Paper Talks to Liam Fairclough pka Aniso Topics

Aniso tropics is indeed a busy fella!

As well as making some pretty outstanding (and bloomin’ unique!) spaced-out cosmic wonky electronic music, he & his partner have just welcomed their first baby into the world! Luckily we managed to grab a bit of time with him in between feeding & nappy changes to get the lowdown on his studio sessions & what goes into his productions…read on!

An obvious one to start but where did the name Aniso Tropics come from?

The name derives from the term Anisotropy, *commences Wiki copy and paste* – “….is the property of a material which allows it to change or assume different properties in different directions.”

A couple of boffin friends who work in physics and chemistry have picked up on the connection. For me, however, this term was discovered via Anisotropic filtering, a feature synonymous with graphics settings in PC gaming; a method of enhancing images and textures on surfaces in relation to distance. I liked the idea of splitting the term into two: juxtaposing Aniso which sounds quite cold and mechanical, with Tropics, conjuring a feeling of nature and warmth.

Your productions have a lot of elements happening in them whilst retaining an element of being stripped back & quite minimal too, where does the inspiration come from in hour creativity? Are there any specific environments or artists you draw on?

I love this description as it’s exactly the kind of vibe I aim for, so cheers! I’m not really one for brand loyalty but I’m a bit of a freak for Ableton. I approach my productions like a sketchpad, creating a big palette of loops, chopping and changing over and over until I really like the stuff that sounds good together. This could take anywhere from days to months, the actual flow and automation of the finalised track comes right at the end and usually just takes a day or two. I think this is where the feeling of many elements happening in a stripped back vibe comes from. I tend to add lots of elements and then pare them back, sometimes quite far into the distance, for the final mixdown.

With regards to influences, that 90’s/early 00’s Warp Records stuff was my gateway drug into off-kilter electronic music. The likes of Boards of Canada and Future Sound of London made me realise a world could be created in the mind’s-eye with just a pair of headphones. I actually got into electronic and experimental music quite rapidly from my mid-teens, falling asleep every night to ambient stuff like Brian Eno. Head nodding to video games in the day with (in my opinion) the golden era of soundtracks, those mid/late 90’s Japanese productions which had heavy influences of ambient jungle/techno and acid jazz. Ridge Racer Type 4 and Street Fighter III: 3rd Strike immediately come to mind.

It was when I started to go to club nights in my 20’s that my horizons broadened outside the electronic sounds and seeing the likes of Mr. Scruff and Gilles Peterson opened me up to a world of music past and present. I love all that rare groove, disco and afrobeat stuff and that’s the kind of thing I tend to play when out and about DJ’ing in bars. Also, a big fan of German Kosmiche Musik from the 70’s, bands like Kraftwerk, Can, Faust, Cluster, Tangerine Dream etc. My track Ferric Bias was heavily influenced by this style.

In terms of contemporary influences, I have to give a shout to Lone and Space Dimension Controller. Lone clearly grew up in a similar era to me with loads of nods to those 90’s ambient flavours and his recent productions are especially lush and layered. Space Dimension Controller knows his way around an 808 like no other and has this minimal sound filled with tons of space and reverb from which I really take inspiration.

Keep an ear out for a relatively new kid on the block, Tom VR, a great producer starting to get his props from the likes of BBC 6Music and Luke Una.

Have to say thanks to you guys at Paper too for the Northern Disco Lights documentary, it’s one of my all time fave music docs and I think the track Lubek especially has a flavour of that Norway disco sound. Was especially buzzing to release my tunes on Paper off the back of this.

There’s always a very solid & tight sound to your tracks, what is your studio set up and do you have any official training or education or have you just jumped in feet first & found your way around?

No official training or education per se however music production has been a staple in my life for over half of it! Big props go to my dad who nurtured and encouraged this hobby from my early teens. He’d bring home these big old IBM machines and music software from his work in educational IT, loaded with old school tools such as Sound Forge and ACID (the Sonic Foundry era) which opened a gateway to manipulating waveforms and samples. Huge appreciation goes to Music 2000 on the original PlayStation too, my first foray into using a DAW (you could even sample from CDs in the PS1 itself, genius!) I still have tons of semi-finished tracks made over the past 20 years or so on old hard drives, sadly the PS1 memory cards are long dead!

