Sunday, 23 January 2022

Dartmoor or less

I am currently working on the final part of my folk lore inspired trilogy of EPs.

The first parts were "Grim's Ditch" and "Weland" which were released in the year of the plague 2020 while I lived in Oxfordshire.  They concerned the stories behind the ancient network of man-made ditches and the story of Weyland the Smith respectively, both of which are stories with roots in Oxfordshire.

Now that I live in Devon, I am looking to complete the trilogy with some new local folklore.  I am however finding it difficult to connect with the stories of the surrounding area since I am still fairly new here.  I lived in Oxfordshire for my entire childhood and a good portion of my adult life - so I was able to relate to the stories I wished to tell with relative ease.

Hamel Down Tor at dawn, August 2021

I am however trying my best to do justice to the landscapes and stories that surround me now around Dartmoor.  Using various library books, wild camping trips and excursions into the wilderness, I am beginning to appreciate the wonder and scale of my new home.

It is a daunting prospect attempting to distil a legend of this landscape into a 21 minute EP (yes, I will complete the trilogy with a 3" CDr to mirror the first 2 releases) yet I hope to do it justice by not rushing.  So it should appear at some point later this year.

Sunset over Dartmoor from Bovey Tracey


So far whilst researching Dartmoor I have discovered the principle of the "Palimpsest" - something which is reused or altered but still bears visible traces of its earlier form.  This can apply to literature but also of the physical landscape.  Past generations of human activity have left scarring and debris for us to discover.  Drone photography allows us to see ancient farmland markings during hot summer months on ground which is now considered inappropriate for farming.  A drying lake can reveal ancient settlements in a particularly low water season.  

I am making use of this principle in a year long "remix" effort - I will be recording live performances over the course of 2022 using samples and ideas from the previous recording.  These can be found here for free streaming and download (or a payment if you prefer and you can add it to your Bandcamp collection). 


Monday, 10 January 2022

The Tump Clump Episode 9

 Welcome to 2022, and episode 9 of The Tump Clump.

There is no run-out groove vinyl sampling this time around, I assembled this episode from the relative safety of my bedroom and not a single 12" record is in sight. Perhaps it will return next month.  We shall see.

Instead I offer some live generative synthesis from my Behringer Neutron, patched "Krell" style to offer some quasi-random bleeps and squeal.  It was good to have the device chiming away in the background as I put the show together, and maybe this is a primer for a future Tump Clump where I offer a completely live performance..... hmmm.... soon come?


The Tump Clump #9 - 2nd February 2022
Chlorine - Limousine
COLDSORE - Chemical
Soloman Tump - Vulgar Fly
Babe, Terror - Shipyard Superwaves
Bourbonese Qualk - Succubare
Iker Ormazabel Martinez - VIII
Lee Riley - Open The Door To The New World
Usagi - The Descent of The 99 Mortal Steps
HAIRSABYSS - Gliding
Hoodrat Messiah - Penance
LampEyes - VoiceBurntFlower
Soloman Tump - Bonus Krell Bleeps

I opened the show with a track by Chlorine, northern UK based field recording and loop manipulator.  I have recently become slightly obsessed with the output by Chlorine, and a lot of his album have recently been remastered with bonus tracks and amazing artwork.  Find them here. 

Another artist I have been diving into a lot over the winter is COLDSORE, a Finnish based artist in the realms of dark ambient and drone, who also creates unique noise-leaning effects pedals.  Maybe one day I will invest.....

I include a track by Babe, Terror which is quite a dismal / lo-fidelity offering, composed of surface crackles and slowed down samples.  A lot of his output could be described as outsider house, presented in a fairly downbeat style and not particularly suited to club listening.  I discovered him via the Ancient M'Ocean release from 2017 on Erol Alkan's Phantasy Sound label (yep, I really do listen to all sorts of stuff) - which was great because it came with a comic.

Bourbonese Qualk, with their stunning album Laughing Afternoon, released the year I was born back in 1982.... I am constantly amazed by how GREAT this album sounds, with its political themes and dirty production styles still being hugely relevant to todays austere world.  I cannot recommend this album enough, so go and listen to it all and then realise they have quite a big discography to wade through.  

