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06/02/2014
by Wizards Tell Lies
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Comps & EPs

I will keep this brief:
Two new releases which feature brand new and exclusive Wizards Tell Lies tracks available now:
First up is ‘For Isabelle’ which is on the incredible Jehu& Chinaman Records.

This is an incredible compilation put together by Jehu label boss Steve Dewhurst:

“To celebrate the birth of my daughter, I commanded a host of my favourite artists to donate music to a compilation in her honour. Most of them acted fast, because a child’s taste in music was at stake and my wife likes One Direction.
Within you might find nursery rhymes, fairy tales, meditative drone sleepers and the kind of fucked-up racket all cultured youngsters love so well.
Isabelle Grace was born on 19 December 2013. I hope that one day she might dig this and all the work I put in for her tiny-ness. Because I got FUCKING SHINGLES doing it.”

The comp features our collaboration with Joshua Levesque ‘Clementine’ a re work of the classic ‘Oh My Darling Clementine’. Perfect for a child.

Next up is the new EP on Chapelyard, a faultless label from Yorkshire:

We have two tracks on this excellent EP, they are ‘The House of Alignments’ and ‘Throws Magic’.

Please support these marvelous independent labels.
Cheers!
WTL

19/12/2013
by Wizards Tell Lies
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Twenty Thirteen

Welcome to my end of year list. In actual fact it is less of a list and more of a self indulgent ramble through 2013, a sort of huge thanks list with occasional detours.

This year has been phenomenal for me. For one thing seeing my young family grow has been amazing, terrifying and rewarding – a constant surprise and joy. The support that my beautiful wife has given my various projects has never ever faltered and for that I am eternally grateful. Steph you are my muse.
I play my 6yr old son a lot of my music and getting a thumbs up from him is perhaps one of the most valuable critiques I could possibly attain so that is cherished.
Creatively 2013 has been unbelievably fruitful and that is down to the labels, artists and supporters I have been lucky enough to work with and make the acquaintance of.

Epic thanks:
Mark Barton, Black Classical, Sebastien Colombat (Lapin Radin), Gareth Courage, Craig Earp, Dave Fleet (Laica), Maxim Peter Griffin, Andrew Guthrie (Chapel Yard), Hacker Farm, Michael Holland (Ears for Eyes), Steve Dewhurst (Jehu& Chinaman), Ian Larsen, April Larson, Joshua Levesque, Andrea Marutti, Simon McCorry (Amonism), Paul McIntyre, people-eaters, Evan Poll (Auditory Field Theory), Rano, Gareth E. Rees (The Hackneymarshman), Roadside Picnic, Ben Sadler (Them Use Them, Juneau Projects), J. Simpson (Forest Punk), Rob Spencer (The Geography Trip), Joseph Stannard (The Outer Church), Stuart Tonge (papa November, Swoomp Theeng), Matteo Uggeri (Sparkle In Grey), Leigh Wright (The Ephemeral Man, Wyrd Daze) and all of my followers on Twitter, Facebook and elsewhere.

Now for some specifics:
Mark Barton a music writer equal parts Thompson and Burroughs has supported Wizards Tell Lies since the very beginning. When I uploaded the very first WTL track (an early demo version of) ‘Who Is Mr. Broom?’ back in 2007 (ish) I really didn’t expect anyone to take note but Mark did and has energetically championed WTL ever since.

Black Classical is a recent acquaintance and he has done an unbelievable amount in support of my various projects. He has included tracks from across my projects in his various mixes for The Numbers Broadcast and Invader FM and is also a really decent chap. His album ‘Zm∆’ is one of the best records this year. A truly deep listening experience that builds worlds populated by long abandoned architecture, zombies and unutterable dark things that loom in the periphery. Sadly that album is no longer available but its sequel is:

I was also lucky enough to be asked to remix some of the music from ‘Zm∆’ which I did in my The Revenant Sea guise.

And talking of remixes, Laica asked me to remix his ‘Environs’ album for a project called ‘Environmental Engineering‘. Laica has been a long standing supporter of my various projects (thanks!) and his ‘Environs’ album is one of this years best.

And here is my remix:

Gareth Courage & Craig Earp have created some astounding artwork for my Revenant Sea releases this year.
Gareth Courage created the artwork for my collaboration with the high class and prolific Roadside Picnic. Gareth’s work is deft and delicate and yet holds a subtle power and sinister quality that makes it mesmerising.
The album ‘Their Words are Lost in the Din of Jets’ came out on the incredible Jehu& Chinaman Records and garnered support from, amongst others, Hacker Farm and Laica. It is now sold out making it my first ever sell-out release! Very happy. There will be more from WTL coming out on Jehu& Chinaman in 2014.

