Spire live at Organ reframed | 8th October 2016
The 17th Spire will take place at Union Chapel, London on 8th October 2016 as part of the ORGAN reframed Festival (7-9 October 2016)
Union Chapel, London
700pm - 1030pm Saturday October 8th 2016
Spire: organ works past present & future performed by
Charles Matthews (organ)
Philip Jeck (turntables)
Fennesz (organ & electronics)
Simon Scott (Electronics)
John Beaumont (Tenor)
Claire M Singer (Organ & electronics)
The Eternal Chord (Organ)
Charles Matthews - www.charlesmatthews.co.uk
Born in 1966, Charles Matthews studied at the Royal College of Music, London, and was an organ scholar at Trinity College, Cambridge. His teachers have included Beryl Tichbon, Gwilym Isaac, David Pettit, Patricia Carroll, Nicholas Danby, Charles Spinks and Dr Richard Marlow. Charles has won numerous awards, perhaps most notably first prize in the 1999 Franz Liszt Organ Interpretation Competition in Budapest. His most recent solo recording is of Francis Routh's cycle The Well-Tempered Pianist; some tracks from this CD can be heard free of charge at the composer's website.
Recent engagements include solo performances in the UK and Spain, as well as duo recitals with flute, recorder, violin, 'cello and voice. Performances in recent months include premières of new works by Susan Howley, Rob Jones and Andrew Glover-Whitley.
A collection of Charles's compositions for flute and piano was published in 2006 by Schott.
Charles has performed for productions by the Royal Opera and Royal Ballet, and recorded music used in various theatres in Spain.
He is organist of St Catharine's Church, Chipping Campden, Gloucestershire, and also contributes to the Spire organ and electronics project. He works extensively with young people, teaches piano at King's High School, Warwick, acts as piano accompanist and organ tutor at the Birmingham Conservatoire, and works as conductor and contemporary music coach for the annual Curso Internacional Matisse at San Lorenzo de El Escorial, Spain, where he runs the Ensemble Postante.
John Beaumont - www.thestorytenor.co.uk
"From an early age I was nurtured by the music and liturgy of the Anglican Church at Emmanuel Church in Shelley, Yorkshire, where my father was the parish priest for 20 years. A former chorister and Canon Precentor of Wakefield Cathedral, he encouraged me to follow in his footsteps, and I joined Wakefield Cathedral choir aged 8, where I was afforded that most singular of musical educations – an English cathedral choral scholar. The rhythm of the church’s year marked my time until as Head Chorister I was singing Faure’s Pie Jesu in the West Riding Cathedrals’ Festival. Beyond university I became a Tenor Songman at York Minster, enjoying again, in its idyllic surroundings the daily rhythm of music in liturgy with its ebbs & flows… Beyond working with the three choral foundations at St Pauls Cathedral, Westminster Abbey and Westminster Cathedral, I was singing on film soundtracks, TV advertisements, working latterly with the BBC Singers in the Proms and exploring a more diverse repertoire. Music was complemented by an 18-year career in the marketing communications industry, firstly with EMI Records and then as an Account Director with one of the world’s largest advertising agencies, and it was here that I learned about the importance of the message and the craft of communication – of storytelling."
The Eternal Chord - www.touch33.net/theeternalchord
There is no “correct” way to play the organ. Of course, there are strong and long traditions of how it should be played and by whom, but in the realm of time these rules count for nothing. The instrument has the largest frequency range of any acoustic instrument, and this unique aspect grants great freedom to the players. ALL STOPS OUT!!!
Based on an idea by Mike Harding which grew out of the Spire project, any number of players from two upwards can perform this majestic piece. Hildur Gudnadottir, Anna von Hausswolff, Maia Urstad, Marcus Davidson, Charles Matthews and others have all played alongside Mike Harding to offer various renditions of The Eternal Chord.
Simon Scott - www.simonscott.org
Simon Scott is a sound ecologist and multi-instrumentalist from Cambridge, England. His albums 'Insomni' (Ash International) and ‘FloodLines' (Touch) are out now (see above). His work explores the creative process of actively listening, the implications of recording the natural world using technology and the manipulation of natural sounds used for musical composition. He plays the drums in Slowdive and has recently collaborated with artists James Blackshaw, Spire, Taylor Deupree (Between), Isan + many more.
Philip Jeck - www.philipjeck.com
Philip Jeck studied visual art at Dartington College of Arts. He started working with record players and electronics in the early '80's and has made soundtracks and toured with many dance and theatre companies as well as his solo concert work. His best known work "Vinyl Requiem" (with Lol Sargent): a performance for 180 '50's/'60's record players won Time Out Performance Award for 1993. He has also over the last few years returned to visual art making installations using from 6 to 80 record players including "Off The Record" for Sonic Boom at The Hayward Gallery, London . In 2010 Philip won The Paul Hamlyn Foundation Composers Award.
