Rough Trade 40 book

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I’m very chuffed to have an interview with Savage Pencil aka Edwin Pouncey in the new Rough Trade book celebrating 40 years of the shop and associated labels. Just published by Thurston Moore‘s Ecstatic Peace imprint it’s packed with scrapbook-like anecdotes, photos, poems, drawings and interviews by a who’s who of the independent scene.

My piece runs to five pages and covers SavX‘s career from aspiring cartoonist and early employee of the Portobello shop to Blast First cover artist and abstract painter with Battle Of The Eyes. The interview was so long that I had to cut it down by more than half so I’ll publish the full thing here with many illustrations once the book has been out a while.

*Also – there’s a free John Grant one-sided 45 with etched B side if you buy the book from Rough Trade shops

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Herne Hill Save The Half Moon music event

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Last minute gig addition, I’ll be playing some music at this on Saturday, it’s a local event for me and there have been lots of things going on in the area recently that threaten the livelihoods of local businesses in this community. A sudden 70% increase in rents to property by the local Dulwich Estate group has already caused one shop to close and the Half Moon Pub, already closed for over two years due to a flood, has had it’s music license revoked unexpectedly. There’s more about it here but basically it boils down to the seemingly unending desire to squash any life and vitality out of London and replace it with the dreaded luxury flats as property owners cash in and squeeze the people who made these areas desirable in the first place out.

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45/7 Vinyl Club mix #20: DJ Food

A new all-45s mix I did for the 45/7 Vinyl Club (not to be confused with the 45Live crew but the aims are similar). Each guest is asked to provide a mix made from vinyl 45s only, answer 5 questions and choose a unique hand-painted cover which they are then sent with a special 45/7 Vinyl Club 7″.

Click into the mix link for the interview and, as there’s no track list provided, here it is below

Dr. Donald B. Louria – Is Marijuana really dangerous? (Teach Records)
DJ Shadow – This Time (I’m Gonna Dub It My Way) (Universal / Island)
Sixtoo – Incedental 1 (Bully)
Dr. Donald B. Louria – Does LSD increase creativity? (Teach Records)
Controller 7 – Wandering Song (Bully)
Primal Scream – Kill All Hippies (Creation)
The Giallos Flame – Vultures feat. Wolf People (Analog Screams)
Cavern Of Anti-Matter – Total Availability and the Private Future (Peripheral Conserve)
Blues Explosion feat. DJ Shadow – Fed Up & Low Down (Edit) (Mute)
The Go! Team – Grip Like A Vice (Memphis Industries)
Paul Weller – Rip Up The Pages (Lynchmob mix) (Island)
The Protein Bros – Drainpipe (Rural)
The Edgar Winter Band – Frankenstein (Epic)
John Rydgren – The Noise (Teach Records)
Beck – Mixed Business (Geffen)
Chaps – Ascension To Virginity (Decca)
The Zutons – Why Won’t You Give Me Your Love? (Deltasonic)
Ocean Colour Scene – Hundred Mile High City (MCA)
The Soundcarriers – Boiling Point (The Great Pop Supplement)
D.O.T. – Say Your Prayers (Twisted Nerve)
The Dirty Feel – Get Down (No Label)
Toolshed – Pazuzu (Theme From Exorcist II) (Black Deck)
The Giallos Flame – Italia Violenta (Analog Screams)
Alan Copeland – Mission Impossible/Norwegian Wood (ABC Records)

Coming soon… I Love Acid 45s mix

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I put this pile of 45s down in a mix last week, possibly the world’s first all 7″, all-Acid mix? I’ve been collecting acid tracks on 7″ for a while now and, when Josh from I Love Acid asked me to do a mix for his I Love Acid Radio slot, I thought this would be the perfect slot to showcase them. The mix is due to debut on March 10th, I’ll post a link here when it does. Pete Isaac from 45 Live is also a big acid 45 collector and we’ll be doing something in that vein later this year…

Acid on 45 is a pretty niche area, a lot of the releases are UK pressings as several tracks made the charts at the end of the 80s and record labels were still pressing 7″s alongside the 12s to get radio play. There are also a lot of european singles from around that time too, tracks that were big in countries like Belgium, the Netherlands and Spain but won’t maybe be known elsewhere. In the 90s a lot of acid on 45 is confined to the more uptempo almost gabba-techno kind and there are slim pickings to be had until the 00s when the sound made a resurgence back into techno.