Craig Earp created the art for my debut as The Revenant Sea – Craig is a creative power house and he designed the stunning Moth Mother that adorns the cassette case. This was released on the exceptional Auditory Field Theory label, who are based in Canada, and I hope to work with them again at some point.

Talking of art, UK illustrator and ex-stonemason Maxim Peter Griffin has designed the artwork for the new WTL album which is due out in 2014 on Rano. I came across his work via Twitter and it is supremely eloquent and wonderful. A gorgeous celebration of Old Albion, Maxim’s pictures depict ancient sites and heroes from Britain’s past. He also creates ‘probable film posters’ and god-like pylons hell bent on destroying mankind. Often comic but always celebratory his work is an absolute joy and he is one of the world’s most talented and friendly people.

April Larson is a humble and impeccably smart artist who I have the luck and the pleasure of working with on our Isobel Ccircle~ project. April is incredibly straightforward to work with and also a really nice person and this has been, by far, one of the most satisfying music projects I have been involved in and it will hopefully continue long into the future. With a debut EP out now on Chapel Yard and an album due on Exotic Pylon Records next year we are extremely proud of what this project has achieved so far. Huge thanks to April for collaborating on this.

April’s album ‘Tempête‘ is one of my favourite albums of 2013, an intensely subtle record of deep fog and deep space that really hooks into your brain and won’t let go. A wonderful aural adventure which puts you in the heart of the fog, disorientating and focussing in equal measure I can’t recommend this enough.

Joseph Stannard is a journalist, musician and events organiser. I owe him a considerable amount – he has been an incredible guiding light and unfaltering clarion sounder for my various projects for a few years now and a lot of the people (musicians and artists) I am now in contact with have come via him. Thank you Joseph!
He has had two great albums this year – one is the exceptional Outer Church compilation that came out on Front & Follow which features many of the artists that have performed live at his Outer Church live events over the years. A selection of weird, unsettling, intoxicating and wonderful music.

Joseph also released a uniquely odd and wonderful tape on Exotic Pylon Records. Appearing as his alter ego Canonbury he unleashed ‘The Knock of the Shoe’ perfectly described by Anna Freery:

You walk into the pounding din of a tent that hums with fresh rain and mud. There’s something behind you coiling in from the moors, by some feat of electronic alchemy the beat passes through but it’s trying to intone something that’s unclear.

I’ve been lucky enough to be able to contribute a couple of times (using various alter-egos) to Leigh Wright’s Wyrd Daze online zine which is something very unique indeed. He gets a lot of quality in there and it is just this huge multimedia package with videos, music, art and writing – very eclectic, and that is all part of its allure. I think Leigh is trying to encourage more of a collective spirit across genres and disciplines and that is well worth applauding.

This year I collaborated with Joshua Levesque on a couple of WTL projects where he has lent his immeasurable vocal talents as a narrator. The forthcoming WTL on Rano features Joshua on a track called ‘The Call of the Maddening Machine’ and we recently collaborated on a track for an exciting project for Jehu & Chinaman Records. They are releasing a download only comp of nursery rhymes early next year and we’ve done a version of ‘Oh My Darling Clementine’ (renamed as ‘Clementine’). I really love this track, it was great fun to do and a favourite of my WTL output. Joshua is a genuinely lovely bloke, eloquent and thoughtful. The quality of his voice draws you right into the narrative as if he were telling you a personal story.

And so, a big thanks to all my collaborators this year:
Joshua Levesque, Simon McCorry, Paul McIntyre, Stuart Tonge, Ben Sadler, April Larson, Roadside Picnic – you all make the music sing!

And finally, the labels, of course, who put this stuff out in the first place!
Auditory Field Theory, Chapel Yard, Jehu& Chinaman, Rano

Thank you all so much for the support and spreading my music far and wide you really have made this year extremely satisfying and you will all be rewarded at the barbecue at the end of the universe.

