Interviews



Interview with Thomas Detert

Published in Vandalism News #37
Performed by Jazzcat


Recently I managed to chase up Thomas Detert, famous composer and member of the demo and game producing crew called X-Ample. He did quite a lot of composing for many productions on this computer. Some of you may remember hearing his compositions in the X-Ample and Double Density game productions features on Magic Disk, Golden Disk and other German magazines.




J)
Welcome to the pages of Vandalism News #37! A pleasure to have you here! Please introduce yourself to the audience...

T)
Hello everybody. My name is Thomas Detert I am almost 32 years old and I come from Germany.


J)
I remember a lot of your music for the German magazines and for the games by X-Ample. When did you start composing on the C64? could you give us your history on the 8-bit?

T)
I'd started to compose music on the C64 back in 1986/87. My first music editor was Chris Huelsbeck's Sound Monitor, which I used to create my first little steps on the C64. But the music routine on which the editor has based on was too high on CPU usage, so I was soon in need of my own music routine & editor. That was the reason why Helge Kozieleck and Markus Schneider did program a music routine for me. Joachim Fraeder did the editor and Mario van Zeist (programmer of Hawkeye) did some improvements on the routine for less CPU-usage.


J)
What were your involvements in the underground scene? Such as demos, groups etc?

T)
We (X-Ample Architectures) have never seen ourselves as an underground group, although we did a lot of demos on the C64.


J)
What do you think makes the C64 so special that it still holds a following in the year 2001?

T)
Well, it's hard to say but it is most remembered for its SID I guess!


J)
When composing, which tools do you prefer to use, or did you make or customize your own as mentioned earlier?

T)
In my studio I use too much equipment to mention here, but Sequencer is LOGIC AUDIO PLATINUM 4.8.1 with different plug-ins, Nearfield Monitors are YAMAHA NS 10 Studio and bigfield are GENELEC 3110A and a SOUNDTRACK 58 INLINE MIXING DESK and various Synth&SFX outboard equipment.



J)
Did any musicians on the C64 give you inspiration or ideas for the music you composed?

T)
Yes, Martin Galway, Rob Hubbard and Jeroen Tel have influenced me a lot.

J)
Could you give a list of the games you have composed music for including the unreleased ones?

T)
I will try to remember, but for details see my folder on HVSC. Tales of Boon, Blue Angel 69, Circuit, B-BOBS, Starforce, Mega Starforce, PP Hammer, Neuronix, Lethal Xcess, Hyper Aggressive, Hydrogenese, Frogger 93, Karamalz Cup, Langnese Games, Eskimo Games, Cyrus, The Power, Clystron, Gordian Tomb, Darksword, Coalminer, Stone Age, Doofus, Dynamoid, Another World, Bamboo, Parsec, The Cube, EON, The Lost Ninja and many more.


J)
Wow! Quite a bunch there. Did you ever have any arguments with scene people?

T)
I never really came into trouble fortunately.



J)
We are starting to see PC programs such as GoatTracker which allows you to compose SID music on the PC. What are your views on this?


T)
It's ok! I do use reFX's QUADRASID for creating C64 sound in LOGIC and it works fine.


J)
Do you play any musical instruments? If so, what do you play?

T)
I do play piano.



THOMAS DETERT's favourites:

Musician: Martin Galway and several more
Painter: my brother Michael Detert & Thomas Heinrich
Programmer: Mario van Zeist & Ivo Herzeg
Game: Wizball
Movie: Electric Dreams (I want it on DVD please)
Food: Chinese and Italian food
Drink: Coffee & water
Band/Performer: Pet Shop Boys, Howard Jones, Vangelis and some more



J)
What was your proudest moment on the C64?

T)
Reading my name in the credits of a released game :-)


J)
What is your opinion on the musicians of today? Is there something that needs to be changed about the big dance and techno influence?

T)
Not really, the consumers must change!!! Home taping is illegal and it's killing music!!!


J)
Do you know what the other X-Ample members are up to these days?

T)
Yes... all members (Thomas Heinrich, Helge Kozieleck, Markus Schneider, Joachim Fraeder, Michael Detert and me) are still best friends, still visiting each other if possible and sometimes we go to the RADWAR-party. Most of them are still working in the computer industry although not in the game industry anymore.

The last X-Ample Architectures game release was "MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE" on Playstation 1.


J)
What are your current activities and your hopes for the future?

T)
I have my own production company together with my partner Mike Griesheimer and at the moment we are building up a new studio and office centre. http://www.edg.thomasdetert.de



J)
Want to send any greetings to anyone? Please go ahead...

T)
Yep. Greetings to the lovely C64 community and a big hello to Remix64 - Neil & Markus (http://remix64.phatsites.de)


J)
Finally, any last words for the readers

T)
Keep the spirit of the old C64 alive!

Thomas Detert.

[back]