Wednesday, December 21, 2005


After AllRecessional
After All / Recessional

Over the last week or so, I have digged out my 310 albums and played them quite a lot. For some reason, it had been a while since I last played any of their work, so it was really nice to dive into Aug 56, After All, Recessional, The Dirty Rope and Snorkelhouse again. All 5 albums are so interesting and different from each other.

This made me think that their last album to date, Recessional, was already a couple of years old, so I thought I'd drop them an email to know whether there was some new material coming up soon.

I just got an email from Tim from the band, and news are rather positive. They have been working on a new album for a while now and are hoping to release it at some point in the new year. He's also pointed me to there page on MySpace ( on which they have four new tracks, all sounding rather interesting, as usual. I am definitely looking forward to more...

310 on themilkfactory


In the post this morning:

A rather big package from the good people at Baked Goods, with new albums from B. Fleischmann (The Humucking Coil - Morr), Dub Tractor (Hideout - City Centre Office), Matinee Orchestra (Matinee Orchestra - Arable), Wechsel Garland (Easy - Karaoke Talk) and Mimi Secue (Maila - Karate Joe).

From Ninja Tune: Fink debut single, Pretty Little Thing, b/w Biscuits, rel. 06/02/2006, with album Biscuits For Breakfast to follow in April.

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B. Fleischmann: The Humucking Coil (Morr Music - Rel. 6/02/2006)

Monday, December 19, 2005


I couldn’t resist any longer. After seeing the new Kraftwerk box set Minimum Maximum at the end of last week, I had to have it. This great release documents the band's 2004 tour and features 2 CDs and 2 DVDs plus a book in a silver box, which is meant to look like a laptop.

Kraftwerk are undoubtedly one of the most influential bands in the history of modern music. Their impact on the music world is equivalent to that of Elvis or The Beatles in that they opened a whole new way for others to follow, a way where the computer became part of the creative process. Before Kraftwerk, electronic music was very much the stuff of scientists and mathematicians. Computers were slow and synthesizers were the size of a house. With technology progressing, they all became a lot smaller and more accessible, yet Kraftwerk took the machines and did with them things that no-one had really dreamt before – democratising electronic music by making it accessible to a wider audience. For a very interesting insight into the band and their career, check out this excellent article written by Colin Buttimer for themilkfactory a couple of years ago.

I’ve only watched part of the DVDs and will be playing the CDs tomorrow on my way to work, but it just dragged my back to Saturday 20 March 2004 at the Brixton Academy. That night, Kraftwerk played two shows, one at 8pm, the other at 12am. I was lucky enough to go, and it remains one of the most impressive and thoroughly enjoyable live shows I've seen.

The gig was just what I was expecting: four guys spending pretty much the whole set static behind their minimalist keyboards/computers. Yet, these guys have such a presence, and the music was just great, and illustrated with fantastic high quality visuals behind the band.

As mentioned above, the box set features two CDs, two DVDs and a superb book with photos taken during the various concerts together with some of the visuals used.


Good to hear from Bip-Hop Records again. The label seems to have been quite slow at releasing music in 2005 compared to previous years. There’s only really been the superb Specified Encounters from Iris Garrelfs and From Tears: Beach Archive by Si-Cut.db. I am quite surprised there hasn’t been a new instalment in the Bip-Hop Generation series, the last one, volume 7, dating back to May 2004.

So I was rather exited to have two new albums from them landing on my desk recently: Janek Schaefer’s Migration, and Same Actor’s Sharp Edges.


The Schaefer offering is the ‘one hour original soundtrack for Migration, a site-specific dance choreographed by Noémie Lafrance and performed by the Liz Gerring Dance Company on window ledges opposite Grand Central Station in New York on 4 May 2005’. An interesting evolutive piece built around four sections.

SAME ACTOR Sharp Edges
SAME ACTOR Sharp Edges (BLEEP30)

Same Actor is the project of Chris Cook ‘for music made predominantly with guitar, sitar and dulcimer’ according to the press release. The result is a collection of rather interesting tracks with mixed flavours, sometimes allowing for oriental tones to delicately alter the mood of the record, while at others, the electronic undertones takes this work in a totally different direction.


I’ve finally given Coppé’s new opus, the bumper double album she is releasing to coincide with the tenth anniversary of her label, Mango & Sweet Rice, a full listen. 34 tracks spread over two CDs no less. As usual, she collaborates with a wide array of people including former Orb member Kris ‘Thrash’ Weston, Q Bert, Ryan Breen, Nobukazu Takemura, Samurai Chop, DJ Vadim, Kettel, Mickey The Cat, Dokaka, The Program and many more. And, as usual, this album is extremely varied. Highlights include so far the superb My Tears Become Lavender Oil which I find quite reminiscent of Yazoo’s sombre and haunting piano-led Winter Kills, the lovely Green Tea Chocolate and the loungey Cutting Toenails In The Park.

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The beautiful Coppé captured by Tony Williams

I first heard of Coppé when my friend Nathalie, who then worked for a Belgian distribution company, sent me a copy of her third proper album, Peppermint, which featured collaborations with Plaid and DJ Vadim. I fell in love straight away, and contacted her to ask whether she would be interested in doing an interview. She was up for it, and we’ve been in touch ever since.

She’s been doing a lot of different stuff over the years, and her work is rather difficult to sum up in just one word, but she’s probably best associated with the likes of Björk and Nicolette.

Friday, December 16, 2005


Frozen ashtrays... Picture taken last Sunday at home.


