Retinal Circus gig posters 1966-68

Retinal Circus July 17-19
A selection of gig posters for the Retinal Circus. The Circus nights, promoted by Roger Schiffer, ran from summer 1967 to the end of 1968 in a basement venue in Vancouver, Canada and would play host to many of the top bands of the day in the late 60s. The main poster artist was Steve Seymour who managed to weave all sorts of intricate typography into each image including dates, bands, start and end times and even a dot-to-dot puzzle which spelt out ‘surprise’ when filled in. The main exception I can see being the Velvet Underground one by Frank Lewis who also did other posters around Vancouver, early Afterthought ones being an example, Vancouver’s psychedelic venue before the Retinal Circus.
There was also a light show called The Retina Circus in Seattle at the same time but they weren’t connected, the main two house lighting crews were called Addled Chromish and Ecto Plasmic Assault.
*Thanks to Greg Evans from the Acid Rain light show in Victoria, Canada for additional info.
Retinal Circus Aug 13-18 1968

Retinal Circus Aug 20-24 1968

Retinal Circus Aug 27-Sept 1 1968

Retinal Circus April 11-13

Retinal Circus July 25-27

Retinal Circus Mar 8-9

Retinal Circus May 23-25

Retinal Circus May 30-Jun1

Retinal Circus Oct 4-6

Retinal Circus Sept 27-29

Retinal Circus Oct 31 - Nov 3

MS124 Tour of Duty 27/11/2002

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This was one of those shows where I put together a mix largely from the contents of my record buying trips whilst abroad in North America plus some current new releases. I can’t quite believe I used to go a couple of times a year at one point, each time coming back laden with music new and old. I don’t think I’ve been back for over a decade now and I really miss it, one day I’ll get back out there.

We kick off with Ramsey Lewis (RIP) and the break-tastic ‘Do Whatever Sets You Free’, chopped up nicely by Natural Self once I seem to remember… Eddie Harris slinks in with a nasty beat and a fuzzed up horn, plenty of sample action here and I think this is the source for a bit of Shadow’s ‘In/flux’. I’m not sure if the DJ Zinc track quite works out of old Eddie, sure it’s in time but not quite in tune or swing, that’s quite a change of pace. I had a white label at the time but now know that the track is called ‘Tonka’. Then into The Human League (!) mixing by bpm, not feel, I like the way Phil Oakey calls everyone ‘big heads’ at the start. This was from the Richard X released ‘Golden Hour of the Future’ album of early Human League recordings.

I like what Push Button does with the Anti-Pop vocal of ‘Ghostlawns’, putting it on a different beat of the bar and slowing the tempo to half time. But into The Banana Splits? What was I thinking? This the most uneven mix of all time, just because it’s IN time kids, doesn’t mean it should go next to that similarly tempo-ed tune. Doesn’t sound quite like Fleegle, Bingo, Drooper and Snorky though does it? The Incredible Shrinking Man was an alias of Shawn Lee who apparently is also singing on this cover of ‘Wichita Lineman’ as well as playing almost everything else too. Killer version on a 7” on Ape City who only put out three releases.

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Sixtoo I hooked up with on tour and ‘Duration’ was his long-digesting masterpiece, featured here in an excerpt, maybe he was living in Montreal by this time or maybe that was after he signed to Ninja Tune, it was around this time anyway. The ‘stop scratching’ vocal sample is actually from a 7” comedy record about a dog, the cover folds out three times into a dog shape, I think it’s a Fred Basset tie-in maybe. Stan Kenton covers ‘Hair’ with his take on ‘Coloured Spade’, I’d go on to collect many versions of the musical over the years and have lost count how many I have now. The New Seekers’ ‘It’s The Real Thing’ – do the Coke advert from a promo 7”. Pugh’s ‘Love Love Love’ I’m sure we all recognise the opening bars of? This was the opening track of Cherrystones’ then current ‘Rocks’ compilation and also the opener of Pugh Rogefeldt’s debut LP.

From Swedish psych rock to Brit hip hop and out into Yo La Tengo covering Sun Ra – edited for radio. This should be called the dis-jointed mix, veering all over the place, it made sense to me at the time. The Free Association were a psychedelic outfit led by David Holmes who made one great album and a clutch of singles and seemed to be the point after which he jumped into soundtrack work. Plenty of sampling going on and all the better for it. Still veering all over the place the Dsico rework of Nelly’s ‘It’s Getting Hot In Herre’ was further twisted out by my occasional Flexus guise for a particularly sweaty party on the hottest day of the year in the old basement under the newsagent that used to house the Bastard night. I think it was a Kinky Voodoo event hosted by my friend John Power and during this song I threw out tons of ice poles for the audience from a cooler I’d bought with me.

