Thursday, 14 October 2010

New obsessions

Deliriously weird dream last night. I was in Mirfield, my mum's West Yorkshire home town (and that of Captain Picard himself, Patrick Stewart). I was staying in a B&B called The Overlook. And indeed it turned out that this was the place that inspired The Shining. I spoke to the landlord, and he told me that a few years previously, he'd been jailed for murdering someone with a rope (at this point he noosed it around my neck...) but that he had been set up. Now that he had got out, he was producing music which was, “closer to Boards of Canada than Orange Juice”.

Funny how these things work in, innit? Mirfield was there presumably because my mum's just been to visit. The Shining... not sure, but I do love the film. Boards of Canada I was thinking about yesterday, and I used to know a member of Orange Juice.


It's a fine time for admirers of Radiophonic weirdness. A couple of new net labels have sprung up over the past few weeks, no doubt inspired in part by Ghost Box, but offering music with a subtly different flavour.

First up is Café Kaput, run by Jon Brooks (Advisory Circle/King of Woolworths) with art direction by Ian Hodgson (Moon Wiring Club). As seems to be the way with this scene there's a healthy dose of humour at work. The first release is an unearthing of DD Denham's lost classroom-based electronic experiments. Except that's a load of old bobbins. DD Denham never existed and it's all Brooks own work in a bleepy, bloopy John Baker style. Ruddy lovely it is too; tricksy, playful and weird. You can stream and download it here:

Then this weekend I stumbled across Pye Corner Audio. Wobbly synth and tape distortion is the order of the day, and the three tracks they've put online (from their album, Black Mill Tapes Vol. 1) have been on repeat ever since. 'We Have Visitors' builds for ages before opening up into something that reminds me of Ken Freeman's Tripods theme. 'Theme Number 4' meanwhile sounds not unlike early Boards of Canada. I was hoping to be the first to blog about these guys, but alas Mr Brooks has beaten me to it!

The full Black Mill Tapes Volume 1 will be available to download on October 31st for a fiver. In the meantime, check out the preview tracks here:

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