Yesterday was a rather good day for post with stuff from a variety of labels, including quite a few CDs from Mexican label Static Discos, Murcof's original label, and something from the good people over at Leaf (I forgot what the band's name or album title is, so will have to post about it later).

There was also a package from Ninja Tune. I can always tell something comes from them as they use a particular type of envelop. This time though, the envelop was 7" size, and when I looked inside, there was something that looked like a Coldcut 7". I know there's a single coming up in January (check here), but looking closer, I realised that there were a tad too many tracks for a 7" single (12!). It turns out this is actually a copy of the new Coldcut album, Sound Mirrors.

I know it costs record labels a lot to produce really nice promos, but it is always nice to get one in the post. This one has apparently "a unique audio watermark" and is numbered (mine's #280), obviously to try and prevent people from leaking the album.

The packaging is so nice that I actually couldn't wait to play the album, even if I have never been mad about Coldcut. First impression is rather good. Very much in the Ninja vein, very eclectic, and features collabs with Roots Manuva, John Matthias (on the new single, Man In A Garage - I love the Lemon Jelly remix of that track which will be featured on the single), Robert Owens, Jon Spencer (without his Blues Explosion malarkey). Saul Williams and many more.

Favourite tracks on first listen: Walk A Mile with Robert Owens and Colours The Soul featuring Dom Spitzer.

Full track listing:
Everything Is Under Control
True Skool
Man In A Garage
Walk A Mile
Mr. Nichols
Sound Mirrors
This Island Earth
Just For The Kick
Aid Dealer
Whistle And A Prayer
Colours The Soul

The CD comes with two stickers (woopey!) and two badges. I usually give badges to Woody as he loves them and appears to collect them, but he won't get these!

The Coldcut set with the numbered CD, the stickers and the badges

Thursday, December 15, 2005


Tonight, the moon is apparently at its furthest away from Earth for the next eighteen years, and also at its brightest as it is nearer to the sun. I noticed how bright it was tonight when I got home actually. I could see in the garden almost as clearly as in full daylight.

I took these few pictures at about 1030 this evening.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005


"Invertebrates. For every one of us, there are 200 million of them."

I don't usually spend much time watching TV in the evening, but I have been totally fascinated by David Attenborough's newest series for the BBC entitled Life In The Undergrowth. The program explores the world of invertebrates thanks to miniature cameras. Insects, arachnids and other worms seen as never before and gives the viewers the chance to see this tiny world on big screens. Truly fascinating.


Posting about Spunk yesterday made me think how I love the visuals create by Kim Hiorthøy for the entire Rune Grammofon catalogue. So I thought it would be a good idea to post some of my favourite of his work for the label, starting with the original cover for Supersilent's debut album, the first release from this totally exquisite and forward-thinking imprint. Incidentally, all these records are terrific.

RCD 2001 - Supersilent : 1-3

RCD 2005 - Biosphere / Deathprod : Nordheim Transformed

RCD 2006 - Biosphere / Deathprod / Nordheim : Electric / Transformed

RCD 2009 - Chocolate Overdose : Dingledoodies

RCD 2011 - Alog : Red Shift Swing

RCD 2019 - Archetti / Wiget : Low Tide Digitals

RCD 2029 - Supersilent : 6

RCD 2033 - Skyphone : Fabula

RCD 2034 - Susanna & the Magical Orchestra : List of lights and buoys

RCD 2035 - Deathprod: Morals and Dogma

RCD 2039 - Strønen/Storløkken: Humcrush

RCD 2048 - SPUNK: En Aldeles Forferdelig Sykdom

Tuesday, December 13, 2005


I took this rather poor quality picture (mobile) of what I could see of the black cloud of smoke coming down from the fire in the oil depot in Hemel Hempstead this afternoon. The picture was taken from my office window in Hammersmith, South London, thirty miles or so south of where the fire was!


I got the new Spunk album, En Aldeles Forferdelig Sykdom, published on the ever-excellent Rune Grammofon imprint, a couple of weeks ago, and it is just totally mind-blowing.

Spunk are an Norwegian all-female free improv band formed ten years ago by four world-renowned musicians: Maja Ratkje, Kristin Andersen, Hild Sofie Tafjord and Lene Grenager. Their work features anything from electronics to screams and is probably best described as challenging.

Of course, this is not exactly the kind of stuff you put on in the morning to cheer you up, but the way they come up with the strangest sounds, and constantly veer from beautiful musicality into complete sonic anarchy is just compelling. The album features wonderful artwork by Kim Hiorthøy.

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iToy™ for the iGeneration™.

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Monday, December 12, 2005


Christmas cards! Now, what a nightmare... The intention is great, but what exactly is the point of writing card after card and send them... when you know they are going to end up in a bin within two to three weeks!... Anyway, I've done most of mine now...

Thursday, December 08, 2005


I've been lucky enough to interview a wide array of incredibly interesting people in my time working on themilkfactory, but having the chance to finally interview the genius that is Greg Davis is definitely one of the highlights of the last six years.

I had wanted to do this for so long, but somehow, I never got the balls rolling until I mentioned it to Todd at Carpark, Greg's record label. Todd kindly forwarded my contact details to Greg, who emailed me saying he would be happy to do the interview. The result was published on this month's edition of themilkfactory.

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The man himself


This blog used to exist somewhere else. It is now here, hopefully in a more adult (ahem...) form. This is therefore the first in an irregular series of rambles and rumbles.

In the meantime, the upload of the new issue of themilkfactory has just started... 1.43am! Just a quick look to make sure everything is doing OK and I am off to bed.