Great records of the year (not forgetting the ones mentioned above):

Bird People ‘Terma’ (Jehu& Chinaman Records)

Man or Astro-man? – Defcon 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 (Warm Electronic Recordings)

Keep Sheila on Acid ‘Erotic Theology’ (Auditory Field Theory)

Prada & Oregon ‘His Past of the Heaven-Floor Permanents…’ (Auditory Field Theory)

Solvogen/ Chaz Dolo – Split (Disco Insolence)

Russel M. Harmon ‘We Are Failed’ (Rano)

Maurice’s Hotel Death ‘Hot Jone’ (Rano)

Alela Diane ‘About Farewell’ (Rusted Blue)

The Duke St Workshop ‘Lexicon of the Pines’

oh/ex/oh ‘House in the Woods’

Synek ‘Kolysanka Do Gwiazd’ (Further Records)

Melvins ‘Everybody Loves Sausages’ (Ipecac)

Abul Mogard ‘Drifted Heaven’ (VCO Recordings)

Cloud Waste and the Calf ‘Shuttlewood’s Private Thoughts’

Papa November ‘She Is Transmitter’

Them Use Them ‘Mesh the Mute’

Raining Leaf ‘Adeptus Minor EP’ (Chapel Yard Label)

people-eaters ‘Imprecate’ (Aetheric Records)

Henry Mancini ‘Experiment In Terror’ (Trunk Records reissue)

Kemper Norton ‘Carn’ (Exotic Pylon Records)

Moon Zero ‘Tombs’ (Futuresequence)

Medroxy Progesterone Acetate ‘I Am An Empty House Longing to be Haunted’

18/12/2013
by Wizards Tell Lies
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Sticks and Branches Man

On the 13th of December we set ourselves the task of writing, recording, mixing, mastering and releasing a track in just one day. We achieved the goal and released ‘Sticks and Branches Man’ for a super limited time.

Although the track is still available to stream you can no longer download it.
The reception to the track has been phenomenal and we would like to thank everyone who shared he link and tweeted or posted about it. You will be rewarded at the babebecue at the end of the universe.

J. Simpson (aka Forestpunk) wrote:

["Sticks and Branches Man" is an] amble through cosmic horror, disco & drone; subtly shifting towards metallic post-rock, a la Mogwai or Tribes Of Neurot. There is a ritual taking place, in the heart of this dark wood. It is an initiation. It is a mystery.
Most of the music on “Sticks And Branches Man” is layered and loaded with scratchy samples, so it’s like looking at three pictures at once. It’s like watching a movie, and then falling into the movie, as the samples remove themselves and becomes a pure, thunderous roar!

Mark Barton, long standing supporter of WTL since the very beginning, eloquently wrote:

a near 16 minute colossus which pulls together the loosely trailed threads of all revealed so far into one seismic sinister symphony calling from the beyond. Draped in a darkly brooding Hammer film like sensuality, its eerie scoring in its initial murmuring draws bleakly upon a disquieting Quatermass styled aural landscape.

And Joshua Levesque, our sometimes narrator, added:

The Wizards may lie, but they do not fuck around.

Thank you all!

WTL

19/11/2013
by Wizards Tell Lies
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Zm∆RmX

Here is my The Revenant Sea remix of Black Classical’s ‘Harrow House 1968′ from his album ‘Zm∆’ (which, sadly, is no longer available):

Both of my Zm∆​ remixes can be heard here in a collection I like to call ‘Zm∆RmX’:

Black Classical’s follow up to ‘Zm∆’ is entitled ‘Zm∆​-​ii The Happening’ and is available here.
Further info on this epic remix project can be found on Black Classical’s Tumblr here.
Get involved!

12/11/2013
by Wizards Tell Lies
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Black Classical vs The Revenant Sea

Over the Halloween period Black Classical released ‘ZMΔ’, an album of unsettling electronics describing a kind of limbo world of occult medical centres, empty streets covered in fall out snow and something inhuman lurking in the shadows. This goes way beyond a Hauntological aesthetic, this isn’t about nostalgia, this is cold parallel universes of sparse populations and deep cold. Having said that, there is a fuzzy Super-8 warmth trying to obscure the music’s dark centre. Brilliantly uncanny stuff indeed. Sadly this album is now deleted but Black Classical soon followed it up with ‘ZMΔ-ii The Happening’ further detailing and elaborating on this dark parallel world. Magnificent it is too.


Tucked away, deep into the album’s closing tracks there is a piece entitled ‘Zm∆ Isobels c’Circle.’ Listen:

It turns out that this is, in fact, a tribute of sorts to Isobel Ccircle~ (US sound artist April Larson and I). But it doesn’t stop there – April and I have simultaneously become fictional and non fictional character’s in Black Classical’s limbo world of ZMΔ! Which is both unnerving and brilliant at the same time.

“Drs Matt Bower and April Larson discovered that the Isobel cCircle virus was transmitted through rain and passed into the human chain via the water networks. The origin of the virus is still unknown to this date. Some theories suggest it may have come from beyond our world others state that it was an act of god…”

Watch:

Further to this meshing of worlds and spreading of the ZMΔ virus, Black Classical has now set up a remix project: “I would really like to populate lots of little Zm∆​ virus strains onto bandcamp… If you are up for remixing it, (I dont care if you sell it for your own profit) I just want the virus to spread.” If you email Black Classical here black.classical (at) yahoo.co.uk he will send you the midi files for the project. Get involved and be part of the problem or try and find a cure, it is up to you!
Here is my remix (in Revenant Sea mode) of ‘The Dead Agenda’ the original of which was on the first ZMΔ album.

