Detuned – DE:10.02 released today

DE02 front
Out today: #2 of 10 projected releases I’ve designed the artwork for as the De:tuned label celebrates their first 10 years. One release a month, multiple combinations of great artists coming up across nine 12″s whose covers fit together to form a larger image, with a tenth remix 12″ to finish things off.

DE10 02B

Listen:

Juno: bit.ly/2IBUQd8
Phonica: bit.ly/2LtqIOZ
Bleep: bit.ly/2Tbcpox
Deejay: bit.ly/2GYOK41
Rush Hour: bit.ly/2Esk75g
Clone: bit.ly/2EahG67
Red Eye: bit.ly/2Ixjsna
Norman: bit.ly/2E7iaKl
Triple Vision: bit.ly/2Sr5aEE
Juno: bit.ly/2IBUQd8

DE10 02A DE02 back

Pinball Number Count and Sesame St anniversary

According to Sesame Street, who celebrate their 50th anniversary this year, Walt Kramer‘s ‘Pinball Number Count’ (featuring the Pointer Sisters on vocals) debuted today 43 years ago in Season 8 of the show. To celebrate they’ve made an online pinball game version that you can play here.

Pinball game

Of course Ninja Tune were the first label to release the track on vinyl back in 2003, on the B side of the Larry Levan remix of ‘C Is For Cookie’, which I also had the pleasure of designing the sleeve for.
Pinball label cookie monster cover websesame pinball cover

Detuned – DE:10.01 released today

DE01 front

Out today: #1 of 10 projected releases I’ve designed the artwork for the De:tuned label as they celebrate their first 10 years. One release a month, multiple combinations of great artists coming up across nine 12″s whose covers fit together to form a larger image, with a tenth remix 12″ to finish things off.

DE10 01B

Listen:

Pre-orders available now:
Phonica: bit.ly/2BypxZV  •  Bleep: bit.ly/2HUwLOw  •  Japhy: bit.ly/2Gejlv8  •  Red Eye: bit.ly/2F8v4ut  •  Norman: bit.ly/2HffoaD  •  Deejay: bit.ly/2Vu5NQk  •  Decks: bit.ly/2BvWTso  •  Rush Hour: bit.ly/2H9ev3B  •  Triple Vision: bit.ly/2zsIpJt  •  Juno: bit.ly/2Fa03q3

DE10 01A DE01 back

Revamped Openmindesign site

With the new year comes the inevitable spring clean and I’ve taken the opportunity to revamp my Openmind design portfolio site. The content is by no means definitive, I’ve taken my favourite designs from the last 25 years and presented just those parts that I feel stand the test of time or represent where my current design tastes lie. Sometimes this might be a label, promo object or back cover but, rather than cram every single thing into a gallery (including some things I dislike) I’ve paired it down to personal favourites.

Many thanks to my Further partner-in-crime, Pete Williams, as one of his many talents is that he’s a super-efficient web designer who can quickly turn wishes into reality with no fuss whilst suggesting all sorts of web-specific things you’d either never thought of or didn’t know exist.

Contact him here if you’d like the benefit of his experience or take a look at his park-studio web portfolio.

Have a look around the new site and contact me if you like what you see and want something similar for your projects…

Openmindesign website

10 Years of De:tuned label releases

De.Tuned 10 all covers 1 1200x1200I’m very pleased to have been asked to design the De:tuned label’s 10th anniversary releases, nine 12″s released monthly throughout 2019, which they have just announced. The above image is a representation of elements of the nine sleeves which, when put together, form a larger image. I’ll be posting them here as they’re released along with pre-order links, the line ups are a who’s who of electronica from the past 25 years, some of which are revealed below.

De:tuned celebrates their 10th anniversary with a 10 part EP series released across 2019. The first part is planned for February and the project will continue each month throughout 2019. The artwork of the first 9 releases of the series forms a 3 x 3 poster display.

PRE-ORDER l Phonica: https://bit.ly/2QNtuVi

De:tuned have called on designer Kevin Foakes (Openmind, DJ Food, Ninja Tune) to create all graphic work.

