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VIDA DE-sign by Michael Buckingham, aka Mick Muttley

Dear friends (yeah really, one of those) I have become a women's wear designer for VIDA! http://shopvida.com/collections/voices/ ...

Sunday, 31 January 2010

SubVersion Stop 70: Relmic Statute - Morning Tapes (Hibernate Recordings 010)

Subtracting melancholia can sway ambient enthusiasts. With solemnity underpinning, Hibernate Recording's tenth foray into physical and digital availability - Relmic Statute's "Morning Tapes” - is also their longest, but is it the most accomplished? The past stock utilised acoustic treatments, drones, and the string instrument family, whereas this is the first to fashion itself on tape loops. If you're thinking degraded William Basinski-alike tonalities, David Horner, aka Relmic Statute will educate you gently.

There's a fine-grained, Sawako-reminiscent delicacy to Horner's sampledelia. He splices field recordings assembled from cassettes and old 1/4 inch tape. Happiness is a tangible objective - it's usually about how much you invest, but you won't always get the rewards. Highlight “Illustration” assures Horner's pursuing older technology isn't just a nostalgist's wet dream, but in actual fact a triumph of perserverant vigour and reconvened semblance. From the opening recording's delayed sonorities, through “A Test For Tapes And Memories”, which could be a more abstract jingle from The Caretaker's studio, the listener is bestowed with a warmth almost fragile, ever receding, but paradoxically richer than a vast quantity of pure drone recordings - it's dense but fleeting all at once.

There are periods of atmospheric turbulence to stop “Morning Tapes” sidetracking into total chillout zone, but no texture-tantrums - dripping water on “Enarso Lipathe” is soft in pronounciation, voices and guitar on aforementioned “Illustration” fade as the memory does. Forever tempered by impermanence, but with enough staying power for repeated hearings, “Morning Tapes” is like a hot cup of coffee when you rise - bubbling under the surface, indebted to containment, and kindest in gentle hands. Unacceptance can frustrate, lead to insecurity and cause you to dumb down your aspirations, so let's hope Relmic Statute, and Hibernate, will receive their due recognition.

Download from eMusic

Hibernate Recordings: wordpress

SubVersion Stop 69: Nest - Retold LP (Serein 001)

Nest comprises Deaf Center's Otto Totland and Huw Roberts. They made waves in 2007 with a self-titled six tracker, receiving glowing reviews. Countering speculation that traditional instruments turn to dynamic mud when paired with electronics, their pianism ranges from euphorically charged (think Keith Jarrett, minus whimpers and outcries) and demurely reserved (Nils Frahm's quieter passages, or Craig Armstrong's "Piano Works" album). Generally speaking, the piano can eroticise and narratively understructure a composition, rather than be the sole instrument, and that's what we have here: twelve works combining atmospheres, drones and additional instrumentation to strike the heart with an astonishing depth and clarity.

For those already aware of the free Serein EP, the revision of "Cad Goddeau" is a welcome surprise, but the real winning factor is in the five new tracks, which are unbelievably more beautifully realised. "The Helwick" stands out as a hybrid of Max Richter's dramatic instrumental leverage, but doesn't devolve into overbearing kitsch. The piano's presence as the underlying 'hook' likens Nest to a more modern constituency and demographic of field research, rather than hollow reciting of classical genre-specifics.

Minimalism is traded with continuity and subtle development; harmony a property of the piano working with adjacent repertoires. And by embedding satisfying repetition, Nest superimpose dreaminess into digestion. Their mission statement of "music without pretence" is exemplified on "Marfjellet", which differentiates the palette, without harsh, grating dissonance. It adds up to music drawing the attendant in through polished veneer and a persistent urge to please. Horizons are multifaceted for where Nest go next, but by this showing, it'll be wrapped in the svelte magnificence we know (or may not yet know) and love from them.

Purchase CD and MP3 versions

Friday, 29 January 2010

SubVersion Stop 68: Muttley - Isolate - for www.ambientblog.net

The Subvert Central community has helped me grow so much since I joined. "Isolate" is dedicated to Jon Statto, who's always been there to lend a hand with blogging feedback.

I picked drones as a leitmotif, as Statto is a lover of such. The catharsis doubles as a controlling agent (see my "Better Days To Come" mixtape for further analysis), structured with meditative properties.

"Isolate" foretells the emotions I conjure from being warmed by Jon. "What has begun, cannot be stopped" from Noisia's "The Tide" ends the program, a signal to 2010 that there will optimistically be more Muttley sets, more dedications, more progression, and more of what makes the world positively tick.


01. Asher - 14 (from the album "Landscape Studies")
02. Sean Mcann - Cathedral Of Limbs (from the album "A Wind In Their Way")
03. Oophoi - Floating (from the album "Night Currents")
04. Billy Gomberg - Lights Form Her Body (from the album "Days")
05. Leyland Kirby - Stralaeur Peninsula (from the album "Sadly, The Future Is No Longer What It Was")
06. Eliane Radigue - Koume (from the album "Trilogie De La Mort")
07. David Tagg - Desperate Air (from the album "Dulcimer Studies")
08. Quosp - Slope (from the album "Grassland Melodies")
09. Tim Hecker - Harmony In Blue II (from the album "Harmony In Ultraviolet")
10. Peter Broderick - Floating / Sinking (from the album "Float")
11. Noisia - The Tide (excerpt) (from the Vision 001 12')

Thursday, 28 January 2010

SubVersion Stop 67: Badmammal - Desobrigamento (goodluck/badluck CD)

He's carved out a unique sound, therefore it'd be foolish to accuse Chris Matule, the man behind the Badmammal project, of bandwagon-jumping. His previous life as Process, signed to leftfield drum 'n' bass stable Ohm Resistance, could implode his individuality to movements such as "minimal", with stripped down bore-fests the worst case scenario. What his work implicitly signifies - simplicity with a nuanced edge - is married with far-reaching titling, and a stylistic IDM middle with Venetian Snares' "Cavalcade Of Glee", and Mu-Ziq's "Duntisborne Abbots Soulmate Devastation Technique".

