Thursday, January 26, 2006

Droners on Radio 3!

Yesterday was a good day for Children of the Drone. In the afternoon I got an unexpected email from BBC Radio 3 to say that one of our recordings was going to be played on their Friday night avant-garde programme Mixing It. I'd sent them a couple of compilation CD's with a cryptical 'press release' some weeks ago, but then just assumed nothing would come of it. So that'll be on Friday 3rd February, sometime after 10:15p.m. It'll be interesting to see what they have to say about us. It was rather a strange choice of track ("Children of the Groan Tube" from Compilation no. 4), a bit of a novelty from our preparatory session for 2002's "Off the Wall" comedy festival slot at The Phoenix, featuring a couple of plastic "groan tubes" Simon brought along as "comedy instruments".

We happened to be having a long-overdue session at Oblique House in the evening, and there was quite a large number of us - so I was able to pass on this good news. The enthusiasm this generated, together with the presence of Simon (who hasn't Droned with us for a while) making weird electronic noises with his laptop and peripheral devices made for quite a remarkable session:

Rupert, Henry, James
Rupert, Henry, James

Simon - laptop, electronics, 'plant-chant' device, acoustic bass guitar
Keith - acoustic bass guitar, acoustic guitar, percussion
John - tablas, acoustic guitar, bouzouki, percussion, low whistle
James T - poetry, keyboard, percussion
Rupert - percussion
Henry - percussion
Melski - xylophone, percussion, vocals, readings
Red Cabbage - weird red cabbage noises
me - saz, balalaika, percussion, readings

Simon with laptop
Simon with laptop

I read from the local Express & Echo classified ads (I managed to find a signed, framed photo of Brian May for £30 o.n.o.!), Melski read from the 'lonely hearts' section, as well as reading and singing from the Penguin Book of English Madrigals ("Adieu Sweet Amaryllis", etc.) The newspaper had actually been brought into the room to soak up a spilled mug of tea; the madrigals book just happened to be lying around. Simon used some recordings of "numbers stations" found on the Internet Audio Archive at one point. John had his new tablas - sounding great, and Rupert brought along a wonderful percussive device (a "tone bar"?) which Henry immediately became enamoured by.

red cabbage
red cabbage - the most psychedelic of vegetables

The red cabbage "performed" via Simon's 'plant-chant' device. It'd been sitting in the fridge, neglected for well over a week, so that was a good chance to give it an airing...

A very fresh, creative, uplifting, heavily percussive session. Parts of it felt quite funky in an "angular early 80's Rough Trade" kind of way (although that's not so obvious listening back through).

Listen Here


Post a Comment

<< Home