Captive Perfumes

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I’ve just been updating the information on my course for music and performance art for next year at the RNCM. I found this photograph (from one of the 2014 lectures) and it made me smile. I wasn’t able to use lighted cigarettes in the RNCM refectory so we used an e-cigarette with a pin concealed in the end. I’m not sure that Dr Sirocofran or Filippo Tommaso Marinette would have approved of this 21st century version and good behaviour.

Virtual airport / SHUCK!

SHUCK_VirtualAirport_previewAhead of the Slip Discs release of my and Matthew Welton’s 2009 song cycle Virtual airport with Laurie Tompkins and Sam Quill’s extraordinary SHUCK! I thought I’d release a sneak preview of the artwork here as well as a link to one of the songs from the cycle.

Recently Matt has been in the difficult situation of having been plagiarised by another poet and Virtual airport is one of relevant poems. He has written an amazing short article on the case here. This kind of appropriation of Matt’s work seems in brutal contrast to the life of this poem and piece. The poem was originally made in collaboration with visual artist Clare Bleakley and it is interesting to trace this starting point, via Matt’s and my long collaborative relationship, through the input of an extraordinary group of performers up to now. The imminent release in combination with Laurie and Sam’s starkly different but complimentary new work.

The performers are Seaming To and Sofia Jernberg (voices), Sarah Nicolls (piano), Oliver Coates (cello), I’m performing electronics and it was recorded live by David Sheppard at the Howard Assembly Rooms in Leeds back in 2009. Thanks to them all.


Sounds from the other city.

Next Sunday I’m doing a short set for the lovely folk of slips discs and Sounds of the Other City – a music festival of interesting music  in mainly small venues on or near  Chapel Street in Salford. I have three reasons to be happy about this – Ian Vine is going to be doing live guitar and electronics from his new album held/always/immer/gehalten, I’m going to be alongside slip discs veterans Tom Rose, Aaron Parker and Chaines and I’m also going to be joined by composer and violinist Bethan Morgan-Williams. See you there. Details here and festival poster below.


Slip Discs at Cafe Renoir

ImageMore Slip Discs fun this Friday. Great live music from Chains, Aaron Parker and Tom Rose alongside a performance of Steve Reich’s monolith Four Organs. I’m going to play some music (mainly vinyl!) at the start of the evening (expect Ligeti, mira calix (vinyl of Prickle just arrived from ebay), Ian Vine, Saint Etienne etc.) before DJ pros Murray, Tomkins and Futers get everyone moving. Should be great fun. See you there.

Revisting exchange and return

I have been revisiting the music I made with mira calix on a year-long+ project exchange and return. It was an intense process at a very busy time but I’ve been enjoying listening to the music again and in particular the final piece we made together onn/off which sees us back in our more ‘traditional’ roles (i.e. I wrote the acoustic music and mira made the electronic music – hardly our traditional roles any more) but music filtered through the lens of having worked together on this for some time. I’ll put some or all of the track up at a later date if I can but in the meantime here are a couple of exchange and return images from our recording sessions at Aldeburgh Music.


One of the best ways to spend an afternoon.

Tuesday was a day trip to London to hear my new EP being mixed by the wonderful Noel Summerville of 3345 Mastering. The EP is being released on 2 December by Slip Discs under the name GOVES.

Noel works with an analogue 1970s numan mixing desk and uses almost no digital processes at all. It made the music warmer and gave a mainly digitally constructed sequence of new tracks a layer of analogue polish.

As this is also being released on vinyl I also witnessed lacquers being cut for the first time. They look wonderful. I’ve a feeling that this tactile medium for music is going to prove serious addictive.

Some images from the studio: