Boring Machines Disturbs Sleep: Vic Spanner / Bonehill (Medical Vinyl)

Boring Machines Disturbs Sleep

Friday, October 20, 2006

Vic Spanner / Bonehill (Medical Vinyl)

Myspace has provided me with many interesting profiles and, certainly, an abundance of new music. While flicking through random profiles one night, I came across one that depicted an animated cat being held at gunpoint. I just had to check this one out.

The profile in question was that of prolific UK based musician/programmer Mark Beechill (aka Vic Spanner/Bonehill). Under his Spanner persona, Beechill claims he is the illegitimate child of DJ Shadow and comedian Benny Hill. That is not a bad description of his music, because it is extremely hard to pinpoint his schizophrenic style on the album, "Sympathy For The Hermit".

"Milky Tears" could have you thinking it was Mr. Scruff on the decks, but this one is more warped, chaotic and downright sinister, especially when you consider it features "Deliverance" style guitar picking.

One of the key features of the album is that it rarely lets you settle, changing tact almost with every passing minute. This ensures that you are kept on your toes and always guessing what Spanner is up to next.

While "Milky Tears" seems influenced by the playful nature of Mr Scruff, the excellent "Howler" would be more at home on a Rephlex Records release. There seems to be a thousand influences on here, yet its all tied together as one cohesive album. One minute it could be Prefuse 73, the next U-ziq. The Kid Koala stylings of "Doublejoy", show Spanner has a similar knack of introducing scratchy record samples and voices, much like the Canadian DJ.

"Sympathy For The Hermit" blurs the line between genres such as electronica, hip-hop, folk and rock with the greatest of ease. Along with the multitude of samples and string sections, it certainly makes for interesting stuff. It runs like one of those Fabric mix albums, but this is the work of one man only. Titles such as "Fiery Biscuits" may suggest it is all done in the name of fun, but the sheer vloume of his output and the quality of the music makes a mockery of that statement.

Another project of Beechill's comes under the guise of Bonehill. "Ep 1." features music made by real life objects, with very little (if any) instrumentation or digital manipulation. Much like Pierre Bastien's robotic orchestra, Beechill (as Bonehill) has created somehting wonderfully 'out-there'.

He lists all the ingredients used throughout the recording process, such as objects as crazy as a Quality Street Tin and even a Brush-Matic 2005. Opener, "The Fuck Did I Do?", reminds me of "Digeridoo" era Aphex Twin, only much more organic sounding, while "Shiteyes'" pounding tin can rythmn makes me contemplate, how good this would sound booming from a club's PA system.

Sean, at I Work At Initech, has also posted on the mad world of Mark Beechill, read what he thinks here. To indulge yourself visit his myspace site and here is his Bonehill project too.

5 Comments:

At 22 October, 2006, Blogger sink sink socks said...

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At 23 October, 2006, Anonymous urban_d said...

Nice review... check out Vic Spanner and more at Urban_D RADIO!

 
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