26th July 2017

I recently started a bit of work on some new material (for the first time in many months). It’s been quite nice using hardware only as it makes it very simple to do alternate, varied mixes: in this case starting out by doing a fairly dancey track, then just making a few changes and suddenly being able to whack out an ambient version. I have nine or ten pieces done (incl. variations) and reckon one or two could end up on whatever the next album turns out to be. You can check out one called Nais Metalmark below.


I’m still having to set up my gear every time I want to make something, which is an absolute pain, but hopefully going to be getting some shelves to put all my hi-fi stuff on soon which will enable me to turn my desk into a permanent studio space. This should help creatively, as it’ll simply be a case of switch on and go whenever I want to make something. So I’m looking forward to that. Hopefully I’ll be able to spend the rest of the summer and early autumn working on a bunch of tunes and maybe put together an album and an EP or two by the end of that for release next year. I have a potential title lined up. It’s been quite a while now since I had a properly new release to get excited about (last year’s Opaline, I suppose), bearing in mind both Seltrac and Myosphere both spent around 18 months waiting to be released.

Generally I’m forcing myself to really strip back my sound a bit. Every time I start a new tune I end up throwing in loads of tracks and muddying it up a bit (not only the mix – no outboard EQ yet – but also the focus of the piece), but whenever I’m listening to music I always make a mental note that I tend to lose the starkness and simplicity of it. So I’m trying to change my creative process to make something less cluttered, more minimal. There’s a lot of gear I still want to get which will help open things up to creating more ambient stuff again, so I suppose the stylistic sound for the moment maybe minimal lo-fi house/techno/electro with ambient touches. But we’ll see.

It’s been a weird summer so far. Either blazing hot sun or tipping it down with rain (neither of which I’m a particular fan). I’m just coming out of a period of particularly poor mental health – something that is often referred to autistic burnout – which has put a lot of personal progress on hold, but I’m definitely feeling better. Taking a bit of time off social media, particularly Twitter, which can be a madhouse when I need some headspace, is definitely helping in that regard. Trying to get back to leaving the house on a more regular basis, and maybe lose some weight too. Really trying to be positive moving forwards. Part of this has involved making peace with some elements of my back catalogue, so Obliquity, Periphery and Two Suns are back on my Bandcamp for good now.

Lately been listening to a lot Martin Newell – Cleaners from Venus and The Brotherhood of Lizards in particular – which has made me consider working on some new Curse of Kevin Carter stuff for the first time in ages. Also Patricia, both albums on Opal Tapes are excellent and I have the new one on its way in the post. And Global Communiction and Heavenly Music Corporation, because there’s always some ’90s ambient in there somewhere.

News:
Later this week comes the third Winter of the World album, Human Croquet. Joaquin and I have been working on this project on-and-off for a while now, and have two albums coming out this year. Human Croquet is the first, and will be released as a CDr on the wonderful Sea of Clouds label. 70+ minutes of sound collage, ambient drift, piano improvisation and even a touch of vaporwave. The other album is called Croxton Kerrial and will be out on Celldeath later in the year. That one’s a lot darker and more experimental.

On the subject of collabs, the Middlemarch remix album is making progress, with premasters delivered to Carpe Sonum (who will be releasing it in the new year), and two tracks previewed on the label’s latest sampler. Have a listen to Mick Chillage and Off Land giving ‘A Painter’s Eye’ and ‘Angels’ a once over here. There are a couple more collaborative projects currently in progress which are pretty exciting. I’ll have more proper news on those in the coming months. And there’s a ton of new/old stuff over on House of Broken Clocks. All can be grabbed for free as ever.

15th February 2017

There’s always a journal entry in February…

So, finally a proper new website – internationaldebris.co.uk – and an update on what’s going on.

The next couple of months should finally see the release of my two new albums. Genderqueer Synth Diaries has had a last-minute name-change to Seltrac. That’ll be out on Third Kind Tapes. Just waiting on a friend to help with the artwork for that.

Secondly, Curtain Moon is now called Myosphere, and will be coming on No Problema, probably around a similar time. It’s going to be good to get these tapes out, as both were started in the second half of 2014, and finished last year (although Myosphere has had a bit more of a makeover since I last posted).

I recently had a couple of smaller scale releases. The first a collection of spacey tracks entitled Cataclysmic Variable Star. That name might be familiar to long-time listeners, as it was mooted as the title of an unreleased album from seven years ago. Some of the material from those sessions is on the tape, as well as reworked versions of a couple of bits that ended up compilations around that time. It’s been released under the name Intergalactic Debris, on Nebula Collection, a new label by Poe, who co-owns BLCR. Grab the tape or download here. Secondly, a split with Angel Marcloid’s MingSpring Memories project, each of us providing a side of moody vaporwave for Velvet Bazaar. That’s here.

