Thursday, April 30, 2020


Says Chal Ravens, "really enjoying The Primitive Painter reissue coming on Apollo – glittering cybertech waters, distant polygonal islands, '90s digiutopics, that sort of thing"

Now I was wondering if the artist name (an alter ego for Alter Ego, apparently - i'm stealing a Youtuber's quip here) was a reference to Felt

... and thought "nah, more likely it's directly referring  to Lascaux"

But lookee here, a nod to The Waterboys

and "Cathedral" - as in the proverbial "sonic cathedral" for 4AD-ish religiose reverb aesthetic?

Felt had this proximately titled song

and this even more proximately titled song

ah - and, stop press - as Cesar in comments points out, there is also this Felt song 

so clearly formatively rooted in mid-80s Anglo-indie this The Primitive Painter chap - or chaps, rather, since Alter Ego = duo 

now I'm wondering if that song is named after the House of Love offshoot captained by Terry Bickers of vitreous-guitar showering you with crystalline splinters renown?

The shoegaze into post-rock evolution is well documented and logical

But the shoegaze into the electronic listening music / chill out / IDM side of techno is less delineated

Chapterhouse got that album remixed by somebody or other IDM-ish (Global Communications? Future Sound of London? )

Morr Music

a German friend of mine Heiko Hoffmann - long time editor of electronic music magazine Groove, until recently - did a shoegaze compilation back in 2003

the texturitis and blissy feeling of dreampop / shoegaze was a gateway drug for E-lectronic dance and non-dance, for some, maybe

for me as a writer, maybe that applies too - texture-attentiveness (texture > text) vis-a-vis MBV et al, sets me up well for texturrythm-attentiveness about rave .... ditto "the politics of ecstasy" becomes "the politics of Ecstasy" (although in both cases I would say now that it's more like an "anti-politics" - for better or worse, and increasingly, i think worse) 

but as a listener I was into club music and synth-abetted funk right from the start of the 80s

and in fact would write about things like Mantronix  in that engineer-as-poet / new sonic architecture mode well before I became a raver - at the exact same time as I was hymning A.R. Kane in similar sort of terms (not man-machinic but certainly the human figure disappearing into the miasma of sound)

same kind of becoming-abstract, depersonalized, sensation-not-significance approach

"against interpretation" (before I'd even read Sontag's essay)

Deleuzian, before I'd ever cracked open A Thousand Plateaux 

one instinctively know what is right

and this was the right response to what the music was doing 

the missus reviewed this gig (where they were supported by The House of Love) 

later we saw Felt's final gig together 


Anonymous said...

Felt recorded a song titled "Cathedral" on their first LP.



ah that's case closed then! total Felt homage

Anonymous said...



Anonymous said...

Was definitely a decent amount of '80s indie fanaticism w/ some of those producers - I also think of e.g. Stefan from To Rococo Rot being a big Durutti Column, Felt fan... Which comes very clear if you've listened to that recent reissue of his pre-TRR outfit, Deux Baleines Blanches...

The Chapterhouse album was remixed by Global Communication - who also remixed Slowdive - & one of the chaps from Chapterhouse ended up making trip-hoppish stuff as Cuba, on 4AD... There's the Mark Van Hoen / Locust / Seefeel nexus, too...



ah the lines connect

Ian H from Moon Wiring sent me a whole bunch of links to shoegaze stuff remixed by early-IDM/chill type people, i'm going to be post them. he mentioned Mark Van H also

Ed said...

Yes I was going to mention Mark van Hoen as the archetypal shoegaze => IDM character. A founder member of Seefeel - so his bio says, although I think he left before the first album - and then Locust, etc.

Seefeel themselves went from exploring the world created by Loveless to making some kind of ambient IDM version of post-rock, didn't they? I used to own their album on Warp, although I remember thinking it was pretty disappointing.


their first album proper Quique is really good and in exactly that spot you describe - Loveless meets Aphex Twin. I think they were quite into AR Kane as well, that's the vibe i got i first heard a tape from them, when it was still formative

even better than Quique is Polyfusia, which gathers up their earlier EPs and singles- More Like Space, "Time to Find Me", Plainsong, and Pure, Impure

there's a remix by Aphex of "Time to Find Me" that is wonderful and surprisingly respectful of the original, he keeps a lot of it which was not his rmx norm

but yeah then they seemed to decide they wanted to go full blown IDM and it got bit austere and cold-eerie with the Warp stuff, i think they were following the lead of RDJ with Selected Ambient 2