My dad also knew Martin Price, the founder of 808 State, and I went around his house a handful of times in my late teens to record vocals and hang out. He’d have this huge stack of big box VSTs and an iMac with Pro Tools in his living room and would tell stories of working with Bjork and crazy worldwide tours. I didn’t quite realise the gravity of 808’s influence on many artists I love back then, so it’s pretty mad looking back in hindsight!

In my early to mid-20’s, I ran a not-for-profit record label called Retronym with my mate Lee Ackerley. We would scour MySpace and fan forums for bedroom-made music we loved from around the globe that harked back to that Warp Records/IDM/Ambient style sound. We would release stuff for free download with an optional pay-if-you-like model with 100% of funds going to the artist, around the time Radiohead made it popular. The label kind of died out with the advent of Bandcamp, and artists being able to release stuff themselves.

Here’s a couple of artists I’d highly recommend who we had the pleasure of releasing on the label:

Boreal Network: https://borealnetwork.net

Cilocub: https://cilocub.bandcamp.com

After the label phased out I decided to re-focus my energy on my own productions and conceived Aniso Tropics. I’ve actually pared back my setup quite a lot over the past few years, no longer clogging up my DAW with tons of VST’s I never use but investing in a handful to fully master and utilise to the fullest. Big shouts go to Valhalla delays, Arturia synths and XLN XO which has revolutionised my beat-making. Also for me, the Korg M1 synth will never die, those crystalline 90’s pad sounds go into most of my tracks. I use my MicroKorg an awful lot for both sampling and MIDI input, and an AKAI MPD for beats and sample triggers. I sometimes throw some of my old guitar pedals into the mix too. Ableton has been my ‘bread and butter’ DAW for a good decade or so now.

As well as becoming a dad really recently (congratulations Liam!), what else is next on the agenda for Aniso Tropics?

Thanks! I’ve got a few more almost finished tracks in the pipeline, these may end up as another EP or time permitting (looking at you our wee new boy Oscar!) a full-length release. I’ve been dabbling into recording my own vocals for the first time in a long time, so expect some more personable releases in future. I’ve also been formulating and tweaking a setup for potentially playing my stuff live with room for improvisation. I also took a bit of a hiatus from regularly DJing to focus on production and using that precious time outside of full-time work. Chomping at the bit again to be out there playing tunes for folk though, so I’ll probably get back on that train again soon enough.

Fun one to finish off, do you have a specific studio snack or snacks which you always must munch on when working on music?

Knoppers Nut Bars from Aldi! They’re kinda like a Starbar crossbred with a Kinder Bueno. If I went off the rails and ended up driving to Dundee in my bare feet, these would be my crux. I also recall being at the height of creative writing the track ‘Lubek’ in the midst of a Wasabi Pea high. That pleasure/pain of delicious sweetness followed by a burn behind the eyes from munching too many at once really got the juices flowing.

Connect with Liam on his Insta. 

Check out his Lubek release on Paper

Lakeshouse – Ban Ban Ton Ton Interview

Oslo’s Lakeshouse did a great interview with the Balearic Bible, Ban Ban Ton Ton. Topics cover include Cosmic Disco, studio set ups influences and all things Norway.

Buy the EP on Bandcamp.

Tonarunur & Private Agenda tell us about their fab collab ‘Suspended In Motion’

Tonarunur

Chris Massey talks to Tonarunur about his brilliant collaboration ‘Suspended in Motion’ with Private Agenda and how the project came together with a tease about future projects I feel, bring it on, Gauti!

With such a distance between all 3 of you, can you let us know how this collaboration came about and a little about the working practice?

I had been following PA’s work for some time. One day I decided to contact them to see if they were willing to provide vocals for one of my tracks. Much to my amusement, they were willing to do so. Not only did they sing, but they also co-wrote the track. The melody and lyrics are entirely theirs.

Did you each bring something individual regards experience or specific studio skills, or was it very much a collaboration all along the way?

