Monday, May 02, 2016

March, April, May - Storm Bugs Dingles

A clutch of new dingles

Monday, February 08, 2016

When the Water

Friday, January 01, 2016

New Resolutions/Cash Back




















To celebrate the end of that confusing interregnum between Christmas and New Year and the start of 2016, Storm Bugs give you a brand new dingle – New Resolutions/Cash Back.

All the best from the Bugs!

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Chronocutting

Keen followers of this blog may well remember the Chronocuts series that started back in 2008. It all began as a happy accident - whilst testing a new web page in 2007 which contained several movie clips I noticed that the movies loaded one after the other, in a sequential order, a one frame gap between each. By using the same footage for each clip an echoing repetitious moving image was created. With 24 clips placed side-by-side one could in effect watch one second’s worth of footage simultaneously upsetting the singularity of the cinematic moment.

Using web browsers proved to be too dependent on the speed of the web connection and indeed on the browser - in Internet Explorer the clips loaded sequentially but not in many others, so a technique was developed to create new single movies built from several slices. As source footage the Chronocuts used scenes from familiar films ranging from Lindsay Anderson’s If to Hitchcock’s Psycho. Our cinematic memory of the scenes and how they unfold makes the temporal and spatial transformation all the more acute. Rather than glimpse a movement once we see it repeated visually and aurally revealing new relationships and dynamics in the footage.

So why the post now? Well next week - the 2cnd of December to be precise I will be screening 5 or so Chronocuts upstairs at the Memorial Gallery in Hastings. Especially for the exhibition I have made brand new higher definition versions and an extended version of Iffy plus a new piece Where the air is clear. 



Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Storm Bugs in the Wire

Get yourself a copy of the October issue of the Wire magazine to read a two page spread on Storm Bugs and  Film of the Same Name

Saturday, July 18, 2015

HKY502 -Storm Bugs dingle


Please to be listening to the new Storm Bugs dingle (download single) HKY502



Thursday, April 16, 2015

Ice Yacht – Pole of Cold


Tucked away on Snatch 3 (the last of the Snatch Tapes compilations released in 1981) is a track by Ice Yacht called ‘0 Degrees North’. An austere piece of drum loop and drone music, there was talk of a full tape having been recorded by the band (?) but no documentation of any further releases can be found.

Rumour had it that members of Ice Yacht had embarked on an ill-fated trip to the North Pole attempting to retrace a journey made by the Norwegian explorer Fridtjof Nansen in 1888. This story was given credence when last year a polar research group uncovered a cassette tape in a vacuum-sealed case in the permafrost. The white tape was marked simply Ice Yacht – Pole of Cold.

After letting the tape thaw out it was then baked in a temperature controlled oven for 5 hours and though some oxide had peeled away the tape was playable allowing the transfer of the recordings. Pole of Cold contains six tracks of analogue electronics seemingly mapping an arctic exploration to the coldest place on the planet though exactly when and where they were recorded is unknown. 

Fragment Factory have now made 100 numbered replica copies of the tape and  it is available now on white cassette

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Yo Ho


So a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all our readers – OK, OK I know this blog has been all but silent this year with only four posts, in contrast to the previous 16 or so posts per year and even 60 when it all began back in 2005. A fellow blogger who I still read occasionally was bemoaning the slow deaths of many blogs; starved of audiences by more immediate social media. In particular there was a wistful nod to the time when bloggers would write long entries/essays in response to each other’s posts and there was a real exchange of thoughts/ ideas, videos and sounds.

Despite blogger stats telling me I have had 60,000 page views Brut Smog never seemed particularly popular so its decline wasn’t about the audience moving to Facebook or Twitter but more that I moved to the former and then rapidly seemed to loose the inclination to spend an hour or so writing pieces. So much easier to post a couple of lines or a photo, get a few likes,exchange some banter and move on. Facebook is very good at giving one the illusion of a warm snug glow of being amongst friends but if my Facebook history was wiped out tomorrow there would be nothing to miss whereas in contrast I would be sad to loose some of the blog posts. This doesn’t quite amount to a New Year’s resolution to blog more and Facebook less. A resolution to do more writing, reading even sketching and less computing would be preferable all round.  

Friday, August 01, 2014

Punctums


Following on from the last post regarding GoTH am pleased to say that the remake - Film of The Sane Name is (after more stops and starts than a 1950s BSA) finally all coming together nicely. To offset/interrupt the workshop and marsh footage some swirling animated sections have been created which have been dubbed "Punctums".

Monday, July 07, 2014

Bike Rental



"The haunting qualities of the English countryside are evoked in this enigmatic film: part fake public information film, part occult jaunt. A woman tours the sparse marshlands of southern England, but what is she seeking? With a tape recorder as her guide, she travels by bike and by foot in pursuit of her secret mission."
Part of the Apostrophe S trilogy finds its way into the Freewheeling strand of the BFI cycling programme. Available to watch for a mere £1.00 or put it another way less than half the cost of a skinny latte.   