I don’t remember the track after this featuring a female rap over ‘Superbad’, but Dsico was putting out loads of mash ups at this time. Another switch, down into dub with Tino, a Ben Stokes and friends alias, from the Hallowe’en Dub album which seems relevant this week. We finish with ‘Acetate Prophets’, the DJ track from the end of Jurassic 5’s third LP. After ‘Lesson 6’ on the first and ‘Swing Set’ on the second we get a complex eastern-themed set of breaks and samples which I wish Cut and Nu-mark would do more of.

Track list:
Ramsey Lewis – Do Whatever Sets You free
Eddie Harris – Carry On Brother
DJ Zinc – Tonka
The Human League – Dance Like A Star
Ant-Pop Consortium – Ghostlawns (Push Button Objects mix)
The Banana Splits – Doin’ The Banana Split
The Incredible Shrinking Man – Wichita Lineman
Sixtoo – Duration (excerpt)
Stan Kenton – Coloured Spade
The New Seekers – It’s The Real Thing
Pugh – Love Love Love
Die & Skitz feat Rodney P/Ms Dynamite/Tali/Mixologists – It’s On
Yo La Tengo – Nuclear War
The Free Association – Don’t Rhyme No Mo
Nelly/Dsico vs FLEXUS – It’s Getting Hot Hot Hot In Herre
Dsico – Super Hiding
Tino – Living Dead Dub
Jurassic 5 – Acetate Prophets

Moonbuilding issue 2 out today

Moonbuilding vol.2

The new edition of Moonbuilding, the quarterly magazine by ex-Electronic Sound writer Neil Mason, published by Castles In Space, is out today. It features a 2 page interview with me about my new book, Wheels of Light, and the mag also comes with a free CD of CiS artists appearing at the label’s Levitation festival next month.

You can order it here and there is also an option to get issue 1 or a bundle of both issues.

Moonbundle

The Groovy Record Fayre is this weekend

Trump Box 21mm
The Trunk Groovy Record Fayre is this Saturday! My Further partner Pete Williams and I are having a stall again at the Mildmay Club, Newington Green. I’ll have lots of dance 45s if that’s your thing, part of a huge collection recently bought by Michael from The Book & Record Bar, doubles from my personal collection including Ninja stuff and copies of my new book, Wheels of Light, among other things. Do stop by, the last one was excellent as was the pop quiz and party afterwards.
And it’s FREE!
October 29th, 11am until late, the Mildmay Club, Newington Green, London, N16 9PR.

My Wheels of Light book is out today!

Kev by Larry Wooden
It’s publication day for my book ‘Wheels of Light’ from Four Corners books – here’s some pictures from the launch night on Wednesday by Pat Grimm and myself. The Optikinetics crew Rob, Tony and original co-founder Neil Rice were in attendance as was wheel artist Jennie Caldwell (see her amazing designs in the book).

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WOL Launch party
Larry Wooden was also holding court with his box of original Orion wheels and a portfolio of original wheel art dating back to the 70s.

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Here is is holding the War of the Worlds painting by artist David Hardy. He’d also made me a one-off Wheels of Light promo wheel and gifted a remastered Star Wars test wheel. He’s busy remastering all the old Orion wheels from the original art, the colours of which are sometimes quite a bit different.

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Opti by Larry
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Stuart Warren-Hill (Hexstatic/Holotronica) is pictured showing Neil Rice one of his homemade picture wheels, and Pat and Mariko are bathing in the liquid light.

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Patgrimm 3
Patgrimm 4
Patgrimm 6
Patgrimm 7
Patgrimm 8
Patgrimm 10
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Rotating prism attachment for Solar 250 lens.

Patgrimm photo

You can order the book here for a history of the British companies like Optikinetics, Orion and Pluto who made these gorgeous objects. Lots of the original art for the picture wheels is featured as well as promotional material and interviews with some of the people behind the scenes. I hope you all find something to enjoy in here and maybe a few things never seen before.