I made the instrumental version, and PA took it from there on…The initial version was slightly different, though, way more “fruity”. Fortunately, we did some cut-downs for the track, and as a result, the track has this “minimal, dreamy and floaty” vibe. Or I certainly hope that is the case!

What would you say your influences (if any!) had been when working on Suspended In Motion?

When I started working on the instrumental version I was going for some “Imagination’s Just An Illusion but heard from a distance” vibe…If that makes any sense. The track sounds like it could work well in some form of live set-up & performance, is that something that had/has been considered? That hasn’t been discussed, but who knows…

Is it the first of many collaborations between Tonarunur & Private Agenda?

The same goes for that one. We haven’t talked about it, but since it was a pleasure working with PA, I wouldn’t say no to another collaboration!

Lastly, favourite studio snacks to crunch on whilst working?

I try to avoid snacks whilst working because it tends to distract me from the music. But if I had to choose one it would be some sort of chocolate filled with liquorice.

Visit their FANLINK PAGE

Marius Sommerfeldt – UnPlugged

Photo: Thomas Ekström

Marius Sommerfeldt, Norwegian electronic producer, marketer and event promoter, was interviewed last week about what is floating his boat. Thanks, Marius, your EP rocks!

1. You’ve had a few different production aliases, with each one being pretty significantly diverse from the other. From the deeper acid squelch of the De Fantastiske To productions to the Garage-esque sounds of Trudee Nite, where would you say you get your influences from, and where does the Sommerfeldt project differ from previous?

Yeah, it’s been a few over the years. The inspiration comes from my record collection, DJ style, taste in music and my surroundings. The Sommerfeldt alias is 100% my playground as a solo producer, and it’s a bit more straight-up house and atmospheric than the other productions. I figured I needed a name to put out my productions and not hide behind just another weird alias.

2. The new E.P. (for us!) definitely carries what we call that ‘classic Paper sound’, yet it still retains something that is quintessentially Norwegian about it. Where do you see the Norway sound now, and would you say there are any specific characteristics that you personally work into your productions?

Thank you, guys! I’m a huge Paper fan, you know. The Norwegian sound is slowly taking its turn towards a new generation of producers and DJs; their non-existing boundaries of how to do stuff and what is «right» or «not» is refreshing! All the club genres are melting in house, techno, trance, UK-garage, breakbeat and even hardcore & jungle.. everything is allowed!

3. What is your work ethic in the studio? Do you just tend to go with the flow, or do you try to get certain elements done each day/session?

First of all, I always start with the groove, I like to fiddle with the drum machines for an hour or two just to make that perfect drum loop. Then I add the bassline, which I have a tendency to keep pretty groovy and minimal to play in the melodies and atmospheres on top. When it comes to finishing a track I usually swear a lot for the next few hours and probably grab a cold one in the fridge while philosophizing about the meaning of life. Making music has ups and downs, but I always manage to land on both my feet in the end.

4. On this release, you feature both Sigmund Floyd & Nora on some stunning vocal duties. How did those relationships come about, and what was the process of creating the lyrics/vocals? Did you have a specific vibe, or was it very much a ‘do what you want’ scenario?

The tracks were pretty much an instrumental demo when I sent them to Nora and Sigmund. Then a few projects were sent back and forth before we met in the studio for a couple of writing and vocal sessions, and we quickly found the vibe we were looking for, I love them both, they are so professional, creative and fun to work with!

5. Lastly, studio snacks are a necessity for me, and I always like to know what other like-minded music makers munch on when doing a session! Are there any specific Norwegian delicacies you stock up on before hiding away in the studio all day?

Have you tried Norwegian milk chocolate? One cup of coffee, a large plate of Freia milk-chocolate… say no more!

 

Photo: Thomas Ekström

Out the Box: Mike Pickering

Our latest Out The Box features a man who can justifiably claim to have brought house music to the UK. A Manchester legend, he kick-started the acid house revolution at The Hacienda alongside Graeme Park with their ‘Nude’ and ‘Hot’ nights. He went on to win a Mercury Music Prize with his band M-People, took dance music into the charts with Deconstruction and continues to DJ around the world.

