prick mason: rfm on id m theft able, robert ridley-shackleton,  leitmotiv limbo/rnp no2 and gwilly edmondez

November 25, 2018 at 11:35 am | Posted in new music, no audience underground | Leave a comment
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ID M Theft Able – Clean Houses Exude Fear (Mang Disc)

Robert Ridley-Shackleton – Stone Cold Crazy (Crow Versus Crow)

Leitmotiv Limbo/RNP No2 – Split (Hyster Tapes)

Gwilly Edmondez  – Trouble Number (Slip Imprint)

IDM Theftable

ID M Theft Able – Clean Houses Exude Fear (Mang Disc) C30 Cassette

In the multi-faceted world of ID M Theft Able I guess this would be classed as a Rap Album.  Concrete words and phrases are to the fore and the slapstick Foley-explosion is boiled down to a set of insistent hollow-point beats.   But anyone expecting swaggering brags about cars, girls and dollars will be misty-eyed and disappointed.  Less Young Thug more Big Hug.  Trades Description jobsworths begone!

“The sight of your blood is always OK, you fall off your leg, what did you right, the sight of your blood is always OK”

The narrative is caught in aspic and carefully chipped away to reveal the irritated wasp inside. Repetition and subtle sense-change is ‘wrapped/rapped’ in breathless stanzas each collapsing on each other piled up like a language Jenga (or something).  With such dense texts meanings are shucked like a plump oyster and guzzled whole, lining the brain pan with glistening salty gloop.

“There ain’t no desert, it’s like staring at the sun, it’s like staring at the sun, it’s like staring at the sun, other people see you they see you, you take your eyes from the sun and you bust your mouth”

The pace is pretty much relentless making this a very physical listen…I’m out of breath just jamming this tape at home.  Heaven knows what it must have been like to sing the darn thing.

“Shove it.  Shove it, Ah-wah, Shove it, Shove it, Ah-wah, Exist, Exist, Fight, Fight”

So readers…if you are new to ID M this is a great, yet fairly untypical, place to start. But with such a varied discography if you wanna get wet, you have to dive in somewhere eh?  Check out his bonkers MangDisc site and label for details and while you wait for this shit to ship get goofed on strange passwords, online tests and quivering graphics.

Go Go Go!

RRS stone cold crazy

Robert Ridley-Shackleton – Stone Cold Crazy (Crow Versus Crow) C20 cassette or digital album

The great Robert Ridley-Shackleton (RRS) seems unstoppable right now.  After a bunch of essential Chocolate Monk releases and a pair of sublime performances at this year’s TUSK festival RRS is tearing up the dancefloor ‘card style’.

A world of funk, noise and gnarly confession is fully realised on this dark tape from the exceptional Crow Versus Crow label.

The title track, ‘Stone Cold Crazy’, merges Robert’s patent Tupperwave sound with teetering wonk-keyboard rhythms in a high-energy funk workout.  But of course the Cardboard Prince has his signature moves and the punnet crackle leaps through my headphones adding layers of gritty confusion to this banger.  ‘Pest Control’ is lyrically the darkest I’ve heard RRS, a disembodied, disinterested monologue over relentless t’wave somehow reminding me of the ickiness of my one and only listen to Throbbing Gristle.  The Side A closer ‘Bury me’ warbles beneath a barrage of clack-clack and close-mic rapping that seems to slip in and out of reality.  A demented carny riff completes the mental image of some dilapidated circus tent, hot animal scents wafting out the canvas flaps.

Side B starts with the bold statement ‘Yol 4 President’ so I’m expecting a joyful noise, a cathartic boil-burst.  But this is more of a leaky pustule, a damp spreading yellow stain on a bandage with some inwardly focused angst.  Much of Robert’s vocal is mumbled and hidden beneath static sheets but the announcement “God is Santa and Santa is God” is clear and filled with secret meaning.

There’s a wonderful jump-cut from the high-octane rattle that ends ‘Yol 4 President’ to the thumping ‘Dirty Cardboard’ complete with snarling multiple voices, ripped and shredded into many funky pieces.  Dirty indeed, this track lets it ALL hang out in ALL the right places.

The final piece ‘Snack Effective’ is a bee’s nest of hiss and rumble.  Like the insects got tired of slave labour and revolt into busy explosions of sexy freedom.  RRS’s early ‘pocket jazz’ sound is revisited and honks like Louis Armstrong huffing his old cornet full of boiled rice.

As you’d expect from Crow Versus Crow the damn tape looks outstanding with a beautiful collage collaboration wrapping up this true vibe machine in a glittery package.

Hyster split

Leitmotiv Limbo/RNP No2 – Split (Hyster Tapes) C30 Recycled Cassette

This glorious, DIY as you like, split tape from Hyster really is the business.

The great Leitmotiv Limbo delivers a side of their trademark music-as-psychic-attack.  In a series of smeared moans the mysterious Leitmotiv molds deep throbs from what I’m guessing is some sort of woolly synth and jacked it straight to the dirtiest, most warped tape in their collection for a quick foggy mastering job.