‘DE:10.01’ kicks off with a special treat from the golden 90s era: on offer a welcome combination of previously unreleased DAT material by Kirk Degiorgio and affectionate As One remix treatments of both original Sensurreal and Jedi Knights (Mark Pritchard and Tom Middleton) work, pure bliss.
PRE-ORDER l https://bit.ly/2BypxZV

The second EP of the series dives deep down into the ambient techno world. The A side makes you drift away on a rare Sun Electric get together, followed by a beautiful Higher Intelligence Agency piece. DeepChord’s dubbed lushness completes this highly intense journey.
PRE-ORDER l https://bit.ly/2LtqIOZ

John Beltran, Mark Archer, Future Beat Alliance and max 404 line up on the third 10 years anniversary 12″ for De:tuned. Both John and Mark deliver a timeless, Detroit indebted techno vibe, resulting in 2 dancefloor-friendly tracks. FBA and max 404 activated their DAT recorder and struck gold with previously unheard crisp yet sensitive cuts.”
PRE-ORDER l https://bit.ly/2ByYTQA

Further 2 at the Portico Gallery, November 2017


Seeing as I never got round to posting these at the time (I moved house the week after) and with a new event upon us in a month’s time, here’s a quick look back at the last Further at the Portico Gallery, November 2017 with guests Sculpture and Simon James (The Simonsound). Photos by Martin LeSanto-Smith and myself

Simon James at the Buchla 200e Electric Music Box


Here’s a film of Simon’s performance by his brother, Curtis James

Simon James Buchla 200e performance at Further from Simon James on Vimeo.

The record and merch stall was kindly provided by Michael and Dorian from the local Book & Record Bar



Sculpture at soundcheck and during their performance

Tickets for the next one – Sept 15th, 2018 with myself, Pete WIlliams, The Karminsky Experience Inc. and Markey Funk (Delights) are available here.

Slides for Further 2 at the Portico Gallery

IMG_6422Dipping back into the archives for some previously un-posted slides that we made for the second Further at the Portico Gallery back in November 2017.

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The next one is Sept 15th, same venue, with The Karminsky Experience Inc. and Markey Funk guesting while I perform a rare outing for my ‘O Is For Orange’ Boards of Canada-esque AV set. Tickets available here

Further returns Sept 15th

Further 3 Portico poster

Further returns to its spiritual home at the Portico Gallery for another night of Light, Sound & Design.

Markey Funk flys in from Jerusalem to present his take on the heavy fuzz and psych sounds coming from his Delights label.
I’ll be bringing my AV ode to Boards of CanadaO Is For Orange – to the big screens with exclusive visual extras.
The Karminsky Experience Inc. grace the decks with their selection of swinging library, soundtrack and beatnik grooves.
And just when you think you’ve heard it all, Pete WIlliams pulls out those special audio treats he’s been hoarding for just this occasion, all accompanied by the sensory overload of the Further slide, oil and video projections.

Delicious food will be available from Pimento ’62 Catering and a fully licensed bar.

V. ltd. early bird tickets available here now!

Further at SYNthesis

Further @ Synthesis_StanleyHalls_Photo.PC
Stuff that’s been clogging up the desktop Pt.2

This rather lovely selection of shots was taken by PC at Stanley Halls in Norwood when Further appeared at the SYNthesis festival last September. I’ve still to collate my images and do a proper post on this and the Portico Gallery one that came shortly after but I love this collage of different points in part of the slide show. Follow PC on Instagram here.

DJ Food AV series #2: O Is For Orange

Archspace DJFood flyer crop
Here we go, after last year’s ‘Selected Aphex Works’ shows, the next installment in my live AV Series premiere’s on April 6th at Archspace, London with a new version of my ‘O Is For Orange’ mix – chock full of Boards of Canada and their influences with psychedelic video accompaniment. Tickets available here

Further at the Portico Gallery – Nov 18th

Further Portico 2.5 Poster A3 portraitThe next Further at The Portico Gallery is on Sat Nov 18th. Pete Williams and I are very excited to be joined by Sculpture for one of their incredible live AV sets and Simon James (Simonsound / Black Channels /Akiha Den Den) will be performing a live set from his Buchla easel system. Early bird tickets on sale now

We’ll also have the Book & Record Bar stall with releases from both acts and a hand-picked selection to compliment plus delicious food and plenty of seating. See below for what to expect on the night.
Sculpture

