Cura Machines/Golden Hum

02.07.2015

I’ve spent the last couple of days with Dan Lea, a highly original composer and sound-designer. He always pushes me to get guitar sounds neither of us have heard before. Swelteringly hot in my studio, I thought my laptop might fan itself to death. Here are some excerpts (guitar through pedals into MainStage channel strips).

Cura Machines
Golden Hum

New pedalboard

25.06.2015

I’ve never really had a proper pedalboard before – I just cobbled stuff together with velcro, chipboard and a cumbersome flight case which, despite it having travelled with me all over the world for 15 years, I am glad never to have to see or lift again.

Thanks so much to the guys at Templeboard (just arrived in the UK), Gigrig (makers of genius modular power supplies and much else), Lehle switchers, Best Tronics, and my faithful friend Jon Dickinson at Antenna Studios.

Now to make some new music!

board 4

board 3

Chris Watson – sound recordist

24.06.2015

I saw Chris do a brilliant presentation last night of recordings he’d made in the Antarctic, using underwater microphones. It amply demonstrated that Cousteau’s description of the sea as ‘The Silent World’ was (to use Chris’s expression), ‘bollocks’.

He has a series on Radio 4, and there’s a good interview with him here.

Thanks Chris!

Chris_Watson_mic_1359033297_crop_550x385

Current reading

22.06.2015

‘Havel: A Life’ by Michael Zantovsky

Zantovsky was a close friend of Havel’s, and is currently the Czech ambassador. The book is a moving and witty insight into those who have greatness thrust upon them, and it illuminates the personal struggles of a peaceful and idealistic revolutionary. Havel, as was recently said of Charles Kennedy, certainly spoke ‘fluent human’ – sometimes too much for his own good.

 

‘The Aristos’ by John Fowles

A philosophical manifesto of sorts, by the author of ‘The Magus’ and ‘The Collector’. It is deliberately and unashamedly didactic, blunt and opinionated; it is also a good example of how the most brutal of observations about life can be strangely comforting.

Ruper Ordorika

22.06.2015

I played guitar on Ruper’s record last year. We made it in 3 days in a studio in San Sebastian, with Kenny Wolleson (John Zorn, Bill Frisell) on drums and Simon Edwards (Fariground Attraction, Kathryn Williams) on bass. It is lovely – he sings exclusively in Basque and for this reason few people outside Basque country hear his music, but over there he is a legend.

He received a lifetime achievement award from the government and asked me to join him and his band for a celebratory show. Here’s the view from the rehearsal room in the mountains.

Salute, Ruper

basque rehearsal a

San Sebastian
San Sebastian