‘Near Mint’ part 2 + Resonance FM fundraiser

ResElectroHThe second part of Robin The Fog & Hannah Brown‘s ‘Neat Mint’ show for Resonance FM just aired tonight with the continuation of their peek into the odder end of my record collection. Hear what these records sound like below.


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Also we’ll all be playing at The Book & Record Bar in West Norwood on Friday alongside the landlord Micheal (not listed below) and Zoe ‘Lucky Cat’ Baxter who, I just found out, is the daughter of Glen Baxter! Come down, the shop is less than a minute’s walk from the West Norwood train station. £5 entry in aid of Resonance FM who have their annual fundraising drive on at the moment to keep them on the air for another year. Some very unique prizes to be auctioned off in a very good cause, truly independent radio with no playlist.

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Near Mint show Pt.1 & 45 Live Show mix


For all those who won’t see the updated posts further down the feed; here’s last night’s new Resonance FM show, Near Mint, that I featured on with some highlights of my collection. Plus here’s the 45Live Radio Show I had an all-45s guest mix slot on with Greg Belson last Friday night/Saturday morning on Dublab.

Big Fish Little Fish Mini Vault event Feb 6th

MINI-RUMPUS1Only two and a half weeks until the Big Fish Little Fish ‘Out of this World’ Mini Vault event in Waterloo. Saturday 6th February | 11am – 2pm. Robin Hexstatic played this last year and I’ve been looking forward to it for ages because it has a space theme. If you’re unfamiliar with the BFLF concept it’s a day time party for families with under 10 year old children that goes under the banner ‘2-4 hour party people’. Kids have lots of activities to get involved in, can get dressed up, there’s a parachute dance and the parents can relive tunes from their clubbing heydays.

They’ve got a whole heap of extras at this one including Korg synth and gadget workshops. Info and tickets here
The last one I did at the (admittedly free) Southbank was a roadblock that had to be stopped halfway because of the number of people trying to get in. It all ends mercifully early and you emerge, blinking into sunlight to realise it’s not breakfast time but not long until dinner.

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20 years since the first Ninja Tune ‘Stealth’ club night

Stealth Dec 95

Yes, 20 years ago today (although it was a Thursday back then) Ninja hosted their second party at the Blue Note in Hoxton Square, London and the first with the title ‘Stealth’ (the original party was a launch do for the ‘A Recipe For Disaster’ album). Great times ensued, pretty sure I met my future wife that night too…

Final reveals for the Rammellzee ‘Cosmic Flush’ album & show

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Just revealed yesterday, a cover mock up for the ‘Cosmic Flush’ box set by Will Barras (we’d seen the silhouetted version of this on the T-shirt earlier this year) and cover artists Poesia and Kofie for the final two releases. Poesia is paired with Sam Sever on the remix and Kofie provides cover for a Psychopab version on the final of seven 12″s. Both can be pre-ordered over on the Gamma Proforma website.
The exhibition of all this art – including She One, Futura 2000, Delta, Doze Green and Ian Kuali’i – opens this Thursday at the Magda Danysz Gallery, 61 Charlotte Street, London. Yours truly will be playing an all-Rammellzee set with a mix for Solid Steel premiering on the Quietus the same day.

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Flexi discs everywhere including the Quietus

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The second of John Doran‘s ‘Vinyl Staircasepieces went up Monday on The Quietus. The first one was a riot and this treads a similar path plus it includes a little interview with yours truly on the subject of flexi discs.
On Saturday I visited the opening of the X-Ray Audio exhibition at the Horse Hospital in London for the launch of Stephen Coates‘ book of the same name and a series of events related to the subject of Soviet ‘Bone Music’.