Mixcloud Select 123: Months of Debris vol.2 (DK loves the Worlds Famous) 26/08/2004

MS123 CDR

A follow up to last week’s upload with a set full of bits and pieces floating around at this point in time, most of it contemporary with some oldies to finish. The recording at the start is DK from my answerphone, he’s a huge World’s Famous Supreme Team and I’d peppered the set with bits of a recording of an old WHBI show I’d found. A full length version of 2 Tall’s entry into the Solid Steel intro competition kicks things off before Diplo’s premiere release, the amazing ‘Epistomology Suite’ enters. I remember how exciting this was to hear at the time, we felt Big Dada had discovered the new DJ Shadow and this was his ‘Entropy’. It didn’t quite work out like that but his debut LP, ‘Florida’, is still a classic debut. Smoove switches things up with a swinging double time soul banger featuring Jess Roberts, I used to play this out for years. Firstborn’s Northern Soul-esque stomper, ‘The Mood Club (Part 2)’ is taken from the 7” and features a great tempo switch down.

Señor Coconut remixes Stephen Coates’ The Real Tuesday Weld and Madlib tackles The Free Design with a Nostalgia 77 track sandwiched in-between. Earl Zinger cuts up the Pink Elephants on Parade theme tune before Black Lodge (RIP) puts his twist on it and then Sun Ra and his Arkestra cover it from the Disney compilation, Stay Awake. Def Tex’s slamming, bleeping ‘Freaks’ ruins the mood somewhat as does the frantic mix into Awkward’s excellent break-fest ‘Plug Me In’, must dig that out again. Ivory blazes a trail all over the shop before Steinski gets old school with the cuts from his split 12” on Stones Throw with J.Rocc. Dr Rubberfunk gets the treatment from Fort Knox Five before Four Tet gets made over by Icarus – I seemed to like the remixes over the originals half the time. This latter remix starts like some lost Terry Riley piece before the drums steam in, must revisit!.

MS123 PRS
This end section was sonically themed: I thought the vocal harmonies of Air’s ‘Run’ were a clear reference to 10cc’s ‘I’m Not In Love’ so found the original and a Godley & Creme version. I’ve always thought there was an obvious sonic fingerprint shared with 10cc’s I’m Not In Love’ and the Art of Noise’s ‘Moments in Love’, a theory strengthened by the fact that AON’s JJ Jeczalik collaged the 10cc/Godley & Creme History Mix Vol.1 LP together and then Lol Creme joined the AON in the 00’s. You could further add G&C’s Trevor Horn-produced ‘Cry’ to the equation, forgive the tuning, it’s way out. A further link to the AON/Trevor Horn axis comes in the form of Hibs’ excellent fan mix of Frankie’s ‘Two Tribes’ which could have been a lost mix from the 80’s. Hibs – aka Jeff Knowler to his friends – engineered my recording of Paul Morley for the Raiding The 20th Century mix and then went on to mix most of my work since.

2 Tall – Solid Steel intro (full version)
Diplo – Epistomology Suite
Smoove feat. Jess Roberts – Coming Back
Firstborn – The Mood Club (Part 2)
(The Real) Tuesday Weld – Ugly & The Beautiful (Senor Coconut remix)
Nostalgia 77 – Sad Thing
The Free Design – Where Do I Go (Madlib remix)
Earl Zinger – Heavy Hitter
Black Lodge – untitled
Sun Ra & His Arkestra – Pink Elephants On Parade
Def Tex – Freaks
Awkward – Plug Me In
Ivory – Blaze A Trail
Steinski – Ain’t No Thing
Dr Rubberfunk – The Owner (Fort Knox Five remix)
Four Tet – My Angel Rocks Back and Forth (Icarus remix)
Air – Run
Godley & Crème – I’m Not In Love
10cc – I’m Not In Love
Art of Noise – Moments In Love
Frankie Goes To Hollywood – Two Tribes (Hibs’ Reagan Says No More mix)
World’s Famous Supreme Team – outro

At Home With The Boyle Family film launch

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Another London-based light show event, the Boyle Family were some of the first artists to work with fluids and projection on the avant garde art scene in the sixties. Staged on Sunday Nov 13th at the now-endangered Iklectik venue in Waterloo with talks, music, film and projection performances. Go and support both the film and the venue.
More info here

Mixcloud Select 122: Months of Debris vol.1 15/07/2004

MS122 CDR

A random delve into the archive this week from a year we’ve not covered too often recently, 2004. Kicking off with a rather tranced up version of the Solid Steel theme by Redroof we start the show proper with Waxfactor’s (aka Pete Sasqwax) ’Reggaenomics’ from his lost classic LP ‘Sci-Fu’ which has just been re-released by coincidence. I’d forgotten about BJ Cole and Luke Vibert’s ‘Surf Acid Hoedown’, what an acid monster, crazy 303 patterns and time changes. One of the first (that I heard) versions of The White Stripes’ classic ‘Seven Nation Army’ was by Brighton’s finest, Nostalgia 77 (Ben Lamdin) and Alice Russell, then starting to make a name for herself as a premier soul vocalist. Dynamite MC’s ‘Bubble’ sounds exactly like that, with early grime licks meeting the sort of production coming out of DJ Zinc’s Bingo Beats label around that time.

