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Heavier Sideways

by Tom Richards

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about

Heavier Sideways is the new EP from electronic musician and instrument designer Tom Richards, consisting of live improvised sessions recorded under lockdown in Richards’ home studio.

The follow up to his 2018 Nonclassical debut Pink Nothing, the EP opens with ‘Big House Tune’, a tongue-in-cheek title alluding to the artist’s lockdown listening habits – handbag house classics, Junior Vasquez, Farley ‘Jackmaster’ Funk, and others adjacent to the legendary Paradise Garage in New York. Although pretty far from handbag, the track is four-to-the-floor, a rare approach for Richards. “It’s maybe the closest thing I’d make to a house groove,” he says.

The creation of the EP was spurred on by vintage technology – a 1990s analogue vocoder and a 1980s Soviet drum machine, both of which were integrated into Richards’ hand-built setup. They’ve left their mark on the recordings, with the drum machine’s insistent blips punctuating strangely non-verbal vocoder-mangled synths.

The lockdown setting is referenced in the title of the final track ‘Minor Breach’. The track revolves around a sparse groove, with interjections of classical radio ‘breaching’ the electronic sound world and influencing filtered electronic feedback. Live radio is a staple of Richards’ performances, as he shapes and rhythmically injects snatches of broadcasts, borrowing dynamic reshaping techniques from the traditions of musique concrète.

credits

released July 17, 2020

All music written, performed, recorded and produced by Tom Richards

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about

Tom Richards London, UK

Hardware based electronic music using instruments designed and built by the artist. Tom also reimagined and constructed Daphne Oram's unfinished 'Mini Oramics' graphic sound synthesiser system.

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