Joe Stretch


1. Who are you?

I’m called Joe Stretch, I sing in the the electro death pop band,
Performance, from Manchester.

2. No, really, who are you?

I’m just someone else making do. I’m a piece of debris floating in space, a bit of flag or the wing of a shuttle, I’m floating away from the planet of
touch and love and into a timeless, cultured and humane hell. I’m a constantly fluctuating fractured mass of social convention, I’m an
invention. I cry, try, enjoy hard morning wanks, I am the author of a useless, needlessly playful identity. To sum up, I don’t care or know.

3. What are you up to at the moment?

 We’ve just recorded our second single which is due out around November, it’s
called ‘Love Life’, it’s produced by Jagz Kooner and is being released through Guilty Feet records. The plan is to tour it but money is a massive
problem. We’ve just made a video too, it cost fifty quid and features forty ten year old children rioting, hastily constructing gallows and casually
hanging us just in time for the end of the song. ‘Love Life’ is exactly three
minutes long. We’re supporting Bryan Ferry next week.
Other than that I’m working in a bar four nights a week and trying to write a novel. The novel depicts a time in the near future where sex habits have
ceased to have anything to do with beauty, at least not existing attitudes and appreciations of beauty. Due to a kind natural regression articulated
through the sexual experimentation of the characters, pregnancy, once again,
becomes the locus of sexual freedom, expression and (above all) enjoyment. Pregnancy becomes the final fetish.
I play football once a week as well. On a Monday.

4. What three rules would make up your manifesto?

Rule 1: Rage Rage against the dying of the light (whenever possible).

Rule 2: Don’t just be yourself be something entirely different.

Rule 3: Kill freedom, the rule of freedom will make boring dick heads of us all.

5. If you were the dictator of a modern industrial country, what would
you abolish? What laws would you implement?

Oh I’d probably resign, or maybe I’d change my job title to “Dicktator”,
that would be so fucking funny wouldn’t it?, I say funny shit like that all the time hahahahahaha, that’s fooking hilarious.
I wouldn’t want to rock the boat, i’d just leave change to the ravages of time, I’d wear aviator shades, drive a black Mercedes, build a big bath and
fill it with page three stunnas and some water.
No, I’d probably abolish idleness, shit food, the very notion of nationhood,
fame, misery, Saturday night, US hegemony, unfunny jokes (except those that are unfunny in a funny way). I’d bring London down a peg or two and probably
get my mum a nice house. I’d make myself editor of The Sun, build lots of monorails and re-orientate the global economy so it makes people happy,
ambitious and well fed.

6. What are your lyrics about?

You can read all my lyrics at our website, so you can figure it out for yourself. Or I could just tell you, there are five or six key

– Loving girls (and hating the girl you love).
– The effect of ideology and modern capitalism on sex.
– The effect of capitalism on the city and the way we move about it.
– The petty misery of modern life.
– The effect of capitalism on our understanding of time and history.

– The effect of the female gaze on male self esteem and men’s engagement with
beauty practices.
– The relationship between beauty and electoral politics.
– How much I hate working in shite restaurants and bars.
Some songs have jokes in them, but not many. A lot don’t make that much sense due to the demands of melody. Some songs are
surprisingly corny.

7. What is your opinion on the contemporary music scene? What do you

99% of contemporary music is more like muzak, it makes my soul bleed. I like Adult,
Stellastarr*, the new Soulwax record, I don’t know, I really don’t know, I hate having to name bands. I like
Depeche Mode.

8. What distinguishes you from your peers?

Musically, Performance are ahead of the game, no one comes close. We are life and death, popular and alienating, inspiring and depressing, girls and
boys, synthetic and dedicated, satire and belief, heart and soul, beats and melody, true and false. I care about my band more than anything, Performance
will change every casual, thoughtless death that occurs nowadays into something
more meaningful, more tragic, more moving. A real loss. We wish to break culture.

9. Where do you see yourself in five years time?

Nowhere. Finally.

10. Any regrets?