The Council Flats of Kingsbury is some kind of dirty fuzzed out beats before that kind of thing was the fashion over on the West Coast, this was from a split white vinyl 7” with LJ Kruzer on the flip on Uncharted Audio. Prince Po featuring MF Doom – ‘Special Distortion’ was from the Danger Mouse-produced, Lex-released LP The Slickness, Lex were really on a role at this point. Bristol’s Boca 45 steams in with ‘Air Drums’ from his second release on High Noon Music. Blend Crafters was a one-off thing Jurassic 5’s DJ Nu-mark did with Pomo which saw one LP and a handful of singles around in 2004 which is followed by the aptly-named ‘Genuine’ by Sharon Jones (RIP) and the Dap Kings. Has a new funk tune ever sounded so authentically 60’s? At that point it was one of the first that hit that sweet spot.

MS122 PRS

J Star’s take on Erick Sermon’s ‘Music’ was one of his first reggae make overs and it’s another Luke Vibert tune, under his Wagon Christ nom de plume with a track from his second Ninja Tune LP, ‘Sorry I Make You Lush’. Rhymefest’s ‘Jackin’ (it got ugly)’ single, chock full of classic rock samples, was something of a breath of fresh air at this point, stealing indiscriminately from all over the map. Diplo’s Hollertronix had come late to the mash up party but were putting out some (mad) decent examples in the states with this Clash meets Missy Elliot example being one of the best. Deisler’s first six track release for Tru Thoughts yielded the latin-infused ‘Xibaba’. I Monster come on like the mutant cousin of a glam-stomping ELO with Hey Mrs’ before an ill-advised segue into my favourite Supergrass track, the Talking Heads-aping ‘Kiss of Life’. If they didn’t go into the studio with the exact intention to ape the Eno-produced era of the Heads then I won’t believe it, they even got Tom Tom Club to do a remix for god’s sake. Interesting that Gaza’s brother, Rob Coombes in credited as primary writer on it. Party Ben’s hip house take on the Beastie’s ‘Ch-Ch-Check it Out’ is fun but hasn’t aged well, would probably work on the dance floor but in the mix here it’s a bit full on as a final track.

Track list:
Redroof – Solid Steel intro
Waxfactor – Reggaenomics
BJ Cole & Luke Vibert – Surf Acid Hoedown
Nostalgia 77 feat Alice Russell – Seven Nation Army
Dynamite MC – Bubble
Heiroglyphics – Love Flowin’
The Council Flats of Kingsbury – Dirty Floor
Prince Po feat MF Doom – Special Distortion
Boca 45 – Air Drums
Blend Crafters – Lola
Sharon Jones & the Dap Kings – Genuine
Jstar – Music
Wagon Christ – The Funnies
Rhymefest – Jackin’ (it got ugly)
Hollertronix – Untitled
Deisler – Xibaba
I Monster – Hey Mrs (Glamour Puss remix)
Supergrass – Kiss of Life (Tom Tom Club mix)
Party Ben – Ch Ch Check it Out Old Skool

In The Court of the Crimson King documentary

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Saw this doc on King Crimson by Toby Amies last night and boy, it’s excellent – highly recommended. Funny, insightful and touching, far better than the Bowie doc doing the rounds – various streaming events and showings are scheduled in the next month before it gets a release before Xmas. More info on the various contents and formats to be released here
ITCOTCK