And that really is me cleared out for the minute. The only unreleased material I now have is that which is going towards the next album. I have way more in the way of environmental interludes, samples, loops and sketches than actual tracks – two finished and two half-done – but it’s definitely on its way now. It’s been a long time since I started with a fresh new album concept, so it feels good to be getting to work on it. Currently there are elements of Seltrac and Leaf Pass in there, but who knows where it’ll be in a few months time?

There will also be new music from Middlemarch and Winter of the World this year. They’re both complete and working their way to friends for hopeful release. I’ll keep you informed with them as and when news comes along.

I didn’t really do a 2016 roundup, but I suppose that all provides the state of play as things stand. Lately I’ve been reading a lot of Doctor Who novels and novelisations, and listening to Goldfrapp, B12, HKE, Carly Rae Jepsen, Gerald Finzi, Gustav Holst, and a bunch of excellent releases from ECM.

Hope everybody is well!

1st June 2016

So there are a few completed things lined up for release. Curtain Moon, the long-awaited follow up to Ambifauna, will be out on Bedlam Digital in July. That album is a fairly dense mix of ambient techno, vaporwave and new age stuff that is the culmination of everything I’ve been doing for the last couple of years. It’s the album I’ve wanted to make for ages and I’m incredibly proud of it. That’s just a digital release at the minute, although I’m hoping to arrange a physical version for some time later in the year.

Around the same time, there’ll be a collection of pieces I made using hardware, recorded to 4-track tape, called Genderqueer Synth Diaries. That’ll be coming out as a tape on Third Kind Records, just waiting on a release date confirmation for that.

There’s also new music from Winter of the World and Middlemarch due this year at some point.

From now on I’m trying to focus on one project at a time as much as possible. The next thing I’ll be working on is a collaboration with my Five Minutes Alone (aka my Middlemarch bandmate Dimitris) which I’m really excited to get started. And then later in the year I’ll start work on new International Debris material.

25th May 2014

Two Suns Were Visible in the Sky has been mastered by offthesky’s Jason Corder, who has done as excellent job as you could expect from him. Kate at Flaming Pines is currently working on the artwork for that, so I’ll be able to bring that to you very soon. Still aiming for a June release there.

Currently finalising the tracklist for Periphery with Gavin at Twice Removed, I posted the artwork for that recently. That’s now looking to be out before the end of the year, as Twice Removed will sadly be closing its doors in November. That does mean 2014 will be focused largely on those two albums, though, which works well for me.

Collab-wise, there are new records from Middlemarch, Winter of the World, Sturmazdale, Merganser and Captain Busby in the works, plus new projects with Tim Dwyer (Off Land) and Justin Marc Lloyd (Pregnant Spore, Rainbow Bridge, etc. etc. etc.).  So I’m staying very busy.

And if that wasn’t enough, there are still singles on Knife in the Toaster and Plenty Wenlock due over the summer, and there are still some remixes to come out at some point…

9th February 2014

You know when you take on too much at once?  My current workload:

Releasing The Last Swifts of Summer and split with Wet Eyes on Bullfinch in a couple of months;

Waiting for release of A Time After Computers on Knife in the Toaster;

Looking for a label for a tape of out-of-print synth music;

Dubbing the first batch of Bullfinch tapes;

Starting promo to make sure people know that Bullfinch is coming;

Beginning to organise the second batch, including artwork;

Recording material for splits with Five Minutes Alone and EL Heath for release later in the year;

Sorting out label stuff for first album and EP by Middlemarch;

Sorting out label stuff for second Sturmazdale album;

Keeping up to date with progress from Dimitris and Craig about recording progress for upcoming Middlemarch and Sturmazdale albums respectively;

Finishing first Merganser release;

Working on some noise-based stuff with Joaquin for future Winter of the World releases;

Curating Terminal Radio Transmission 13 for broadcast in late March;

Curating the third Terminal Window album;

Writing stuff for Absent With Concept (completely behind with this, once again);

Working on the second Captain Busby record when I get chance to see Gregg;

Working on the first Duggan! album on the vague occasions Thom and I get our arses into gear;

Why do I do this to myself?  If my medication stops working anytime soon I’m going to have some sort of breakdown from this insanity.  Send me money/love/free tapes of nice music while I work through these one step at a time.

1st January 2014

2014 update, on two different matters.

