Kit Sebastian releae their debut album Mantra Moderne this Friday on Mr Bongo. Fusing Anatolian psychedelia and Brazilian Tropicalia with 60’s European pop and American jazz, the duo is made up of Kit Martin, who lives between London and France and plays all instruments on the album, and Merve Erdem, vocalist and multi-disciplinary artist from Istanbul, now based in London. Today, we sent them our twenty questions.
Hi, how are you today?
M: Not too bad. And you?
What’s the weather like?
How do most of your songs start life?
K: After the cinema.
M: After films, books, long walks or crises.
Have you ever been starstruck?
The Royal Family: should they stay or should they go?
K: Go, a resurrected culture is inauthentic.
If you weren’t doing this, what would you like to be?
M: For me what we do includes all that I would like to do in my life: writing, music, visual arts. For me the question is rather where I would like to be.
What’s your favourite book?
M: Oğuz Atay – Tutunamayanlar or Ahmet Hamdi Tanpınar – Saatleri Ayarlama Enstitüsü
What were you like at school?
K: Quiet, then troublesome.
M: Selectively curious
What’s the music scene like back home?
K: In London we’re currently enjoying a healthy World music scene.
Best gig you’ve played so far?
K&M: Servant Jazz Quarters, intimate yet amazing sound.
What’s your favourite single?
K: Şenay – Benim Olursan / Sev Kardeşim
M: Barış Manço, Kurtalan Ekspres – Ölüm Allahın Emri / Gamzedeyim Deva Bulmam
What do you listen to in your tourbus?
K: Turkish and Caucasus folk.
M: 60’s French pop, 70’s Persian pop.
What were your favourite artists growing up?
K: Whoever did the soundtrack to Joe 90 and Thunderbirds.
Who would you want to play you in the film of your life?
K: Albert Dieudonné
M: Anna Karina
Vinyl, CD, Download or stream?
What’s the best cover version you have ever heard?
K: Nina Simone – My Sweet Lord
M: Eartha Kitt – Uska Dara
Tell us about your recent release?
K: After two singles, we’re getting ready to release our debut album, Mantra Moderne on Mr Bongo. Although it was recorded on cassette tape, a lot of effort went into our sound and we think there is something in there for everyone.
Any hopes for 2019?
K: Hoping to play outside of UK, would love to take the music back to Turkey and France.
What would be your dream collaboration?
K: Hossein Tehrani if he were still alive.
What’s the strangest thing that has ever happened at one of your own gigs?
K&M: Playing atonal free jazz to an audience who expected Peruvian dance music.