Dave Barbarossa – Mud Sharks

Mud cover
It’s all books on here lately, I’ve been helping Dave Barbarossa realise a third, print-on-demand edition of his first novel, Mud Sharks, recently – a semi biographical, semi-fictional retelling of his upbringing and road to stardom in various bands. Fans of a certain age will know him from the first iteration of Adam & The Ants, then Bow Wow Wow, he later went on to drum with Beats International, Republica and Roland Gift among others.
Mud back
The book is a rapid-paced ascent through a troubled childhood, dirt poor upbringing in 70s London into a world of punk and out the other side, a proper rags to riches story, told intelligently with a keen turn of phrase.
Mud dedi
You can order copies from here or message Dave directly through his Facebook and he will sign and dedicate a copy to you.
As a thankyou I got to look through untold Ant/Bow Wow Wow treasures at his place including acetates, diaries, scrapbooks and more. He also gifted this original proof copy of the Young Parisians single cover and promo photo to me as a thank you. The dedication is a reference to something Adam wrote in a log book Dave owns of the making of the Dirk Wears White Sox album where each track is broken down into instruments, sections, notes and recording info.
YP front
YP back
Ants photo

Mixcloud Select 121: Messy Half 22/12/2003

MS87 CDr
A quick one this week as I’m pushed for time. A half hour from late 2003 which was originally coupled with some left field Xmas songs. This set is a bit disjointed, lots of bits and pieces that I wanted to play but didn’t fit together too well – hence the name of the mix. A mash up of Beyonce that hasn’t aged well kicks things off before Hey Ya, which I’m sure you’ve heard too many times but it was new at the time, please skip if you need to. The mix gets interesting after this with 808 State’s ‘Ancodia’, remixed on the Extended Pleasure of Dance EP 12” with an obvious but satisfying blend into Richard X’s ‘You Used To’ after. Love that transition.

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Steinski’s frenetic remix of Melle Mel’s ‘Freestyle’ follows and I think that’s Cut Chemist on the decks. The insane Captain Funkaho crashes in and all over the place with his Dick Hyman-sampled ‘Capt. Chaos’ before we drift into the original – ‘The Moog & Me’. We play out with Boards of Canada’s sublime remix of cLOUDDEAD’s ‘Dead Dogs Two’ which is about as good as it gets.

Track list:
Cropstar – Crazy Prado
Outkast – Hey Ya
808 State – Ancodia (Taters Deep Nit Funky Beat mix)
Richard X – You Used To
Melle Mel – Freestyle (Steinski remix)
Captain Funkaho – Capt. Chaos
Dick Hyman – The Moog & Me
cLOUDDEAD – Dead Dogs Two (Boards of Canada remix)

The second Trunk Groovy Record Fayre

Trump Box 21mm
It’s back! The return of the Trunk Groovy Record Fayre. My Further partner Pete Williams and I will be having a stall again this October at the Mildmay Club, Newington Green. I will have lots of dance 45s if that’s your thing, some records from my personal collection and copies of my new book, Wheels of Light, among other things. Do stop by, the last one was excellent as was the pop quiz and party afterwards.

Do stop by, last year’s was amazing (see photos here), from the daytime fair to the evening pop quiz and after party get down.
And it’s FREE!
October 29th, Mildmay Club, Newington Green, London, N16

Wheels Of Light book

WheelsofLight_cover editInadvertently, I’ve written a book! I say written but it’s really more picture-heavy with a contextual history provided, but my name is on the cover so what the hell. I’ve been working away on a book of light show projection wheel art for a good few years now in conjunction with the lovely people at Four Corners Books.

optikinetics-liquid-wheels

It started when a friend called me in mid 2019 having discovered a load of original projection wheel art at a lighting company called Optikinetics – one of the original and only surviving companies who made projectors and their accessories from the 70s. After viewing drawers full of art, slides and transparencies I took the idea to Four Corners who I’d previously worked with on Jonny Trunk’s ‘Wobbly Sounds’ book about flexi discs. They were up for it and so we were off, my main job being contextualising the art and interviewing the main players and artists from the UK scene, which led to more art turning up along the way.
Wheels of Light Acid Wheel Light Fantastic Limited
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Wheels of Light Oil Wheel Optikinetics
We were nearing the final stages of the edit and the book was sent to the designer when a vital missing piece of the jigsaw turned up. A certain Larry Wooden – proprietor of Orion Lighting and originator of the panoramic picture wheel – had been missing in action since I started to track down the original people involved in the business of making wheels. I’d resigned myself to having a passage written by Larry back in 2009 in the book as his only contribution – taken (with permission) from the Funky Parrot website – but suddenly he appeared online in a group devoted to projection. A quick email and not so quick phone call and the next week I jumped on a train to Colchester and met Larry outside the station in his motorhome where we chatted for hours and he filled me in on where he’d been, what he’d done and what he was going to do.