Simon James

The last Further at the Portico Gallery

Openmind ambient mix on Solid Steel 26.09.94

Telepathic Fish 4 webI was asked by the m.cast website to write some background history on a mix I did for Solid Steel with old friend Mario Aguera under the Openmind DJs name back in 1994 (this was before I became part of DJ Food or had been given the Strictly Kev moniker). Here’s a little slice of London ambient history as I remember it:

Openmind originated at 102 Tintagel Crecsent in East Dulwich, South East London around late 1992. The shared house spread across three floors above a shop, rented out by a local chemist specifically to students at a very reasonable £37 each per week, and the occupants came together by chance from different circumstances. Computer programmer Mario Aguera and 3rd year Camberwell School of Art students David Vallade and Kevin Foakes were later joined by Chantal Passamonte at some point in 1993. They frequented many of the clubs, gigs and underground parties of the time like Club Dog, Tribal Energy and Megatripolis but often found themselves enjoying the post-club comedown chill out sessions more than the actual clubs themselves.

After an incident with a synthesiser, a Rastafarian and a bowl of fish (see David Toop’s excellent ‘Ocean of Sound’ book for details) they formed a collective called Openmind and started a series of ambient parties under the name Telepathic Fish. Nearby neighbour Mixmaster Morris took them under his wing and introduced them to many of his contacts.

The first party was held in their house across two floors which held a rave room with strobe lighting and a chill out complete with tower of scavenged TV sets broadcasting trip videos, black lights and Morris DJing from decks on the next door kitchen counter. Advertised through word of mouth and a few posters at the college, the party drew 300 people and they realised that they had to find somewhere else to do the next one.

A squat in Tunstal Road, Brixton was located and a line up of Mixmaster Morris, Aphex Twin and the Openmind DJs (Mario and Kev) with Matt Black (Coldcut) on visuals played throughout a Sunday afternoon into the evening. A second gig was held at the same venue later that year (’93) which saw members of The Black Dog, Psychic Warriors Ov Gaia and The Future Sound of London checking out what was happening. Early flyers included shaped fish pendants and tea bags, hand-assembled using tracing and holographic paper.

After Matt Black’s initial revelatory experience at the Fish (his first ever VJ set) he invited Mario and Kev to guest on his and Jon More’s weekly KISS FM radio show, Solid Steel in the summer of ’93. They appeared a number of times (11.07.93 / 07.11.93 / 04. 03.94 / 15.07.94) and Matt and Morris continued to guest with music and visuals at the parties.

The venue then changed to the Cool Tan building in Brixton for a fourth excursion that included Matt Black on decks with PC (DJ Food), a pre-Leaf Tony Morley and visuals by Hex. Just before that party Mario and Kev were invited back onto Solid Steel on 26.09.94 and you can hear Matt giving the party a shout out in the mix. The sets played here are a pretty good indication of the sort of thing they played at the Telepathic Fish parties, sometimes pooling their then meagre record collections to fill out the nights.

There were more parties after this, usually as part of bigger events – Orbital’s Brixton Academy gig VIP room, Quirky, Megatripolis, a New Year’s Day party at the derelict Roundhouse and a Dutch excursion that saw them playing in a gas silo. They also produced four issues of an ambient fanzine called Mind Food which they sold at the parties, by mail or in various record shops in London.

Mario went on to join Hex for their early explorations into visuals and software and then headed up a team at a major video game developer. Chantal, David and Kev all worked at the Ambient Soho record shop in Berwick St. at certain points. Chantal went on to become Mira Calix and sign to Warp. David designed record sleeves for Warp, Ntone, Worm Interface, MLO and Reflective among others. Kev became part of DJ Food, carrying the Openmind name on as his design alias whilst shaping the look of the Ninja Tune label in the 90s and 00s.


