Mixmaster Morris @ Telepathic Fish 2, May 2nd 1993

Mixmaster Morris – Ambient Tea Party Vol. 3 mix – Brixton 02.05.1993 from Fiasko One on Vimeo.

Here’s a bit of musical history I just found online, Mixmaster Morris DJing at the second Telepathic Fish party that I hosted with David Vallade, Mario Aguera and Chantal Passamonte aka Mira Calix back in 1993. This is volume 3 and I should have the other 2 volumes somewhere in the archive, one with Aphex Twin playing I think as well as my own efforts. Check the cassette inlay for some ‘of its time’ design by my own hand.

For those that aren’t familiar with it, Telepathic Fish was the name my then housemates and I gave to a series of Ambient parties that we staged in London in the early to mid 90’s. They started on a Sunday afternoon and went through to the early hours and the emphasis was on chilling out rather than dancing (although that did happen too sometimes). At some point I’m going to compile the whole Telepathic Fish experience into a series of blog posts or a small book as it was quite a formative time for me as well as the rest of the crew. For more mixes from Morris, who was a guiding light for me back then, you can now check out his brand new website here.

Posted in Music, Openmind designs. | 1 Comment |

“An eye for an eye, a truth for a truth”

Eyes01www-scarfolk-blogspot-comRichard Littler‘s Scarfolk blog just keeps on giving, the latest entry is one of the best, a perfect balance of the horror and dark humour that the site thrives on coupled with excellent graphic creations to match. I can’t recommend the book enough and, if you pop into Forbidden Planet to buy one (in London at least), they also have a fine line in Scarfolk mugs, birthday cards and magnets too.


Posted in Design. | No Comments | Tags:

Blackhill Transmitter 3 EP

“Rain struck the tower but we persisted – the broadcast was scheduled, it had to go ahead, suddenly we were plunged into darkness – silence – nothing – then the noises started – slowly building – the transmission had begun ……..”

Blackhill Transmitter 3 is a four track digital EP and a Future Sound of London side project. You could roughly place this in the hauntological category being that the Black Hill transmitting station in Scotland became the final transmitter to switch off analogue television in 2011. There’s a bit more to it than that though, dark and heavily textured, the four tracks flow into each other, working as one 15 minute piece. It’s available from FSOLDigital.com and if you like it there are two previous volumes here and here.


Flexibition #5: Springtime for Hitler / The Inquisition Song

This disc was given away with Event magazine, now long deceased, which was a rival to Time Out in the early 80’s when it ceased publication for a bit. It was a promo for Mel Brooks‘ 1981 film, ‘History of the World Part 1′, from which the two songs on the disc came. As ever with Brooks, both were politically incorrect before the term even existed, being about Hitler and The (Spanish) Inquisition (he also later released ‘The Hitler Rap (To Be Or Not To Be)’).

This is probably one of the first flexi’s I ever got after the freebies with Flexipop magazine and was most likely rescued from the paper-recycling shed at school along with a pile of early copies of The Face that would periodically come in, unsold, from the local newsagent. I had so few records at this time that I’d grab anything and ‘The Inquisition Song’ even made it onto my first proper mixtape in 1987.
You can see the scene from the film here, it starts at about the 2 minute mark. (Warning: very inappropriate lyrics)

Update: More info on Event magazine can be seen on the website of Pearce Marchbank who was art director.


New Solid Steel logo / identity

Keen-eyed listeners to the Solid Steel weekly radio show may have noticed a logo makeover last week. A new, slimline logo has taken place of the previous single ‘S’ one as we continue to streamline the show for online consumption. The logo comes in white on black circle but can be reversed and I designed it in three weights with the heaviest being for small usage where the centre circle is offset with the outer circle also in box form. Expect a new responsive website redesign in April too. SS_SSpacek_Kutmak_BlkSS_logo_small_square_2015

Metroplex by Stormjang

tumblr_ni36woXVex1r22moqo1_1280Found on a tumblr site via another tumblr site which, predictably, didn’t have any info on where it came from or who drew it because of the re-titling that goes on when you post on these sites. I despair at an information age in which the information is stripped from half the content. Google image search reveals it’s by a guy called Stormjang and comes from Deviant Art.

Posted in Art, Robots. | No Comments |

RIP Rod McKuen

McKuen_SFHippieTripIt’s been a bad week for deaths in the music world, first it was Tangerine Dream-founder Edgar Froese, then Demis Roussos and now Rod McKuen, the spoken word poet dubbed ‘the King of Kitsch’. He wrote over a thousand songs, several books and released hundreds of records in his lifetime and there’s sample gold in that silky voice.

