November 9, 2009
Geoff Leigh has uploaded some of his video experiments with ice formed under the influence of orgonite (with a soundtrack of some music work we did earlier this year). Orgonite, a dubious by-product of the Willhelm Reich school of pseudo-science, is an agglomerate of left handed metal swarf and acrylic resin said to have mysterious and mystical properties…
October 8, 2008
“Man will never be free until the last king is hanged with the entrails of the last priest.”
(attributed to) Denis Diderot
A group of Fundamentalist religious extremists have finally been evicted from St Mary’s in the Castle Arts Centre, Hastings, after a successful opposition campaign. The Sonrise Church which has occupied the Arts Centre will leave the building in january 2009 having endured years of “constant harassment from a minority of ‘nameless, faceless people” including death threats to the church members and congregation, egg throwing and vandalised cars: “we have been the subjects of a faith hate campaign. So extreme has this campaign against us as a family been that on several occasions we have had to involve the police” says Glen Khan head of the Church and Sky TV preacher.
July 14, 2008
on the 2 January 1492 the Andaluz city of Granada fell to a besieging army of christian Celts and franks ending 750 years of Arab civilisation in the Iberian Peninsula. What had become a haven of learning, culture and tolerance met the kind of violent end that was to characterise christian expansion; with papal approval Arab, morisco (mixed christian and Arab) and Jewish populations were indiscriminately slaughtered, the libraries and universities torched…
April 4, 2008
Geoff (Leigh) was keen to broadcast the output of our recent audio collaborations – so here we go; an mp3 of rough mixes of electro-acoustic improvisation: Geoff Leigh on Flutes and Myself on ‘other things’. you can hear more of Geoff’s work on: Geoff’s myspace page. The image above was nicked from Ian land’s extensive photographic library of trees and sky around Hastings.
March 13, 2008
Last Saturday I spent the afternoon working with ‘the legendary’ Geoff Leigh (pictured above in his cave like studio in Hastings) on some electro-acoustic improvised pieces: Geoff playing flute and various wind instruments which I processed live using granular sequencing software. This will hopefully be the beginning of a longer, currently anonymous, musical collaboration (if you can think of any good names, let me know). Geoff is a renowned multi instrumentalist probably best known for having played in an early incarnation of Henry Cow* in the early seventies, Moiré Music in the eighties and more recently with North African musicians and with those other old hippies, Faust.
January 4, 2008
Hastings Arms, Hastings. 17-12-2007
John Crampton is one of those idiosyncratic British musicians like Lol Coxhill or Evan Parker maybe, who have taken a musical form, in this case Blues*, and adapted and evolved it into their own per-culiar voice. John’s music is essentially blues but replaces the standard characteristics with his own idioms: shuffling 12 bar blues rythm are replaced with up-tempo 4/4 beats metronomically measured out on a simple foot pedal. Instead of the formulaic flattened guitar chords, John’s playing is an eclectic mix of Flamenco, West African Ju-Ju slide, country and Punk, the tin guitar occasionally treated as a percussion instrument augmented by hand claps and foot taps. Layered over this is Crampton’s gritty, growled minimal vocal and harmonica playing which again avoids blues stereotypes and harmonically adds to the range of the music creating a ‘big sound’ like an Irish string section moving loosely along with the guitars.
Micklepage Stomp (excerpt) MP3 file
http://www.crampton62.freeserve.co.uk/ John Crampton Website
*Not my kind of thing, “The Blues”. I like the idea of “The Blues” but my ears refuse to listen to it – don’t get me wrong, i can see why it is good; i understand the whole ‘west-africa-to-america’ relevance, complex harmonies and rhythms and root importance to rock and pop music – i’d just prefer that it sounded better. Maybe it’s what happened to Blues that makes me uncomfortable; when played amplified by white blokes it tends toward bombast (and that unforgivable crime; the creation of Heavy Metal). When it’s purity is preserved it becomes sterile and ironically further away from it’s roots; becoming the sole domain of aging middle class males.
October 22, 2007
A video taken just outside of our house in Hastings. To mark the end of ‘Hastings Week’ (yet another excuse for general drunkenness and ribald behavior) there was a torchlight parade through the old town by fire carrying, firework throwing pagan marching bands and stocky men and women dressed as corpses, pirates, devils and skeletons. The whole thing culminated in a massive bonfire on the beach where crucifixes were set ablaze (how we cheered!) and fireworks ignited at dangerously close proximity. A plan that was hatched to storm the nearby St Mary’s centre (occupied by Christian extremists) and throw some believers into the blaze, was, alas, abandoned in favour of acquiring more booze before the offie closed. Next year perhaps.