IC012 Irregular Crates Podcast 012 (Hibernate special)


It’s been a while since we last posted up a show and we’re delighted to have a special takeover presented by Jonathan Lees of Hibernate Recordings/Rural Colours. Not only that, Jonathan has taken the time to answer a few questions we posed to him about releases on his labels, his selections for this mix, his new project as The Sly and Unseen and some projects on the horizon… To listen to this Hibernate special, click on the image above or HERE to be diverted to the podcast page on Mixcloud. As always wherever possible links to buy/research more have been provided. With that said, this show premieres lots of new material!

01 Kesarbai Kerkar – Lalat: Ghatan Lagi Rain (Canary Records)
02 Isnaj Dui – Sleep Still (Rural Colours)
03 King Gong – Baozoo Kheng (Discrepant Records)
04 Nath Family – Sounds of the Indian Snake Charmer Vol 2 (Hanson Records)
05 The Sly and Unseen – Everything Has Always Been The Same (unreleased)
06 Federico Durand – Clavel (Spekk)
07 Spheruleus and Friends – Upper Wharfdale (Hibernate – unreleased)
08 Olan Mill & Keung Mandelbrot – Inner Plate / Intra Plate (Hibernate)
09 Memory Drawings – The Island of the Day Before (Hibernate – unreleased)
10 Caught In the Wake Forever – Forever Children (Self release)

Whilst the mix is streaming, feel free to read the interview below and then after that we have a few words to say on the two current releases in Jonathan’s respective catalogs: Isnaj Dui’s Euplexia and Olan Mill / Keung Mandelbrot’s Seismology.

And for more information on the two labels, click away: Hibernate / Rural Colours


IC: Hi Jonathan, how are you keeping these days?
JL: Yeah, all good up here… thanks. There’s lots of interesting things happening in West Yorkshire music wise right now. Recently a new art gallery and performance space opened up in Bradford called Fuse, there’s been lots of exciting talks and performances going on from the likes of Petrels, Star Turbine & Helm in addition to our last show with Ian Hawgood, Danny Norbury and Ithaca Trio to name a few. There’s the excellent Golden Cabinet in Shipley where we’ve seen excellent gigs from Demdike Stare, Cut Hands and our own Isnaj Dui too. Hebden Bridge’s Was Ist Das has many upcoming gigs including French drone act Natural Snow Buildings at a little rural pub in the middle of nowhere in June. And finally over in Todmorden late July there’s the Tor Festival, a festival of experimental, psychedelic, folk, drone and noise.

IC: What’s cooking at Hibernate/Rural Colours HQ right now?
JL: Right now we’re promoting the recent Isnaj Dui album “Euplexia” on Rural Colours and “Seismology” from Olan Mill and Keung Mandelbrot over on Hibernate. 

IC: What are you working on for future releases?
JL: There should be some new postcard eps out at some point, we’ve got Melodium, Texture Ranch, Darren Harper, Inventors of Aircraft and Hybernation lined up. A couple of albums on Hibernate from Memory Drawings and Spheruleus and friends. On Rural Colours an ep from Simon Whetham. That’s probably it for the rest of the year. Not too much…

IC: Are there any shows on the horizon that we should know about?
JL: Sunday June 1st at Fuse in Bradford we’ve got a hibernate show / launch party with Olan Mill, Hybernation and Rough Fields. 

IC: Tell us a bit about the mix-what have you thrown in there for us?
JL: I just decided to put in some recent and upcoming hibernate tracks alongside what I’m listening to at the moment…

IC: What are your favourite records of the moment?
JL: Right now I’m addicted to everything on Canary Records (https://canary-records.bandcamp.com/) who basically re-issue old 78rpm vinyl from all over the world. There’s lots of interesting stuff from Greece, India, Central Asia and so on Also I’m loving the stuff that’s coming out on the Discrepant label, a lot of which is more recent field recording based from minorities groups of South East Asia. I’m a big fan of Caught in the Wake Forever and I’ve been fortunate enough to have had his new album “My Family Goes on Without Me” on repeat now for some time. Also I’m a big fan of Federico Durand, pretty much love everything he does.

ICWhat about your new artist project Sly and Unseen – what’s it all about and do you have any plans?
JL: Yeah the Sly and Unseen is basically a project with myself and Katie English. I got together with Katie just over a year ago and we both enjoy working together so we decided to see where we could go with music. A lot of what we do is influenced by what I’ve been listening too so it’s kind of a mixture of ambient and folk songs and we record solely with real instruments. We’ve an ep out soon (hopefully) on Audio Gourmet and an album recorded too.


ISNAJ DUI – EUPLEXIA [Rural Colours]


More Isnaj Dui is always welcome and in Euplexia we have a fine album of honed electronics, dulcimer, percussion and bass/concert flute, typical of Katie English’s unmistakable sound which is both ethnic and calming sounding. Fans of Katie’s work will be used to a beautifully deep bass sound to her work which of course is still present however in Euplexia, Katie allows higher flute frequencies to take a more central role – which really soar against the backdrop of electronics and acoustic drones. Stand-out tracks are numerous but the otherworldly Basement Floors pushes boundaries in experimental sound art as well as for Katie’s material too. Then there’s the fuzzy drones and warmth of Sleep Still which also really grabs you, especially after listening to the album from the start.


Olan Mill Keung Mandelbrot

The impressive catalog at Hibernate expands one more in early June with the inclusion of this collaboration between modern classical drone artist Olan Mill and noise/sound artist Keung Mandelbrot. The result is a gritty, beautiful but utterly charming record which pits droning guitar and strings with noise which combine for a unique listening experience. The lulling beautiful of Alex Smalley’s orchestral Ambience never truly allow you to rest entirely as the bursts and shards of noise provide a gentle nudge to wake you from your blissful state. What makes this even more listenable is the arrangement and length of tracks – with the first 5 pieces clocking in at less than ten minutes before the epic Finn-Engdahl sprawls itself over 13 wonderful minutes. This track really is the focal point; the main event – an utter masterpiece of wreck and despair. The thoroughly electronic Basilicata serves to bring you back down to earth and is really needed after the events that preceded before the warmth and holiness of Inner Plate/Intra Plate follow. The album reaches a crescendo in Geophone with high strings and a bed of noise held in time, fading slowly into a few final moments of guitar.