We're happy to say that Contra Pop Festival will be returning to Ramsgate on 4th-5th August 2018.
The line-up will be announced here, on the Extra Normal website, on Thursday 31st May.
Golden Teacher at Contra Pop 2015
The first Extra Normal mix of 2018, Faceless, is a very special one, not just because it’s actually an original composition rather than a mix(!), but also as it was produced by our good friend and musical visionary, Simon Vincent.
The striking illustration below, ‘In His Head’, is taken from the comic book Simon was reading in 1993 around the time he made Faceless.
Click on the clipping to be transported to the mindspace of a ruthlessly corporate London via wyrd old Norwich at the advent of the Partridge
We're delighted to announce the latest addition to our roster, Commons, an alter-disco improv duo hailing from Ramsgate.
You can follow them on Twitter at @commonsband and Instagram at @commonsband
More importantly, you can catch them live at the Tom Thumb Theatre in Margate on 21st March, supporting Brooklyn's avant-psych-jazz ensemble, Sunwatchers.
We’re excited to announce that Lumpen Nobleman will be performing live with ex-Family-Elan drummer and all-round musical maverick Mark Hearne at Folkestone’s Profound Sound Festival, programmed by Hot Salvation Records, mid-afternoon on Saturday 3rd February. Expect synthesizer, turntable and percussive improvisations.
The festival's base is the Quarterhouse on Tontine Street and other acts on the bill over the weekend include Louise Ahl, Fritz Welch, Paddy Steer and Brassica.
Happy New Year!
Lumpen Nobleman's track 'More Realistic Contemporary Settings' is included on esteemed London label Linear Obsessional's MR-James-inspired A View From a Hill compilation, released on 24th December 2017. The comp was put together by David Little and features tracks by Steven Ball, Viv Corringham, Ingrid Plum, Philip Sanderson and dozens more.
“The duration of the track corresponds with the time it takes to carry an overfull Aldi carrier bag briskly through the patchily lit grounds of St. George’s Church, Ramsgate, from the Church Road entrance to the Broad Street exit, stopping for a minute to consider how MR James redefined the ghost story for the 20th century by abandoning many of the formal Gothic clichés of his predecessors and using more realistic contemporary settings”.
Here are the last two Extra Normal mixes of the year.
The first one, put together by Dan Dizette, touches on the 1960s British folk revival, 1990s Malian field recording and some of the screechiest moments of the mid-20th-century Transatlantic avant-garde.
Click on the skeletal peacock to begin.
The second one, by Lumpen Nobleman, takes in noisy guitar-work, eccentric singer-songwriting, European avant-prog excursions, Gaelic psalms, Jamaican reggae, London dancehall and the best pop song of 2017.
Click on the picture postcard view to board the Siberian Express.
Exclusively first class travel available; nothing's too good for the workers.
We're proud to say that a recent track from Lumpen Nobleman has been included on the latest Patient Sounds compilation.
Much like when his first release was aired on the HelloGoodbye Show back in 2011, the singular nobleman has again been mistaken for a congregation of noblemen.
Heard yesterday that we didn't get our main funding, so there will be no Contra Pop this year, unfortunately.
We'd like to thank everyone who made the last two years a success and hopefully we can bring the festival back in the future!
Keir Neuringer and Matt Wright's wonderful CD Speak Cities is out today!
Get your copy from the Extra Normal Bandcamp site (here).
On the back of a spellbinding show with Evan Parker at London's Cafe OTO on Saturday 15th April,
the duo will play Arco Barco, Ramsgate, on Wednesday 19th April (sign-up here), with DJ Lumpen Nobleman,
and St. Gregory's Centre, Canterbury, on Thursday 20th April (tickets here), with pianist Simon Vincent.
Shaun Blezard's Towards the Margins show on FutureMusicFM last Sunday 26th March was an absolute cracker, taking in some of the most vital jazz, improv and 'out there' music of recent times. We are honoured that Shaun saw fit to include a song from the Extra Normal vaults and a forthcoming track from the label.
The former piece is Richard Dawson's stunningly wonky live version of 'Judas Iscariot' recorded at Contra Pop 2015; the latter being none other than Keir Neuringer and Matt Wright's 'Cityspeak', from their forthcoming album, Speak Cities, due for release on 18th April.
