Who can understand where your brain will go next with regards to what you are gong to listen to? I'm still really enjoying The Advisory Circle's excellent 2014 album From Out Here. Perhaps it's the best ever release on Ghostbox. It's definitely up there with The Focus Group's Hey Let Loose Your Love and Belbury Poly's The Willows in my book. I just wanna keep hearing it and I know I've already written about it a couple of times before but hey it keeps growing in my estimation. It's probably not very cool to be into GhostBox these days but I don't give a fuck. Hipsters can go and listen to their fka twiggles, shite z-grade house or whatever.
Actually some other stuff from hauntological zones has had my attention also. I went back and had a listen to the G.E.S. album Circulations and fuck me, after having a reaction just a notch above lukewarm to it back in 2009, I'm starting to think this recording is one of the best in its field now. If you dig those first couple of Focus Group albums and haven't heard this you need to check it out. Circulations is a gloriously random sampleadelic collage and a mini-masterpiece. Apparently a couple years after this release G.E.S. did a second volume which passed me by but now I'm on the search for that.
Listening to that has in turn led me all the way back to 1999. Leyland Kirby's project The Caretaker's first album was issued in 1999 but I didn't hear it till the early 00s. Anyway those first 3 albums Selected Memories From The Haunted Ballroom (99), A Stairway To The Stars (01) and We'll All Go Riding On A Rainbow (04) have had me captivated again. It's a bloody great concept ie. the haunted ballroom is the ballroom in The Overlook Hotel in Stephen King's novel The Shining. Of course The Caretaker is named after the caretaker Jack Torrance from the aforementioned ghost story. The records are perfectly out of time, sentimental, nostalgic, revenant, disorientating and even sometimes quite lovely. The Caretaker's secret is to keep it subtle and let the music insidiously haunt you. This trilogy is a magnificent achievement. The mood The Caretaker creates lingers on long after you've stopped listening and I find myself going back time and time again to experience the inexplicable feelings this music elicits (couldn't bring myself to say uncanny Mr Fisher). The Caretaker is possibly the most successful artistically of anyone who has been cast as hauntological.
Finally this brings me to Actress. I didn't mind their R.I.P. record from 2012 and I thought 2010's Splazsh was quite ace. I never would have imagined they would end up in the exhausted zones they did on last year's Ghettoville though. Darren Cunningham's exemplary arty electronic melange was always a restrained version of tech, house, garage and other club styles. I don't know if tunes from Splazsh or R.I.P. ever got played out but you felt like it was maybe possible with some of them. I can't imagine anything from Ghettoville getting a spin in a club though, unless its a disco at a funeral or a zombie rave. This is post-millennial electronic music that's broken down, malfunctioning and barely able to transmit through its frayed circuits which is not dissimilar in spirit to Mordant Music's requiem for rave Dead Air from 2006. Ghettoville feels like the final death notice for rave memorial services. I mean 'wake for rave' has become a sub-genre hasn't it? With the likes of Burial, Lee Gamble, Mordant Music, Leyland Kirby's V/VM et al. This could be the final death knell for the technoid future or is further sonic depletion yet to come?