Saturday, 2 August 2008

Recording A New Text With Graham Massey

Just returned from a brief visit to Manchester, where I was recording a text for the soundtrack to a new Biting Tongues video, The Dragman, which should be ready in the autumn. Graham Massey had already produced a rhythm bed for me to work with, comprising a session with drummer Eddie Sherwood and sound files supplied by bassist Colin Seddon. The resulting track sounded amazing: this new ‘hyperlocal’ way of recording and assembling material from different sites and moments seems to suit the rather fractured approach to composing that Biting Tongues attempted to carry over from their live performances to their work in the studio.

The Dragman started out as a text I wrote for some of the later Tongues shows and was originally arranged for three voices. I had sent a copy of it to Howard Walmsley, who thought its fragmented storyboard narrative might form the basis for an interesting short film. He broke the text down into short scenes and took the resulting shooting script with him to China last year, where he worked with calligraphy and English language students at an art college near Monkey Mountain, translating and recreating parts of the text. The results are eerily beautiful. There will be more on the making of The Dragman as production continues.

It is hoped that the film will be finished in time for the four-day residency Graham Massey is curating at the Shunt Vaults in London this October. Taking place between 1.10 and 4.10, it will feature performances from Biting Tongues, Tool Shed, Massonix, Oort, plus surprise guests, DJs and MCs. Again, more on this as it comes up.

Photo credit: Ken Hollings and Howard Walmsley during Biting Tongues rehearsals at Islington Mill, Salford, taken by Graham Massey 22.2.07.

1 comment:

xl said...

Hi Ken. Finally got my head around to look at your blog. I' amazed. You really got into it. I love it and I love your sense of humour. I'll get back to you about the other things later. take care, xl