A belated happy new year from everyone at Extra Normal.
We're excited to announce the London launch of Keir Neuringer and Matt Wright's Speak Cities CD at Cafe OTO
with Evan Parker on Saturday 15th April 2017.
Please click on the photographic portrait of Mr. Neuringer for more info.
We're delighted to announce the release of US saxophonist Keir Neuringer and UK composer Matt Wright's fantastic new album, Speak Cities, on 18 April 2017. The duo will tour the south east of England in support of the release in the springtime. For more information on the forthcomingCD, please click on Neuringer's labyrinthine cityscape above.
Pierre Bastien at Contra Pop 2015, by Zara McKenzie
Happy to hear Pierre Bastien's Mecanoid on the Beach (recorded live at Contra Pop 2015) get an airing on The Wire's Adventures in Music and Sound show on Resonance FM last Thursday. Stream the whole show (presented by Gustave Evrard) below, and listen out for Bastien's track around the 39-minute mark.
We're excited to announce that free improv trailblazers Far Rainbow, Tullis Rennie and Cath Roberts will be appearing at Free Range in Canterbury on Thursday 17th November 2016 at our (polite) behest. This is going to be special. More info at http://free-range.co/
On Saturday 17th September, Sounds for Living, a new organisation founded by our friends, Rachel Connelly (Unmeasured Music) and Dan Scott (Athelstan Sound), present a fantastic all-dayer in Margate, entitled Shelter.
The event, housed in Fort Hill Shelter on Fort Crescent (during the afternoon) and Margate Arts Club (in the evening), will encompass performances by a number of our improvised music heroes, some of whom we've been lucky enough to work with in the past.
US-born saxophonist and composer, Robert Stillman, whose work features in the recent mix we made for Kit Records, will be performing at Shelter at some point between 2.30pm and 6.30pm on Saturday.
Likewise, Tina Krasevec and David Leahy were invited by our friends in Canterbury, Free Range, to appear at Contra Pop 2015 and made it as far as featuring on the festival poster before unfortunately having to pull out. We trust they'll make it along on this occasion and their investigation into the relationship between two performers and a double bass will prove fascinating.
We saw trombonist Sarah Gail Brand play alongside Contra Pop 2016 artist Lauren Redhead at Free Range in October last year and witnessed Steve Beresford on fine form on electronics, objects and piano at the Horse Improv Club in Lambeth the following month. We're looking forward to seeing Brand and Beresford team up for Shelter.
Graham Dunning, who appeared at the Extra-Normal-programmed Magnetic South Festival at London South Bank University in April 2016, brings his radical turntablism to Margate Arts Club at 8pm on Saturday. Dunning's Mechanical Techno is a Pierre-Bastien-meets-Tony-Hart tour-de-force!
Looks like there's only going to be one winner in Ramsgate's giant jellyfish hunt.
Click on Oliver Barrett's wonderful illustration to find out more about Contra Pop Festival, 20th-21st August 2016.
In other news, the Contra Pop 2015 compilation CD will be released on Saturday 20th August 2016 and available exclusively at Ramsgate beach over the festival weekend.
The compilation includes several tracks recorded live at last year's event, combined with a selection of previously (un)released offerings by festival artists. We are delighted that every single live act that performed at Contra Pop 2015 is represented here and we would like to thank the artists for embracing the project.
1. Kayaka (8:16)
2. Tomaga (7:51)
3. Pierre Bastien ( 10:45)
4. Evan Parker and Matt Wright (10:35)
5. Richard Dawson (4:38)
6. Richard Youngs (5:24)
7. Ghédalia Tazartès (4:56)
8. Orlando (6.49)
9. Trelawney (4:08)
10. Ravioli Me Away (2:02)
11. Pega Monstro (4:32)
12. Gnod (5:16)
1. Klara Lewis (2:29)
2. Don’t DJ (8:40)
3. Peder Mannerfelt (4:24)
4. Petrels (11:11)
5. Giant Swan (10:20)
6. Golden Teacher (8:09)
7. Dick El Demasiado (2:18)
8. Felix Kubin (1:54)
9. Bass Clef (6:52)
10. Heatsick (4:52)
11. Adrian Sherwood (5:43)
We've made a contribution to the fantastic Kit Records mix series. Thanks to Richard Greenan for the invitation.
