Sunday, December 11, 2011

Ghost Box Study Series 01-04 (#9, 2010)

This series of extra-hefty vinyl 7"s with really classy artwork reaches a new peak for Ghost Box. For most of its existence, the label was strictly CD's and downloads but just recently took the step into vinyl. In addition to some re-issues, these four singles mash-up two separate acts (British, electronic, hauntological) to either split sides or collaborate.

Belbury Youth and Recreation Wiring Club
Ghost Box has delivered 3 more Study Series in 2011 - and they will end up as something for our astral year-end!

"The Young People" by Moon Wiring Club and Belbury Poly, from Study Series 01: Youth and Recreation (2010)

For #01 (my video of: both songs), Moon Wiring Club brings more of a big beat sound to Belbury Poly's synth miniatures.

Side A, "The Young People" by Moon Wiring Club and Belbury Poly: is the jam. The polyrhythms! The masterful command of shifting moods! The depth of the sound design! Hell, it's got riffs.

Side B, "Portals and Parallels": is too funky in its own right. These two fit together real nicely, and I could stand for more from the collaboration.

"Seasons Change" by The Advisory Circle with Hong Kong in the '60s, from Study Series 02: Cycles and Seasons (2010)

On #02 (both songs), The Advisory Circle plays a little background acoustic guitar on Side A, then collaborates with hazy popsters Hong Kong in the '60s.

Side A, "New Dimensions In" by The Advisory Circle: for some reason reminds me a lot of The Wicker Man film - the original one, from 1973. Something about the acoustic guitar (wood), the floutish sounds (pagan), the Britishness, and the pastoral menace... not sure what.

Side B, "Seasons Change" (with Hong Kong in the '60s): makes me think of one of those post-Dave Rick Bongwater '60s-girl pastische tunes, where Ann would do her own background vocals and everything.

"Swingalong" by Belbury Poly and Mordant Music, from Study Series 03: Welcome to Godalming (2010)

Belbury's back in #03 (both songs), this time working with Mordant Music – the wine is chilled, and so is the mood. Mordant takes Side B solo, and smudges up found-sound voices and dreamy sequencers.

Side A, "Swingalong" by Belbury Poly and Mordant Music: is a super-Space Age bachelor-about-Carnaby themesong, with maximum chimes and SFX ejaculations. (... or underwater diving soundtrack?)

Side B, "Inn Ohm the Lake" by Mordant Music: recalls a different side of Bongwater (by way of Shockabilly), with multiple extended-tape samples of people talking over a bed of musical interlude. Only more strictly synthesized...

"The Song Before" by Broadcast and The Focus Group, from Study Series 04: Familiar Shapes and Noises (2010)

By #04 (all three songs), Broadcast and The Focus Group are bringing back more of their mixed-up rituals, a great supplement to Investigate Witch Cults of The Radio Age (#6, Drone/Ambient 2009)!

The final installment is the one of these first 4 that seems most like a whole record (rather than just 2 songs on a single). This entire set reminds me of the Witch Cults album. And also definitely the fact that Trish Keenan of Broadcast succumbed to pneumonia at the beginning of this year. Although I really loved the collaboration LP, I wasn't a lifelong fan - so I didn't post anything at the time. But it's still really terrible.

Study Series 04

[This is now old news and possibly out-of-date...] Belbury Poly recently put out the downloadable Radio Belbury: Programme No. 1. Moon Wiring Circle released a free EP and 3+ mixes summarized here. The Advisory Circle made the #6 Free Podcasts of 2010.

Ghost Box SS03

Genre - Electronic Hauntology
Official -
Myspace -
Location - England, UK

Review - Other Music
Download - Ghost Box, Amazon, iTunes
Purchase - Ghost Box

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