Taken from a book that uses several languages, especially Spanish and Portuguese, "Desobrigamento", Matule's fourth self-released CD, is definitely on par with "Carrying A Deranged Gospel Choir", his debut for the imprint. From first listen, one notable feature is its adherence to a similar speed throughout. Appreciation arises from catchy melodic phrases, but "Desobrigamento" ultimately shines due to its percussive versatility.

"Paper 8s" is a highlight early on, marrying honeycomb melodic timbres to drum metamorphosis. Adrenalin-rush-inducing moments prolong the intoxicating vibe. I can imagine a track like this going down well at a house party, early morning, with drinks in hand. This could also be said of the entirety.

Dedicated to a friend whose father passed away, “Sending And Taking” is for me the epitome of the Badmammal brand - lots of heart-grabbing melodics by way of strings and strums, correlative, subdued beat programming that doesn't detract from the lavishness of instrumentation, and soul in spades. Leave it to “Desobrigamento” to reinforce belief in what's worthwhile, and brighten up one's day. Language barriers aren't applicable here.

Purchase: CD & listen to audio

SubVersion Stop 66: Muttley - Closing Down (January 2010)

Carl Sagan's Ghost's "Closing Down" was the initiator for this concept - undertaking with association triggers. Sometimes I'm afflicted by nervous energy, and I have to disconnect from my computer or internet; in essence, to close down.

"Closing Down" is a specially made soundtrack - like "The Eyes, They See An Ominous Pillar" was, that serves to heal reaching normality once again, spanning 34 minutes.

"Now, well now it's time, to pull yourselves into lines, and raise and rise, push your leaves and branches high" sings Leo Chadburn at the tail end; a telling narrative to pick yourself up whatever background you have. This won't be to everyone's taste.


Carl Sagan's Ghost - Closing Down (from the EP Colonian Spa)
02. Matthew Robert Cooper (Eluvium) - Radial Summer / Signal Evening (from the album Peeling)
03. Richard Skelton - Scar Tissue (from the album Landings)
04. Charles Stanyan - The Path From My Door At Night (from the album Peeling)
05. Last Days - May Your Days Be Gold (from the album The Safety Of The North)
06. Darren Harper - The Long Goodnight (from the album Time Forgotten)
07. Olafur Arnalds - Vi Vorum Sm (Dyad 1909 Version) (from the album Dyad 1909)
08. Andrea Belfi - Sleeping With Extraevil (from the album Between Neck And Stomach)
09. Language Of Landscape - And The Rain Embraced Our Closing Worlds (from the album Memories Fade Under A Shallow Autumn Snow)
10. Leafcutter John - Let It Begin (from the album The Forest And The Sea)


Wednesday, 27 January 2010

SubVersion Stop 65: Mister Vapor & Altus - Falling Out Of Orbit LP (Just Not Normal 072)

Normality can be priceless, but all the same, there are times when the lure of pastures anew surges through our souls, and demands us to try out new things. Just Not Normal could well be an oasis for music that strays from the conditional norm. As a newcomer to the netlabel, with a weighty 71 releases already in cyberspace, you have to wonder, as is often the case with the digital realm, if quality matches quantity, or antiquation can co-exist with enigmatic fervour.

No matter: Mister Vapor and Altus produce a fine sound on "Sparse Reaches". It's an atmospheric drone work of lengthy stature (25 minutes), in intellectual similarity to the detail of Robert Rich's New Age ambient of "Calling Down The Sky" ilk. Whereas drones can drain the vitality of a listener's attention span, Vapor and Altus usher in a variety of compositional techniques to keep you on the edge of your seat.

"Falling Out Of Orbit" is an appropriate album name - "Immense Revolutions", however, deceptive. It's slower moving, employing twinkle-timbre synthetic washes within an eighth, with a sole drum hit jogging any sedated attendants from drifting out of the auditory stratosphere. Light repetition of notation is thickened by dense walls of atmosphere - Italy's Oophoi springs to mind. When you're close to a quarter of its timespan there are satisfying chord assemblages resonating over reverberated minor keys.

The most important role this LP plays is multifarious - I am piqued to investigate more from Mister Vapor and Altus as singular identities, and the notion of filling up my hard drive with the Just Not Normal tag transposes a delight and not a chore. Which description I leave with on sustained hearing remains to be seen, but for now the future looks rosy.

Download: Mp3 & Flac releases

Mister Vapor: MySpace
Just Not Normal: wordpress

SubVersion Stop 64: Muttley - Back To The Drawing Board (January 2010)

A genre bleeding into a new definition? If you listened to "Back To The Drawing Board" as an ambient lover, the tunes would be fresh to your ears. If you glanced at this set-list as a drum & bass conisseur, you'd predict it would be beat-orientated. The fact is that these tracks were not drawn-out drones in their initial guises, nor beatless. Every one is a composite of stretched audio.

I read Dave Michuda's "slo_mo" entry, and downloaded Paul's "Extreme Sound Stretch", wondering what original things I could do with it. At this time I was also feeling let down, and had spoken to a friend about jungle mixes. This duality lead me to revisit the most spine-tingling tunes I could find in my drum & bass collection, citing the phrase "back to the drawing board".

I don't have many records in the genre - 250 maximum, at a push. So sampling for breakdowns, intros and outros without percussion was fairly easy. Thinktank's "Skyscraper" was a starting point. The samples in "Back To The Drawing Board" were stretched to up to ten times their original length. Adam F's classic "Jaxx" and Probe-One's "Substance" were the longest modifications in the set, taking under two minutes of synth noise and elongating it to roughly 600 seconds. Not all is audible; using Acoustica Audio Mixer I faded in and out of sounds with clarity optimized.

