘t like bands that behave like the next big superstars.
Q: Your music stands for pure EBM, but I remember the album “Love It!” (1997) which clearly experimented with ‘pop’-elements. It remains your most surprising work to date, but how do you look back at “Love It!” today and would you ever think or consider experimenting with other influences than EBM ever?
Lars: Oh yes… it was a special time for Orange Sector. I left the band and Martin tried to find his own way in music. So it doesn’t matter if we love it or hate it. This album stands for that special time and is part of the Orange Sector history. Who knows if other things should ever happened without this record. If it feels like being the right thing we would consider experimenting with other influences, but it would still sound like Orange Sector… like fucking EBM !!!!