Click below to be taken to the mix.
We are sorry to announce that Gus Garside has had to withdraw from the Free Range performance detailed below due to illness. We (and Gus himself) are hugely disappointed that he won't be making it to Canterbury and we wish him a speedy recovery.
We're pleased to say that Simon Vincent will now be performing a rare solo electronic improvisation in addition to his interpretation of Feldman's Palais de Mari.
On Thursday 15th October, Extra Normal travels to Free Range in Canterbury to present a new collaboration between Berlin-based pianist and electro-acoustic musician Simon Vincent and Brighton’s improviser and double bass player Gus Garside.
For Free Range, Vincent interprets Morton Feldman’s final solo piano work Palais de Mari (1986), while Garside (double bass and effects) and Vincent (electronics) come together to perform a specially-commissioned electro-acoustic improvisation.
Simon Vincent is a performer and composer of acoustic and electronic music, who challenges the boundaries of genre and musical expression with a highly personal language which he has been developing since the early 1990s. ‘Visionary and expressive’, ‘rich and surprising’, ‘intelligent’, ‘delicate’, ‘impressionistic’, ‘fresh’, ‘incredibly individual’, his music has attracted praise from critics as varied as Ben Watson, Julian Cowley, Massimo Ricci, Gilles Peterson and Four Tet.
Gus Garside has worked in a variety of musical settings – jazz, contemporary music, pop, cabaret, dance, theatre and improvised music – where he has performed with many leading players. He is a member of a number of improvising and contemporary music groups including his long standing string trio Arc, with Sylvia Hallett and Danny Kingshill; Static Memories, a duo with Dan Powell and the West Hill Blast Quartet, a free jazz unit with Ron Caines, Dan Spicer and Andy Pyne. ‘Where Garside differs from the average jazz bassist is in the range of sonorities he conjures from his instrument’ – The Penguin Guide to Jazz on CD.
Extra Normal and Julie Tippex present a Contra Pop primer event at Cafe Oto in Dalston, London, on 20th August with live performances by festival artists Pierre Bastien and Tomaga. For more info and tickets, click on the poster below.
We're delighted to present Dan Dizette's new ten-minute sound-collage, Radio Saviour.*
Prepare to be taken on a non-linear journey through a tumultuous century of radio broadcasting,
from state-controlled 1920s Leningrad to uncontrollable present day London.
* The piece was originally produced in response to an international open call for experimental radio art.
After being selected for broadcast, Dan decided to withdraw the work due to what
he perceived as a lack of transparency in the commissioning process.
Extra Normal Mix No. 43 by Kyle McCallum.
15 tracks, each performed by 15 year olds (plus or minus 15 months), compiled over 15 years then mixed live in a slightly different order. Click on the adulterated magazine clipping to listen.
Extra Normal Mix No. 40 by Dan Dizette is made up of twenty-two tracks which have each been made available to the public free of charge by the various artists and/or labels involved in their production and release.
After a successful launch event in June and the visit of Ravioli Me Away in September, Stupid Future is now preparing for a special Spooky Future edition at Vinyl Head Cafe in Ramsgate on 30th October.
Lumpen Nobleman will be projecting a selection of horror film visuals and spinning some of his most creepy soundtrack records and Vinyl Head will be putting on a seasonal menu including delicious pumpkin soup and mysterious 'adult treats'.
In the meantime, Lumpen Nobleman has put together an exclusive Halloween mix:
A huge thank-you to Ravioli Me Away for hitting the Ramsgate Music Hall with a unique brand of post-punk agitation on Thursday. Extra Normal and Northerly Wind wish the band all the best for the rest of their tour. For tour dates and to get your hands on 'The Inevitable Album', click here.
We are excited to present an ambitious addition to the Extra Normal mix series. Mix No. 38 comes in the form of an audio tapestry of ‘spoken words and stories, non-verbal utterances, glottal sonics and human harmonies’, selected and collaged by Jennifer Lucy Allan to a backdrop of modern drone.
Allan is online editor at The Wire magazine and label head at Arc Light Editions, which is part of Bristol’s Multiverse Music. The label’s debut release was the first vinyl pressing of Arthur Russell's Another Thought, followed by Ingram Marshall’s Fog Tropes. In the coming months, Arc Light Editions will release a beautiful but forgotten Finnish jazz record by Jone Takamaki Trio.