There's a variety of octave adjustments mixed in, blurring the lines. "Extreme Sound Stretch" lets you do this as well as shift pitches and harmonics. While this mix was rendered entirely from drum & bass audio, I plan to incorporate a helping of outsider repertoires, including ambient and piano works, to chime in with my favoured selections. It's worth noting that I bought these tunes partly on the basis of their atmospherics, so perceive this as a prototype to me discovering ambient music when I was 16, if you will.

The title is relevant, also, because I'm completing my Open University study. I am in the process of re-reading all the units to ensure I obtain the highest mark I can for my second assessment. 75% on my first is respectable considering I knew I was slacking due to undisciplined structure. At 25 minutes, I hope "Back To The Drawing Board" will resonate with your own experiments.


01. Mav - Atomic Collision (Vector Burn remix) (Covert Operations / Warm Communications, 2003)
02. Konflict - Messiah (Renegade Hardware, 2000)
03. Thinktank - Skyscraper (Obscene, 2005)
04. Adam F - Jaxx (from the album Colours, 1997)
05. Cartridge - Expressway (Unreleased)
06. Kemal & Black Sun Empire - Stranded V1.0 (oBSEssions, 2005)
07. Polska - Burning Sun (Subtle Audio, 2005)
08. Probe-One - Substance (from the album Testflight Presents Altitude Vol.1, 2005)
09. Breakage - Drowning (Planet Mu, 2006)
10. Hive, Keaton, Echo & Gridlok - Exit Violence (Violence, 2005)


SubVersion Stop 63: Muttley - Paralysis (January 2010)

I've dedicated several mixtapes to friends I speak to online, or have met because of online interaction. A follow-up to "Caught In Static", "Paralysis" is dedicated to Annastay from talking to me about her condition. I wanted to create something that was contemplative, warm and useful for capturing a joyful, stable state of mind beyond what paralysis constitutes - with a fair helping of static noise to round off the spectral suspension.

Annastay was misdiagnosed for years and it turns out the culprit was lyme disease. It caused her "to be really ill over years; I was fatigued constantly, pain moved around to different region of my body causing severe tightness or numbness while the muscles would go into complete spasm throughout the day. As these problems progressed, the spasms started to linger in one limb or two for days on end. I had years where I couldn't even sit in comfort. I had to keep moving around due to the intensity of pain, not being able to sit still for 15 minutes. I had stopped sleeping, whereby then I started to have severe anxiety/mental problems (as you can imagine anyone would in this situation). Environment and large amounts of stress can cause these problems to surface with anyone with a dispostion to them, let alone chronic health problems of this extent.

The lyme attacks the blood effecting your brains' neurological pathways. My cognitive function has been severely affected, and my short term memory basically non-existent; I still can't remember names to anything really. I constantly have to ask or check who an artist is when listening throughout the duration of a song if I want to try and remember it. I had gone untreated for so long, that it's invaded my entire neurological system and inhibited deeply in my ligaments and muscles.

I could barely walk at points over the years. Yet my condtion and how I feel is still invisible to people and even most doctors. Now that I've finally started some antibiotics for the last 6 months I've luckily started to begin to sleep again more than just an hour at a time, and had small improvements in some areas of pain but my brain is worse than ever from the dying off of the spiroketes - I have days where I literally cant connect any of the thoughts I have or take much action on any ideas I might have on the creative front, which is frustrating as inspiration or productivity is hard to come by while going through all this.

I've always fought through the symptoms and worked on music, but the last few years has been the hardest and most devastating as this wasn't possible. I had no outlet for expression or release of feelings as my shoulder was not able to take extended time on a mouse or drum kit. The treatment is not clear-cut nor the same for anyone with this disease and will take years to treat. I was fortunate enough to have it show up on a blood test finally."

Conversely to "Caught In Static", the pieces here are more focused. Last Days makes a late appearance as "Nothing Stays The Same, Nothing Ever Ends" (from The Safety Of The North) on "Caught In Static" resonated with her over the other tracks. To initiate the idea for suitable music I thought to myself: "What would someone paralyzed like to listen to?" Then I extended this to "What can free the listener's inhibitions to fight paralysis as the problem?" I concluded from these judgments that I required tunes that weren't fleeting, had a large amount of sustain, and evolved in texture. Consequently the files' runtime is a fair bit shorter.


01. Machinefabriek - Weightless (remix) (from the album Bijeen)
02. Keith Berry - The Other Shore (rework of Fessended sounds) (from the album Bleu Resultat)
03. BJ Nilsen - Viking North (from the album The Short Night)
04. Ivan Ckonjevic - Umesto Bujenja (from the album Plavi Bicikl)
05. Apalusa - Small Environs 2 (from the album Small Environs)
06. Carl Sagan's Ghost - Solitude II (from the album At The End Of It All)
07. Stars Of The Lid - Articulate Silences Pt. 1 (from the album And Their Refinement Of The Decline)
08. mwvm - Negative Pole (from the album Rotations)
09. Wereju - Forsaken (from the album The Way Of The Cross)
10. Last Days - Nightlight (from the album Sea)


Related links

underourskin.com: watch

Lyme disease: wikipedia

15 Minutes Of Fame: archive

Sunday, 24 January 2010

SubVersion Stop 62: Peter Broderick's "Experiments In Sound And Song"

It is with deeply felt honour on my part that I can present Peter Broderick's contribution to "15 Minutes Of Fame". Best known for his piano-led masterpiece "Float" on Type Recordings, an LP which elicited heart-tugging poignancy in its 36 minute duration, "Experiments In Sound And Song" is described by Peter as follows:

Peter Broderick - Experiments In Sound And Song - www.myspace.com/peterbroderick
"In the last months, I have been occasionally posting music for free on my flickr page ( http://www.flickr.com/photos/peterbroderick/ ). All of this music was recorded very quickly, impulsively, and then put online, and at the moment I don't plan to do anything else with it. The music has been all over the place, from quiet solo piano to wanna-be hip-hop. All of the songs in this mix, and more, can be downloaded at my flickr page, and I hope to keep putting music up there in future. I have written a short description for each song here, and posted links to the original flickr postings.


