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My debut solo album Ealing Feeder is due for release in spring 2014. Sign up to my mailing list for news. Meanwhile, you can pick up these collaborations with Belbury Poly, Spacedog, Moon Wiring Club and others.

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Algorithmic music – the Ealing Feeder in action

Posted on Apr 19, 2014 in Sounds
Algorithmic music – the Ealing Feeder in action

Here’s a new video of the Ealing Feeder. It’s playing some algorithmic music, cooked up during a recent experimental afternoon with fellow composer Sxip Shirey. Recently, I spent a fine afternoon in the studio, experimenting with Sxip, a fellow composer who shares my commitment to live performance and story telling. If you haven’t seen Sxip’s […]

Atomic Lunch

Posted on Mar 28, 2014 in Miscellaneous, Talks
Atomic Lunch

Atomic Gardening, my documentary exploring the life and work of atomic dreamer Muriel Howorth, is being played on arts radio station Resonance FM tonight (8pm Friday 28 March). The show includes some fascinating insights from geneticist and cancer expert Kat Arney and Paige Johnson, a nanotechnologist and historian of gardening. I’m hugely grateful to them […]

From the Vault – plans taking shape for live score at BFI, Saturday 14 December

Posted on Nov 18, 2013 in Gigs, Sounds
From the Vault – plans taking shape for live score at BFI, Saturday 14 December

Plans for our Gothic happening on 14 December are taking shape: The devil has the best tunes on Saturday 14 December when our collective will perform new music inspired by rarely seen Gothic silent films from the BFI National Archive. The music and films will be brought together for the first time in Vault: Music […]

BBC Radio 4 doc: Digital music, performance and the vinyl renaissance

Posted on Nov 12, 2013 in Talks
BBC Radio 4 doc: Digital music, performance and the vinyl renaissance

How are the ways we value music shifting in the era of music streaming and intangible mp3s? This question was put to me in a recent episode of BBC Radio 4’s Digital Human. The show looks at shifting ideas of value in many fields of art. Auctioneer Anita Manning discusses the importance of scarcity value […]

Message and Method

Posted on Sep 26, 2013 in Sounds
Message and Method

Lost signals and the poetical science of Ada Lovelace are the themes of Message and Method, Spacedog‘s collaboration with Belbury Poly. Out now on vinyl and as a download, Message and Method is no 10 in the Ghost Box Study Series. There’s a beautiful sleeve designed by Julian House, reflecting the themes of this record. […]

Trace: poetic robotics, music and the uncanny

Posted on Sep 24, 2013 in Robots, Sounds
Trace: poetic robotics, music and the uncanny

I’m excited to be embarking on a new part-time residency at the Pervasive Media Studio, Watershed, Bristol, where I’ll be exploring poetic approaches to robotics on stage. Thanks to the National Lottery through Arts Council England for funding this R&D project.   Why explore poetic robotics? For many years, I’ve been creating robots and automata […]

Bring to Light – Birmingham 25-27 October

Posted on Sep 24, 2013 in Gigs, Sounds
Bring to Light – Birmingham 25-27 October

On Sunday 27 October, I’ll be helping to celebrate the opening of the new  Library of Birmingham at Bring to Light, a weekend of adventurous music curated by Capsule. I’ll be performing a selection of my latest work on theremin, laptop, automata, Geiger counter and assorted other instruments. The set will incorporate one or two […]

Vault – music inspired by silent Gothic treasures from the BFI

Posted on Sep 16, 2013 in Gigs, Robots, Sounds
Vault – music inspired by silent Gothic treasures from the BFI

When I’m not building new automata, I’m going to be locked away in the studio this autumn, composing a live score for early 20th-century gothic short films. Part of the BFI Gothic season, this score will have its premiere in the BFI main cinema, South Bank, London, on 14 December 2013: Vault is a compelling […]

Down to the Silver Sea

Posted on Sep 12, 2013 in Sounds
Down to the Silver Sea

News of an exciting new album – a collaboration with some of my favourite fellow artists: Like a seashell glimmering on Bridlington beach, Down to the Silver Sea is a little gem from an English summer. This pearlescent, summer compilation is from the gloriously confusing mind of Ian Hodgson (Moon Wiring Club). I’ve contributed three […]

South Shields meets the sublime: A report on the Foghorn Requiem

Posted on Jun 24, 2013 in Miscellaneous, Sounds, Writing
South Shields meets the sublime: A report on the Foghorn Requiem

When sound escapes the confines of a building, it takes on an unusual caste. At myriad outdoor festivals around the country, we’re in denial about this oddness as we amplify outdoor sound, add reverb and otherwise try to fake the effect of boxing it up in bricks and mortar. But for forty glorious minutes on […]

Horlicks and Armageddon (Brighton Fringe 7-15 May)

Posted on Apr 26, 2013 in Gigs, Robots, Sounds
Horlicks and Armageddon (Brighton Fringe 7-15 May)

In a sub-basement deep below Brighton Town Hall, I’ll be using theremin, stories from the archives and my own automata to recall the lives of Britain’s self-styled nuclear survivalists. In the 1980s, while most of us lived in fear of Armageddon, this small band of enthusiasts prepared for nuclear war with relish, as though it […]

