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Saturday 24th, May 2003
Greed

When DEVOLUTION RECORD's Geremy O'Mahony* heard LEMON 8's remix of STRANGE WORLD at the Miami Winter Conference, he made a note to contact it's label, Switzerland's SOG RECORDS when he returned home. On doing so, he promptly licensed a track that Satoshi Tomiie had just featured on his Global Underground Nubreed 06 and was getting requests from the world over onto his own UK label. Though STRANGE WORLD epitomises GREED's TOBI WIRZ's underground progressive sound, it is Switzerland's LESLEY MEGUID's enchanting voice and her complement of storyline lyrics that lends "GREED featuring LESLEY" a much broader appeal. It comes as no surprise then that before Tobi assumed GREED as his own solo project, GREED had started life as an UNDERWORLD inspired live act with the full medley of members such that when GREED take to the stage today, it still blows out to a full 5 members including drummer, keyboards and singer. Indeed there are already standing comparisons to the in-form KOSHEEN. 2003 promises to be an exciting year for the GREED project with interest from DEVOLUTION to develop the act as well as a host of new collaborative releases in the pipeline from Darko (Sumsonic), Van Bellen (Saints & Sinners), Echolab (Sweden's Atmos) as well as remixes from Switzerland's DJ Nukem and Loader.

Name: Lesley Ann Abdel Meguid
Alias: None
Age: 21
Website: http://www.redwood.ch
Nationality: American, Swiss and Egyptian
Favorite DJ: DJ Apollo, Buckshot Le Fonque
Favorite Producer: Brendan O'Brien
Favorite Tune: Police - Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic
Favorite Remix: The Sugarcubes 1990 remix "Happy Birthday"
Favorite CD: Blue / Joni Mitchell
Favorite Label: The kind you can cut off your undies
Favorite Food: Sushi, strawberries
Favorite Drink: Beer, tea
Favorite Movie: Better Off Dead

Name: Tobi Wirz
Alias: Greed, Tobi W, Michael Nova
Age: 33
Website: http://www.sogrecords.com
Nationality: Swiss
Favorite DJ: Lemon8
Favorite Producer: Underworld
Favorite Tune: Juanita "Underworld"
Favorite CD: One By One, Foo Fighters
Favorite Food: Pasta
Favorite Drink: Beer, red wine
Favorite Movie: Angel Heart

In the beginning Greed consisted of Ralf Peter (keys), Lukas Landis (drums) and Tobi Wirz himself playing bass. Tell us a little bit about how it all got started. How did you discover your interest for electronic music and how the former members of Greed got together
Answer (Lesley): We all met through Lukas – we played in a band called “Entre Les Bistros”. Tobi had asked me to sing on some empty tracks of his he was working on for his project that originated from his music school final. He did all sorts to it and we decided to do some more that then became “Greed feat. Lesley”. I otherwise have no interest in the electronic music scene – at all!

Is Lesley a part of the Greed production team? What other projects does she have?
Answer (Lesley): I don’t produce, as Tobi is the producer, I write melodies and lyrics and fool around with the harmonies. So I guess we are a song writing team. I’m not involved in any other dance projects, however I do have my own band “redwood” which is my heart and soul. We work a lot! I do a bit of entertainment music occasionally to earn a buck or two, too. I am currently working on a solo project, but nothing official... yet!

How do you work as a production team?
Answer (Lesley): Either one of us comes up with an idea – Tobi might have a frame of a song going and I contribute my thing to it, or the other way round. He is more professional that way. He as everything in his computer and I actually once recorded a melody on my tape recorder while peeing... we work differently but effectively in the end!

Your live act is quite different from the regular live dance act with “decks and effects”. Are we seeing a return to the live band format?
Answer (Lesley): We both come from live bands, we’ve been playing live music practically all our lives and for me, that’s a very VERY important part of the whole music thing. If “Greed feat. Lesley” weren’t a live band, I wouldn’t take it seriously.