01. Sunday Song (0:00 - 3:26)
A simple song I wrote on my friend Nils Frahm's piano, recorded on a quiet Sunday evening when I had his place to myself.

02. When I ___ I ___ (3:26 - 7:15)
I asked people on my flickr page to fill in the blanks on the following sentence: "When I ___ I ___, and my ___ is ___." Then I made this song using their comments.


03. Freyr (7:15 - 13:25)
Before I moved to Europe at the end of 2007, I lived in Portland, Oregon, with my cat Freyr. Freyr was my best friend in the world, and leaving him behind was tough. But my father loves cats as much as I do, so I took Freyr up to his place in the country side to stay. He loved it there. And I would see him every time I was back in Oregon visiting. This last November he disappeared into the woods, and never came back. One morning I received an email from my father, explaining that Freyr was gone, and how that made him feel. Most of the emails I get from my father are quite short (he doesn't spend all his time on his computer like we do!), but this one was much longer. I knew he loved that cat like I did, and the words he wrote were so beautiful to me. I had to take them and make a song out of it, a song for Freyr.

04. These Walls of Mine (13:35 - 21:36)
I had surgery on my knee back in December, and was very immobile in the days that followed. So I spent all of my time trying to distract myself and pass the time. I watched Twin Peaks all over again, and recorded a bunch of ridiculous music. I thought a lot about all the different ways to present words. Our voices are so versatile, and when words come out of our mouths, the way we deliver them is a crucial part of how those words come across. So this is me playing around with the delivery of words, and trying to make hip-hop with a piano, a violin, a nylon string guitar, and a computer.


05. I Do This (21:36 - 27:20)
This really makes the most sense if you look at these flickr entires, in the following order:
1. http://www.flickr.com/photos/peterbroderick/4034911156/
2. http://www.flickr.com/photos/peterbroderick/4037989881/

06. Copenhagen (27:20 - 35:16)
There was a huge marching rally on the street right outside my window in Copenhagen. They were playing these amazing beats on their drums. So I hobbled over to my suitcase (it was the day after my knee operation) and grabbed my field recorder. Then I spent the rest of the day making this song, using my voice as the only other instrument. I processed layers of my voice to make a beat the same tempo as the one I had recorded from outside, then blended the two together with more layers of my voice.


07. Hannover (35:16 - 38:09)
I was on tour with Efterklang a few months ago, and we played at this wonderful theater in Hannover, Germany. I found an empty room with a piano, set up my field recorder and recorded some short improvisations, then mixed a few different pieces together really quickly.


08. Inside Out There (38:09 - 43:28)
Another song I made in the days after my knee operation. I was restless, and was basically just messing around with making beats on the computer, only using my voice and other things laying around, like my fingers on the table top, or smacking the chair next to me. Once I finished the beat, I picked up some other instruments and made this song around it.


"15 Minutes Of Fame" archive

Monday, 18 January 2010

SubVersion Stop 61: SubVersion Recommends: Muttley - Finding Beauty

"Finding Beauty" was inspired by a comment from PvC of ambientblog.net. I was discussing with him by email my rate of output, and I realised only then that I'd put out 14 mixtapes in a month (December 2009 - January 2010).

Ideally I'd design artwork, but I'm a technological caveman at present, so tracklists and hyperlinks will suffice.

I brought up catharsis as an integral element, but then I thought further - from a track title by Craig Armstrong - and it appeared to summarise why, more specifically, I bind tracks. It was to find beauty.

In a way this is an extended counterpart to "Patience Of Saints Remembered" as where that upheld the best bits from conclusive tunes on albums, "Finding Beauty" blends crescendos, climaxes and stretched out deluges. It will also serve as a taster for the SubVersion audience of what concepts have passed, as well as soundtracking movements to find beauty - in its rawest (physical) or artificial (online) aggregations.

If you are a budding or established artist, I have plans for artwork I'd like to see realised. If you'd like to guest on SubVersion, feel free to drop me an email.


01. Celer - A Lifetime Of Wasted Breaths (from the album Flowers: Dragon's Eye's Fourth Anniversary)
02. Nest - Trans Siberian (from the album Nest)
03. Darren Harper - Amongst The Trees (from the album The Hundredth Mantra)
04. Beau Finley - Winter Light Arc Light (from the album Adventures In Mass Transit)
05. Library Tapes - Waves (from the album Sketches)
06. Language Of Landscape - Contemplating Departure In Wake Of Clear Light (from the album Memories Fade Under A Shallow Autumn Snow)
07. Badgerlore - String Wrist (from the album Stories For Owls)
08. Brian Eno - Dunwich Beach Autumn 1960 (from the album On Land)
09. Robin Guthrie & Harold Budd - Avenue Of Shapes (from the album After The Night Falls)
10. mwvm - Sleepy Crayfish (from the album Rotations)
11. Craig Armstrong - Choral Ending (from the album As If To Nothing)
12. Yui Onodera - Synergetics I (from the album Synergetics)
13. Language Of Landscape - Speaking Through Truth And Denial (from the album Memories Fade Under A Shallow Autumn Snow)
14. Brian Grainger - Untitled 1 (from the album The Fieldtrip Reconstructions)
15. Stars Of The Lid - Even (Out) (from the album And Their Refinement Of The Decline)
16. Richard Skelton - Green Withins Brook (from the album Landings)
17. Duncan Ó Ceallaigh - The Sea And The Sand (from the album Distant Voices, Still Lives)
18. Tim Hecker - White Caps Of White Noise II (from the album Harmony In Ultraviolet)
19. Moby - 18 (from the album 18.)
20. Beau Finley - Graves Of Children (from the album Peculiar Ghost)
21. Craig Armstrong - Starless II (from the album As If To Nothing)
22. Nest - Charlotte (from the album Nest)
23. Craig Armstrong - Wake Up In New York (from the album As If To Nothing)


Saturday, 9 January 2010

SubVersion Stop 60: SubVersion Recommends: Greg Haines' 09 Mix

From now on, all non-"15 Minutes Of Fame" exclusives to this blog will go under the banner of "Subversion Recommends". For the first instalment I'm very proud to present a fantastic cross-genre set from Greg Haines, the artist who shot to critical acclaim in 2006 with MIASMAH's "Slumber Tides".