Each column of sound is oscillating like a sausage being pumped with sonic gristle and fat.  The plump pink hands of the butcher (each fingernail a crescent of blood) are surprisingly agile and gentle as the tube of minced flesh gets heavier and heavier.  Now imagine the gory mess being mashed slowly, sensuously into your ears.

It’s not all spit and sawdust…things get decidedly holy on ‘Door C’ as a whiff of incense coils like rope hissing through the gates of heaven.  The mood is deepened on ‘Door E’ which generates that feeling of helpless exhaustion after an early winter run.  You stand, steaming like a racehorse, hands on hips, breathing in the frigid air, the mind a perfect, beautiful blank.

In the best possible way Leitmotiv Limbo conjure up the in-between moments of life.  The pauses and stutters; the twitches and delicious stretches.  A satisfied yawn cast in iron.

Side two offers RNP No2, another mysterious presence, who operates in a similar sound world to that great Dane Claus Poulsen but with perhaps more of a pick n’ mix approach.  Each piece is a perfect, stand-alone unit showing a variety of styles and obsessions.

So, what may be rubber batons are beating gently against a copper tube as a single note is worried and plucked from within a felt piano.  Or, on the wonderfully titled ‘The Pink Flowd pecking order’, bristling electric-hums play the drums and collect the empties at the bar at the same time.  I don’t know about you but for me that’s classic Prick Mason material.

Other jams of note take a tin bassoon feeding back through Jah Shaka’s soundsystem (or something) that slowly turns into early Dead C clanging, ringing and singing.

We’re eased out of the listening space with a buffling roar, it could be more rubberised twigs on vibrating pig skin, it could be a puffy cheek slapped until it glows maroon. I’ve no idea what is happening, and what has happened is no guarantee of what is next to come.

What a wonderful place to be eh?

Gwilly Edmondez SLIP

Gwilly Edmondez  – Trouble Number (Slip Imprint) Double tape (C60 and C30) or digital album

“Make your own world now” croons Mr Gwilly Edmondez (AKA Gustav Thomas and MYKL JAXN) on his career-spanning double-bulge tape package.

And even the most cursory peak into this wonderfully detailed bumper-harvest reveals a singular world that screams “E.D.M.O.N.D.E.Z!”

Tape one is comprised of unreleased gunk, radio broadcasts, classic album trax and live excursions as Gwilly leafs through his famously chaotic archive to pluck the ripest fruit, the sweetest meat from as far back as 1986.

As you’d expect a lot can happen in all them dusty years so many, many, many bases are covered my dear readers.  You want the slick quick dictaphonix?  You got it.  You crave the sampling keyboard rainbow-beans?  Tick yes sister.  Is your personal Jones for the trademark un-sense gibber and brain-fold poetry?  Consider yourself satisfied brother.

But this time-romp is no haphazard kitchen sink-style hodgepodge.  The sense of the man (the very, very Gee Edmondez) feels as comfortable and natural as a favourite moccasin. All the pinches have been ironed out resulting in gratifying fullness.  In fact there are few hard, sharp edits and things flow like one of those Fabric Mixes (or something).

The spectre of Southen Rap flavours many of these jamz like hickory-smoked BBQ.  And, as would be fitting for a sweet n’ sticky rib, it’s darn slippery too.  At points I’m thinking a Chopped and Screwed Stanley Unwin at others a hacked Eno biscuit but towards the end I’m exhaustedly thinking of Hugo’s big Balls.

Tape Two (Gnarlage of Self) sees EdMoNdEz  jamming good in the more recent year of 2017.  Here the method is to record a free-flowing data dump of capricious tunage on tape, keys, percs and gits then pass the resulting loopage to one Dario Lozano Thornton for editage.

At times this layering offers a Jack Kirby dimension, all bright colours, freaky angles and cosmic pronouncements.  At others the live-in-the-room feel (bolstered by inter-jam bantz and nervous laughter) is more a modern day Alan Lomax capturing a chrome-plated Sonny Terry.   And the blues reference is very deliberate readers for this tape is an unwinding transport spiel, a word-salad for sure but underpinned by the railroad whoop of the freight train hobo.

I guess the question such a well-referenced retrospective raises is, ‘so what’s changed on the journey man?’  I can safely report back that to my ears it’s pretty much everything and at the same time nothing. The tunes may differ but the voice remains utterly distinctive and wonderfully radge.

But what do I know?  Listen for yr damn self coz you the boss eh?