PLACE

It has to be the Etihad stadium, the home of the champions Manchester City. I’ve been a City fanatic for nearly 60 years through thick and thin, just as I went with my dad, nowadays it’s me and my son Charlie. We are season ticket holders, and we try to get to as many of the away games as well, especially the Champions League matches, which have taken us all over Europe, usually staying a few days to enjoy the host cities.

Etihad Stadium, Manchester City

FOOD
I love food but am coeliac, so it cuts down the options a little. I tend to have different restaurants for a specific dish I fancy. For the best Dover sole in London, it’s Lemonia in Primrose Hill all day long been going there for 25 plus years; they don’t bother giving me a menu now as they know what I want.

Lemonia - Greek hideaway

For a good steak, it’s Patagonia on Camden high St. Nobody does steaks like the Argentinians, and anywhere with Sergio Aguero and Carlos Tevez shirts signed on the wall is good enough for me. I like trying new places but have little patience when trying to find one that is not full. I loved Sessions, though; my favourite Italian is Luca in Clerkenwell.

BOOKS
I love books and travelling gives me plenty of time to read. I recently finished “Long Relationships: my incredible journey from unknown DJ to small time DJ” by Harold Heath. This is a must read for anybody who’s been a clubber; it’s brilliantly written and brutally honest.

Harold Heath

I’m currently reading “The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay” by Michael Chabon, which ranks in the top 5 books I’ve ever read. An epic tale.

Kavalier & Clay

FILMS
I haven’t been to the cinema much in recent times as I find them uncomfortable and generally not very welcoming places; however, on a recent trip to New York, my daughter introduced me to the films by Jordan Peel, “GET OUT” and “NOPE” which were both really good.

How Paper Recordings and Norwegian Disco Lights led Pete Jenkinson into the scary world of Academic Research

I’ve generally had an awkward relationship with higher education throughout my life, preferring the ‘getting your hands dirty’ or, as they’d say in academia, the kinaesthetic approach to learning. As a conscientious pupil, I took Maths and English a year early to squeeze in an extra ‘O’ level in Statistics, Applied Maths and English literature. I even took the A/O level General Studies by going to classes during my lunch.

New Order's seminal electro dance tune Blue Monday

I’d always been into music, listening to Luxembourg under the covers, going to gigs underage. During the summer holidays of ’86, my interest was piqued by Mann Parrish in ’82 (cassette album FFS) and then Blue Monday in ’83, but these new beats from the US were just the bomb. I became immersed in all these new sounds coming from the east coast of America on Tommy Boy or Sugarhill, ordering imported vinyl from artists like Afrika Bambaataa, Grandmaster Flash and the Jonzun Crew. We created cassette ‘pause button’ mixes on cassette and set about becoming a wannabe ‘Beat Boy’ with my fellow ‘beat boys’. We pumped our new sounds on a Hitachi TRK ‘Ghettoblaster’ while dreaming of being Radio Raheem from Spike Lee’s seminal film of the era titled Do the Right Thing. We fantasised about being members of the Rock Steady Crew from the Bronx in NYC, wandering around our small (and safe) housing estate with a roll of lino, attempting to moonwalk like Jeffery Daniel while wearing a glorious nylon and leather mash-up of Tacchini, Farah and Adidas Sambas. I chose the path of discovery and enlightenment.

Radio Raheem's Boombox

To cut a long story short, I scraped a couple of A levels after resits, which resulted in getting a place on an HND in Business Studies at Sheffield Polytechnic. Looking back, it’s almost as if my forays into higher education have been used as a stepping stone as I have zig-zagged along my journey, meeting people and creating positive situations. The coherent thread running through my life has always been music, whether singing and playing guitar in a band at Poly, working behind (or on it) at the Hacienda or trying my hand as a DJ agent for Miles Elliot and even becoming a bona fide club promoter. The Hard Times and Robodisco parties allowed me to work with talented DJs such as DJ Harvey, Terry Farley, Derrick Carter, Josh Wink, Andrew Weatherall, Roger Sanchez, Frankie Knuckles, and the Masters at Work.
From this world of DJs, clubs, journalists and travel came the next part of the journey on life’s disco bus.