Philip Jeck works with old records and record players salvaged from junk shops turning them to his own purposes. He really does play them as musical instruments, creating an intensely personal language that evolves with each added part of a record. Philip Jeck makes geniunely moving and transfixing music, where we hear the art not the gimmick.
Fennesz - www.fennesz.com
Fennesz uses guitar and computer to create shimmering, swirling electronic sound of enormous range and complex musicality. "Imagine the electric guitar severed from cliché and all of its physical limitations, shaping a bold new musical language." - (City Newspaper, USA). His lush and luminant compositions are anything but sterile computer experiments. They resemble sensitive, telescopic recordings of rainforest insect life or natural atmospheric occurrences, an inherent naturalism permeating each piece.
Tone 54 | Bethan Kellough "Aven"
Compact disc in slip case - 5 tracks - 27:54
Limited edition of 500 copies
Artwork & photography by Jon Wozencroft
Mastered by Denis Blackham
Release date: 26th August 2016
Live at Volume, Los Angeles, 30th April 2016 as part of Touch Conference
3. An Opening
The word ‘Aven' refers to an underground shaft that leads upward from the roof of a cave passage.
Recorded with SoundField SPS200 & JrF C-Series contact microphones, Sennheiser ME64, Sound Devices 788T, Elektron Monomachine, RME Fireface UCX, and Cockos Reaper. Field recordings from Iceland, June 2015 and South Africa, November 2015.
Strings performed by Bethan Kellough.
Bethan Kellough creates sound worlds that weave together instrumental materials, sound design and ambisonic field recordings. Her composition ‘Aven' is based on a recording made in Iceland in 2015, which features the booming sound of underground geothermal activity escaping to the surface through a small shaft. “Looking down into the darkness, there was a sense that a whole world existed in an unknown space beneath. The sound world of Aven is a journey through such an imagined environment.” The composition is driven by this sonic encounter, but enters the imagined worlds beneath through the instrumental material developed throughout the work. These melodic passages predominantly feature violin, which Bethan has played since childhood exploring traditional Scottish music, rock violin, free improvisation and classical studies. The field recordings used in Aven were made in Iceland during the Wildeye sound recording workshop with Chris Watson and Jez riley French, and in South Africa during the Sonic Mmabolela residency with Francisco Lopez and James Webb. Each of the recordings explore a world of sound beneath a surface, reflecting upon the initial recording environment at the geothermal site. In South Africa, an approaching storm was heralded by wind blowing through bushes in the savanna, underneath which was hidden a Soundfield microphone. A contact microphone on a fence in South Iceland revealed the tones of the wind contained inside the wires, and in an Icelandic nature reserve the wind was also captured by microphones buried underneath a layer of grass – a miniature world sheltered by the strands of dry straw.
Bethan Kellough (formerly Bethan Parkes) is a sound artist and composer. Her work spans across ambisonic composition, field recording, sound design and multichannel sound installation practices, drawing a focus on sonic spatial experience. Her works are designed to open out spaces with sound, exploring spatial aesthetics and the interactions between sonically and visually articulated spaces. The immersive sound-worlds she creates inhabit the boundaries between music and sound design, weaving together instrumental materials, sound design and ambisonic field recordings.
She holds a PhD in Sonic Arts from the University of Glasgow. In 2015 she joined the Touch Mentorship Programme.
Her works have been exhibited and performed internationally, including at Touch Conference, Los Angeles, USA; Gallery of Russian Art and Design, London, UK; Resonant Forms Festival, Los Angeles, USA; Borealis Festival, Bergen, Norway; Jardins Efemeros Festival, Viseu, Portugal; Spazio Bocciofila, Venice, Italy; The Global Composition International Conference, Dieburg, Germany; Symposium on Acoustic Ecology, University of Kent, UK; Sound Thought Festival, Glasgow, UK.
TOUCH vs TOUCH VINYL | Los Angeles 30th July 2016
TO:101 | Claire M Singer "Solas"
Double CD - 7 tracks - 68:11
Mastered by Denis Blackham at Skye Mastering
Artwork & Photography by Jon Wozencroft
1. A Different Place 06:35
2. Ceò 05:39
3. Solas 10:50
4. Dìobaig 04:47
5. Eilean 11:36
6. Wrangham 06:47
1. The Molendinar 25:57
and Aisir (Bonus track) (download only)
All tracks written & performed by Claire M Singer
Solas, Wrangham & The Molendinar were recorded by Iain Berryman at Union Chapel, London 26-27th February 2016 on the organ built by Henry Willis in 1877
Mixed at Bennachie Studios, Aberdeen and EMS Goldsmiths, London
Violin extract on Eilean from “Land of the Standing Stones” composed and performed by Paul Anderson
Eilean was commissioned by Aberdeenshire Council and The Molendinar by Civic Room, Glasgow and Union Chapel
Solas (‘Light' in Gaelic) is Claire M Singer’s debut album spanning 14 years of her work in acoustic and electronic composition. In recent years she has focused on writing and performing a mix of organ, cello and electronics with regular performances at Union Chapel where she is Music Director, running a diverse programme of concerts and educational workshops around the Chapel’s Henry Willis 1877 organ.