New writing on music, technology and culture

Posted on Apr 10, 2013 in Writing
New writing on music, technology and culture

Three publications arrived through the post this month. Each includes some of my writing on music, technology and culture: Material Culture and Electronic Sound is a new book from the Smithsonian Institution Scholarly Press, edited by Frode Weium and Tim Boon, with a forward by Brian Eno. This is a beautiful book, with many photographs, […]

Seeking a friendly nuclear physicist

Posted on Apr 9, 2013 in Gigs
Seeking a friendly nuclear physicist

The Brighton Festival Fringe is fast approaching and I’m hard at work, devising a new solo show Horlicks and Armageddon which will be taking place in a city sub-basement from 7-15 May. Here, I’ll be mixing music, film, robotics and readings from the archives to tell the little known story of Britain’s nuclear ‘survivalists’. In […]

Flatpack Festival 30 March 2013

Posted on Feb 27, 2013 in Gigs, Robots
Flatpack Festival 30 March 2013

On 30 March, I’ll be performing live at Flatpack Festival, Birmingham, as one of a series of events celebrating the heyday of Birmingham Arts Lab. Here’s Alan Moore talking to Flatpack curators about arts labs in the 60s and 70s. With its lack of hierarchy, its collaborative working and an atmosphere which encouraged wild creativity, the […]

Brighton Fringe 2013

Posted on Feb 27, 2013 in Gigs, Talks
Brighton Fringe 2013

The Brighton Fringe is fast approaching and here’s a round-up of the shows I’m bringing this year. There’s a solo show of archival oddities and music, exploring Britain’s 1980s nuclear survivalists; a Spacedog set at Jane Bom-Bane’s music café and a theremin jam with Leila Dear, curated by Strange Attractor and Disinformation. Horlicks and Armageddon […]

The Effect – composition for the National Theatre

Posted on Jan 18, 2013 in Sounds
The Effect – composition for the National Theatre

How do you write music for a love affair that blossoms in the arid setting of a clinical drugs trial? And how do you portray the head rush you experience when you fall in love or swallow a stimulant drug – that sense of heightened awareness and those rushes of excitement and panic that flood […]

Popcorn – 2 bit video

Posted on Dec 17, 2012 in Exhibits, Sounds
Popcorn – 2 bit video

Some festive, unplugged 70s strangeness: my cover of Popcorn, played on the sampled carillon, with its own pair of binary videos. I fell for the charms of 1-bit video when I was updating an installation that makes music by tracking butterflies in flight.  I’d been experimenting with vision algorithms that reduce video to a simplified […]

Listen to the birds

Posted on Nov 27, 2012 in Sounds
Listen to the birds

Anyone who shares my obsession with talking and singing birds might enjoy this juicy worm from Moon Wiring Club. Today Bread, Tomorrow Secrets is a new album from electronic artist Moon Wiring Club, exploring an uncanny world where humans and birds dine together at a bewitching, Edwardian post-theatre banquet. The album is available on CD […]

That effect in The Effect

Posted on Nov 14, 2012 in Sounds
That effect in The Effect

Anyone who has seen Lucy Prebble’s gripping new play The Effect may be curious to know more about the peculiar sonic undercurrent which is present at certain points in the drama. As this has been mentioned in a few reviews, I thought I should say a little more about it. Without going into too many […]

A trip to Belbury

Posted on Oct 28, 2012 in Gigs, Miscellaneous, Sounds
A trip to Belbury

Apart from a few brief theremin performances, I’m stepping back from live shows over the next few weeks as I’m working intensively in the studio. This month, I’m composing music for The Effect, a sharp and witty new play by Lucy Prebble (writer of Enron). The Effect is a ‘clinical romance’, exploring the nature of […]

The Odditorium

Posted on Aug 25, 2012 in Talks
The Odditorium

Seen at this year’s Port Eliot Festival, the Odditorium is a collaboration with a handful of other salon speakers who share an interest in the arcane. The Odditorium is curated by David Bramwell, host of Brighton’s long-running Catalyst Club. David and I have performed together at The Last Tuesday Society, The Horse Hospital and TEDx […]

Find Us – music from the Voyager golden record

Posted on Mar 6, 2012 in Sounds
Find Us – music from the Voyager golden record

Find Us is a miniature I’ve composed using sounds from the Voyager golden record. You can download it free as part of Soulless Party’s album Electronic Encounters – Special Edition. This year we’ll be celebrating two thirty-fifth birthdays. In November 1977, Columbia Studios released their blockbuster Close Encounters of the Third Kind, arguably the film […]

Happy Ada Lovelace Day 2011

Posted on Oct 7, 2011 in Miscellaneous, Sounds, Writing
Happy Ada Lovelace Day 2011

This must be how it feels to see a unicorn. Six months ago, I came face to face with a machine I’d read about often but never expected to see. A one-off invention, this oddity had been a dreamlike presence in my life, hovering into my consciousness at unexpected moments, something I imagined but couldn’t […]

The Bird Fancyer’s Delight (BBC Radio 4 doc) – notes

Posted on Jul 6, 2011 in Sounds, Talks
The Bird Fancyer’s Delight (BBC Radio 4 doc) – notes

For those of you who would like to know more about The Bird Fancyer’s Delight, the topic of my recent Radio 4 documentary, here’s a bumper crop of references I’ve found over the last few months. These include transcripts from the British Library, music excerpts, photographs of a serinette and details of contributors to the show. I hope you find them interesting…