e at Robodisco-Planet-K-circa-2000

There were six of us working at the Haҫ and Hard Times, a perfect moment to start a record label. The concept behind Paper Recordings evolved during early evening drinks at a tiny bar on Whitworth St. called Alaska in February 1993. It has been life-defining, creating the social and business thread running through my thirties and forties; it even facilitated my meeting my wife in Amsterdam. Music has taken me on a whirlwind trip for the last 27 years, a complete blast. But, of course, the business got a bit choppy in the mid to late noughties when a seismic shift in media consumption fuelled by the internet and its mischievous offspring, file sharing and Napster, its main cheerleader. In simple terms, the arse fell out of the vinyl market, and with Paper’s turnover comprising 85% vinyl sales and 15% merchandise, we hit the skids. Paper went into a business version of an ICU unit, and the rest of the gang fractured down different career pathways. Elliot continued to DJ and run his World Famous Quiz Nights; Miles is a Cloud Computing Engineer, Andy a 3D Modeller, and Stephen now owns an Event Tech Company. Ben and I decided to work Paper out of the pickle. Each time I realise that Paper has commercially released over 2000 recordings, working with over 500 artists, producers, and remixers in over 50 countries, it makes all the graft worthwhile.

Paper Tees drying on the line

Writing this made me realise that turning to academia when the shit hits the fan appears to be my solution, and so it was again. Martin Moscrop, a member of the seminal Factory Records band A Certain Ratio, was also the head of music at City College Manchester. And even luckier, a fan of Paper Recordings. He invited me in to talk to his students; I loved it. That led me to take a teacher training qualification, more hours for Martin and then, over time, several colleges, teaching kids how to generate income streams from music and performance (I’m still trying to be fair!). It was around 2009 when I did some lectures that turned into a module lead role at Manchester media school ‘Futureworks‘. Working in the School of Sound & Music Production, I was lecturing across the entire three years of the Music Production degree; on the Career Focus modules. The only issue that became a bit of a monkey on my back was that I only possessed an HND qualification and not a degree; the level I was currently teaching.

Northern Disco Lights

I suffered from ‘imposter syndrome’ during my teaching career until after we’d started a film company called Paper Vision Films and produced our first feature film. Paper became a trusted conduit for Norwegian house introduction into the UK and US underground music markets. It was a 74-minute music documentary called ‘Northern Disco Lights’, exploring the story behind these Nordic electronic musicians. Since its premiere at Bergen International Film festival in September 2016, it has screened at over fifty international film festivals in cities around the world, including Tromsø, Oslo, Bergen, Kyiv, Berlin, Copenhagen, Stockholm, Tbilisi, Baku, Melbourne, London, New York, Jakarta, Budapest and Prague. To say this has been beyond exciting would not be an understatement. Could an academic investigation into house music development in northern Norway’s Arctic reaches be repackaged as a Master’s level bit of research? Well, I plucked up some courage, temporarily squashed the imposter syndrome and applied for a Masters by Research degree at MMU. I was accepted and given a place, starting October 2019, submitting my 30k word thesis on New Years Eve 2021 (NYE FFS) and awarded the qualification on June 22. Reflecting on the Northern Disco Lights film and the Masters, I feel it raises the question of what comes first, the professional project or the research into the process? It has made me realise that they are always interchangeable and it’s just dependent on who is at the wheel. The common denominator is and will always be motivation, resilience and hard work.

So, for now, my relationship with academia can take a back seat.

Pete x

PS: you can have a read of the research thesis by clicking the image below.

Boom

Out The Box: Johnno Burgess

Johnno Burgess

Johnno Burgess has always had his fingers in many pies. He has run club night Bugged Out for nearly 30 years and edited Jockey Slut magazine in the 90s, publishing the first interviews with the likes of Daft Punk and the Chemical Brothers. His new print magazine venture, created in cahoots with old-school Jockey Slut crew Paul Benney & Jim Butler, is Disco Pogo which was launched earlier this year and can be found HERE. With very catholic tastes (Johnno used to try and shoehorn Take That singles into after party playlists) outside of techno, he now co-books for London’s Mighty Hoopla pop festival.