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One of these events will be my own ‘A Night At The Flexibition‘ event this Saturday the 5th of December where I’ll be chatting to Stephen about various discs from my collection (some pictured above for the Quietus piece). We’ll be playing selections and talking to Alex, the engineer who cuts audio onto X-Rays for Stephen in performances. It should be very informal and there will be a small quantity of random flexi discs free to the first 20 or so people through the door, pulled from my own stash. The X-Ray Audio exhibition will be viewable so you can kill two birds with one stone and maybe even pick up early copies of the excellent book with free facsimile flexi while they last.

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X-Ray Audio & The Flexibition at the Horse Hospital

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Above is the flexi disc that comes free with the limited edition version of Stephen Coates‘ new book on Soviet Bone Music, ‘X-Ray Audio’. The book and exhibition launches this Saturday at the Horse Hospital in London showing discs, films and images that tell the story of how these strange artifacts came to be.

On Dec 5th at the same venue I’ll be in conversation with Stephen showcasing some of my flexi disc collection, playing selections and telling the stories behind them. First through the door will get a random flexi and Stephen will also bring some of his Soviet 78rpm discs too no doubt.

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Freaky Formats at the Vinyl Factory: 3D sleeves

Various 'A Psyche For Sore Eyes' webI’m pleased to announce that I’ve collaborated with the good people at The Vinyl Factory for a monthly look through the weirder reaches of my record collection. After the short film on flexi discs they made this summer we’ve got together to produce an irregular look at the weird & wonderful world on vinyl and the myriad forms of pressings and packaging it can come in, dug directly from my collection. The first post just went live and focuses on 3D sleeves, photographer Michael Wilkin shot the sleeves.

The Art of Curation at ADE in Amsterdam with Mixcloud

RecordPalaceOpArt A couple of weeks ago I was in Amsterdam, taking part in discussions about ‘The Art of Curation’ with Mixcloud co-founder Nikhil Shah. The chat was hosted by the electronics company Sonos as part of the annual ADE music conference that takes place there, the biggest in Europe. I chose five tracks that linked with the subjects of Music, Art, Sci-Fi, Comics & Design which largely tie into the things I collect and post about on this site. This is the part where the blog eats itself as I blog about myself talking about blogging and readers will hear some familiar names and sounds during the interview.

Raze7frontThe trip was a fruitful one in terms of digging for new things in my time off and I went with a mission for 45s, underground comics and sci-fi paperbacks. Things got off to a poor start with my first stop at Record Palace (Op Art -themed wall display at the top) which is on the outer rim of the centre of the city. I’ve shopped there a few times and it’s always yielded treasures but this time it wasn’t to be. Of the two 7″s I bought (a substandard late 80s Dickie Goodman break-in record and Raze‘s ‘Break 4 Love’) when I returned home to play them I discovered that the disc inside the Raze cover was in fact a Thompson Twins single. My fault for not checking the disc but they were only 50c and there was a strict ‘no playing’ rule on records from the cheap bins. The only good thing about it was the Trevor Jackson-designed cover which, when you look at the ‘dancing’ figures, is actually quite dirty.

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From here I visited Lambiek a few roads away, the oldest comic shop in the world if their website is to be believed and, on the strength of their stock, I can believe it. The shop is about to move to a new premises and their usual gallery space was now a large dumping ground for what looks like all manner of random stock. Very little of it was priced apart from the odd penciled number on an inside cover and many of the piles can contain anything, very little order exists as you can see below.