Other performances include the Roundhouse London by The LCO Soloists; a' fàs soilleir, an audio-visual work, exhibited at Tate Modern London, XMV New York City and Ceremony Hall Austin TX and she has performed as part of Spire at Muziekgebouw, Amsterdam, Kunst-Station Sankt Peter Cologne and many more.
The Molendinar, which was co-commissioned in 2015 by Civic Room, Glasgow and Union Chapel, London to celebrate Glasgow’s Molendinar Burn Project was performed on the 14th June 2016 at Glasgow Cathedral to conclude the weekend festival.
Tone 53 | Simon Scott "FloodLines"
CD - 1 track - 30' 51"
Mastered by Denis Blackham at Skye Mastering
Artwork & Photography by Jon Wozencroft
Track listing and notes:
Recorded live at Cafe Oto as part of "Touch presents…" on 31st January 2016
Simon Scott is a sound ecologist and multi-instrumentalist from Cambridge, England. His albums 'Insomni' (Ash International) and 'Below Sea Level' (12k/TouchLine) are out now (see above). His work explores the creative process of actively listening, the implications of recording the natural world using technology and the manipulation of natural sounds used for musical composition. He plays the drums in Slowdive and has recently collaborated with artists James Blackshaw, Spire, Taylor Deupree (Between), Isan + many more.
This is his first physical release for Touch.
Source material recorded in The Fens, East Anglia.
Simon Scott's blistering live set from London follows his 2015 album ‘insomni’ but features his field recordings of areas of The Fens in East Anglia that cartographically are below mean sea level. They’re complimented by underwater hydrophone recordings taken on field research trips, making the unheard audible and brings the unseen to the surface. It’s a flat landscape that was devastated by the draining of The Fens in the 17th century. The ecosystem was damaged but these areas have been left to reflood and re-establish it’s vernacular wildlife, replete with its own instrumentation and orchestras. Tapping into these, Scott's vision encourages us to explore the fertility of the flatlands of England.
Touch Conference on Touch Radio
TouchRadio 125 Philip Jeck - Live at The Battery, San Francisco
TouchRadio 124 Mark Van Hoen - Live at The Battery, San Francisco
TouchRadio 123 Daniel Menche - Live at Chapel Space, Seattle
Landscape and Perception update | Stonehenge site investigations
Landscape and Perception is a research project set up by Jon Wozencroft and Paul Devereux to explore the role of sound and acoustics in prehistory, and in particular, to propose that the sonic properties of the bluestones taken from Preseli to Stonehenge might have been a key factor in their transportation from Pembrokeshire to the Salisbury Plain.
Following the discovery of abundant acoustic activity in the project's main point of focus in the Preseli Hills in Wales, landscape-perception.com has been updated to include documentation of the site investigations carried out at Stonehenge in July 2013.
Touch Conference | USA 30th April - 10th May 2016
A series of conferences featuring Touch artists on the west coast of America presenting and demonstrating their work to a discerning audience:
Touch (est. 1982) is one of the last surviving labels from the turbulent new wave period in London, which uniquely fused art, design and music. Hear artists from the label roster present and demonstrate their work to a discerning audience.
Philip Jeck uses turntables and sampler to create a unique sonic improvisation, both emotionally captivating and technically involving.
Mark Van Hoen, with modular synth and software pushed the analogue/digital envelope to create damaged melodies, drones and dense claustrophobia.
Simon Scott explores the creative process of actively listening, the implications of recording the natural world using technology and the manipulation of natural sounds used for musical composition.
Daniel Menche - In a genre known for its randomness and chaotic structure, Daniel Menche has established himself as a musician with an uncharacteristic sense of focus and determination. Rather than creating "noise," he strives for order and cohesiveness. Aural intensity is not a representation of confusion or the chaotic, but a concerted effort to provoke and stimulate the listener’s imagination by generating intensely powerful sounds and music.
Bethan Parkes - Her work spans across field recording, sound design, ambisonic composition and multichannel sound installation practices, drawing a focus on sonic spatial experience. Her works are designed to open out spaces with sound, exploring spatial aesthetics and the interactions between sonic and visually articulated spaces.