06/11/2013
by Wizards Tell Lies
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Wyrd Daze

Via email this week I had a chat to ‘writer, musician, esoteric librarian, geek, introvert, optimist’ Leigh Wright about his ongoing project the Wyrd Daze zine, to which I have contributed art and music.

Earlier this year the ex-Somerset resident (now based in Quebec) published Wyrd Daze ’a one-off print zine of experimental writing, art, and music’ which sold out quickly due to its far reaching scope and the quality of the artists involved.

Leigh: “What surprised me most was that almost everyone I asked agreed to participate. I expected to be lucky if half of the people I asked responded! And the quality of contributions continues to far exceeded my expectations. There’s some wonderful talent out there, and I’m truly honoured to be hosting their work.”

And the work on show is impressive indeed. The zine featured Hacker Farm, Zachary Corsa, Chris Lambert, April Larson, Concretism, Cloud Waste and the Calf, oh/ex/oh, Declan Kelly, Berit Ellingsen, Pete Hackett (among others) and of course Leigh himself. I myself contibuted an illustration for Nathaniel James’ short story ‘Home’ and also a Revenant Sea track ‘Resonance Picture Machine’.

With Wyrd Daze now in its second manifestation, Leigh has abandoned the print version in favour of a digital montly.

Leigh: “Although I really love the idea of creating a physical product, I decided to turn the whole concept around. Making the zine digital makes it even more accessible, and allows me to host multimedia content.”

Issue 1 of the digital version of Wyrd Daze is a massive digital bundle with yet another cast of very impressive contributors. April Larson, The Hare and Moon, Machine est mon Coeur, Robin the Fog, Joshua Levesque, The Ephemeral Man (Leigh Wright’s alter ego), Melissa Diem, Emma Hammond, Michael Holland, Gareth Rees, David Southwell, Black Classical and many others all contribute something quite different to the zine making it very special indeed.

The complete Wyrd Daze cornucopia can be bagged for just 5 Canadian Dollars a month (about £3), a small price to pay for such a collection of wonderful ephemera. Leigh’s decision to now charge for the magazine is a respectable one.

Leigh: “There’s a tendency at the moment for people to expect artistic content to be available on the internet for free, and while I have huge respect for those who create as a hobby and are happy to freely give their art away, there are others whose passion for life stems from the urge to create. Their dream is to spend as much of their time as possible expressing themselves in this way, and in order to do so they need to make a living. I believe they deserve as much a chance to do so from their art as anyone does from any other career path. The aim is to hopefully raise a revenue from the subscriptions with which to pay artists for original content. I do believe that artists deserve to get paid for their work as much as anyone else.”

Subscribers will also benefit hugely from the subscription cost.

Leigh: “Subscribers get a magnificent package of diverse creativity that far exceeds the entrance price. Eventually I’d love to be able to produce physical objects for subscribers, such as music releases, chap books, prints, or whatever! But ultimately, if for no other reason, Wyrd Daze deserves support because it is a celebration of extraordinary independent artistic expression, a rare and precious thing!”

Wyrd Daze is a huge undertaking and now takes up most of Leigh’s time. I asked him, simply, why?

Leigh: “The main impetus for Wyrd Daze is for it to be a catalyst for creativity, both mine and that of other independent artists. Modern technology has been a great boon for creativity: computers and the internet allow people to produce, promote, and distribute their own work with ease – but getting your voice heard within the ever expanding crowd can be difficult. With Wyrd Daze I can showcase a variety of creativity, and the collective voice reaches much farther. We all help promote each other. It’s that sense of creative community and collaboration I find so appealing.”

And that sense of community, passion and appeal really does shine through in the zine. With no ruling theme the content really is wide reaching and most importantly of a high quality. But huge projects like this don’t just pop into existence.

Leigh: “The idea of producing a zine is something that’s recurred for me for years in various forms. I think I’ve always been attracted to experimentation and creative freedom. I’m an absolute geek and love all things sci-fi – one of the benefits of that is that the genre delights in posing cosmic questions and challenging perceptions, so that definitely shaped my inquisitive mind. When I was 16/17 I was fortunate to have older friends who ran a record shop – they turned me on to the emerging electronic scene and took me to my first Orb gig in 1992. That blew my mind!”

