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  • Colin Newman 'Bastard'


    Colin Newman 'Bastard'




    Colin Newman 'Bastard'


    It was four years into the swim ~ label’s history before Bastard arrived. Like my previous albums, it was another collaboration – although this time only with my partner in life and crime, Malka Spigel.

    There was a point in the ’90s when British music journalists basically didn’t get dance music and would refer to it as “faceless techno bollocks”. It was that very attribute that Malka and I felt most attracted to. In instrumental music, you could be anyone from anywhere. The only thing that mattered was how good your tunes were. In fact, for the first Immersion album, we pretended to be from Germany and were photographed in wigs and masks. This had the unexpected result of the album selling more copies in Germany than anywhere else!

    With Bastard, it took a while to get to the concept, which was essentially this: What if we subverted the whole ‘bloke from Wire’thing and had a Colin Newman album without any actual songs on it? These days, this is not such a big thing, but it was hugelytransgressive at the time. The language of Bastard is house, techno, breakbeat, drum and bass, and doubtless post-rock. The only singing is a one-line Malka sample on ‘Turn’.

    Not only did the album not play by the rules of what would these days be called musicby a ‘heritage’ artist, but it didn’t play by the rules of dance music either. Back then, dance music artists didn’t mix up styles as theydo today. This is one of the reasons the album’s called Bastard.

    Upon release, Bastard was modestly successful in comparison to the label’s other releases, although widely misunderstood. Thetitle is intentionally multifaceted, referring to several ways in which the album is a misfit – a cuckoo in the nest. But it never meant ‘Colin Newman is a bastard’ – even if Malka’s toy finger gesture on the cover tempted fate on that!

    Malka and I have done more work together on swim ~ – and, of course, there has been plenty of Wire activity after its second hiatus during the 1990s – but I never felt the need to do another solo album. I don’t crave attention and certainly don’t feel I lack ways to express myself. In many ways, it’s more creative to collaborate with others.

    There is joy and beauty in collaboration. And collaborating with Malka has become so effortless that we almost don’t know whodoes what in the work we create. This has led us to throwing open our partnership via Nanocluster events and albums where webuild musical bridges and make partnerships that transcend the art. Maybe that’s the point? Surely, art should be about human connection and diversity of expression?

    Colin Newman, Brighton, 2023 (edited from album sleeve notes)

    Vinyl LP & CD 1
    1. Sticky
    2. May
    3. Slowfast (falling down the stairs with a drumkit)
    4. Without
    5. g-deep
    6. Spaced In
    7. Spiked
    8. The Orange House & the Blue House
    9. Turn

    CD 2
    1. Automation
    2. Faq
    3. Voice
    4. Output
    5. The Narrativ (with Corrado Izzo)
    6. Blank Canvas
    7. Time Will Allow
    8. Tsunami
    9. Cut The Slack (2001)
    10. Found & Bound (2001)
    11. Unbroken (2001)
    12. Flight Mode (2008)

    CD2 info:
    Tracks 1–4 taken from 1995 EP Voice.
    Tracks 5–8 originally appeared on swim team #1 and swim team #2.
    Tracks 9–12 previously unreleased and exclusive to this edition.
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  • Immersion 'Living on An Island' - Cargo Records UK


    Immersion 'Living on An Island' Vinyl 10"


    The duo of Malka Spigel of Minimal Compact and Colin Newman of Wire, Immersion is a true collaboration, with no delineation between who plays what.

    Through the nineties Immer-sion released three acclaimed albums of expansive instrumental electronica.

    Side A:
    1. Fireflys
    2. Nanocluster

    Side B:

    3. Spinner
    4. Living On An Island

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  • Immersion 'Sleepless' Vinyl LP


    Immersion 'Sleepless' Vinyl LP


    Immersion are Malka Spigel and Colin Newman. Although best known for their work with, respectively, Minimal Compact and Wire, the duo's work as Immersion provides an outlet for their ongoing fascination in crafting enthralling, unique musical soundscapes.

    'Sleepless' is Immersion's latest album, a suite of ten distinctive, unpredictable instrumentals that effortlessly encapsulate a range of emotions and energies. It follows 2016's Analogue Creatures Living on An Island, which saw the duo return to the studio after a lengthy hiatus.

    On release, the album received unanimous praise from reviewers:

    'A collection of seductive instrumentals that's as sensual as it is hypnotic' (Drowned in Sound)

    'Achieves a kind of hypnotic power' (Mojo)

    'Full of infinite wonder.' (The Quietus)

    Sleepless is at once a logical development from Analogue Creatures and a huge leap forwards. Although the influence of German krautrock pioneers like Tangerine Dream and Popol Vuh is still detectable, Immersion have evolved their own far more personal sound.

    Their amalgam of fascinating textures and limpid melodies gives their compositions an irresistible appeal. While warmly percolating analogue synths remain at the heart of Immersion's sound, Sleepless finds their sonic palette broadened to encompass guitars, drums and bass.

    There's a guest appearance from Matt Schulz of Holy Fuck, too, and a collaboration with Gil Luz and Asi Weitz of EBM band Hexenschuss.

    For a duo who once titled an album Low Impact, this is most definitely Immersion in high-impact mode.

    1. Microclimate
    2. Off Grid
    3. MS19
    4. Sleepless
    5. Propulsoid
    6. Hovertron
    7. The Humming Sea
    8. Manic Toys
    9. Seeing Is Believing
    10. Io

    Release Date: 13/07/2018
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  • Immersion with Thor Harris | Cubzoa 'Nanocluster Vol.2'


    Immersion with Thor Harris | Cubzoa 'Nanocluster Vol.2'


    Theme: collaboration. Or how to remain creative in the modern world.
    Nanocluster started as a bespoke one off pop up gig that turned into an album series.