Then you will hear Iker Ormazabel Martinez on Brachliegen Tapes, 45 minutes of sinister blown out electronics to ease you into the new year. I have become a keen follower of this fledgling label, who have also put out records by Mark Dicker, Knifedoutofexistence and Like Weeds, all whom I have previously played on The Tump Clump.

Lee Riley presents us with Open The Door To The New World, a short guitar piece that Lee always manages to craft together so well.  

The piece by Usagi comes from the compilation Urban Graves For Feral Souls, put together by the MOON MUSIQ label and concerning Witches and Witchcraft and Magick.... also raising money for GEMS as per their previous excellent compilation which I previously featured in Tump Clump 7.  Some very strong material on this release, so check it out if you can.


After the show I continued to experiment with the Neutron Krell patch, adapting it slightly, and made a note of the settings because I thought it sounded quite good.  I recorded about 3 hours of audio in the end - so maybe a track or two will result.... I am constantly surprised by how good the Neutron is.  For such a cheap piece of equipment, it is very versatile.  And for Behringer it is nice for it to not be a direct rip off of other existing equipment - more of a Frankenstein's monster of a fixed semi modular rig.  I call it the gateway drug.... hmmm.... maybe one day when funds are flowing again, I will bite the bullet and dive into the modular world.... but for now, this is completely awesome and still fun after 2 years.

(happy) new year. 

VITAL THINGS RECORDINGS - STILL ILL

 

Still Ill is a compilation from Vital Things, raising funds and awareness for the Gidimt’en Checkpoint legal defence fund, part of the Wet'suwet'en resistance against the Coastal Gas Link.  The indigenous Wet'suwet'en people of British Colombia, Canada, have faced constant pressure and invasion of their land from private security forces and gas / fracking industry employees.  

There is a whole raft of information on the ongoing struggle here - www.yinthaaccess.com - which is currently a rapidly developing situation.  

Vital Things is the home of the artist A Beautiful Idea, who used to run an excellent podcast which kind of helped to inspire me towards starting The Tump Clump.  


You can buy the digital compilation from Bandcamp HERE or the physical release can be purchased direct from vital things HERE.

Track listing as follows, and as you can see includes a track by myself on CD2, alongside many excellent and more competent artists so it is very much worth your time and money!


CD1
SINNEN - Longshadow    4:24
COLDSORE - SHUT DOWN COLONIALISM    7:01
SANKT - Totalitär2    4:56
1Ö - Struggle    8:15
there are no birds here - Loess    5:20
The Creeping Man - A Veneer Of Patience 4:27
QUARTERSIZED - The Promise of Oil The Cost our Land    5:24
YOL - Frozen    3:12
Bloodkry - Haunting    3:15
Allister Thompson and Matt Borghi - River Of Tears    5:22

 

CD2

Caroline Mckenzie - ...but you cannot own the skies    5:29
WXR_JR - Deep Dirty Water    6:48
St James Infirmary - blood of the red chamber    2:26
Soloman Tump - The Time Is Now    7:28
Henrik Meierkord - Asche    6:18
DEATH/VOW - moth vs the flame    5:10
Boughs - Pray The Sun Rise Again    5:48
Alien Sin - CSF    5:41
truthscan - Music for Influencers    3:19
The New Emphatic - Despotism    5:30
A Beautiful Idea - We Don't Fear You    4:36

I enjoyed creating my track for this compilation.  I channelled some anger at the situation the Wet'suwet'en people find themselves in.  So it ended up as quite a noisy / chaotic offering.  I layered up some digital synth noise, distorted percussion, vocal feedback loops and even my kids shouting - all through my old Tascam 4 track.  So it's got quite a primitive sound to it.  But overall, I personally think it works.  The words "The Time Is Now" comes from the quotes on the Yintha website where they are urging for direct action against the oppressors now.  I hope that in some way my track helps.