We begun chatting via MySpace in concern of gigs, and one thing I was dying to ask was if he'd like to record a selection of his influences. He had this to say...

Greg Haines' 09 Mix - www.myspace.com/greghainesmusic


01. Trygve Seim - Himmelrand
02. Jocelyn Pook - Masked Ball
03. Allegri - Miserere
04. Jimmy Scott - Sycamore Trees
05. Sufjan Stevens - Redford
06. Burial - Dog Shelter
07. François Tétaz - Wolf Creek: Main Title
08. Arvo Part - Tabula Rasa (ludus)
09. Craig Armstrong - Immer
10. Tape - Moth Wings
11. Seven Peace Orchestra - Sketch II
12. Tomasz Stanko Quartet - Trista
13. Contemporary Noise Quintet - Even Cats dream about Flying
14. Nomo - Elijah
15. Phill Niblock - Sax Mix
16. Popul Vuh - In the Realm of Shadow

SubVersion Stop 59: Genetic Basis for Musical Ability?


Friday, 8 January 2010

SubVersion Stop 58: Richard Skelton - Landings LP (Type Recordings 055 / Sustain - Release 014)

Popular music denotes a quality or aesthetic that has widespread appeal. It doesn't have to introduce much innovation to be warranted - more often than not, tried and tested structures and ideas form the forefront as well as the backbone of the music. The Beatles churned out pop hit after pop hit of sing-a-long joyousness or non-arbitrarily melancholic oeuvre, whereas Madonna continually reinvented herself whilst not changing a lot of her lyrical and ornamental phraseology. Musicians like these are looked up to by the pop contingent and offer plenty of crossover ability. Nonetheless, there is another side of the musical coin that comparatively, exists not to obstruct the rudimentary, but breathe life into loose ends.

Enter the modern classical canon. Classical allocated a capital 'C' clasps at a type of linguistic superiority, and a fanbase that can detest anything watered down to feed the masses. But with the backing of Type Recordings, creators can flip the lid of niche expectancy. What immediately struck me with Type, however, is that they cross the spectrum of psychedelia, ambient, drone and further experimental music. This offers a paradoxically homogenous sub-societal menagerie of styles and counter-arguments that get you to question: what's at my disposal? Contextual plight reinforcing the aims of musicians can be seen lens-like, where architecture arises from a certain clan of supporters, as a means to explain that resultant work embodies a lifestyle and personality all of its own, but also of a wider palette of influences.

Richard Skelton is no stranger to building his ethos with various bricks (aliases) and mortar (labels released on, including Type). He started out with wife Louise Skelton in A Broken Consort, an experimental acoustic band that would serve as an infancy to his subsequent solo work. In 2008 Preservation (later Type on limited edition vinyl) released "Marking Time", a tonic for relieving mental tension, that ruminated away past woes like an unmade bed being folded into neat, caressed shapes. "Landings" affirms from the start that the sheets (instrumentation, approach) could well be swept to freshen, but arrangements surrounding these homely, sometimes forlornly processed pieces remain through the drawn out currents of weeping bowed strings.

"Noon Hill Wood" commences this emotionally rich embellishment; a pulse can be felt from the tension and release relationship, to give the audience its appropriately timed foothold into Skelton's soundworld. The harmonies swell over a light but pronounced bowing mechanic, repetition of phrase supposing question and answer schematics. Consequently sidestepping judgementality to invitingly recoup the theme, the second track, "Scar Tissue", revolves around a descending guitar chord whereby strings play a brief counter-melody to thicken the texture. You get the feeling that at under two minutes the work is much more of a prelude than an exercise in pretence. "Threads Across The River" is exactly the latter but skillfully, and comes off like the closing echo of Godspeed You! Black Emperor's "Blaise Bailey Finnegan III", slowly developing a searching, nasal accentuation with violins undercutting each other in slow-motion, contrapuntal pinball. At 06:30 the mood alters with layered strings adjusting in tempo, absorbing the poise of prior muscularity with a smattering of guitar strums to close.

"Green Withins Brook" is a nice diversion in a third of the album's duration, where bowing and tremolo effects step aside. The picture is clean-cut and flourishing in four minutes, ripe with execution and emotional range. "Of The Last Generation" has us returning to the fields of golden phrase-matching, where rhythm is uneven, pitches slide up and down sharply but with little general oscillation, and timbre has a rough-hewn, gritty surface, full of porous potential. Even though there's no great movement it's hard not to be moved by the captivating melody lines.

"Undertow" sidechains Arvo Part, overlapping chords like a napkin being folded before dinner arrives. This pattern of pre-empted satisfaction was encountered earlier in the LP, although at just under six and a half minutes, it's more fitting of the usual diameter of Skelton's arsenal. "Voice Of The Book" breaks the silence with melodic counterpoints split like atoms - lightly rocking back and forth on the lapsteel, giving this a reassuring feel.

"Rapture" clocks in at 120 seconds, bucking the timespan trend for the third occasion and gently weaving between airy notes, segueing into the highlight construct, "Pariah". This tune re-introduces the guitar in a lowered pitch, with sombre tones, superimposing the entirety as regaining real purpose and enveloped in Skelton's reserved, yet expressive melange. The simplistic composition evokes captivating qualities that signify maturity.

"River Song" builds on the gentle lull and draws out its tension, beauty seeping out of every notation in morose lineages. "Remaindered" starts with a synthetic textural patchwork dissimilar to Zelienople's psych-rock breakdowns and Sigur Ros' noteworthy, transcendent grandeur, but again the bowed string accompaniment makes an appearance early on to subduct qualms over maintained identity.

