And up into the ring, where’s my hanging microphone…. “Laydees and gennelmen….Tonight, and FOR one night ONLY…. ITS….”

July 2016
Green Door Store

Shirty

Shirty

Shirty sets up on the stage, a keyboard and laptop, at his feet a light (oddly making his feet a focal point of the show) and slowly leaking smoke machine and to each side of the synth a thin black tower just visible joining these towers in the smoke wisping up are three traces of green light. he runs a techno front track (what’s the opposite of a backing track? everything but the drums?) and supplies the beats shadow boxing the lines to provide the beats. he does three tracks like this in total slowly getting more complex, the last one has a slowly unfolding piano part that he loops his hand played rhythms into. After these three he gets audience members up to play around, some guitar samples are loaded in, or some T99 stabs. I almost rush up for a bash at “Anastasia”. Its a lot of fun.


Before Ian and Nick get started Alex Peckham shows two short films, one by Jo Knell (aka Jojo Gingerhead) and one of his featuring her hands and sewing machine. they segue well, and the soundtrack shifts between them are nice from Jojo’s noises to Alex’s cut up soundtrack, with its almost verse chorus structure.


Nicholas Langley and Ian Murphy

Nicholas Langley and Ian Murphy

Ian Murphy and Nicholas Langley are set up with their piano guts spilling over the wall from the Green Door Store room area out onto the main floor. Everyone gathers round as they apply their machines, bits of metal and odd devices to the thing, working around the soundboard, swapping sides, back and forth. Endlessly fascinating as theatre and at its best when they work together on a pattern of sounds for a while, not quite rhythmic, repeating, they are listening and playing – improv as it should be – but on a single instrument. Somehow they seem to cover a lot of ground from the first few Pink Floyd albums. Very odd, that. Nice.


Aqua Dentata

Aqua Dentata

And to finish the evening off, in complete contrast to everything we’d had previously was Aqua Dentata, its his first visit to Brighton in two years and the first time ever at The Spirit of Gravity, so we’ were really chuffed as he got to work on the PA, slowly chasing up the ends of the sound spectrum with his constantly developing stasis of highly detailed drones. Without anything obviously changing he keeps us mesmerised with shifts of stereo balance, tonality, timbre. The bass is full and the top end hits several sweet spots I never knew existed in my tinnitus ranges. Gorgeously wafting out with the gentle wash of Eddie bowing a flying saucer..


Colour me digital

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September saw our first involvement with Brighton Digital Festival and it came off rather well, three very different facets of digital music.

The 55th Flotilla were kind enough to take a break from their regular Build Brighton night and supply the elektrocreche, with their trademark ships wheel and telegraph, their new large size telegraph is a particular joy.



ian n nick useStarting our evening off was the first live collaboration between Nicholas Langley (Hz, Cosmonaut Transfer) and Ian Murphy (Hobo Sonn), Ian set up in front of the stage (“I like to hear the actual PA”) with his vintage sampler and Nick sat right down on the cobbled floor with a phone. They start with Nick circling Ian’s sonics quite uncertainly, settling into the evening before really starting to assert himself – pushing Ian out of his usual places, before fluttering some phoned in tapped tabla that had Ian bouncing back with some textural drones. Then Nick switched to a fuzzed organ that wound around what Ian was doing for a very satisfactory psychedelic finale.


john wall useJohn Wall had to leave early so played the central slot and turned in a real storming set, wringing every tone from the generous PA that the Green Door Store has, so a special mention to Matt Benzie the soundman for giving him free reign to really stretch the sonics of the room. It was also nice to have John play in an environment where you could see the whites of his eyes as they flick around his laptop screen, totally focussed on what he’s doing. Really abstract but very cohesive, from trouser flapping bass to the cleanest top ends.


baconheadSo Baconhead gear up the proceedings, keeping the bass extended but adding crunchy rhythms. Referencing Panoptica and Derrick May; with extreme repetition, pitch bends and odd sounds it was step on from their set in the spring, uncluttered and unhoodied keeping focus on the dynamics. Head noddingly good.