Sunday, 2 January 2022

FEAST#7 - a noise live stream

I finished off 2021 with a fairly last minute live performance for the Feast#7 stream by NIM_Brut.  I have previously provided solo, duo (with Plague Arish) and a DJ set for FEAST on previous events so it feels like a nice partnership is building up here! The live chat on Twitch and the performances are always worthy of checking out, especially due to the continued lack of live music around these parts....

So firstly I wanna talk about my set.... well, this is my blog after all.

The plan was to film with 2 cameras, my mini HD recorder (kind of like a cheapo Go-Pro) and also with the wildlife night-vision camera I borrowed from my in-laws.  Unfortunately that only captured about 10 seconds of video before cutting out - maybe I had it set up wrong? Anyway, one camera worked, and the audio recorded quite cleanly...

My set up, if you are at all interested, comprised of:

Ch1 (the noisy stuff): Marbeau Noise Synth => Behringer Neutron => Holy Island Super Freq => JPTR FX Kaleidoscope

Ch2 (the metallic loopy stuff): Home made Spring / sawblade / percussive thing => EHX Crayon =>EHX Freeze => Boss Loop RC1 => Boss Super Octave OC3 => Pladask Fabrikat

(The Moody Sounds Babybox is in the photo but I ended up not using that)

Neutron occasionally sending some evolving tempo control to the Fabrikat parameters. 

For the video I added waveform data from the HD camera (reversed and boosted) and also from the mixer, hence the 2 sets of waveforms which look quite different. Colour and bounce and some other things gave it an interesting style.  

You can watch the entire stream here, my set starts about 10 minutes in after the sonic assault of TONY:


I enjoyed all of the sets here, a real variety of experimental works.  So if you have a couple of hours spare I recommend checking them out.  

I  cleaned up the slightly extended original audio and uploaded it to to Bandcamp which you can stream / download for free HERE (or pay anything if you wish to add it to your collection).

I should also mention VITAL THINGS who provided the intermission music to the stream (cut from the youtube video above).  The 9 tracks are part of a forthcoming charity compilation called Still Ill which is supporting the indigenous people of British Colombia and their fight to stop the fracking industry from invading their land without consent.  More on this compilation in a future post, but for now you can find more information HERE.

Thursday, 23 December 2021

Things I did in 2021

 


In 2021 I managed to release:


Which I am pretty proud of considering everything that has been going on in the world (and in my life too....).  Much respect to my collaborators Blackcloudsummoner, Stone Jaw and Lee Riley.  

In 2022 I look forward to:
  • Continuing with the Tump Clump radio shows
  • Unleashing guest mixes for other radio shows (2 in the works... not finished yet, sorry)
  • Finally (maybe) finishing my concept album with Dansmonsters - no promises hah!
  • Releasing Issue 3 of Intrusive Signals zine
  • More collaborations.... any takers? HMU.
  • Releasing the final part of my Folk-horror trilogy on 3" CDr (following Grim's Ditch and Weland)
  • Maybe finally a live performance? Who knows, covid be praised.
  • Working on CLAIRVONT "The Second"
  • FESTIVALS! CLUBBING! PARTIES! GIGS! PUBS! CUDDLING! Maybe. 

Thursday, 16 December 2021

2021 EOYL

For anyone out there who has read my zines, you may know that I love a good list.

So this is my end of year list for 2021.  These are the releases I have listened to most often, in no particular order, with links where available, and some photos of the physical stuff where applicable.  I hope there are not things I have forgotten.  

There are 3 great collaborations in here, and numerous self released / small label works.  A lot of things were released on tape because that was an easy medium to self release where record pressing plants were snowed under / closed due to covid / low on materials.... also nice to see a semi-resurgence for the CD for this same reason.  

This shows what an important year it was for artists coming together to create and keep things ticking along. Enjoy and support the artists!

Top row: Shackleton, Lucy & Aaron
Bot row: Ekoplekz, Mark Dicker, Scald Hymn, Knifedoutofexistence, Campbell & Edwards.