Orion - Space Panorama original

Some of that is a story for another time but I now had access to the last major player – alongside Optikinetics and Pluto – of the British FX wheel scene of the 70’s and early 80’s. Their story, the equipment they created as well as original art and quotes from the artists and designers of the wheels will be told for the first time in Wheels of Light, available from Four Corners Books on October 21st. Larry has set up a new Orion Effects site and is selling various bits and pieces of his archive so if you’re into that incredibly niche area then this is possibly the last time such a collection of original pieces will come up for sale, certainly from one of the originators of the UK scene. Go to orioneffects.co.uk and click on the heritage pages.

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Below: Mis-registered image of the Optikinetics ‘Robot’ wheel taken from a catalogue (not in the book). I’ll be posting more ephemera over the coming weeks as much didn’t make the book… You can pre-order it here, nearly 180 pages, full colour throughout. There will be a launch party on the 19th and I should have copies for sale at my stall at Jonny Trunk’s second Record Fayre on the 29th.

Opti Robot web

On the road with Dust & Grooves

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I’ve seemingly neglected this blog a bit this year save for a lot of the Mixcloud Select weekly entries but that’s because I’ve been so damned busy (which is good!). Last month my friend Elion Paz – photographer, dirt bike enthusiast and now marathon runner – arrived in the UK for three weeks of preliminary shoots and interviews for the second Dust & Grooves book. You may know the first book, a beautiful hardback tome to record collecting published in 2014 with Mr Scruff on the cover, perched atop some of his collection.

Way back then there weren’t many books like this about vinyl collectors and obsessives. Things have changed quite a bit since then it’s fair to say and the next book will cast the net even wider into other areas. While Eilon was here I helped him out with interviews, contacts and also featured in a piece myself focusing on Command record covers (see above).

cb85b245-fd5d-4491-a151-07473c081f95© Eilon Paz/Dust & Grooves

Our first assignment together was a visit to Zoe ‘Lucky Cat’ Baxter to check out her collection of reggae and Chinese records, here we are sniffing the acetate dubplates.

Eilon_Paz-153© Eilon Paz/Dust & Grooves

We then headed to West Norwood to The Book & Record Bar to speak to Alex Paterson of The Orb who pulled out one of his tour boxes, unopened for over a decade and walked us through the contents before we retired to his home to dig into his collection. Alex later told me it was one of his favourite interviews.

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Next up was a trip down to Brighton to dig with the ultra-hospitable DJ Format and take a journey through his career with a focus on odd religious records. Here we are messing about with his copies of Marshall McLuhan‘s ‘The Medium Is The Massage’.

Eilon_Paz-567© Eilon Paz/Dust & Grooves

Lastly, after much persuasion, we visited Stockport and the incredible collection of Andy Votel, someone Eilon had wanted in the first book but hadn’t been able to fit in. Oh the sights we saw…
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Eilon then went to Bristol for several days before returning to his home town on New York last week and running his first marathon at the weekend. His work ethic and vision are nothing short of extraordinary, I know the next book will be right up there with the first.

Mixcloud Select 120: 30 Minutes For Cash 22/09/2003

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A short, mellow set from 19 years ago – Johnny Cash’s ‘One Piece At A Time’ is one of the first songs I remember hearing as a child. My dad was/is a mechanic so this song always appealed to him and he explained that it was about a guy building a car out of bits and pieces of parts he’d stolen from the factory he worked at. He would do a similar thing with all manner of bike parts (not stolen!) over a 14 year period when he built his own custom bike later on in life. The track is book-ended by excerpts from the ‘Live At Folsom Prison’ album. Lunz’s ‘Wobbly Flu Twilight’ is a dark and delicate piano piece and then a Blackalicious track produced by DJ Shadow called ‘Changes’ appears, introduced by a short John Rydgren interview from a series called ‘Scenes’. In the interview the artist (who I’m not sure the identity of) talks about changes that he made on the new record and how the record label weren’t happy with it.

This is one thing I always tried to do with spoken word inserts, make the subject matter somehow reference the track it was placed with or over, it wasn’t always possible but when it works it’s lovely. The track was taken from an original beat tape of DJ Shadow’s I was in possession of at the time and I later found out it appeared on the Japanese version of the ‘Melodica’ album (credited to UNKLE) but I’ve never found a copy to check if it’s the same. Keeping on the Shadow theme, I had recently discovered one of the samples from one of my favourite tracks of his, ‘Changeling’ from Endtroducing, in the form of ‘Imagination Flight’ by the Chaffey College Jazz Ensemble, a private press LP with various composers, Charles Argersinger being the writer of the title track.