Kraag/Mang Disc

Crow Vs Crow

Hyster Tapes

Slip Imprint


garlicky pillow talk: joe murray on thf drenching and i dm theft able

July 24, 2013 at 7:52 am | Posted in new music, no audience underground | 2 Comments
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THF Drenching – Cup Penis Open Penis Cup (CD-r, Council of Drent Recordings, edition of 50)

I’DM Thfftable – Popsicles, Icicles, Baseball And Fancy Clothes (CD-r, Chocolate Monk, choc.260)

thf drenching - cup openi'dm thfftable - popsicles

THF Drenching – Cup Penis Open Penis Cup

The great THF Drenching needs no introduction to the keen student of shifty Dictaphone shenanigans.  However, I realise not everyone is as obsessed as me so here is a potted history culled from the Observer Book of Dictaphones (1988):

THF (slave name Stuart Carlton) formed East Anglian Pop Sensation Pence Eleven in 1999 with some other bloke and got played on the radio loads.  Pence Eleven were all very clever and that but were still relying on songs with verse-chorus-verse leanings.  Stardom beckoned but Drench chucked all that lot in to create Limescale with everyone’s favourite grumpy old uncle Derek Bailey in 2002.   Drench dropped the guitarbassdrumpiano and now played a mean Dictaphone along with Sonic Pleasure on bricks, Derek on the usual guitar with Tony Bevan (sax) and Alex Ward (clarinet) to boot!  Hey – things were looking up!  Before, after and around this time THF rocked the mighty Pleasure Drenching Improvers with Sonic Pleasure again on common house bricks.

I caught their fizzy volcano full in the face at a rather impressionable age, this melted my head somewhat and things have never been the same since.

Thanks for the history lesson Pops but what’s this got to do with this here record?

…I hear you cry.  I’m trying (probably with a ham-fist) to build up a sense of history, a journey and all that, because our boy’s come a long way.  Cup Penis Open Penis Cup is a fully realised music concrete piece, with intent and purpose and a god-damn score and all that jazz.  The voluminous sleeve notes and inserts take you on a carefully planned trek around ‘Seven Kinder Dach Lieder’, ‘Sixty-Nine Fat-Stock Brevaries’ and ‘A Hundred Stirrup-Spout  Pots’.  The sound is classic English improv with a ‘chuck it all in’ approach.  Micro-recordings of belch, keyboard hump, domestic warning, tin percussion etc are carefully arranged in several dimensions at once.  Drench-o must have had a tidy editors head on so what might come out a mess sounds delightful Spartan and breezy.  Like me old muckers, Usurper, the thin line between just enough/too much is artfully balanced.  Listening to this on headphones is a real trip with that outside/inside thing really making me work it.  I have to keep taking my earphones out to see if that rolling marble/milkshake slurp is really inside my head or without.  And of course this discombobulation is all part of the experience with ‘Seven Kinder Dach Lieder’ going through several movements – increasing in complexity, colour and texture until you find yourself trilling and hissing in response to this Bakelite sound world.  ‘Sixty-Nine Fat-Stock Brevaries’ slows the pace with measured swells of electronics and bruised clouds of butter to make the kinda thing you hear on Radio 3, late at night with a cough-syrup jones.  Things continue in this vein for the lengthy ‘A Hundred Stirrup-Spout  Pots’ until THF takes things to the street with an un-holy Hip Hop sound; wrestling dumbbells, sweating profusely…drenched as it were!  I tried listening to this disc doing the normal domestic jizzle; packed lunch construction, cat-hair tumbleweed removal etc and realised I was doing Drench and myself a disservice…I was half stroking it.  Go the whole hog, dive in, Cup Penis Open Penis Cup demands your attention!

I’DM Thfftable – Popsicles, Icicles, Baseball And Fancy Clothes

All bow down to the rightful heir to Carl Stalling’s jump-cut, cartoon sound violence! 

ID M Theft able has been ploughing his fertile furrow of trash-culture, sound-sculptures for an age.  This bear of a man has a gentle touch with the ‘pings’ and ‘pops’ of non-idiomatic improv and honk-core jollies.  OK, so just listening on disc does miss out the visual aspect of the live ID M experience (catch a bus or train to catch this chap live Midwichers) but this is no less vinegary as super-frantic jump cuts and Donald Duck quacks assault my tender ear buds. 

But it’s not all fast forward scrimming, ID M places domestic snitches confidently to give this warmth and keep it all outta the avant-academy.  Was it that dullard Zappa that asked the question, does humour belong in music?  Well buddy I think Theftable has pretty much proved the argument, hands down, that you can play for yuks and still bristle a professors beard. 

Examples?   The lullaby of ‘Browning, Cooling’ melts over a glass hexagon making too much sound not enough.  ‘Leaving the awkward cook out only to find myself at another awkward cook out’ measures the cheap pre-set dog woof sounds (pretty much the worst manmade sound ever) and places them right next to real dog growls and barks (pretty much one of the best natural sounds ever) giving your nip a playful tweak and a wink that says ‘I know exactly how to ride this wave Chief’ all the while hurling chunky glops of mustard in your eye. Track 3, the mysteriously titled ‘A (lord or c)ie or y in the snow’ sounds like The Residents got hold of cLOUDDDEAD’s tape library and had a go at making a perfume advert.  Just when you think your poor old nervous system can’t take no more a simple loop (andoverandoverandover…) and wood block ‘click’ remind you of what true beauty is on the fade of ‘Vanishing Memories.’  Surprisingly, for this kinda jazz, ID M milks the cover version with a very secret and intimate version of Heart’s, ’These Dreams’.  No need for Spandex and hairspray this cuts right to the heart of the sentiment…garlicky pillow talk whistled through ginger whiskers.

Council of Drent (editors note: this site is hilarious. RH)

THF Drenching on Bandcamp

Chocolate Monk

I DM Theft Able

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