Interview with CoaXCable
Anybody who's ever been to #pixel knows him, CoaXCable, one of these guys who seem to live in front of their computers. CoaX, also known as Ze'ev Trachtman, born on September 29, 1976, considers himself having been interested in the scene since 1985, when he collected cracktros and games. Later he became an ansi artist, graphician, musician, founded groups like Winter in July (WiJ), CoolPhat and PAL (Peace and Love), joined TRSI, BAFH, Hugi, Xtigma music... - in short, he has been leading an intense scene life, and he doesn't stop being hyperactive. He starts a lot of different projects, produces tunes and cliparts, and seems to be present everywhere - all of this in spite of the fact that he's living in Israel, a country full of violent conflicts that has never seen real peace since the day of its foundation. Despite the long military service and the constant exposure to terrorist attacks, people like CoaX find time and the right mood to deal with computer art.
Zevik, since when have you been interested in the scene?
Well, I have been into the scene since the year of, hmm, 1985 or something... then, I collected cracktros.. for pc.... and old pc games... and liked them much. I dreamt of making those kinda things myself... But I got into the scene - I mean into the demo scene - in 1996, when I got my first modem... a Zoltrix 14kbps modem. Yach! And I got connected to a few BBS's.. I had taken their numbers from some Israeli computer magazines.
How did the story proceed?
Well in the year 1996 I met a guy who used to be nicked Electron (after we established our group) and who taught me the basics of ansi/ascii and let me leech them as he was a bbs op god :-).. and I got a full leech without any ratio. After a while we got some more guys.. and became ansi/ascii artists. Many bbses asked for such art and people loved our stuff and.... wanted us to process their ascii requests.
Like all groups we had a few probs.. Our 1st packs were shitty but with the time we got better.. We went to demo parties and got placed 2nd and 1st.. With time we added some ppe and pc coding section... and other features... like music, swapping, warez trading :-) and more...
When I got my 1st music tracking software from the bbs's I tried composing.. and I made some nice tunes... 4 channels... with really shitty samples.. hehe.. But still I got placed 3rd with a 4 channel at MOV'98 (a demo party in Israel) which had the name "Groove land"..... A year before, at the MOV'97 demo party, I had got 7th with my multichannel tune called "Can we dream"... I was also placed 4th or 5th at another demo party called ritual'97 with a surprise drum'n'bass theme but I never got the official results file and I don't even have the tune any more. :<
I then established a few known Israeli groups... and became one of the known Israeli Sceners for people who did the things I used to do... I mean: composers, ansi/ascii artists and some 2d gfxers knew me.. That was one of the reasons why I got the idea of establishing more groups and venturing farther into the scene.
After a few years the Israeli scene died.. I looked for a new scene all over the world and saw that there was much more activity out there than in Israel, and instead of one computer scene there were several scenes.. like ripping, divx, cracking, warez trading.. and I thought it'd also be nice trying those as an artist... So I joined trsi and other groups.... and started releasing under their labels/names.
Since then I have been dealing with the world scene amd for some reason I don't look backwards to the scene I grew up in... Dunno why.. :<... Most people left it for many reasons.. And many of them don't and won't like to hear about a thing called "demo scene"... Then we were kids.. and teenagers.. Some are still kids or teenagers.. but grown-ups.. even I... almost at the age of 25 :-) still feel like a kid... But real life calls me and I have had a few thoughts of leaving the scene.. but again.... it's fun so why quit a thing you like and have been doing for years!?....
Well anyway.. as a part of being in the world scene.. I bought a ticket and landed in Finland, in August 2000, and went to the ASM2K... It was nice... to meet people from the net.. On the other hand it was not like I had expected... It was a gamers' meeting and not a demosceners' demo party or meeting..... I hope to get to other demo parties..... or not, who knows..
Nowadays I work as a computer guide.. I am a college student as a preparement for the 1st degree I want to study. Well, not married... and bla.. :-)
You've been a member of a lot of groups in the course of the years, do you have a complete list? And what did these groups focus on, what types of groups were they?
Well, these are the groups and projects I was or am still involved in:
BNC (band and cool gang) Group - art, music, swap, utils, code
Xtigma Music - Music
WiJ (Winter in July) Demos - demo/art group (with a few guys from abroad)
Conmus Project - a music project that died after a few weeks
PAL Project - also a music/art project that died after a few weeks
Mandela Beats - I'm still a member of it, but I don't know why I don't deal with it
TRSI (Tristar & Red Sector Inc) - Console/demo
BAFH (Bastard Artists from Hell) - art only
HE (Holy Empire) - well, some scene group :-)
And I also was a trial member of CRO, but I left it after a few weeks... And I am a member of the Hugi diskmagazine crew as an artist. :-)
What software do you use for creating your artwork?
The software I use for my scene artworks is Photoshop 4/5 and AAT for DOS for drawing/pixeling; for composing music I use Impulse Tracker and Mod Edit. And I use acid draw, a simple program by the ACiD group, for making ascii since I started with ansi/ascii. :-)
What's the root of your fascination for demos?
Well, I love demos because they allow you to be a little game designer.. And as all or most of us know, the games world profits of demos, as demomaking prepares good people for this business and demos also gave loads of ideas to game designers with gfx/sfx and general coding ideas.... I love watching those things running over the screen with nice music and nice design.. and 3d scenes.. that stone you... Most demos are the same... but the new age of hardware acceleration made this world a little bit different and faster but still.. not much if to be honest... Well do you think I am wrong.. if yes correct me guys..
About gfx.. As standalone products I have always said good art is a nice thing to see and also music is nice - think when you hear good music when driving the car or just write some emails to friends as I'm doing atm :-) hehe.
Do you want to be a real game designer?
Hmmm, in a way I wish to be one.. But it is mostly me being a director in a basic TV-movie making as I studied it at high school when I was a high school student :-).. Well, I love being a little god.. making thing look and sound well...
Let's say the producing of a nice thing that will make people say "wow" or just enjoy it in their leisure time is a great pleasure.. As much as I can contribute to the world by doing nice things it makes me happier in the current years of hate, sadness and not much happiness.
You're a great friend, everybody who has you as a friend can be happy. Thank you for the interview!
CoaXCable's latest group CoolPHat is seeking for 2 good scene coders that can deal with 3d/2d and also for a good 3d modeller, ray tracer and 2d gfxer. If you want to contact cXc, write an email to him.
CoaXCable & Adok