McKuen_TheEarth Listen to one of my favouties by Rod, ‘The Mud Kids’ from ‘The Earth’ LP and tell me it’s not genius, transports me back to a time I never knew but can imagine existed. Keen-earned listeners might also recognise the opening strings from a certain mix I did with PC and DK way back.

Guilty pleasure, ‘Seasons In The Sun’, the 70’s hit by Terry Jacks, was an adaptation of a McKuen piece which was itself taken from a Jacques Brel song that he translated. He jumped on many bandwagons, aligning himself with the Beat Poets on ‘Beatsville’ and the Hippies on ‘Rod McKuen Takes A San Franciso Hippie Trip’ but the results were never convincing.
The Rod McKuen disco LP? Sure, ‘Amor, Amor, Slide… Easy In’ has at least one decent break on it and was also as used by Christian Marclay in one of his album sleeve assemblages (the hot pants side).


Posted in Event. | No Comments |

The 3-Way Mix in St. Petersburg

St Peterburg_statue
I think Russia is rapidly becoming one of my favourite places to play, 3 gigs in the last 3 months, all memorable for different reasons and all the crowds have been so good. They seem way more into the music and not preoccupied with their mobiles, very vocal but in a positive way. Plus we got to play at the Museum of Contemporary Art in St. Petersburg with one of the biggest video screens yet.
One guy on Saturday night was stage-diving to the Beasties mix from the off, so much so that he got himself thrown out. Another kept shouting ‘more volume’ and led the crowd in his chant but we were already in the red. Afterwards we were informed that he’s a little bit deaf and always does this at every gig.

St Peterburg_Airportstatue St Peterburg_Erarta St Peterburg_Erartastatue St Peterburg_ice St Peterburg_poster St Peterburg_Putineggs St Peterburgx3

Posted in DJ Food, Gigs. | No Comments | Tags:

Flexibition #4: Teach Yourself Heath / Monty Python’s Tiny Black Round Thing

Flex4_TeachHeath_frontAs flexis go neither of these are especially rare, certainly not the Tiny Black Round Thing’ which I discovered I had several copies of when going through my collection. ‘Teach Yourself Heath’ is actually quite good though, being a piss take of the former PM Edward Heath by an uncredited Eric Idle and Michael Palin from the Pythons. It was originally given away inside copies of the 1972 ‘Monty Python’s Previous Record’ album, an issue of Zig Zag (#27) and possibly Format magazine.

‘Monty Python’s Tiny Black Round Thing’ was given away with a May 1975 copy of The NME to promote the group’s ‘Live at Drury Lane’ LP. Palin hams it up as a radio announcer talking about the flexi’s merits and Gumby makes an appearance as the NME’s editor. The B-side is ‘The Lumberjack Song’ which I’m sure you’ve all heard way too many times already.


Judge Dredd – The Mega Collection

So, say for instance, you’ve heard of Judge Dredd, maybe you saw the Dredd film on DVD a year or so ago, you’ve read the odd graphic novel or seen high praise for certain stories kicking around the internet? Maybe you’ve read a few from the Top Ten Essential Dredd epics lists that periodically do the rounds on the web but want more? Where do you start with 38 years worth of stories, characters and continuity? Here is where, The Mega Collection: a fortnightly series of hardback story collections of the essential must-read tales spanning 80+ volumes (I read somewhere but can’t find now).

Starting with the classic tale of ‘America’ written by Dredd co-creator John Wagner and painted by Colin MacNeil at the incentive-inducing price of £1.99 it’s a no-brainer of a purchase if you’ve never read it. I can confirm that it’s a bonafide classic all right, centering around the subject of ‘democracy’ in Dredd’s world although it’s an odd choice to start the collection with. Maybe it sets the tone more than anything else and is a hard-hitting jump into how the Judges meter out ‘justice’ in the future?.
After the first issue the price jumps up to £9.99 per issue but there are subscriptions available with all sorts of free gifts and a free issue as well. Another incentive is that the complete collection will display this scene across the spines once finished. If you’re still not convinced then here’s a review of the first issue from the Everything Comes Back To 2000AD blog. This post reads back a bit like an advert unfortunately but it’s a perfect jumping in point and, for the same price of a vinyl 12″, a hardback collection every two weeks is a very good deal indeed.