The Belgian-German band Dictaphone around mastermind Oliver Doerell returns with their fifth album named “Goats & Distortions 5”.

After their last highly acclaimed album “APR70” Oliver Doerell is surrounded again by his longterm bandmembers Roger Döring (clarinet & saxophone) & Alex Stolze (violins). In the last 3 years they dived even deeper in their “morbid instruments” concept. An old tape machine, which Doerell found in a hidden room in his house in Berlin served as soundsource, ghostly sounds could be heard and the machine died soon after being sampled. For the first time Roger Döring played a bass clarinet on this album and after the recordings lost it in the subway on his way home…

They improved their skills to use rustle as a instrument and are supported by the voice of Helga Raimondi in the track “your reign is over”. The result is an ungraspable, ghostly, spooky album consisting of ten different journeys into the experimental sound world of these unique compositions.

Their latest releases were the praised “Poems from a rooftop” (Sonic Pieces) from 2012 and the “goats & distortions 5” predecessor “APR 70” in 2017 on Denovali. Denovali also reissued the past repertoire of the trio in 2017. Oliver Doerell composed for more than 30 pieces of Modern Ballet and BBC documentaries.


1. proud autodidact

2. last time i went to the hairdresser was in 1983

3. last time i went out to see a concert was on the 19th may 2019


1. What is the biggest inspiration for your music?
Brussels art music scene of the 80ties.

2. How and when did you get into making music?
It was raining a lot in Belgium in my childhood , so something needed to be done inside.
I started around 1984 with a monosynthesizer and a small tape recorder from which i removed the eraser head, so you could record endless layers. The results were very blurry and ungraspable . i ´m still interested in an declining morbid sound .

3. What are 5 of your favourite works of all time?

Made to measure : vol 1 ( Crammed Discs )
Serge Gainsbourg : l´homme a tete de choux ( Philips )
Minimal Compact : one by one ( Crammed Discs )
Joy Division : closer (Factory Records)
The Wolfgang Press : queer ( 4AD )

4. What do you associate with Berlin?
I´ve been living in Berlin for 30 years …so it´s something like home. I wasn´t so happy to leave Brussels, but my best friends and bandmates moved from Brussels to Berlin and i followed them some years later . I liked the idea of an island . when i arrived in 1991 the wall was already gone ..

5. What’s your favourite place in your town?
My appartment

6. If there was no music in the world, what would you do instead?
intensive and professional gambling and masturbation

7. What was the last record/music you bought?
Gonjasufi : MU.ZZ.LE (2012)

8. Who would you most like to collaborate with?
Collaboration is a complicated thing .I have a very lonesome approach to my creation .
I´m lucky to have found some musicians and friends who understand this and support me on my trip. They just drop by to record and disappear again. Especially Roger Döring is for more than 20 years my companion .

9. What was your best gig (as performer or spectator)?Minimal Compact at the Halles de Schaerbeek in Brussels ( around 1986 ) . unbelievable band which had a big influence on my development as a musician.

The worst Dictaphone’s show was at Benicassim festival in Spain in 2003. We started to play on a side stage directly next to the main stage , in the same second the Pet Shop Boys started to play and totally bombed our fragile sound . After 15 minutes we decided to stop and go to see the Pet Shop Boys concert, which wasn´t really a great compensation …

10. How important is technology to your creative process?
As i work mainly on my own it is of course important .I´m constantly recording endless improvisations with all sorts of acoustic and electronic sources & instruments. This is what i like to do most . The “cleaning”and arranging is more boring and i always fear to loose the magic of the chaotic and raw recordings.

11. Do you have siblings and how do they feel about your career/art?
Good question . I don´t really know.I will ask them next time i see them and I will listen to their words very carefully.

Photo © Heike Jeschonnek