Life Elsewhere Music Vol 268

Hello, standby for a bumper bundle of exceptional music curated for your listening pleasure. We cover so many different genres in this mix, beginning with what this artist describes as folk, rock, acoustic rock, alt-country, and more. OK, enough of the labels, Jesse Adelman in my opinion writes well-crafted songs with a knack for outstanding performance and production. He says he is a real adult not three pesky kids in an overcoat. Jesse plays most of the instruments and takes care of the engineering on his LP, Strangers. On Is This Real, you may have to stop for a moment and ask yourself, is this a never-before-released cut from a major artist whose name you can’t quite place. Lovely photo on the sleeve. | As Neniu’s Hello plays, I guarantee you will be joining in with “Alo”. The musician and designer says he is addicted to his computer and his album, Moulin is entirely home-made. Grab your French-to-English translation guide to discover what Mr. Neniu is going on about. | You may want to ask why Grandma is appearing in band names lately. We had Bored At My Grandma’s House now Let’s Eat Grandma challenge us with their LP, Two Ribbons. Hailing from Norwich, UK best friends since the age of four, multi-instrumentalists Rosa and Jenny tell the story of the last three years from both Jenny Hollingworth and Rosa Walton’s points of view. The title cut, Two Ribbons is a good place to start understanding Let’s Eat Grandma, but I can’t promise you’ll be more clear about their name. | Collect Call is the solo project of Brighton-based multi-instrumentalist and producer Joseph Thorpe who says his album, The Golden Hour was recorded across a mixture of cupboards, attics, and, studios. Make sure you check out the video for, Chase The Light. | With a couple of intense black and white photos in her promo package, it’s not surprising when Oakland-based, Mikayla McVey says about her song, On Naming (ft. Twain), “It’s about the power of language to create and destroy the world equally – love, landscape, spirit – all the thousands of things we can feel without speaking, but nonetheless are compelled to write novels & poems & prayers & songs about”. | Rachel Newton and Lauren MacColl have joined together to give us “A humanizing tribute to the women who were accused in the Scottish Witch Trials and an exploration into historical beliefs in the supernatural and modern-day parallels in our society. The work is inspired by and in remembrance of real women who were persecuted and tried as witches, and characters from folkloric tales and mythology”. Together they present as Heal & Harrow from their self-titled LP, Lillas is the haunting opening cut. | Next, it’s over to Ireland where so much inventive and powerful music is emanating recently, Eileen Gogan being a fine example. This is an artist who has been a fixture on the Dublin music scene for a good many years. For the EP, Another Golden Day, Eileen has teamed up with Sean O’Hagan, who has his own revered musical career, not least of all as co-founder with Cathal Coughlan of acclaimed Irish band, Microdisney. Sean was an early member of Stereolab before leaving to form the highly influential group The High Llamas. Together, Eileen and Sean have found a fascinating synergy that has resulted in Another Golden Day. Listen carefully to The Last Signal, it takes dedicated musicianship to create such an unassuming song. Exquisite production. | Then, we hear from Emelia Austin with Hand Soft. Is there a secret message behind the almost drone-like, Hand Soft? Even after studying her lyrics, I’m not so sure I have a clue. But, I know I love the wall of noise Emelia produces. Accompanying her debut single she states, “I’m just a melon”, and I’m none the wiser. | OK, hold on while I veer off on a bit of a tangent. Ever since I first heard the astonishingly good, King Hannah I keep wondering if I will discover another band who gives me that certain jolt of intrigue. I will agree, House of Light are far removed from what Hannah and Craig are doing, yet there is something – maybe the old-timey rock guitar pushed to the fore.? The piqued vocals? The production? Consider Still Life from their album, Come Into My Night, you may agree with what I hear. House of Light describes themselves as born in Berlin and raised in L.A. though the main writer moved from Melbourne. They are Justin de Vries (voice/guitar), Mark Kinchin (bass), and Chris Hughes (drums) and I’m looking forward to your opinion of their music. | Is Spoken Word making a comeback? If so, two of Irelands foremost spoken word exponents, Stephen James Smith and Cursed Murphy make an excellent case for your attention. From, Tell It To A Tree, Cursed Murphy along with  Basciville give us, The Secret Keeper, allow the images to stay in your mind, and treasure them. | The somewhat confusing many varieties of electro music can cause the fans of Grime to despair over Drum & Bass, while Dubstep aficionados can get uppity if you call their music simply Techno. In part, this explains why we prefer to call the genres of electro music – fabulous music. As an example, we head to the close of Vol 268 with masterful examples that trainspotters could get all snotty about finding the correct label. Breakfake starts the set with, Nowhere from the Revolution EP on Wheel & Deal Records out of London. This one takes me back to the tower-block pirate’s stations that sprung up on many a London council estate in the early 90s. Yet it is hypnotically modern. | The following two cuts from a splendid compilation, Return To Nature on the Local Knowledge imprint, again out of London. Nice Girl is first with Unacknowledged Star Nose, no messing about here. It’s straight into an insistent beat with everything but the kitchen sink mixed in. And that’s a good thing. As a whole, this one is perfectly ready to be dismissive of any genre you might want to brand it with. I’m thinking around 3 am on the dance floor you’ll find new moves and motions you never thought of before. Or, laying back on a cushion or two with a lover, everything will be alright if you allow it. | Then, a seamless segue into Present Dub by Fibre Optixx and the beats, the samples, the spareness of the production will cast a spell you’ll wish will last to sun up. This is an essential album and as I often say, compilations are an ideal way to discover new music. You need to know that Local Knowledge says you’ll get a free packet of the cutest Butternut Squash seeds you ever receive with the LP. And, the graphics from Tommy Brentnall aka piggybankshoe deserve respect. Plus, All proceeds from digital sales will be donated to Firesticks Alliance, a vital Indigenous-led organization facilitating cultural learning pathways to fire and land management.You are encouraged to read more at | With the compilation title of Return To Nature, I could not resist going back in time to 1979 for the closing track, Back To Nature by Fad Gadget. This was the first artist to sign to Daniel Miller’s Mute label and back then, Frank Tovey AKA, Fad Gadget had been initially messing around with an old Grundig reel-to-reel machine to achieve the sounds he wanted. Imagine what he would be doing today with all the tools we have available. I think it can be safely said that Mr. Tovey was far ahead of the game when it came to electro music and certainly an influence on much of the electro-music heard today. Sadly, Frank Tovey died of heart problems at the age of 45 in 2002. My 7” of the original pressing of Back To Nature has been played more times than I could possibly count and still sounds amazing today. Enjoy the mix!


  1. Jesse Adelman – Is This Real
  2. Neniu – Hello
  3. Let’s Eat Grandma – Two Ribbons
  4. Collect Call – Chase The Light
  5. Mikayla McVey – On Naming (ft. Twain)
  6. Heal & Harrow – Lillas
  7. Eileen Gogan with Sean O’Hagan – The Last Signal
  8. Emelia Austin – Hand Soft
  9. House of Light – Still Life
  10. Cursed Murphy, Basciville – The Secret Keeper
  11. Breakfake – Nowhere
  12. Nice Girl – Unacknowledged Star Nose
  13. Fibre Optixx – Present Dub
  14. Fad Gadget – Back To Nature

Artwork by Grace Garcia “Greek pastry shop window” 2022 giclée print on archival paper 12” x 12” Courtesy of Norman B’s collection