New Obsolescents and Quadraphon gigs

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Two new gigs that showcase two sides of my Quadraphon turntable set up – first off – in two week’s time I’ll be playing an in-store at Wow & Flutter in Hastings alongside Robin the Fog and Chris Weaver as The New Obsolescents. We’ll be playing all afternoon on Sunday April 7th and generating material for our next album live in the shop. We’ll also be exhibiting multiple test sleeves for our debut LP that have so far not seen the light, these will be up for sale at some point with test pressings of the album from Castles In Space.

Speaking of which – the word is out for the label’s Levitation’24 festival which moves South to Bedford Esquires this year and boasts an incredible line up. I’ll be joined by Graham Dunning and we’ll be reprising out customised turntable/mechanical techno set from Fog Fest last year.

Levitation flyer
There will be a third announcement very soon along these lines that I’m also very excited about…

Levitation ’24

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Just announced – the Castles In Space Levitation event is moving down South to Bedford Esquires after three years in Whitby. Just look at that line up! I’m not sure how they’re going to fit all these in on the day (I think there are three rooms but don’t quote me) but I’m so pleased to be asked to reprise the modified turntable set I did with Graham Dunning at Fog Fest last year. Colin was manning the merch table that night at the back of Iklectik and saw the whole thing so knows what we’re capable of. Tickets are here, I know it’s months away but the early birds are already gone so be quick.
There are two other very special gigs on the horizon that will be announced shortly that I’m equally excited about too – stay tuned…

Graham Dunning & DJ Food at Fog Fest, Iklectik, 2023

Here’s the performance Graham Dunning and I gave at Robin The Fog’s Fog Fest II this summer at Iklectik.
Totally improvised, we’d had a couple of rehearsals, and with visuals from PuttyRubber and Leon Trimble, it was exhilarating and felt like spinning plates rather than discs. Probably my favourite gig of the year along with the 10th anniversary of The Book & Record bar lock in.

Modified turntable video content for you

A few highlights from Graham Dunning and my 40+ minute set on modified turntables at the Slovak National Gallery, Bratislava for the opening of the NEXT Festival 2023.

A couple of new episodes of James In Real Life’s video diaries on the build of his Duplokit turntable –
Tonearms:

The Chassis Pt.1:

New Infinite Illectrik release – Locked Loop Group and more

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Out today – ii15 – Locked Loop Group – Phonomontages #15.1-4 – a mini album of four techno-centric Quadraphon turntable workouts on the heavier side of things. Of course it’s also Bandcamp Friday today which is when 100% of the revenue for all releases bought goes to the artists and labels on the platform.

These are nearly the last of the sessions that I recorded earlier this year in preparation for the Ramsgate Music Hall gig (which has just celebrated 10 years as a venue!). I’m hoping to get one more release out by the end of the year and there are some other pieces I’m saving for a label compilation that may come in cassette form in the new year which will tie up this phase of my label, Infinite Illectrik. There are a few more pieces floating around though; one will be coming out on a compilation early next year, another two will be part of a physical release on a new label at some point in 2024 too, more on that when I’ve finished the design. The Quadraphon is getting a companion soon which may change the whole set up and I also want to work on the hole in the catalogue, ii03, which still isn’t underway and is a very different beast.

Also just out: part 2 of James In Real Life‘s ‘Duplokit’ build series


His Duplokit Infinite Illectrik release: https://duplokit.bandcamp.com/album/phonocollage-131-132
Support him on Patreon for more videos and exclusive audio: www.patreon.com/JamesInRealLife

Dropping soon: video footage of Graham Dunning and I at Iklectik earlier this year for Fog Fest.
You may have heard the news but it seems the venue’s numbered days may be even shorter than anticipated. The whole of the Waterloo Paradise complex that houses the venue and several other businesses and art studios now faces eviction before Xmas when they were previously told there would be none until the proposed development deal was finalised and demolition due to begin. Due to their campaign to fight the site being levelled to make way for office buildings they now believe that the eviction notice has been accelerated to remove any resistence from the land despite demolition proceedings being way off into the future. Please read their latest statement here and help spread the word.

Graham and I play at the NEXT Festival on modified turntables on Nov 29th in Bratislava, Slovakia.

Design work has been relentless since September (I’m not complaining) with multiple zoetropes in the works, an album for The Real Tuesday Weld under a new alias, work for De:tuned that should be announced in December and work for Castles In Space. This is alongside writing assignments for the second Dust & Grooves book, my weekly Mixcloud Select uploads and research for another book.