April 29th, Aeterna Gallery, Los Angeles
Jon Wozencroft (photography exhibition, part of Touch Retrospective April 9th on...)
Location: 5240 Alhambra Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90032
May 3rd, private location (invitation only), San Francisco
Mark Van Hoen
May 4th, Holocene, Portland
Mark Van Hoen
May 7th, Chapel Space, Seattle
Mark Van Hoen
May 10th Dublab, Los Angeles (Radio)
Jon Wozencroft | Aeterna Gallery, Los Angeles April 2016
Exhibition with limited edition prints of Jon Wozencroft 's album art. Show opens 9th April 6-10pm until 21st May (click on the image above to see a brief video)
949 Chung King Road
Los Angeles CA 90012
Tel: 213 457 3404
If you wish to purchase any of the prints, please contact the gallery directly - aeternalosangeles.com @AeternaGallery
Cover photos include:
Oren Ambarchi - Insulation | Fennesz - Black Sea | Hildur Gudnadottir - Without Sinking [see above] | Philip Jeck - Stoke | New Order - Video 5-8-6 | BJNilsen - Invisible City | Scala - Beauty Nowhere | Spire Live - Fundamentalis | Mika Vainio - Behind the Radiators | Various Artists - Touch 25 | Various Artists - Touch Sampler 3 | Chris Watson - Stepping into the Dark | Jon Wozencroft - Touch & Fuse
Tone 45.6D | Anna von Hausswolff - Källan (Prototype)
Digital Download - track - 39' 57" [24bit/48kHz wav]
Track listing and notes:
1. Källan (Prototype) 39' 57"
Artwork & photography by Jon Wozencroft
Organ: Anna von Hausswolff. Recorded live at Lincoln Cathedral, 19th October 2013.
Performed at Frequency 13 Lincoln Digital Culture Festival as part of Touch presents…, (which also featured Chris Watson & Hildur Gudnadottir). Recorded live by Mike Harding using 2 x dpa 4060s onto a Nagra Ares Pll digital recorder. This recording is unedited from the original raw file.
Though she now lives in Copenhagen, Anna von Hausswolff grew up in the once vibrant, bohemian neighbourhood of Haga in Gothenburg, Sweden, in a family who counted amongst their ancestors Bernhard Reynold von Hausswolff, an 18th Century governor of Falun, Sweden, who helped bring an end to the burning of witches. Although Anna has achieved acclaim with her song-based albums ‘Ceremony', 'Singing from the Grave' (both first released on Kning Disk in Sweden) and the latest 'The Miraculous' (released on her own label, Pomperipossa Records), she has always had an ear for the radical approach, and this is the first step in a long-term collaboration with Touch.
Touch is 34 Today
Today, 11th March, is the official 34th anniversary of the founding of Touch in 1982...
First contact with New Order after their concert at the Newcastle Mayfair on 11th March 1982…
TOUCHLINE | A new online resource
Jez Riley French - Portable Music
Previous releases still available:
Ash 11.8D | Jana Winderen "The Wanderer"
Digital download available from janawinderen.bandcamp.com.
Stereo version of multi-channel installation: 31m21s.
Zooplankton and Phytoplankton are organisms which drift in the oceans, seas and bodies of fresh water. The word ‘zooplankton’ is derived from the Greek zoon (ζῴον), meaning ‘animal’, phyto is derived from the Greek words φυτόν (phyton), meaning plant and planktos (πλαγκτός), meaning wanderer or drifter.
Mammals, fish and crustaceans feed on zooplankton and they in turn feed on phytoplankton. Phytoplankton need two things for photosynthesis and thus their survival: energy from the sun and nutrients from the water. In the process of photosynthesis, phytoplankton release oxygen into the water. Half of the world's oxygen is produced by phytoplankton photosynthesis.
Local abundance varies horizontally in the water column, vertically with ocean drifts and seasonally with the light.
The Wanderer is a sound composition created from hydrophone recordings from the realm of these creatures in the Atlantic Ocean, made by Jana on her travels from the North Pole to the Equator.
The Wanderer was produced for the Lorch Schive Art Prize, Trondheim Kunstmuseum in 2015. Originally released on a USB Stick in an edition of 50.
Spire Live at The Unitarian Church, Cambridge | Friday 26th February
5 Emmanuel Road
This concert will be recorded and a donation towards entry guarantees you a free copy of the recording which will be made there [wav file].
New Touch Postcard
"Give me somewhere to stand and I will move the earth" ARCHIMEDES
Design & photography: Jon Wozencroft
This postcard, on 400 gsm heavyweight card and printed in Bulgaria by Iasen Georgiev,
ships free with all orders in the TouchShop
This is the 3rd in the series: