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Prequel Tapes – Inner Systems LP

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From the press release:

I would often wander into the forest after school. This wasn’t Sheffield, or Manchester, as much as I thought I wanted it to be. Sometimes the mushrooms we picked would make me sick, which added a vital sense of adventure to the days and weeks that could pass without much happening at all. Something to talk about, a story we made together. It was a dead city. Not great, not terrible. Nothing to break an illusion. We had no idea what we were doing, but a reality check was the last thing we were looking for.

Wasted from the youth centre, we would go and listen to people spin records at Skandal. The melodies in The Cure songs lingered with me for days. I wanted to make my own music. I started to leave early and bang on metal into a microphone. I saved up and bought a Casio FZ-1 sampler and drum machine. We poured ourselves into bands. We would stay in and practice, programming MIDI on an Atari ST-1024. Nobody would hear this music. My Korg MS-10 was stolen by an ex-band mate from our rehearsal basement. I would dive inside myself, burrowing a tunnel to a new world. Configuring an inner system.

A fascination with Clock DVA became an obsession with techno. KLF. Future Sound of London. The melancholy was still there, in traces, but it was moving somewhere, looking for company. Growing. Ecstatic. Ecstasy! I left the basement to share this with others. I moved to the big city and the music got faster. My process got faster. Collaborations. Plug-ins. That’ll do. Take it to the people! What used to be a personal practice became a public practice. A call and response. A communal effort. Abstract numbers heard this music. My technique sharpened. My studio served a function greater than my own; a system outside myself.

Then I found the DAT tapes, and the VHS footage. They had traveled with me. Far from a nostalgic exercise, this was a reclamation of the original impulse. A reminder of the music I always wanted to make. Reorienting myself with analog machines and obsolete formats, I stole hours to bring this work into the world. I hope that it speaks to you.

Prequel tapes is a work of deep synthesis. Teenage recordings orchestrated into densely layered tapestries; a deeply emotional study on a life characterised by a shifting relationship to electronics. The pieces serve as a chronology of desire and reflection, reconciling a nascent passion for industrial music with a history in the club.

There is a temptation to draw comparisons to Mark Leckey’s excavation of UK rave culture, Lee Gamble’s junglist memories or the hauntological approach of the Ghost Box label, however this is clearly a personal trajectory aesthetically distant from an English past. Oscillating between utopian to claustrophobic, the evolving synth work, deep techno atmospheres and traces of the clangorous energy of early European ambient and industrial tell a distinctly German tale, forged between the forest and the autobahn.

Out on November 13 on R’COUP’D. Prequel Tapes will follow the release of his debut album Inner Systems with an EP release on R’COUP’D at the end of November.
The Dragon Keys EP features four original tracks by Prequel Tapes. The magical melodic Dragon Keys is given two distinctive and classic re-rubs, Ambient and 133bpm. ‘My Side’ edges into darker territory but still with Prequel Tapes distinctive use of subtle melody and off kilter percussion.

Tracklist:
Under your Skin
When We Fall Into The Light
The Comfort Of Feeling Numb
Scarlet Fog
Inner Systems
Untitled Memory
A4J8-D
Dragon Keys

Video: Fink – Fall into the Light

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Following the success of last year’s Hard Believer album—which saw the trio known as Fink melding Fin Greenall’s ruggedly lush vocals with a slow-burning and steady-thumping array of string plucking (Guy Whittaker) and cymbal smashing (Tim Thornton)—they ring in 2015 with Horizontalism, due for release via R’COUP’D on 18 May 2015.

Presented as a collection of dubs from Hard Believer, the re-worked material takes on a decidedly more mysterious turn: vocals dangle and loop precariously over raw edges of murky sound, lasers oscillate and waves crash, percussion click-clacks somewhere far away, and the listener somehow draws nearer to the core from which Fink draws the sonic intimacy for which they’re so well-known.

Inspired by Greenall’s new home in Berlin and his resurgent interest in electronic production, his series of mixes may stand in stark contrast to the bands musical output of the past years but the listener finds themselves at the same intersection of impassioned storytelling, manifest emotion and darkly beautiful ambience that Fink fans have come to expect.

Watch the video for Fall into the Light below. Download for free here.