You can down load this mix directly from the m.cast website here

First hour: Mario Aguera (Openmind/Telepathic Fish)

Coldcut – Autumn Leaves (Irresistible Force remix) (BMG)
UVX ‎- Elevator (13th floor spectrum) (Magick Eye Records)
Frankfurt – Tokio Connection – Luminescent Avatar (Harthouse / Rising High)
Golden Girls – Kinetic (Morley’s Apollo mix) (R&S)
Psychic Warriors Ov Gaia – Obsidian (Deconstruction) (KK Records)
The Grid – Crystal Clear (The Orb remix) (Virgin)
Ongaku – Mihon 2 (Fax/Rising High)
UVX ‎- Elevator (13th floor spectrum) (Magick Eye Records)
Deep Forest – Sweet Lullaby (Natural Trance Mix) (Columbia)
Peter Gabriel – At Night (Real World)
Amorphous Androgynous – Mountain Goat (Virgin)
System 7 – 7-7 Expansion (Double Edged Sword mix) (Big Life)
David Morley – Calibration (Apollo)

Second hour: Kevin Foakes (Openmind/Telepathic Fish – pre-DJ Food)

Frankie Goes To Hollywood – Warriors of the Wasteland (End) (ZTT)
Harold Budd & The Cocteau Twins – Memory Gongs (4AD) / S’Xpress – Coma (Record Mirror) No-Man – Days In The Trees (Reich) (One Little Indian)
KLF – What Time Is Love (Virtual Reality mix) (KLF Communications)
Jesus Jones – Zeroes & Ones (Aphex Twin Reconstruction 2 mix) (Food/EMI)
David Sylvian – Home (Virgin)
This Mortal Coil – Andialu (4AD)
B12 – Soundtrack of Space (Warp)
Spacetime Continuum – Fluorescence (Reflective)
Eurhythmics – The City Never Sleeps (Capitol)
Moody Boys – Free (XL)
Depth Charge – Depth Charge (Drum Death Version) (Vinyl Solution)
Material – Mantra (Praying Mantra mix) (Axiom)
Dub Syndicate – What Happened? (On-U Sound)
Moody Boys – Pumpin Dumpin (XL)
Plaid – Yamemm – (Warp)
unknown (Digidub or Moody Boys?)
Minnie Ripperton – Lovin’ You (Epic)

Songs of Immigrants & Experience

Songsfront
Earlier this year I reconnected with an old friend from the early Ninja Tune days, Shane Solanki, a writer and poet who was responsible for the original Ninja press releases and the lexicon inside the original Ninja Skinz packets. These freeform, punning, cut and paste definitions, profiles and prose helped define part of the aesthetic and thinking behind the label in the early years and gave voice to Coldcut and co.’s ideals. He’s currently constructing a hugely ambitious project involving a stage play, an album and a graphic novel based on a story he’s written called ‘Songs of Immigrants and Experience’.
I helped him visualize certain scenes for the play and put together a rough version of an extract from the novel to help present the complicated project to prospective publishers. Below you can see examples of the A4 handout at the last performance and shots from the show with some of the scenes as backdrops. For more info go to Lastmangoinparis.netSongsinsideSongsinsidedoveSongsinsidedetailSongsback

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De:tuned Brainbox compilation artwork

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As you’ll be aware if you read this blog, I’ve designed the artwork for the new 6xLP ‘Brainbox’ compilation from Belgian label, De:Tuned. This was somewhat of a dream job in every sense as not only did I have multiple surfaces to play with but the design brief was an ideal one from the start. Ruben Boons, label manager, came to me over a year ago wanting something that jumped off from my work with Amon Tobin around the ‘Out From Out Where’ album sleeves which is one of my personal favourite designs and was exactly where my head was at this particular time. Using similar methods of assembly and composition I created a main image that everyone was happy with (which became the cover) and then remixed it mulitple times to form images for the rest of the compilation. Everything you see here stems from at least part of the cover image.

From the off it seemed that Ruben and I was on exactly the same page and any suggestions he made always bettered the designs and, as I’d been given pretty much free reign over what to produce, this made the whole process even more enjoyable. There’s nothing worse that presenting a client with multiple variations of a job and them picking the weakest one. From experience I try never to send any examples of prospective designs on a job that I ultimately wouldn’t be happy to see in print but there are always favourites. No such worries on this job, it was bliss from beginning to end and I couldn’t be happier with the final result. There are only 300 box sets out there (I know mine says 304 below, that’s part of a small overun for the artists involved) and each comes with a download code for those who like their music digital – there is no CD though, another godsend as one of the most boring parts of a job like this is reformatting a design down to a small version for a CD.