The closing piece is perhaps a nod to the album "The Shape Leaves" (of the same name) by Skelton's previous involvement with A Broken Consort. But more than that, it's a curtain-puller on the ghosts that exist from listening to this magnificent long-player. A Skelton record sounds like nothing but a Skelton record and that's a reality Richard should be proud of. Widespread popularity may escape him, but that's part of the parcel in a land of cultural overproduction. Unmissable.

Purchase: CD

Purchase: Mp3 release
Sustain-Release: MySpace

SubVersion Stop 57: Muttley - Patience Of Saints Remembered (January 2010)

Seeing as I'm up to 30 instalments in 15 Minutes Of Fame mix series to date, I thought I'd try and flip the script with concepts. "Patience Of Saints Remembered" is the distillate of deeper listening to albums that take a few sessions to cherish and affectionately revisit. Each track is picked from the end of the respective LP or sequence.

I've lifted from the specified LPs before, so rather than just choosing tunes and leaving it at that, I aspired to showcase another tangent which could go unnoticed, if the audience quantified the mood of complete works by just one track alone.

Yui Onodera's "Untitled 7" rises from the artificial murk and tempo adjustments of work prior. Carl Sagan's Ghost's "The Patience Of A Saint III", whose title inspired this effort, instills guitar to the ambient picture. Max Richter's "H Thinks A Journey" provides a more subtle overtone than "This Picture Of Us. P" (15 MOF Pt.23). Aquadorsa's "Night Of Trembing Stars" is ultimately woozier, with melodies that traverse like stardust over fragmented narratives.

Last Days' "Onwards" initiates a pulse in comparison to "Nothing Stays The Same, Nothing Ever Ends" (15 MOF Pt. 21). "Gray Hued Sky" by Chihei Hatakeyama invites more hazy undercurrents than past selections from Hibernate Sampler 1. Milieu's "Dream From Above Houses" affixes an uplifting yet melancholic air when paired with "Six Fourteen" (Muttley - Back To Mine Pt.3).

SpeaK's "Choose A Different Road" compacts the highs and lows of themes hinted at with "Drowning Peacefully" (15 MOF Pt. 25) and "The Sun Resonates With You" (15 MOF Pt. 27). "Games Again" from Peter Broderick conjures an instrumentally richer perspective of his folk-inclusive "Home" long-player. Finally, Nils Frahm's "Somewhere Nearby" places altruistic emphasis on the backbone of his improvisations throughout "The Bells" disc.

I'm always searching for fresh ideas for mixes, so if you like this and want to influence what I come up with next, be my guest to drop an email or comment.


01. Yui Onodera - Untitled 7 (from the album Punkt)
02. Carl Sagan's Ghost - The Patience Of A Saint III (from the album At The End Of It All)
03. Max Richter - H Thinks A Journey (from the album 24 Postcards)
04. Aquadorsa - Night Of Trembling Stars (from the album Cloudlands)
05. Last Days - Onwards (from the album The Safety Of The North)
06. Chihei Hatakeyama - Gray Hued Sky (from the album Hibernate Sampler 1)
07. Milieu - Dream From Above Houses (from the album Brother)
08. SpeaK - Choose A Different Road (from the album Once Nomadic)
09. Peter Broderick - Games Again (from the album Home)
10. Nils Frahm - Somewhere Nearby (from the album The Bells)


SubVersion Stop 56: Muttley - Cut Your Losses (January 2010)

I don't have a great deal of luck with women. I'm the shy type, too, which makes things doubly hard when attempting to express my feelings. Several female friends I find very attractive, but don't have the courage nor confidence to say what I think. Either that or they're already with a partner, which renders my perspective mute by design.

I've managed one relationship that was two-way - them giving, me giving, and that was early in my youth, when we were too young to care. A topic on single people sparked the following response when I was 17, that stays with my standpoint to this day:

I get fed up with the intentions of a lot of people I meet as biased towards getting a quick fling, or pulling to blag to all their mates, or because they're so insecure with their social position that they think they have to have a partner for whatever length of time just to fit the usual mould. It bores me to tears. And not because I'm jealous that I'm not in a relationship, couldn't give much care right now personally...

To be honest I'd be much happier if I found a decent female soulmate to share thoughts and get through life with. As puritan as it may sound the drive for sex and novelties just aren't there for me in huge supply and even if they are through being lustful of someone who looks nice, I always remember in the back of my mind that if they're nobody inside it's not worth it in my case.

All comes down to what you actually want out of a relationship though doesn't it. As nasty and vague as it may sound I think some women lie about having a man with attributes of depth and instead just use it as grounds to talk about themselves overzealously - a doormat so they can wipe their pseudo-substance (aka attention whoring) all over proceedings. I hate that, it's completely selfish and even worse than just admitting you want nothing more or less than the primitive needs associated with sex.

Saying that I'm in no doubt there are a lot of women who think otherwise, and to those who actually do want a more meaningful person to talk to, I hope you find one soon. It's the same as finding a needle in a haystack if you don't have the right enviroment to be lucky in - my advice is to pursue with your interests and maybe through that you'll at least make some mutual friendships, which in time could develop into what you want. Keep positive.

I've known guys who have fell in love with women sixteen years older than them. As it happens the majority of women that appeal to me are at least a year my senior. I've been told I'm very attractive, but that's from those who are drunk, flirtatious or out of my age range.

How does this all lead to the mix I'm presenting? "Cut Your Losses" is my means of distinguishing whether love is lust, attraction is approved, timespan is tolerable and, in the final outcome, what lies ahead.

It goes through stages - the first three tracks are from the modern classical stable, with piano and strings; soul food for perceiving things not through rose tinted glasses. Long-form ambient pieces are then supplemented to draw out thoughts. The set ends with Zelienople's "Christmas", The Daysleepers "Lovesparkles" and Slowdive's "Waves".