    Built around Colin Newman from acclaimed UK post-punk band Wire and his partner in life and sound Malka Spigel from Minimal Compact with various guests, they define collaboration.

    Colin met Malka when he produced her band in 1985.The collaboration started there.

    They became a couple and created their own projects like the instrumental electronic duo Immersion in 1994 and Githead in 2004 - spaces where they both ‘feel really comfortable.’

    Growing out of Immersion, Nanocluster was birthed as a series of one-off gigs at the Rosehill in their new hometown of Brighton in 2017 with an added cast of influential and cutting edge musicians.

    These were not ad hoc jams.
    The songs had been written and rehearsed prior to each performance. This adventure led to a debut album, Nanocluster Vol 1, released in 2021 with Stereolab singer/guitarist Laetitia Sadier, German post-rock duo Tarwater, electronic musician Ulrich Schnauss and experimental artist Robin Rimbaud (Scanner).

    Released again as double 10 inch with each collaboration taking up each disc, the new album Nanocluster Vol 2 has further developed this idea with a stark beauty that sounds like a future pop with sleek lines and unexpected great melodies.
    Disc one is built around Thor Harris, the charismatic percussion player from Swans and many other projects, who they met and performed with at South By South West in Austin, Texas in 2023. Thor adds ideas, his tuned percussion instruments, clarinet and trumpet to the sessions.

    Disc two is built around Cubzoa (Jack Wolter from the band Penelope Isles) who brings his musical craft, beguiling voice, guitar and much more.

    Meanwhile Matt Schulz from Holy Fuck plays drums across both combinations helping the resulting music become a third entity.

    What results is a true collaboration that, enhanced via Immersion’s production, merges its elements to develop a new harmony.

    Key to the process is Colin and Malka’s radio show for Slack City radio, ‘Swimming In Sound’ with its entertainingly diverse playlist that has widened their horizons. It’s also helped build relationships not only with these collaborators but also musicians like ambient country masters SUSS, with whom they plan an extended Nanocluster tour in the USA with in 2025 and Brighton via Falmouth’s “jangly pop punk” Holiday Ghosts with whom they will perform the next Nanocluster event in their home town, as well as many more in the pipeline.
    ‘Nanocluster is collaboration but in a very specific form. We don't have rules. It’s a series of creative snapshots. We start as the gig with our collaborators with tracks that we rehearse because this is not a jam and where it stops is an album.’
    ‘It’s chemistry & music. Malka & I operate as a team and now we’ve taken it to another level. Malka comes from a band where they would stand in a room together and work out the material. In Wire, I would present the songs, so when Malka and I first started working together, we had to find a third path, and that was the concept behind our collaboration.’
    Nanocluster Volume 2 is a 21st century collusion of shared ideas, creating a momentary extended musical family.

    It’s about musical and personal relationships and the meeting place in the middle.

    A temporary band of house guests.

    The place where Immersion happens.

    2 X 10” VWM58LP 
    Immersion | Thor Harris 
    A1. As Long As
    A2. Just Close Your Eyes 
    A3. Rotations 
    B1. The House Of Thor 
    B2. In Snow
    B3. At The Wizard’s House 
    Immersion | Cubzoa 
    C1. I’m Barely Here 
    C2. In The Universe 
    C3. Other Ways 
    D1. Not About Me 
    D2. Neptune 

    CD WM58CD 
    Immersion | Cubzoa 
    1. I’m Barely Here
    2. In The Universe
    3. Other Ways
    4. Not About Me
    5. Neptune

    Immersion | Thor Harris 
    6. As Long As 
    7. Just Close Your Eyes 
    8. Rotations
    9. The House Of Thor 1
    0. In Snow 
    11. At The Wizard’s House

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  • Minimal Compact 'Creation Is Perfect'


    Minimal Compact 'Creation Is Perfect'


    Creation is Perfect: an album of new versions of classic tracks by a classic band – and yet so much more besides…Formed in Amsterdam in 1980, Minimal Compact were part of the original post-punk explosion. The band developed a unique mix of propulsive rhythms, spacious bass lines, rich keyboard textures, mesmeric guitar lines, and vocal melodies with a Middle-Eastern inflection.

    They sounded like nothing that had gone before. The band gained a reputation for energetic, unpredictable, intense shows . Now they have reconvened, together with producer and long-time collaborator Colin Newman (Wire), to finally capture their music in its true brilliance.

    Several of the band’s signature songs have been re-recorded using a mix of live recordings and studio tooled performances. The result is an album that radiates vitality and sheer class.

    Highlights include live favourite ‘Statik Dancin’’ with its barbed hooks and irresistible groove. The bright, tender optimism of ‘My Will’ is especially moving, with Spigel’s vocal at the fore. Then there is ‘Take Me Away’, with its tightly coiled hypnotic guitar lines edging towards mania. The album climaxes with a brand new song, ‘Holy Roller’.

    Creation is Perfect
    is an album of power and depth that demands repeated plays. Crackling with energy and immediacy, this is the sound of a band reaching a new level of creativity.

    Book edition - 80 page hard bound 10” x 8” (25.4cm x 20.30cm) book produced in a numbered edition containing the story of the beginnings of Minimal Compact (written by Jack Baron), the story of the Creation is Perfect album (written by Colin Newman), extended credits and lots of mainly never seen before pictures plus of course a CD of the album.

    1. Statik Dancin’
    2. Take Me Away
    3. Nada
    4. Raging Souls
    5. Not Knowing
    6. My Will
    7. The Well
    8. Holy Roller

    Release Date: 18/10/2019
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