I’m extemely happy to announce that my debut original release is finally available!
Ultraviolet ft. Lord Skywave / Bleu Monday is available as a limited edition 12″ (500 copies) or digital from all fine retailers. It has received national airplay by Gilles Petersen (BBC R1), Mary-Anne Hobbs (XFM), Mistajam (1xtra) and Sinden (Kiss FM). The support from DJ/producers has been outstanding with names like Mark Pritchard (Warp), Ben UFO (Hessle), Ben Westbeech, FaltyDL (Ninja Tune), Spencer Calum (Numbers/Warp) and Brodinski all giving it full marks.
Just in time for autumn, Hemlock brings us a beguiling wisp of a tune that drifts like fallen leaves and flickers like a jack-o-lantern’s grin: “Ultraviolet,” a collaborative effort from Nautiluss (Thunderheist’s Graham Douglas Bertie) and Lord Skywave (Simon Lord of Simian and Black Ghosts). Despite the Hemlock imprimateur, I’m not sure you could really call this bass music; it’s pop, plain and simple, with a passing resemblance to thSee muted melodicism of Mount Kimbie or James Blake. The groove is a minimal affair, nothing more than shakers, a time-keeping hi-hat and dull kicks on the 2 and 4; its most pronounced feature is an apple-crisp handclap that crunches with a decidedly Hemlock feel. The brunt of the song is carried by tremulous, organ-like synthesizers and rich vocal harmonies, with Theremin details adding a sci-fi patina to their disembodied Beach Boys vibes. Nautiluss goes solo on the B-side with “Blue Monday,” which hews to a more traditional bass-music cadence, stumbling and spindly, with wraithlike chords and portamento lead filling out the chilly atmosphere.
Here’s a description by Drowned in Sound which just gave us “single of the week”:
Naturally, when a person is faced with two dudes sassy enough to call themselves Nautiluss and Lord Skywave, one has certain – rather fixed and high – hopes. And while I have been in trouble all my life, with my foolish and old-fashioned propensity for romantic over-expectation, thankfully ‘Ultraviolet’ is as assured and brilliant as the names of its creators suggest. It is a glitchy, twitchy-snared dub-ballad with slow, elongated vocals that can’t quite dissipate the air of spooky threat; those Twilight Zone synths in the background are definitely up to something. You know, the roller disco at Bracknell sports centre in 1988 was never going to be the rainbow-lit arena of neon legwarmers I imagined. But that sort of dashed disappointment is precisely why I found music – just like what is happening here – because it makes it all better. B-side and Nautiluss instrumental ‘Bleu Monday’ is, happily, just as big on portent as the lead track. And as gleefully modern as a thing could be.
Last but not least… This record couldn’t have happened without a few people so I need to mention them:
Simon Lord, who hit me up in spring of 2010 looking for music with Ultraviolet being the result of that request, and so I am forever indebted to him. Jack and Andy at Hemlock for believing in the music and giving me the opportunity to be a part of the Hemlock family. I couldn’t be in better company!
Thanks to everyone that gave it early support and shared it with their friends and fans and moms and dads. The road of an artist is fraught with peril but I feel stronger when I know I have support from my peers and friends. Thank you thank you thank youuuu!