1. Music of 2014.

This year will see the release of my new album The Last Swifts of Summer (or possibly Phose – but I think I’m going back to the swifts again), probably in late spring.  This will be part of the first batch of tapes on Bullfinch.  There’s no exact date yet – all depends on finances – but things look to be coming together nicely for that.  Alongside this will be a tape from The Glimmer Room’s Andrew Condon, which is really exciting and I cannot wait to release.  I’m very glad to be putting this out, as it means I’m really going to have to put the effort in giving it the promotion it deserves, which is a good way to start the label!  Fingers crossed there’ll be a release from Modulator ESP too, and possibly a split between Nmesh and Akkya.  So a broad range of styles, which is always good.  Hopefully more tapes again at the end of the year.  I’m looking forward to doing this as it’s giving me a specific project to work on, and hopefully tie in my other music with too.  I’m hoping to put out as many of my own projects on Bullfinch as possible in the future – notable exceptions being upcoming releases by Middlemarch and Sturmazdale, which are both being negotiated with other labels currently.

2. New year’s resolutions &c.   I have been quite critical of new year’s resolutions in the past, largely because people so often feel forced into committing to them, which usually ends up with them being broken very quickly.  So mine are vague, and will tie in with my moving to somewhere nice in the first half of January.  But I have decided that it seems a good time to get some of my life in order.  There are many things I know I can do, and I’d like to try doing them to make me feel better.  I really want to eat healthier, partially because I’m getting to the stage, for the first time in my adult life, that I’m struggling to fit into shirts; partially because I’m finding my often rather unhealthy diet is actually making me feel kind of shit these days, and only seems to exist out of habit.  I’d also like to cut down on dairy, particularly in unnecessary stuff like regularly eating ice cream and chocolate.  I’d also like to cut down on drinking as I’ve sort of stopped enjoying it, and it seems to lead to so many problems.  Not going tee total, but just being sensible with it.  Getting unnecessarily wasted seems actually quite unappealing these days.  I’d like to get good with my money.  I want to pay off some debts and save some cash, as well as put money towards things that are useful and constructive (putting out tapes, getting decent music gear) rather than lots of impulse buying of snacks and music.  I’d like to spend less time wasted inside at the computer and more outside in the real world, and enjoy nature and the countryside more. Finally, I’d like to come off anti-depressants this year, and hope I can return, in some way, to a normal state of mind.  Maybe return isn’t a good word, as I want to be moving forward, so moving towards a new sense of wellbeing.

These are all relatively obvious things that many people strive for at the start of each year, but they’re all things I’ve made progress with in the past, only to lose it as my life’s been tipped upside down once again.  Hopefully, this year should provide the right time for me to start getting on top of them.  It might be slow, but hopefully I’ll be there.

New music coming from Warpaint, Dementia and Hope Trails, and FSOL, and hoping for announcements from Idlewild and Max Richter amongst others.

I hope everybody has a wonderful year too.  🙂

18th October 2013

As it currently stands, we’re still hoping for the Babel/Ross Baker split to be out in November – that’s Terra Incognita on my side, which is somewhat old now – finished that a few months ago.  So that’ll be good to get out.  We’re just sorting out the artwork (or at least trying to).

I have tentatively begun work on my next album now.  Something I realised when looking back over older releases was a certain element of individuality.  Lately I’ve had a perspective of finding music that sounds like my music/creating stuff directly inspired by other music, yet this seems completely at odds with how I created my earlier work.  I actually remember when I was doing Purlieu, my attitude was literally “well if nobody else is going to make this album, I’m going to have to”.  So that’s something I’m returning to, I think, trying to create a sonic world which currently doesn’t exist.  It’s actually quite exciting to be starting on a fresh new project like this – particularly as my 2012/2013 output will all slot together as a series of related works with an overall sound/theme.  The WIP piece I’ve begun work on is quite different from the last few records – quite noisy and dark.  A welcome change of pace.

In other news, Dimitris and I have completed the Middlemarch album, which is to be titled Wolf Hall, and will be released on Time Released Sound in the new year.  Needless to say we’re very excited about this as we’re both big fans of the label.  We’re just finalising details about that right now.  This is probably the most beautiful selection of tracks I’ve ever worked on, and it’s been a real honour to work with both Dimitris and Colin at TRS in putting it together.

And there should be a couple of net-releases coming soon of debut records from two other collaborative projects: Merganser and Winter of the World.  More on those soon.

I’ve been collecting a nice number of LPs at the minute, and getting rid of my CD copies of said albums.  Over the past few years I’ve definitely become a convert to analogue over digital.  You should buy some of the CDs & tapes I’m selling on Discogs so I can buy more vinyl.