Mr Disco Pogo

FOOD
I used to love the Nepalese Gurkha Grill restaurant in Manchester when I lived there in the nineties. I went so often – sometimes three times a week – before I left the city for London in 1999. I went back there about 12 years later and a few of the staff came out of the kitchen to say hello, I felt like a prodigal son! I’ve recently invested in the Nepalese cookbook Ayla by Santosh Shah who you may have seen on MasterChef: The Professionals in 2020. I can’t wait to get stuck in though our local butcher may not stock the offal and wild boar that seems to be popular with Nepalese chefs. I love making curries, they take bloody ages if done properly, stewing the meat, making the base onion sauces but I find it therapeutic to spend a few hours on a Saturday knee deep in cumin.

The Gurkha Grill

MUSIC
I’m slightly obsessed with Confidence Man at the moment. We booked them for Mighty Hoopla in 2019 off the back of their Boyfriend track. They were so energetic that Sugar Bones fell off the stage, and then popped back up covered in blood from the nose he’d just fallen onto to finish the set. Their 2nd album Tilt is packed with wannabe singles and their live show is now unmissable. If you like bands who understand the theatre of pop and the joys of constant vogueing then go and see them!

 

PLACE
The Rose & Crown pub in Kentish Town is my local. They serve craft beers on rotation by brewers like Deya and Verdant. Over lockdown the pub was kept alive by the local community who would queue up every Friday to takeaway a couple of two pint growler bottles. Weird how my taste has completely changed, I drank pints of continental lager like San Miguel for decades and now it’s half a pint of Session IPA. I need to put my ‘readers’ on to check the % on the taps though as they can be as punchy as Special Brew, sometimes clocking up around the 7.5% mark. They had Luke Una’s Verdant collab on tap for what seemed like minutes, it was very popular and was drained rapidly.

mmmmm tasty brew

FILM
I watched Rear Window again recently which is my favourite Hitchcock. I love Jimmy Stewart and his cranky personality shines through as he plays an adventurous photographer trapped in a wheelchair while his leg is in plaster. He becomes a voyeur through boredom furtively spying on his neighbours through binoculars and then witnesses what he believes to be a murder. I used to live in Gainsborough Studios in Hoxton which is where Hitchcock’s early black & whites were filmed like The 39 Steps. It had a similar gated community to Rear Window where you could look out and see your neighbours on different floors from the balcony though I never invested in binoculars! I went to see The Birds screened in a forest as night fell in a London park once which was creepy. I haven’t watched Psycho naked from a shower yet though.

Calder Del Sol Sessions feat. Flash Atkins & Massey

Fast becoming the hottest social gathering in West Yorkshire, Flash Atkins Music’s monthly ‘Calder Del Sol Sessions’ at Barbary’s are bringing a bit of the classic Ibizan vibe to Mytholmroyd in the Upper Calder Valley.

With a soundtrack covering all corners of the record shop provided by Flash & the occasional guests, this after work social shindig is a must for music & craft beer lovers alike.

For the month of June it was Paper’s #1 brew maker Chris Massey Music’s turn to join a top crowd with top musical vibes on the hottest day of the year so far.
It was so good they even made the sunshine instantly disappear pretty much as soon as it started.

Part 1 of the 4 hour mega fest is avail here…tuck in for a fest of sounds of jazz, balearic, cosmic, outsider pop, sun drenched soul, funk, chuggy disco and of course a few choice Paper cuts.

Calder Del Sol Sessions

Flash Atkins is running a new monthly on the Barbary’s terrace throughout the summer in the hills of West Yorkshire.

July 22 is an all African special, Léna C hits the decks on August 19 and the closing party lands on September 23. Expect friendly Northern folk, craft ale and the best music from all corners of the globe.

Out The Box: Chris Massey

Chris Massey seemed the perfect choice to kick off our new ‘Out The Box’ when we ask friends and heroes to tell us about some of the things they love.

Chris AKA The Boy Wonder has been working at Paper Towers for over 10 years and keeps the show on the road while Ben and Pete lounge around in their PJs eating crisps. We have seen him grow from a spotty youth who loved rubbish 80s films into the chiselled hunk of a man he is today who still loves rubbish 80s films.

Chris has carved out a career as one of Manchester’s best loved DJs and party starter as ‘Massey‘, is a damn fine producer and general man-about-town having managed bookings at some of the city’s finest venues including Electriks. He can currently be found event managing at the wonderful Carlton Club when not propping up the bar drinking Vimto out of a straw.