Last year, you supported Kosheen in Switzerland, you’ve been playing live on radio and this summer, you’ll be lining up alongside Lexicon Ave, Danny Howell, Lemon8 and co and the Extrema Festival in the Netherlands. Anything else in the pipeline?
Answer (Tobi): There is talk at the moment about a gig in Lisbon and another in Tokyo so we’ll see how it goes. Strangely, we are much better known overseas than we are in our own city where we can hardly get the club to pay our train fare let alone a flight and a hotel.

Can you give the readers a little teaser on what to expect from Greed feat. Lesley in the year to come? Will we get to hear another vocal anthem like Strange World this summer? happy
Answer (Tobi): There are some phaaat ones in the pipeline – in fact, I would go as far as saying our phaaatest yet. “I See You” this summer with remixes from DJ Nukem, Minilogue, Van Bellen & Greed and Andry Nalin. Coming up after that is a collaboration with Van bellen named “City Lights” – on remix duties is the Dutch Matthew Dekay and from Swiss legend, Chab. Finally, there will be one that I can only refer to as “Tea” – a cover of one of my favourite songs from the 80’s. We are just working on another one called “Watch” which should also be fantastic as we really begin to develop a distinct sound.

What you will notice is that step by step, each release is getting more and more musical and moving away from the traditional progressive grooves.

What about albums?
Answer (Tobi): Both of us feel the need to create something more than “just dance music”. Sure, that’s where our project started but we think it’s always important for artists to keep on moving – to keep experimenting and developing as individuals and that is reflected in music. Inevitably for us, it means experimenting with “non-dance music”. To that end, yes, we have made tracks that just aren’t suitable for release as a dance single so yes, an album makes total sense.

How do you feel about the progress of Greed feat. Lesley? What do your future plans look like?
Answer (Tobi): I think we will see more live gigs in and out of Switzerland as well as more album oriented material.

Idols are an important part in every music lovers’ life. Which artists did you admire in the early days and what about today? Do you have a special artist you would pick out for a collaboration if you only were allowed to choose one?
Lesley: Wow... there are too many to even get started but for me the reason I think I love music so much is because my parents always had music around us. I went to music school at age 4 and have been at it since. Sting and The Police, the Beatles, U2, Pearl Jam, Joni Mitchell, Ani DiFranco and so many more have contributed so much to my live and my love and passion for playing music.

To choose one... I would probably have to be Eddie Vedder. He’s just amazing.

Tobi: I’ve always been a big “Underworld” fan - they are one of the reasons why I started to produce dance tracks. It’s unbelievable what stories they can convey in their music and they can always surprise.

I have always said that the day I get to work with these guys, I can quit! There’d be nothing that could top that for me

What about you Tobi – you’re not only the bass playing Greed in the live act but you’re a DJ, a producer and label boss of the in form SOG Records as well. How do you manage all these?
Answer: It’s a lot of work indeed. However, I couldn’t do it without the support of quite a few people around me. I guess this is the moment to thank them all!

80% of the members at http://www.trance.nu are probably sitting at home producing music with both software and hardware, just trying to figure out how to make their breakthrough. What words of wisdom can you give the young and upcoming producers on this site?
Answer (Tobi): Be patient! You can’t learn to produce music within a couple of days. And you will never come to the stage where you will be able to say: “I know it now…”. But that’s the great challenge to it!

In which direction is SOG Records heading these days?
Answer (Tobi): As I mentioned earlier, especially in the next several releases, you will begin to see a move towards much more musical releases – an emphasis on melody and harmony combined with rolling grooves.

Most people are probably dead tired of the never ending mp3-issue, but it’s still an important issue in the scene today. Being a label manager and all; are you feeling the effects of the whole mp3 downloading syndrome? How is your view upon the whole situation?
Answer (Tobi): MP3s has become an important tool for me. I use it for example to show a first version of a remix to the label. It’s so much easier than sending around CDs!

On the other hand, it makes me think when I find downloads of my tracks that have not even been released. You just learn to be very choosy with sending around tracks or CDs!

Finally, any last words for the users of trance.nu ?
Thanx for being with us. Moo!

Thank you very much for your time Tobi and Lesley. The trance.nu staff wishes you the best of luck with your all your future endeavours.


Written by:
LikWit

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