You can hear excerpts from it and more above in this Solid Steel mix I made and buy it from the many links below:
Juno: bit.ly/2eD3NzG Bleep: bit.ly/2dsrXzY Hardwax: bit.ly/2f51Tdr Rushhour: bit.ly/2eN9dsN
Norman: bit.ly/2errQmc Japhy: bit.ly/2eaHxOU Decks: bit.ly/2emIWni Deejay.de: bit.ly/2eN2VwO

NB: Each disc was given a subtitle as well as a number, referring to different parts of the brain: Frontal, Cerebellum, Parietal etc. also, the last image below is of a sticker that comes with the box.

BBnumberBBbottom BBinners3 BBbox+innersBBinners2 BBinnerstext BBinner6 BBinner4Bblabel2BBinner1BBinner7 BBlabel1 BBinner5BBinner5.2BBinner2 BBsticker

De:tuned ‘Brainbox’ compilation preview and pre-order

Detunedteaser
You can now pre-order and listen to parts of all the tracks for the forthcoming ‘Brainbox’ compilation that I have provided the artwork for on De:tuned records from Belgium. The line up is immense and all the tracks are exclusive, this has taken a long time and a lot of care to put together. The box consists of 6 vinyl LPs, each in full colour inner sleeves with unique artwork and is limited to 300 copies. There is a digital DL version too but no CD, the box set also comes with a DL code and a sticker. The line up reads like a who’s who of 90s electronica: Plaid, As One, FSOL, Scanner, Meat Beat Manifesto, Speedy J, MuZiq, B12, Mike Dred, David Morley, Christian Vogel… and the quality of the content is very high. Pre-order here

New reissue of Frankie’s ‘…Pleasuredome’ album

WTTPHollyquote
I still get buzzed off the fact that my name is on the design credits of the recent reissues of this classic album which meant so much to me as a 14 year old and still means so much to me 32 years later. Not two years after the huge ‘Inside the Pleasuredome’ box set that I worked on with Philip Marshall comes a standalone vinyl reissue of the LP contained inside the set.

WTTPcreditThe music is the same but there are some slight differences to the packaging: mainly the actual vinyl itself which now has the original label designs with the F, G, T and H restored (I had to remake them from scratch) and white vinyl instead of black. Eagle-eyed collectors will also notice that the fig leaves have been restored on the back cover image to cover the animal’s modesty whilst in the midst of their orgy. Philip had to remake each one from scratch too.

WTTPFlabelWTTPTdiscWTTPSainsburysThis edition will be available exclusively, I’m told, from Sainsburys – that bastion of record emporiums where we all go when we need our fix of the black crack. Whether this is just the white vinyl version or whether there will be other colours available elsewhere, I do not know.

WTTPcover
WTTPback

I do know that this is the nicest looking vinyl reissue since the box set version though; heavy card, full colour inner sleeves, coloured vinyl, different labels etc. Also, high quality images, not the anti-aliased, bitmapped, jpegged, over-saturated coloured version that the Music On Vinyl issue had some years back – quite possibly the worse reissue of any album I’ve ever seen, an insult to this album’s legacy and one of the only undamaged records I’ve ever thrown away.

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Kosmischer Debris x9.15 & 16

KD x9.15 IMG_9225

A double dose of Kosmischer Debris round ups in this post – selections from the past month or so of experiments, works in progress or random graphics from my desktop – all self-generated and posted (nearly) daily on my Instagram

Above: details from a Circuit Bending Mandala and the full thing at a larger scale
Below: Top row: lights from my Rane mixer, Middle row: Circuit Bending, multiple logo tests for a band called Psyence, B&W Rane lights. Bottom row: Inkubation collab with Sarah Coleman, Circuit Bending + detail.

KDx9.16

Jonny Trunk / DJ Food hook ups

JonnyTrunk+DJFoodflyer2web

Two dates for your diaries: June 25th I’ll be DJing with Jonny Trunk at Camberwell’s finest used record emporium, Rat Records. They recently bought in a really good selection of soundtrack, electronic, library and weird records which we’ll be playing selections from before adding them to the racks for punters to buy. Let US try, before YOU buy.

But before that  – this Saturday to be precise – I’ll be sitting in for Jonny on his OST radio show on Resonance 104.4 FM from 4.30-6.40pm. There’ll be a theme to the show and I’ll have special guest Jonny Cuba from Soundsci talking about library digs and soundtrack finds. Listen here this weekend

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