8th October 2010

Long-time fans of Second Thought will remember the 2T project which recorded between 2001 and 2003, the name of which still occasionally appears credited as artwork designer. Upon revisiting some of my old music, I renewed my interest in the harsher and more experimental ends of my music – noise, industrial, drone, harsh noise wall, breakcore and all the other ridiculous stuff 2T used to come out with. In a recording spree of a few weeks I came up with a startling amount of this material and am now faced with the rather worrying prospect of a billion different releases. Only one has come out so far – last week’s Torn Vision 3″ CDr.

Fortunately, a fair amount of it will be appearing on compilations over the coming months (more news on them as and when they’re released). I’ve also come together with a few artists to release some splits. Next week will see a CDr release on Jerky Oats of a three-way split between myself, Cementimental and Fist Taker. It’ll be limited to 30 copies, digipacked with more artwork by Lucy Wade, my beautiful girlfriend and co-conspirator in the creative world of Jerky Oats Records and Merganser. The album is 75 minutes of harsh noise wall and should be approached with caution and curiosity by anyone not familiar with this end of my music. I have another split on its way, with Absence.Insolution (who is releasing one of the aforementioned compilations), we’re just looking for a label for that, and third split with Noisesurfer due out as a netlabel release before the end of the year. Which leaves me two 20 minute records which I’m currently submitting to a few cassette labels. If they ain’t interested I’m heading outwards to some CDr labels, although I like the noise cassette scene so it would be sad not to have at least one of them released on cassette. These, coupled with The Curse of Kevin Carter’s song form, Dungeness’s dronescapes and the unmelodic textures of Small Black Box, mark a very experimental final quarter of 2010 for Second Thought.

The reason for the push on getting these out is I want a clear run in the new year. I don’t think they’ll all be out by January, but I really want to be able to categorise this period as the experimental period, when a lot of unusual sounds and ideas were put out at once. It’s like a scrapbook, lots of ideas and genre exercises and experiments, put out for free, or as limited editions. And I’m tired of seeing all this stuff lined up and not actually releasing it. It’ll clear my mind and inspiration to get it out of the way, because I feel like this era is over in my head and I hate holding on to stuff. 2010 has been a year of experimentation, with all sorts of new releases and directions for me. It’s been the re-emergence of Second Thought with a bang, and I’d like things to calm down a bit now.

The new year will see Safernoc released, and an accompanying EP of outtakes, Syophonic. Safernoc is the big statement, the proper follow-up to Vacuum Road Songs, after all these years. There are a couple more things due – some remixes, and follow-ups to Canal Seven and 60 Degrees South, but overall I want to let everything breathe. And I want to work towards a more streamlined future. Once the follow-up to Safernoc is out (yes, I’m that far behind on actually releasing stuff), I’m calling an end to side-projects and experiments, and putting everything out as ‘proper’ releases. This might mean two albums a year rather than one album and six experimental EPs, I don’t know. But it will make Second Thought feel more like Second Thought again. I kind of miss the days when I’d record a bunch of tracks, and as they went along they’d begin to make sense and an overall sound would become evident, and after a while, 12 or 13 tracks would fit together nicely and become an album. It felt very honest and I’m looking forward to returning to that mindset again.

Anyway, that’s a lot of ranting for what is effectively “expect a lot of weird unlistenable shit before Christmas”.

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