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‘This River’ by Colder, on Trevor Jackson’s Output label has a beautiful, dark piano motif I could listen to all day and Colleen’s ‘Babies’ floats in like a saccharine lullaby. Ken Nordine narrates ‘Little Boy Blue’ from Billy Vaughn & his Orchestra’s 1956 release on Dot, one of his first appearances on vinyl. There’s more of Johnny Cash’s dialogue to the crowd from the Folsom Prison album over the start of Super Numeri’s ‘Coastel Bird Scene part 1’, at the time a new signing to Ninja Tune who would make two albums and singles before various members split into Loka, Snap Ant and Pop Levi. What I didn’t know at the time was that James Morgan aka Snap Ant, had also previously released a 12” on Ntone under the name Ominium which is presumably how Super Numeri came to be on the label. The originally mis-titled Eternals’ ‘Zero Gravity’ is the opening track from the Astropioneers OST of which I have absolutely no recollection of owning but it’s a lovely way to end a fairly sedate set.

Track list:
Johnny Cash – One Piece At A Time
Lunz – Wobbly Flu Twilight
Blackalicous – Changes
Chaffey College Jazz Ensemble – Imagination Flight
Colder – This River
Colleen – Babies
Ken Nordine – Little Boy Blue
Super Numeri – Coastal Bird Scene part 1
The Eternals – Zero Gravity

Mixcloud Select 119: A Bird In The Boosh 21/03/2005

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Opening with Pedro Chamorra’s entry to the Solid Steel intro competition (we got so many good entries it was hard to pick a winner and I used loads of runner up tracks as intros) and we’re off on an hour journey through time and space, punctuated by excerpts from series 1 of the Mighty Boosh. The first series is still my favourite with Howard and Vince’s riffs on music (jazz vs electro) always a joy to hear.
The Kleptones kick the mix off with an odd collage based on Queen samples from their A Night At The Hip Hopera cut up mix, most of their stuff is still online for free at https://www.kleptones.com/. Soulwax’s incredible mix of LCD’s ‘Daft Punk Is Playing At My House’ builds and builds and was one of those rare things, a remix that improves on the original. Kevin Mark Trail’s track was probably a promo 12” with MJ Cole remixes as was the Bluefoot Project Away team mix, coming from a compilation 12” entitled Interesting Flavours on Chocolate Fireguard Records.

Ms. Thing’s ‘Love Guide’ was the Switch-produced cut from the Two Cultures Clash compilation and predates the sort of material he would go on to make with Diplo as Major Lazer. Vincent made one EP in 2004 and two tracks from it are on this mix, the duo of Phil Donkin (bass) and Simon Vincent (piano) formed the group and the broken beat jazz of the Sentinel EP was the result. More broken beats from the Sun Ra cover of Likwid Continual Space Motion Ope-ra, a collaboration between IG Culture and Bembe Segue on a 25 minute version of the classic ‘Space Is The Place’. Two producers who have since become good friends and collaborators team up next as Johnny Trunk remixes Stephen Coates’ The Real Tuesday Weld’s classic ‘Bathtime In Clerkenwell’ into a reggae skank.
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Meanwhile back at Ninja Tune the label was signing new acts and one – Loka – remixes the other – Blockhead – in fine fashion on his ‘Sunday Seance’. I always liked Loka, they were exactly what I was after at that point and their first album is a hidden classic. I don’t remember where the Def Harmonic track came from, I can’t recall owning one of their records but maybe it was on a comp? Max Sedgley’s follow up to his massive ‘Happy’ single was almost as big and then it’s the second Vincent cut, bringing jazz to the funk – should have waited with that earlier Mighty Boosh sample. Finishing with a remix from Herbert in which I get busy on the loop pedal at the end we wind things down with Atom TM’s glitchy take on Emiliana Torrini’s ‘Sunny Road’.

Tracklist:
Pedro Chamorra – Solid Steel spot
Kleptones – Precession
LCD Soundsystem – Daft Punk Is Playing… (Soulwax remix)
Kevin Mark Trail – D Thames (MJ Cole Dub)
The Bluefoot Project – Little Miss Selfish (Away Team mix)
Ms. Thing – Love Guide
Vincent – Gift
Likwid Continual Space Motion Ope-ra – Space Is The Place (Prelude…)
The Real Tuesday Weld – Bathtime In Clerkenwell (Jonny Trunk mix)
Blockhead – Sunday Séance (Loka remix)
Def Harmonic – The Deep
Max Sedgley – Devil Inside
Vincent – Sentinel
Brazillian Girls – Lazy Lover (Herberts Busy Lover mix)
Emiliana Torrini – Sunny Road (Atom TM’s Future Folk mix)

No Mixcloud Select archive mix this week – a new one!