Producing something of this magnitude on a monthly basis will need a constant steam of quality contributers, so how does Leigh go about obtaining the talent?

Leigh: “I began by and continue to approach people for contributions, but have put out a general call that I’m open for submissions of any kind, so it’s a bit of both now. People should contribute to be a part of something unique, to share their creativity with others, and for the love of it!”

To whet your appetites both as creators and subscribers you can view a showcase of the excellent Wyrd Daze digital issue 1 here and Leigh can be reached at wyrd.daze@gmail.com.

06/11/2013
by Wizards Tell Lies
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Black Classical and Phantom Circuit

Thanks to Black Classical (UK producer and DJ) my collab with US sound artist April Larson (Isobel Ccircle~) got some great exposure last week via his penchant for dark and haunting ambient/drone/electronica.
I Live Through Death‘ appeared on his Numbers Broadcast

Fractal Hooks‘ appeared on Black Classical’s show for Invader FM.

Incidentally ’Fractal Hooks‘ has also featured on Mirrored Palm’s ‘Don’t Trip’ mix for NTSLive.

DON’T TRIP on NTS Radio 10/10/13 by Don’t Trip on Mixcloud

Wizards Tell Lies also had an outing over Halloween via the brilliant Phantom Circuit who saw it fit to feature our track ‘We Are In Your House’ on their most recent transmission ‘Wizards in the Woods and Autumnal Hues
Thank you Phantom Circuit.
Listen:

Phantom Circuit #130 (3rd Nov. 2013) by Phantom Circuit on Mixcloud

I implore all of you who are suffering post-Halloween blues and want to continue the haunted mood for a bit longer to listen to all of these shows. You will not be disappointed.

03/11/2013
by Wizards Tell Lies
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Environmental Engineering

On 3rd of August Laica released ‘Environs‘ into the world. This is a truly magnificent album that absorbs and envelops the listener with fragmented field recordings and environmental manipulations. No instrumentation here, this is all nature, the outside, the world reworked and transformed by Laica’s deft hands into a suite of unnerving electronica. Excellent stuff indeed.

Taking the idea of reworks and manipulations a step further with ‘Environmental Engineering‘ Laica approached a number of artists (The Revenant Sea included) to remix and rework the ‘bits’ he used to create ‘Environs’. The results are available here:

The remixes/reworks are:
1.Revenant Environs (Revenant Sea Remix)
2.bkclx-Laica-Environs-1.1.a (Black Classical Remix)
3.Isomorphic Environs (Isomorphic Remix)
4.The Pokk Environment (Pokk Remix)
These four remixes/reworks cost only £1 for the lot and the money is being used to fund a CD version of the album which will feature many more remixes and reworks. It is money well spent. Have a listen, I am sure you will agree.

As an aside/addition: Laica also wrote quite favourably about my two most recent releases (Roadside Picnic & The Revenant Sea’s ‘Their Words are Lost in the Din of Jets’ and Isobel Ccircle‘s (US sound artist April Larson and I) debut EP) in his column for Darkfloor Daily.

28/10/2013
by Wizards Tell Lies
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Ears for Eyes

Over at Ears for Eyes – the wonderful music blog written by Michael Holland – there is a fascinating and insightful post about the Chapel Yard Label that recently released the debut EP by Isobel Ccircle~ (a collaboration between US sound artist April Larson and I).

In the article, Michael gives a few words over to this very release:

Isobel Ccircle is a collaboration between Matt Bower and April Larsen; their EP ‘Eyes in the Ground’ is remarkable. Deeply weird, even if you’re familiar with their solo work, it manages to be at once forbiddingly alien and deeply, stunningly beautiful. Opener ‘I Live Through Death’ pairs April’s piercing drone with Matt’s strange subterranean cracklings; it sounds like glaciers breaking apart, monitored from the far-future sea bed by gilled post-humans. The detail in the production is amazing, clanging pipes, vastly magnified vinyl crackle, singing primordial birds, scrambled xeno-broadcasts, melted audio files played through mile high stone chimneys; it has a whole world of sound in which to wander. Put your head phones on, sit in the dark and let this stunning EP take you away to abandoned and impossibly old temples, locked in undiscovered ice-sealed isolation.

25/10/2013
by Wizards Tell Lies
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The Temple of Doom

In a bid to get all seasonal and festive we have made our own contribution to the plethora of Halloween mixes doing the rounds at the moment.
Our mix is called Wizards Tell Lies & The Temple of Doom:

Wizards Tell Lies & The Temple of Doom by Thecuriositypipe on Mixcloud

Turn off the lights, light a candle, close the curtains, sit in a salt circle and listen…