DJ Massey- Paper / Sprechen

Image credit: Slappy Snaps 2021

AND SO OVER TO CHRIS…

Hi, hello, how are you doing…it’s Chris Massey here, fully fledged working class northerner who now resides in Manchester, is still working class but somehow manages to make a living through the crazy industry of music!

Curator, collaborator, label manager, producer, engineer & much more, I fill my days listening to, programming & making music as well as looking for artists to work with on my own Sprechen label and for the mighty ship Paper Recordings. I have been involved with Paper now near enough 10 years now (a space has been cleared in the mantle ready for my carriage clock!) where my duties include overseeing who & what we sign across all 3 label offshoots, running the social media pages, seeking out locations for the annual Christmas do and much more.

Here’s a few things I favour which may have flown under your radar which I wholeheartedly recommend you check out!

BOOK:

Medical Grade Music by Steve Davis & Kavus Torabi
Having booked Steve & Kavus a few times to DJ for me as well as perform with their Utopia String band (who are bloody ace!), I was so excited to finally get this book at Christmas and it didn’t disappoint. 2 blokes from seemingly totally different worlds (one a 6 times world champion snooker player & one from several rock & psych bands) who bonded over music and their journey that brought them together with DJ gigs at Glasto along the way.

Medical Grade Music by Steve Davis and Kavus Torabi

Image Credit: Katie Davies

FILM:

Exorcist III (Directors Cut)
The Exorcist is prob my fave film ever and try as they may, no sequel has ever been anywhere near it (most have just been damn awful!), however the director’s cut of Exorcist III is a really interesting film in that it sticks incredibly close to the original book (called Legion) by William Peter Blatty which for all intents & purposes is more a dark detective noir novel. This is what he went with when he directed the 3rd film which fell victim to studio interference and demands of ‘more horror, it needs spinning heads, an exorcism and of course green vomit!’. The result was a pretty naff film on release with extra scenes filmed just to fit in the textbook exorcism scenes and lots cut from what was originally filmed.

The director’s cut restores all these scenes (most which feature an incredible part by Brad Dourif) which although rough & in work print quality do take the film back to the original source & story and though its nowhere near as good as the 1st film it does stand as a very worthy (though different vibe) film & true sequel. It also has one of THE biggest jump scares ever committed to celluloid.

MUSIC:

Memorex Memories
Being born in 1980 I do have fondness for all things in that era, one of being more modern music that borrows heavily & has plenty of nods to a time before mobile phones ruled out lives. Memorex Memories ticks all these boxes & then some. Not sure how I stumbled across him but I think it was when listening to a ‘Vaporwave’ mix, of which his tracks where the standouts. A quick look round found his page on Bandcamp and opened me up to his insanely good productions which seem to somehow straddle post dubstep with 80’s synth heavy film scores. Really cool & really inspirational…check him out asap. Listen HERE.

Memorex Memories Bandcamp

PLACE

Lords Antiques & Salvage

My parents have recently moved from their home in Bolton to set up a new life a bit further ‘oop north’ in the village of Bentham near Lancaster. Its a stunning little village which has great views & dog walks and which also conveniently now means that we get to have mini weekend breaks whenever we feel the need to get out of dodge!

On a recent trip over to my parents told us about Lords Antiques which sounded amazing and which we instantly planned to visit with the dogs (as its dog friendly!) Its a huge space on multiple floors selling lots & lots of ace old stuff. Not just ‘tatt’ (which is my fave!) but loads of really great interior & exterior salvage. You want heavy marble pillars? No probs! You want a set of animatronic dinosaurs? Just got a full set in stock.

They also have a full room dedicated to taxidermy where one of our dogs took an instant liking to the wild boar skin rug (we just about got him out of there before he ate its ear!).

Well worth a visit to this little known place that’s tucked away in the outer realms of the countryside…plenty to see & do nearby too. Go have a mooch HERE.

Lords Antiques & Salvage

REACH OUT:

@chrismasseymusic (Facebook & IG)
@sprechenmusic (Facebook & IG)