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Due to being crazily busy this week, not least having to sort a set out for a friend’s wedding on Friday (playing AND taking my decks – this is a real rarity) I’ve not had time to prepare a show this week. But! I did drop a new mix on Sunday for Matt ‘King Megatrip’ King‘s new kickstarter.

Long time listeners to Solid Steel will know the name King Megatrip from back in the 00’s, he was one of the first collectors of old shows online, provided the occasional guest mix and used to send us spoken word samples on CDRs back in the day, culled from old films and records that he would religiously record and edit down. These started as discs with 99 entries as that was the most ‘tracks’ you could fit on a disc and each one had its own cover, track list and number. Slowly the ‘Soundbank’, as it came to be known, grew in size to the point where it was 200 volumes, each track-indexed with the basic premise of the sample and compiled on a DVD. I still use it to this day and Matt has threatened to share a new 200 volume follow up some day.

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He’s been slightly distracted however by his Tales To Enlighten project – the first was a 200 page graphic novel detailing the son of Satan and his robot consort, Manfred’s adventures trying to gain enlightenment. He successfully Kickstarted that last year and it was a blast. Now, the sequel – Tales To Enlighten: The New Testament – is here and it’s a whopping 550 pages with 30 artists and a ton more content. He’s aiming to get $20k which means the whole book will cost just $52 once printed – a bargain – and as of writing he’s already got $17k of it after nearly 2 weeks. Help him out if you want a ton of indie/underground comix full of sex, drugs, violence and blasphemy hitting your doorstep (or just to use as a doorstop) soon. If you fancy pledging then head over to the Kickstarter page, there’s loads of different levels and goodies on offer with extra zines, T-shirts and even original artwork.

To try and help drum up some publicity and as a good excuse to fit a new set of funky religious psychedelia together I constructed Songs of Revelation: Further Religious Rock & Spiritual Spoken Word for him a few weeks back, a follow up to last year’s Songs To Enlighten mix.

Track list:
Reformation – In The Beginning
Otis Skillings – A World Mixed Up
Reformation – Reformation ’71
John E. Schroeder & Richard Koehneke – Doors Are For Locking (excerpt)
Truth of Truths – John The Baptist
The Continental Singers – Step Up, Sit Down
Truth of Truths – The Trial
John Rydgren – Cantata Of New Life (excerpts)
The Crimson Bridge – First Suite by Gary Rand (1st movement Searching For Reality)
W. Cleon Shonsen – The Hippy Psalm (Instant Insanity Drugs excerpt)
John E. Schroeder & Richard Koehneke – The Best Tombs In Life Are Free (excerpt 1)
Kent Schneider – The Church Is Within Us, O Lord
The Crimson Bridge – Birthright
John Rydgren – The Lord Is My Shepherd (New Life spot)
Reformation – Let There Be Light
John E. Schroeder & Richard Koehneke – The Best Tombs In Life Are Free (excerpt 2)
Otis Skillings – Love Can Work A Miracle (edit)
Katarzyna Gartner – Kyrie (excerpt 1 edit)
U.S. Apple Corps – Don’t Do Me Nothing
Peter Link & C.C. Courtney – Deadalus
Katarzyna Gartner – Kyrie (excerpt 2)
The Mission – A Feeling

Forthcoming DJ Food gigs

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A few gigs coming up – supporting Funki Porcini on the Sunday date of his weekend residency at Iklectik, London, showing his Laserium set which has to be seen in a dark place. I’ll be bringing my Quadraphon turntable for some multi-armed action.
Tickets: https://iklectikartlab.com/funki-porcinis-laserium/

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In two weeks I’ll be opening the Create Music Village festival at Coachworks in Ashford, Kent with an Audio Visual DJ set – come to party.
Tickets: www.ticketweb.uk/event/dj-food-support-casey-coachworks-tickets/12480335

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Mid October I’ll be honouring a gig that was cancelled due to Covid all those years ago and returning to Belfast to play what may well be the final outing of my Selected Aphex Works audio visual set at the Ulster Sports Club.
Tickets: forthcoming…

There’s also a launch party in East London for my forthcoming book on Oct 19th, more about that soon…