Delights OOTW
This Sunday sees a Delights special radio show for Out Of The Wood at the Book & Record Bar in West Norwood alongside Paul Osbourne (Project Gemini) and Hannah Brown with special guest Markey Funk beaming in live from Jerusalem. Sadly because of the war in Israel he won’t be able to make it to the UK for a long projected trip and several gigs but this is as near as we can get, huge thanks to Pete Williams for sorting the technicals out. The show is an all 45 set from the four of us and you can listen back to all four sets here

Duplokit on Infinite Illectrik

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When I set up my digital label, Infinite Illectrik, in 2020 it was with the intent that I would just use it as a platform for my own modified turntable recordings and other experiments (but that’s for later). I had no intention of it becoming a label to put out other people’s work but primarily as a personal playground both sonically and graphically, but as they say, ‘the best laid plans…’. With this month’s release I’m pleased to present the first experimental turntable work from James Meharry aka James In Real Life aka Duplokit.

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James contacted me earlier this year from his home town in Christchurch, New Zealand after seeing my Quadraphon online as he was working along similar lines, albeit with a different, custom-built set up. Whereas my Quadraophon has one turntable with four tone arms, he is working with two decks, each with an extra tone arm – which solves the problem of changing records that I have at least. We’re both using rotary mixers with outboard FX, using locked groove records as our palette and have been building / refining our set ups in virtual tandem for several years with the end goal of a performance-based turntablism/DJ set based on experimental rhythm or soundscape building.

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What James also has under his belt is a lathe to cut his own records and the technical knowledge to design his own parts, modifying his turntables to do some outrageous things. He sent a photo of his creation (now christened Duplokit) and I asked if I could hear some of what he’s been doing. What he sent immediately impressed as it’s similar to what I’m attempting yet different and we started a dialogue, exchanging info and I asked if he would be up for me releasing it on my label.

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What has transpired since is that James has gone into new realms with the machine, adding ‘warp drives’ to each deck and is currently building further innovations for later that will mean he can do more than any regular turntable can with his set up. With this release, he’s starting a Patreon and will be doing regular YouTube episodes for members, taking you through each step of his build process, building to his own James In Real Life releases as the Duplokit develops. I’m pleased to showcase a couple of his earliest experiments on Infinite Illectrik today, give him a listen, a follow, even sign up to his Patreon if you’re curious as to what it’s all about and want to drill down into how he’s made the monster used to create these tracks. I think what he’s doing is something quite unique in the field of both custom-built equipment and also the advancement of turntablism into new areas.

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Subscribe to follow and support James on his journey.
Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/JamesInRealLife
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCBxkXMFwtF_wfmLRsQXugiQ
Bandcamp: https://jamesinreallife.bandcamp.com
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/jamesinreallifeofficial

September Infinite Illectrik release – Multitrack Tonearm Unit

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We’re missing ii13 this month, not for superstitious purposes, just jumped ahead to ii14 as it’s ready now.
A meditative 2-tracker from the Multitrack Tonearm Unit is September’s release, both recorded earlier this year during rehearsals for the show in Ramsgate.

Of course, today is Bandcamp Friday where 100% of revenue generated over the next 24 hours goes to the artists or labels and BC doesn’t take a cut. If you want some recommendations here’s my Buy Music Club list for September with some releases I’m into at the moment as well as a few pre-orders – I have a track on the Buried Treasure comp; an edit of a previous Infinite Illectrik release. Balkan Vinyl/I Love Acid is having a big sale to make way for new release – go here to see what they have. Next month we welcome a very special newcomer to the label for ii13 – more on the 29th. Below is a variant of the cover image that I particularly liked and wanted to show.

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New 45 Live mix tonight on Dublab and more

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My now annual 45 Live mix has come around again, a set made entirely of 7″ records of any persuasion. The crew has been running for nearly a decade now, originated by Boca 45 and Pete Isaac to celebrate the 45 format. As usual I’ve been stockpiling dance singles from the late 80s and early 90s and this year’s offering is heavy with Hip House, a genre that shone brightly for around a year in 1989 having notable releases in both the UK and US with us Brits arguably being the first to get a track out with The Beatmasters featuring the Cookie Crew in 1987.

That doesn’t feature here but there’s plenty of UK action to balance things out including a bit of Skacid (Ska + Acid) and even a bit of Bleep. As usual Greg Belson will be holding things down Stateside as the host of the show (which hits episode 200 next year) and my mix will feature at some point in the middle of the show. You can tune in live at 4am GMT (Aug 5th UK time) as the show goes out 8pm-10pm PST on the west coast tonight. https://www.dublab.com/shows/45-live-radio-show
UPDATE: Here’s the show

PS: No Mixcloud Select upload this week because of this mix, back on it with more 90s tapes next week.

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Of course Aug 5th is a big one as it’s the first iteration of a new book and zine fair, initiated by Velocity Press in the same spirit as the indie label market. I’ll be popping my head in as Four Corners Books have a stall and it will be good to support. Then I’ll be heading straight to Iklectik to set up for the second annual Fog Fest party, hosted by Robin The Fog (shhhhh… it’s his birthday, bring cake). I’ll be taking part in a modified turntable soundclash with Graham Dunning alongside visuals from PuttyRubber and Leon Trimble and from the rehearsals we had the other week it should be a lot of fun (see below). Also on the bill are Robin in his Howlround guise, Steve Davis DJing and live sets from Lauren Sarah Hayes, Nad Spiro and tpwiikatj. Here’s a snippet from our rehearsal the other week

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I almost forgot, today is the return of Bandcamp Friday and the monthly Infinite Illectrik release is out – for ii012 it’s the (re)turn of the Electrostatic Headshell Assembly with a 3 track techno/electro set recorded earlier this year. There’s more to come before the year is out including some new names to the label and possibly even a physical release to round the year out.