In the meantime, you’re invited to navigate this sprawling alter-narrative that Styx in the Throat.
Extra Normal and Northerly Wind's eclectic clubnight, Stupid Future, is combining with Ramsgate Music Hall to bring eccentric London-based post-punk group, Ravioli Me Away, to Kent on Thursday 4th September.
Advance tickets are available from Ramsgate Music Hall via WeGotTickets.
As is often the case with the Extra Normal mix series, No. 37 invited its author to do something, musically or otherwise, that they wouldn’t normally do.
After ten or so years of ‘kicking your quivering record collection firmly in the throat’ on Glasgow’s Subcity Radio, The Awkward Sons of Patrick Stewart have decided to home in on a subcultural musical genre often shied away from by prudish vinylists and boutique labels, by way of ‘a wall-to-wall, dark, sickly, occult, morbid, extreme metal punishment session’.
Mastermind of this beautifully crafted Satanistic trauma-fest, The Awkward Sons’ very own Splashy the Blame-Shifter co-runs the noise/drone/rhythmic industrial/hollowed-out techno tape/digital label, Herhalen, on which he’ll shortly be releasing some ‘noise/feedback/drone/fucked up laptop abuse’ on a split cassette with Ship Canal and Lenina.
Splashy also plays in the band, Ex-Servicemen, and, if you’re lucky enough to be in Glasgow on 25 July, you’ll catch the city’s only tramp juice-fuelled industrial dub power trio at Nice ‘n’ Sleazy, supporting contemporary noise legend, Kevin Drumm.
In the meantime, if you’re feeling sinister, prepare to be VIOLATED by The Awkward Sons.
Extra Normal is teaming up with Northerly Wind to present a night of DJing in the upstairs bar of Ramsgate Music Hall on Saturday 28th June. The latest news from Northerly Wind HQ is that Drunk Mum may be bringing along a Kaoss Pad. Happy days.
Contribution No. 36 of the Extra Normal mix series comes from the mysterious figure of Darnell Corvid. While it is rumoured that the man is a major player in the emerging Doom Wop scene and has connections with a vegan cafe and its associated record shop, we firmly believe that Mr. Corvid is actually a visionary alien who came to earth to soak up some groovy sonics during the Space Race and is now retired and living in the body of the tabby cat, Link Wray, in the Mount Florida area of Glasgow.
Lumpen Nobleman has been commissioned by curator, Anne-Marie Watson, to produce a piece of music which is to be pressed onto vinyl as a one-off dub plate and housed in Mat Jenner's travelling Foam archive alongside contributions by ninety-nine other artists and musicians.
Click here to view the Foam catalogue and for updates on the current whereabouts of the archive.
Now that the dust has settled on a spate of February mixes, The Archduke Dance Contraband follows his DJ appearance at Extra Normal’s Vacant World with a selection of Robert-Burns-inspired folk music.
While Burns had ‘the temerity to suggest that God was a woman’ (Michael Marra), here Ivor Cutler urges that ‘women of the world take over’ and The Archduke astutely places Cutler’s mini manifesto in paralllllel-o-lel with Linda Perhacs’ spiralllll-o-ling psychedelic gem in this finely-crafted mix.
Alongside such subtle programming, the mix tacitly acknowledges the centrality of the shared social experience to the folk fraternity, in its inclusion of several live performances which capture the kind of inter-song banter key to the repertoire of any serious songsmith.
Click on the Bard to be taken on an emotional rollercoaster ride.
We're delighted to announce that, hot on the heels of diverse mixes from Howard Slater, DJ Local Promoter and David Panos, the fourth guest mix of the series comes from a figure fast becoming a legend of the Glasgow music community. Over the several years of its operation, Cry Parrot has put on some of the most memorable gigs in the city's already world-renowned musical history, often featuring protagonists of Scotland's DIY underground playing alongside a discerning selection of international acts. Key to the vitality of Cry Parrot has been an operational ethos that favours artists and audiences over profiteers, an approach that is sure to make a lasting impression as the project branches out across the UK and further afield.
Without further ado, here is an exquisite mix from Cry Parrot's Fielding Hope, who has sensitively collated a phenomenal breadth of jazz from around the globe and beyond.