Three angles conclude that I've time until I find a lady with the same trajectory as mine, willing to give, provide for each other, subvert the common perception, go beyond the banal and thrive on communicaton that is undertowed by friendship, not instinctual saccharine.


01. Nils Frahm - Over There It's Raining (from the album The Bells)
02. Olafur Arnalds - Lokau Augunum (from the album Dyad 1909)
03. August Stars - Noreaster (from the album Midwinter)
04. Epeus Reichenback - Apartness (from the album Etherized)
05. Spherueleus - Blue Moon (from the album The Disguised Familiar)
06. Yui Onodera - Untitled 1 (from the album Punkt)
07. Saito Koji - Candle (from the album Candle)
08. Zelienople - Christmas (from the album Pajama Avenue)
09. The Daysleepers - Lovesparkles (from the album Drowned In A Sea Of Sound)
10. Slowdive - Waves (from the album Just For A Day)


SubVersion Stop 55: Muttley - The Hunt From Nothing To Something (January 2010)

"The Hunt From Nothing To Something" was formed from lampooning my online and offline persona. I have often been obsessive for various things in my childhood and adolescence, be it cars, trading cards, video games and, as the underpinning rudiment, music. This would explain why I back up everything I've downloaded, ripped and burnt to DVD each month. Then there are the negative attributes cast on me by ignorance. The tracks work in unison to warm the winter days we're experiencing.


01. Eluvium - I Will Not Forget That I Have Forgotten (from the album When I Live By The Garden And The Sea)
02. Harmonic 33 - Departure Lounge (from the album Music For Film, Radio & Television)
03. ON - Oh Run Slowly (from the album Your Ghost Comes Back To Haunt Me At Night)
04. Stars Of The Lid - December Hunting For Vegetarian Fuckface (from the album And Their Refinement Of The Decline)
05. Brock Van Wey - White Clouds Drift On And On (from the album White Clouds Drift On And On)
06. Fennesz & Sakamoto - Abyss (from the album Cendre)
07. Wereju - Not Who I Thought You Were (from the album Fairytale Ending)


SubVersion Stop 54: Muttley - I Toss And Turn, But There Is Light Somewhere (January 2010)

I had a selection of recordings in this tracklist playing at varying intervals while I slept on New Year's Day, and thought it would be cool to try and capture the peak- to-trough schematic of my brain switching on and off from the music. I had my headphones in, tossed and turned in bed to the sounds of ambient, waking up in the middle of tunes, being lulled to rest by them in succession.

Most of the records are fairly new - the Hibernate Sampler was released in winter 2009 and is highly recommended by myself - and best of all, it's a free download! For sleep theme variations, search out "Threshold", and be sure that "Tension Is A Ruse", a forthcoming instalment, will prolong investment in how we can handle everyday occurences.


01. Steve Roach - Opening Sky (from the album Dynamic Stillness)
02. Lexithimie - Scale 1 (from the album Hibernate Sampler 1)
03. Carl Sagan's Ghost - Solitude I (from the album At The End Of It All)
04. Peter James - Still (from the album Holding On - Letting Go)
05. Eluvium - Everything To Come (from the album Talk Amongst The Trees)
06. Bas Van Huizen - Diggeldenker (from the album Ontgalman)
07. Northener - The End Of December (from the album Hibernate Sampler 1)
08. Stars Of The Lid - Don't Bother They're Here (from the album And Their Refinement Of The Decline)
09. Porzellan - Rosen (from the album Hibernate Sampler 1)
10. Sundog Peacehouse - Mountain Triple Ocean (from the album Brosound)


SubVersion Stop 53: Muttley - In The Face Of Loss (January 2010)

"In The Face Of Loss" is a light-hearted lament to how we don't always seem warranted, when we didn't get the fortunes we desired, where bricks are metaphorically falling on top of us, and if we're worried our work isn't up to par. The foundation was three-fold - I began reviewing gigs for pleasure stroke self-improvement in August 2009, whereby an encouraging email from Ronan @ Nightshift filled me with enthusiasm.

From August to December 2009 I've had five reviews published - one by Nightshift, one through Blues In Britain and three via Oxfordshire Music Scene. I aim to keep on with this hobby, but have bad days as well as good - for reasons you could glean from my writeups of past.

The second ruse was my Open University course. My tutor marked assessment was sent in and I'm awaiting critique with my grade. "In The Face Of Loss" is foreseeing the worst case scenario in that I fail the examination, and, making the problem bigger, the course itself.

Crucially, however, I was mainly influenced by a discussion with SC user Annastay. She gave me feedback on "Caught In Static", saying she could "kind of breathe mentally with it". Therefore my intention with "In The Face Of Loss" was to imagine a universally perfect tracklisting for soaking up battle scars; balancing grievances with gratification.

"Summertime" by Ringo Deathstarr was chosen for this specific seasoning: a dreamy shoegaze anthem, similar to Slowdive in essence of configuring reminiscence on the sunny days you had earlier that year, or years prior to that date. As ever, feedback welcome with open arms; I hope you enjoy the trip.


Marow - Caph (from the album Scintillation)
02. Peter James - In The Face Of Loss (from the album Holding On - Letting Go)
03. SpeaK - The Sun Resonates With You (from the album Once Nomadic)
04. Drowning The Virgin Silence - We Twist The Sun And Sea (from the album Beneath The Sulfur Sky)
05. Olafur Arnalds - Og Lengra (from the album Dyad 1909)
06. Zelienople - Indifferent Dreams (from the album Gone OST)
07. Low Light - Landing Dust (free download - www.lowlightmixes.blogspot.com)
08. Marcus Schmickler - 22 Gliders_Rule 4 (from the album Param)
09. Hammock - This Kind Of Life Keeps Breaking Your Heart (from the album Maybe They Will Sing For Us Tomorrow)
10. Stars Of The Lid - Dungtitled (In A Major) (from the album And Their Refinement Of The Decline)
11. Ringo Deathstarr - Summertime (from the EP In Love)


SubVersion Stop 52: Muttley - Starting All Over (January 2010)

If you're a follower of my sets you'll perhaps remember that I got a reply from the woman that inspired many early efforts. Well, four months on from telling me she'll explain everything, and prior to observing her as status: online while I've been using instant messenger for more hours than I can count, she deserves no sympathy for leading me on to believe I'll ever get a mature response to rectify positioning I stand in with her. I haven't chased her up, and I won't be contacting her again.