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But there was some gold there and I soon had a little pile building, the owner unable to direct me to the undergrounds as everything was mixed up due to the impending move. They closed at 5pm and at approximately 4.45 I glanced under a shelf and saw a box that looked like it was exactly what I was looking for. Going through it my suspicions were confirmed and I started pulling out handfuls of British and American underground and independent press comix as fast as I could, some in not-so-good condition but still a lot that you only find on eBay these days.Oz39
This copy of Oz magazine was nestling in the box, looking like a Robert Crumb comic, copies usually go for £10-20 and up.ImagineFoss SubvertComicsx3
These three Subvert comics by Spain were a bit water-damaged but I’d never seen copies before aside from being reprinted in other mags.Skull_TwoFistedZombies MotherOats1&3
No.s 1 and 3 of Mother Oats Comix by the late, great Dave Sheridan.
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They had five copies of this Radical Rock comic, all badly water-damaged but readable. You can easily find these for about $5 on eBay, but the postage triples the price as they’re always from the States.
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I wasn’t going to leave a comic behind with a cover like the Bizarre Sex one, the issue of Tasty has some really nice abstract acid trip visuals inside although the cover isn’t up to much.
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That Dutch NIMFKE comic on the right is probably one of the filthiest things I’ve ever seen in comic form.
CrackedMadStarWars SickThere was more but here’s a lot of it. I’d been tempering my choices, thinking that this was adding up to quite a bundle but some of this stuff just doesn’t come around in Europe that often, even in this condition. Upon taking them to the counter I couldn’t quite believe my luck when the assistant proceeded to charge me one Euro for each comic with only two for some slightly over-sized books like Imagine and Heavy Metal. Digs like that don’t happen every day.

On then, with a spring in my step, to a couple more comic shops further north near Centraal station. On my way I passed a shop with a big sign outside, ‘Used Books, English Language’, and took a quick peek to see what it was like. Once inside I inquired if they had any vintage sci-fi paperbacks and the guy at the counter pointed to eight large apple boxes stacked in the aisle. “Four for ten Euros“, he quipped, “How long until you close?”, “20 minutes!”. I probably got through about two thirds of them, given that they were two rows deep inside but it was worth it.
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Bear Witness

#solid_steel #result_art #dk #bear_witness #stage_jump

A video posted by Anton (@mr.armtone) on


I think this is one of my favourite videos of the year. From the Resultart party DK and I did in Nizhny Novgorod in Russia last weekend (that’s him playing on the right) I wasn’t around for this but wish I had been. The party was in an old warehouse that had been left unused until just a month before and had been transformed with artwork and a huge video screen into a great club space. The soundsystem was SO loud that the bass frequencies were hurting my ears and rippling the screen of my laptop at times.

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Polar bear video courtesy of Mr. Armtone who managed to find me a very rare ‘bone disc’ (see last week’s Flexibition) which I will treasure forever. Thanks Anton! :)DSC00002

DJ Food ‘Music On A Shoestring’ mix [Psychonavigation 2000 – 2015]

MusicOnAShoetringHere’s the details for the Psychonavigation Records 2000-2015 mix CD I’ve just finished: 23 tracks from the 45 track ‘Music On A Shoestring’ digital compilation, mixed by yours truly into a 74 minute head trip. Here’s an online stream of the mix in full, see what you think…

If ambient electronica, deep space dub, classical piano and acoustic pieces are your thing then this is for you.
Some names you might recognise from the line up: The Future Sound of London, Autechre, Brian Eno, Alex Paterson, Thomas Fehlmann, Dr Atmo, Spacetime Continuum
It was very hard to fit all the tracks I wanted onto one disc as the hit rate on the compilation is so high, my original wishlist was 35 of the 45 tracks. You can pre-order the mix CD here or buy the full digital compilation for only €10(!), selected by label boss Keith Downey from the last 15 years of releases. I can’t convey how many beautiful tracks are on this comp and all for €10 is an absolute steal, some of them are available to preview on the Bandcamp page right now.

20 Years today since the 1st Ninja Tune party at the Blue Note

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Yes, that’s what it says on the flyer above. 20 years ago today Ninja Tune held a launch party for the DJ Food album ‘A Recipe For Disaster’ at a small club called The Blue Note in a little known part of London called Shoreditch. Metalheadz hosted a club there every Sunday and a few others had done nights there at the time but such was the success of this one-off it was decided that the label should make it regular. Two months later ‘Stealth’ was born and Ninja became the second label to host a regularly monthly night at the club which, it’s no exaggeration to say, brought people to Shoreditch and spearheaded the interest and popularity of the area as we know it today.