With the Extra Normal mix series peppered with extraordinary releases from Difficult Fun, we thought it fitting to solicit a DJ mix straight from the horse's mouth, the London label's very own David Panos.
Panos has dismantled three generations of house and techno music, before screwing them back together again using the nuts and bolts of the Athens electronic underground, and a bit of lubrication from a sensational wild card entry from the Channel Islands.
To enter this clash of goths vs. ravers, where Euro/US house and techno meet the unique sound of Athens' cold wave bars and clubs, click on the collage (provided by Panos) above.
Events on the Extra Normal mixes page have taken another unexpected turn. After our own Lumpen Nobleman bent the rules with the contribution of a newly synced soundtrack to an existing 1970s exploitation film, and guest Howard Slater breathed new life into the series with his Youtube playlist, DJ Local Promoter now hits us on the blind side with a sucker punch: a mix that comes in the form of an all-singing-all-dancing live radio show.
This special edition of From Classic to Modern takes us, anthropologically and comedically, into the very heart of Scotland's regional broadcasting tradition. A rare sociological insight into the mind-blowing headspace of the thousands of Scots tuning into sublime frequencies on the car stereo on their way to an out-of-town hardware store to pick up DIY supplies on a Saturday afternoon.
Musically, this selection comes straight from the heart of your passionate host, DJ Local Promoter, who will take you sailing soulfully from Wester Ross to Nova Scotia and back again via the extremely funky shores of a post-punk-disco-not-disco Francophone Europe.
It is with great pleasure that we present to you the unique world of From Classic to Modern.
After a three-year period encompassing the production of thirty musical compilations by in-house selectors Lumpen Nobleman and Dan Dizette, the Extra Normal mix series is now expanding to include contributions by some of the visionaries who have inspired us over the years.
We're delighted to announce that the first of these figures is the
inimitable Howard Slater who has put together a magical selection of jazz, spoken word, post punk, deep house and techno.
Without losing a hint of his analogue aesthetic, where sound flows endlessly, Lumpen Nobleman returns with a release that travels far, far away, to galaxies inhabited by mutant radiophonic workshops and colonised by industrial forces that know better than us; where electronic music is just a ritual, and collision and seduction are the same thing. Celestial rhythmic Fluxus of the highest divinity, or earnest, earthbound power electronics; who knows? What we really can assert, though, is that something ominous and bloody physical is about to happen. – José Luis Villalobos (Electrónica en Abril, Madrid)
A Magnificent Stone Near Nazarovo will be released by Extra Normal on 27 May 2013 in a cassette edition and Norman Records will be taking pre-orders shortly.
Extra Normal is excited to announce that Lumpen Nobleman will perform at La Casa Encendida, Madrid, on Sunday 22nd July as part of a series of events spanning July, August and September 2012.
The programme of concerts will include contributions from Sonic Youth co-founder, Kim Gordon, in collaboration with DNA no wave pioneer, Ikue Mori; avant minimalist, Eyvind Kang, alongside vocalist, Jessika Kenney; and hypnotic jazz experimentalists, The Necks.
We're delighted to be contributing a guest mix to Jonny Mugwump's Exotic Pylon radio show.
For more information, click here.
Have a listen to the Exotic Pylon Radio Archive and we're sure you'll agree that this is the most forward-, backward- and sideways-thinking transmission on the airwaves. ________________________________________________________________________
Lumpen Nobleman's Grusha LP is available from:
Aye-Aye Books, CCA, Sauchiehall Street, Glasgow
Monorail Music, King's Court, Glasgow
Piccadilly Records, Oldham Street, Manchester
Rough Trade East, Brick Lane, London
Rubadub Records, Howard Street, Glasgow
Sister Ray, Berwick Street, London
Sounds of the Universe, Broadwick Street, London
Supreme tellers of tales from the dark underground of the imagination and widely accepted blogger-top-dogs, 20 Jazz Funk Greats, included Lumpen Nobleman's Scaling the Yablonois on their Souvenirs from the Zone mixtape.
To read their earlier report on the making of the Grusha LP, click here.
Lumpen Nobleman's Grusha, just one piece of wax in the five-figure record collection of David Barbarossa, got an airing on the first episode of the Glasgow disco legend's Wild Combination radio show. To listen, click here.