If she reads this, I hope she can see the error of her ways - in causing multiple fractures in my lifestyle - but I doubt it. I know I shouldn't resent her for it, and maybe she's decided to let me down lightly - as an alternative to traded words that could get bent out of shape in her perception. In any language, though, it speaks volumes for a lack of integrity on her part, and the misinformation no doubt fed by her friends.

"Starting All Over" is what I'll be using to emblematize the shift of my worries to becoming chaff from the wheat. They - belief she was down, depressed or dejected, serve no purpose now. I was flustered by resultant issues and the "not knowing" stage, but I don't have to go through with that anymore. Gordon Giltrap's "Starting All Over" puts things pertinently in perspective: "Don't tell me my line of thoughts' out of line / I don't need anyone, me and my chicken run / I'm singing a song, feeling fine".

This mixtape has more songwriting than my last five instalments put together. It isn't that idiosyncratic, to contrast previous work in 2009. All the same, there are several personas the lyrics can appeal to. Beck Lanehart's "Reckless" meanders in a story of love that pulls heartstrings to fathoms off the map, whereas PJ Harvey and John Parish's "Passionless, Pointless" is asking "Where does the passion go?". Clannad's "Something To Believe In" is included as I built this as my mother's birthday present in 2009, whereby my parents are fans of the album "Past - Present"- as I am as well.

It's taken so long for me to put this online because I was longing it out for that woman to pluck the courage and return the favour with friendship. I was waiting for what we shared to be recouped innocently, as it started. Now 2010 is upon us, I can safely say I'm sick of it, past it, and have moved on completely. I hope if you believe in New Year's resolutions that yours come true and alive - mine is to never deal with this hardship again. Whenever I am tempted, the warmth has faded. Begone is the useless symptom - in comes the truth of soul, distilled for evermore.


01. Gordon Giltrap - Starting All Over (from the album "Testament Of Time")
02. Neil Halstead - Witless Or Wise (from the album "Oh! Mighty Engine")
03. Beck Lanehart - Reckless (CD-R)
04. PJ Harvey & John Parish - Passionless, Pointless (from the album "A Woman A Man Walked By")
05. Clannad - Something To Believe In (from the album "Past: Present")
06. Eluvium - Intermission (from the album "Copia")
07. Neil Halstead - A Gentle Heart (from the album "Oh! Mighty Engine")
08. Grouper - When We Fall (from the album "Dragging A Dead Deer Up A Hill")
09. Paavoharju - Tuoksu Tarttuu Meihin (from the album "Laulu Laakson Kukista")
10. Gordon Giltrap - Deserter (from the album "Perilous Journey")
11. Bill Frisell - Eli (from the album "The Intercontinentals")


SubVersion Stop 51: Muttley & Guests - The 15 Minutes Of Fame Mix Series (2006-2010 archive)

Easy all

Back in the July of 2006 I decided to begin a mix series dedicated to underexposed artists, and their assorted enterprises. Still entitled as such, "15 Minutes Of Fame" has gone on to accumulate over 45000 downloads since its inception. Through the link underneath this text you will find all folders to my music exposure projects:


And below that is an updated blog on the series, complete with the guidelines for onlookers and DJs alike to adhere to:


1. Up to 40 minutes in length

2. No more than 10 tracks

3. Unsigned and signed tracks can feature

4. All genres can be covered where applicable

5. All tracks mixed in key where possible

6. The aim of each mix should be to promote the artists featured, not the skills of the DJ.

7. Any means of mixing are acceptable, live or programmed, but state what you used.

8. Each set-list will include as much information about the tracks and artists as possible in order to act as a highly informative resource for the listener. External links - for example myspace pages, other selected tracks, music reviews and more can be implemented as you see fit, providing they will be deemed as relevant for the audience to use.



1. Gaps between mixes may vary for several reasons. There is no set time for each new set to pop up.

2. I'm not a mixing robot. And because I realise this, I can attest that, as a contributor you don't have to be. There will be no egos. Just good music, first and foremost.

3. Nonetheless, this doesn't mean the contributors will want to be shielded from constructive criticism. I certainly don't, rest assured. If you can spare a few words here and there, then please do. Because as far as I see, feedback is the only way a mini-movement of selectors can move forward and better themselves proactively.


The 2006-2010 archive can be found via the following link:


Every set published on this blog, barring the SubVersion recommends series is a 15 Minutes Of Fame mixtape, exclusive to SubVersion, and stroke or it's initial source.


Finally, if you're reading this text and wondering how you as an artist can possibly see your music featured, or if you'd like to contribute a set, here's the lowdown...


Submitting tracks and mixes

To do this you can:

1. Send me a private message through whatever forum this text is posted on.

2. Contact me via email at: fifteenminutesofmuttley@hotmail.co.uk

3. Post in threads such as the one you may be reading right now.

Your mix will receive a permanent home on the muttley.kapsil.net server, be supported on whatever forums SubVersion visits, and be archived with a wealth of source material for present and future enjoyment.


'15 Minutes OF Fame' was partly inspired by the Subvert Central Podcasts, a series which holds parallels in terms of welcoming diversity in the selections presented. Seeing as this concept is now well and truly off the ground it appeared the ideal time for me to align it with another of similar mindset, and enable the spreading of this small internet project further than originally intended. Special thanks go to Ben Subvert (aka Scope) for accepting my request for conjoining the projects under one recognisable banner.

Thanks to everyone for their continued support on the forums about this series. It's truly appreciated and makes it all seem worth investing time in.

Bests, and many thanks for reading