  1. Dit Sese - Dit Sese (Invisible City Records, March 2021, Cassette / Download).  30+ minutes of "dense electronics and void drone" which take you to the precipice of the event horizon and back.  Recorded live in Tokyo, these 2 tracks contain many of the characteristics of drone music, yet there is a hell of a lot going on in the depths.  Obscure shrills slowly rise and fall, chattering layers are buried in the depths, things drip and grind, heavy tones come in and out of focus.  The sounds mesh together as a heavy smog to get lost in, and I have done so on many occasions. 

Tuesday, 7 December 2021

The Tump Clump Episode 8

Episode 8 heralds the arrival of December,  the darkness dominates and the Winter weather has crept into play.  My shed now feels pretty cold.  And a bit damp.  

Perfect.

Let us continue.





Following an intro that could be me getting into the festive spirit, I open the show with a couple of tracks from the Steep Gloss label, based in Wigan.  I picked up the 2 tapes recently by Wellness Regime and The Conduits, and both resonate well with my current brain energy.  The Conduits take processed crusty loops and add an aura of dark strangeness.  Wellness Regime also use loops, perhaps field recordings layered with the chaos of life.

Dit Sese is an artist I am happy to admit that I know not much about.  Originally I discovered the project via a tape on Invisible City Records earlier this year, labelled as "Dense Electronics and Void Drone" which seems particularly apt.  The 2 x 15 minute tracks were recorded live in Tokyo in 2020 and forge an addictive drone trip that warrants repeated listens.  I was then pleased to discover the compilation track from Seoul based label Constant Value called In Thin Rain recorded in 2016, weighing in at just under 6 minutes and therefore I could shoehorn it into the show.  I hope to discover more from the artist... somewhere.... 

The run-out-groove-anthem this time around is the hideous Wombling Merry Christmas, simply because I found the 7" in my collection and its the only festive themed record I own. And NOW ITS STUCK IN MY HEAD AND I CANNOT GET IT OUT.  Sorry if you also get afflicted by this.  Go sing it to a friend and pass on this ear plague. 

I constantly try and make The Tump Clump an inclusive space.  I like playing tracks from around the world, from different scenes, and welcoming in different folk.  

So its pretty cool this time to play Urschmerz from Germany (death folk industrial), noise queen Lutkie from USA (gnarled synthesis and vocals) and Hannya White from London (abstract soundart). I lump all this together as DISMAL and I enjoy it.

The tracks by Pigswill and Scum Alice come from a charity compilation called Are You Shivering? put together by members of the DEEP DIVE DISCORD server and out on the Moon Musiq label.  Some really exciting sounds in here, and Scum Alice has a huge discography, seemingly broadcasting live on Youtube and Twitter quite often.  One to keep an eye on.  All proceeds support the GEMS initiative:

"For the past 20 years, Girls Educational & Mentoring Services (GEMS) has served as the nation’s leading organization for empowering commercially sexually exploited and domestically trafficked girls and young women. Through cultural change, advocacy, training, and survivor leadership, GEMS is committed to shifting public perception and policy."

I close the show with some sounds of my own called Grit, which is the digital bonus track from my new split tape release alongside BLACKCLOUDSUMMONER.  It's kind of my soft attempt at power electronics, but really just experimenting with a loop pedal and adding vocals. I enjoy this sort of setup, I might do more. 

Thank you for listening to the show and for reading all of this.  Please support the artists.

See you in 2022 for some more.


The Tump Clump #8 - 7th December 2021
Wellness Regime - Lucky This Is All Hypothetical Isn't It
The Conduits - All My Friends Are Shallow Dilettantes
Urschmerz - Reject
Dit Sese - In This Rain
Hannya White - Wanna See
Non Bio - Create Problems
The Mike Sammas Singers - Wombling Merry Christmas [Run-out Groove Anthem]
Lutkie - It Reckons
Pigswill - Sleep Cycle
Scum Alice - Heavy Whispers
Volunteer Coroner - Yesterday Lays Upon Your Shoulders
Soloman Tump - Grit