Friday, December 20, 2013

Hollow Gravity Review


To end the year a nice review of Hollow Gravity LP on the Sound Projector website. Given the volume of releases coming through Mr. Pinsent's door, reviews in the Sound Projector can be a little after the fact though rather than being a cause for complaint in the internet world in which releases are hyped to death for about a week and then all but vanish the longer slower approach arguably has its merits. The LP of Hollow Gravity sold out some time ago though copies can be found online without too much trouble and/or you can of course get a digital version on the Bandcamp page here.

Tuesday, December 03, 2013

Video Mix Tape



These last couple of years I have spent so much time on the purely audio that in contrast to the late noughties I have had a lot less time for the audio-visual.  Partly just to remind myself of all the blood, sweat and video making I put together a quick back to back edit of works all loosely connected by a certain objectification.

Monday, September 16, 2013

No Nothingness/ Triangulation - the new Storm Bugs single


No Nothingness/ Triangulation - Storm Bugs single 

the first new tracks to be released in ten years

now available inclusively as download (in MP3, FLAC etc)




Watch the video



Friday, March 22, 2013

The Upstairs Backwards




















Myself and VDO have been working on a couple of collaborative tracks. The first fruits of our labour is Drums in the Sanctuary (the office abandoned, she descends into the underworld) the title being a willful misreading of this. Another track is already recorded and who knows if a willing body can be found there will be some kind of release this year. 

Tuesday, March 05, 2013

Snatch Tapes Head Cleaner


If like many of us you have spent the last few days listening to Bowie's latest offering and you now find your heads are completely clogged then you need the patented Snatch Tapes Head Cleaner. Just click here and play though your system once or twice to dislodge any unwanted residues. Guaranteed clean heads or your rabbit back.  

Friday, January 18, 2013

The Gift of Vision and Sound


This Saturday at the Furtherfield gallery One minute (Volume One) curated by Kerry Baldry  will be screening. Included, as part of the programme is a video called Jiggery Pokery I made back in 2005. Jiggery Pokery was part of a sequence of pieces, which attempted to very directly link sound and image.

During the 1990s I created a number of installations in which a key element was the interplay of sound and vision and once I got my first Mac in late 97 I began experimenting with various programmes that allowed you do this on screen. The Mac in question had a blistering 200 MHZ processor and it wasn’t until 2002 when I upgraded to an iMac G3 (600 MHZ) that really anything of interest began to happen. In 2001 I also came across an application called Vidoedelic that provided real scope for linking image manipulation to either sound or midi signals.

Using sound files or live sound in Videodelic was rather imprecise working as it did rather like a colour organ by filtering the sound into frequency bands (bass, mid or high) and then allowing you to apply one or other band to a parameter. Anything other than a very straightforward bass beat was hard to track. What worked much better was using midi data.

The midi value of notes could be precisely matched to parameter changes. So for example as you ascended up a scale an image could rotate in steps precisely equivalent to each interval. Using this approach I worked up a number of pieces. As with the installations the idea was to use sound to animate the image in some way, articulating a tangentially related aspect or property. So for example in A Rocco Din the idea was to take a picture of an accordion and then have a piece of accordion music perform a digital dissection of the image.
A Rocco Din was the first piece to be completed and took a couple of months to finish this was largely down to technical problems as though Videodelic can record QuickTime movies of its output it can’t do this when being controlled by midi only when using sound files. The solution ended up being using an on screen recorder with the midi track running at ¼ speed then speeding it all back up… all in all far more than any iMac can handle. Arriving at a perfect sync which was in a way the whole idea proved to be very difficult.
The next completed piece was Jiggery Pokery. Again working from a single image this time of two highland dancers and using an adapted midi file of a highland jig as an animation source the image was coerced into ‘dancing’. By this time I had acquired a box that meant one could play the piece live on the Mac and output the VGA of the computer to a DV camera. Not entirely without loss of quality but a lot easier than the first method.
I completed two more pieces using a similar approach Quadrangle and Row Row, working from an image of a white square and of two men in a boat respectively. Quadrangle uses a quasi-random midi sequence generator producing a possible more inventive series of sequences than those used in A Rocco Din or Jiggery Pokery. Quadrangle also uses the midi data to change the colour of the image. Row Row in contrast is the most straightforward of the four works with the image of the two men in the boat being stretched to create the illusion of the image rowing.
Looking back of the four pieces Quadrangle and Jiggery Pokery still seem to ‘work’ the other two seem a little too restrained possibly hidebound by the technical difficulties it took to simply finish them. 

After making the four pieces, which took best part of two years I largely stopped using Videodelic as it was never upgraded from os9 to Mac OS X and the problems with capturing the output was never resolved. Instead I began to use MAX/MSP/Jitter to make pieces such as Fleshtones.

It might be interesting one day to revisit the pieces in a more performative fashion.