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Also – more Food-related collaborations if you want to support digitally today or any other day:
https://djfood.bandcamp.com/
https://celestialmechanic.bandcamp.com/
https://thenewobsolecents-cis.bandcamp.com/album/the-superceded-sounds-of

July Infinite Illectrik release – Magnetic Cartridge Quartet

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A day early but who’s counting, this month’s Infinite Illectrik offering is from the Magnetic Cartridge Quartet, two techno travelogues that stem from locked groove records by Ritchie Hawtin and the Poly Kicks label, mashed up on the Quadraphon turntable.


There are a few physical releases in the pipeline featuring edits of some of these pieces, more info when I have it. Also I’ll be having a modified turntable soundclash with Graham Dunning at Fog Fest 2, Iklectik, London on August 5th., tickets on sale soon…

Fog Fest 2 (Iklectik Boogaloo)

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I’ll be going head to head with Graham Dunning‘s mechanical techno set up with my Quadraphon turntable on August 5th at Robin The Fog‘s second Fog Fest bonanza at our favourite London venue, Iklectik.
Graham’s turntable escapades have to be seen to be believed and he was very inspirational in kicking me into gear to build my own variation on a modified turntable some years back. So it’s thrilling to be able to collaborate on a performance with him, who knows what sweet music we will make? Also returning to the line up from last year is Steve Davis whose Utopia Strong group goes from strength to strength (ba-dum-tish!). I have to confess that the other names on the bill are new to me but Robin knows his onions so I’m sure the whole thing will be joyous.
Tickets available soon…

June Infinite Illectrik release – The Infinity Curve

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This month’s Infinite Illectrik release is two polyrhythmic percussion phonomontages by The Infinity Curve, one of several aliases for my Quadraphon turntable experiments. Recorded earlier this year and utilising an array of locked grooves from the drummer Julian Sartorius’ locked groove record, these are some of my favourite recordings so far and point in a direction I’d like to continue in.

New Infinite Iklectik releases

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On May 1st 2020, in the midst of the first lockdown, I quietly started my online label, Infinite Iklectik. Like most people at the time, I was housebound and in the midst of a mass of creative activity now that all the hours of the day were mine. I was also about to turn 50 and thought it would be good to have my own label online by the time I turned half a century. The reason for creating a label of my own? I’d built the first version of the four-armed Quadraphon turntable the summer before and been recording all sorts of material on it to test it out.

Quadraphon Mk1

Created through simultaneously playing vinyl records with multiple locked grooves (infinitely looping single grooves) with four needles and then patching the individual channels through an FX pedal to build and alter rhythmic tracks, there was hours of audio to go through. Having time on my hands I’d slowly been editing down the jams to their highlights, careful to keep track of which records I’d used for each one. Now was the time to give them a home and Bandcamp was the most obvious place to easily host files that I had no intention of releasing in a physical format but wanted to see the light. Being that this material is very different to the music I release as DJ Food – and also the fact that I’m signed to Ninja Tune under that name – I elected to create a series of pseudonyms with a nod to the turntable more than anything to play the part of the various groups that would be signed to my label. It’s fun to play label manager, artist, designer, A&R and PR agent all on your own, I could do anything I liked without having to refer to others to sign anything off, guess I am a control freak sometimes.
ii Bandcamp
I uploaded seven releases on May 1st and a further Four Tet remix a month later and then nothing… Other work got in the way (not least three albums under the DJ Food, Celestial Mechanic and The New Obsolecents monikers) plus artwork duties and further improvements to the Quadraphon which would take another two years to complete. With a gig earlier this year at the Ramsgate Music Hall I started rehearsing and recording in earnest, again amassing a huge array of material, you can record albums worth in a matter of days with this thing. Anyway, to cut a long story short, three years on from the initial label debut I’ve readied a batch of releases which will be released monthly, the first being this Friday, May 5th, which is coincidentally my birthday.

Forthcoming releases:

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The keen-eyed will notice a new name on the list; jamesinreallife is from New Zealand and has unknowingly been working along the same lines as me with his own device for years too. I hadn’t intended to release anything but my own music on II but when he sent me some of his first recordings it was too good to ignore. More about him in time, his release is a way off yet and there’s much to discuss there. Anyway, here’s a short clip of the Ramsgate gig where I’m remixing the locked groove side of Four Tet’s ‘Sixteen Oceans’ LP live. I’ve been posting more clips on my Instagram and YouTube channels too.