True gold for the experimental music head, spoken word audio colleges on the topic of dream logic, with musical flourish.
“This is a weird record, for weird times, made by weird people, for weird people!” Says John Doran in his sleeve notes for the album.
+ Pressed on double coloured vinyl in a deluxe gatefold sleeve.
Back in 2015, to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the BBC broadcast of Delia Derbyshire & Barry Bermange’s “Inventions For Radio: The Dreams”, The Eccentronic Research Council released their own super-limited edition cassette soundtracking the recalled dreams (and nightmares) of friends, artists, actors, musicians, scientists, poets and filmmakers.
The release was called “The Dreamcatcher Tapes Volume 1”. Five years on, and with a large part of the planet under lockdown and with nowhere to go but within their imagination, the ERC put a call out once again to music collaborators, nurses, teachers, truck drivers, writers, journalists and shop workers to upon waking, record their dreams straight into their phones and to then send them to the ERC to soundtrack. And thus, Volume 2 of The Dreamcatcher Tapes was born!
How did you make the album during lockdown? “We got around 26 dreams sent to us via email over the space of a couple of weeks then Dean Honer my partner in The ERC and I revved up the old analogue equipment and would record music and collage sounds to the dreams (remotely) from our home recording studios and bounce them back and forth to each other till they were done. It was a really good way to work actually, sometimes I didn’t even have to put on any trousers!” says ERC/ Moonlandingz founder Adrian Flanagan.
Why a second volume of The Dreamcatcher Tapes? “I was really interested to see how the enforced lockdown and the removal of people’s basic needs such as human contact and hanging out in close proximity to friends was affecting the dreams of my friends, peers and those at the very front line of this horrible pandemic”, Adrian continues. “The Important shared experiences for people’s mental health such as going out to gigs, the pub, the cinema etc. ”It was an interesting experiment.
Nurses dreaming of inadequate PPE and having to use blow up Elvis costumes to protect themselves. Teachers dreaming of zombies and lots of people dreaming about sex - where the hair of Greek sorceress’s Circe meets bouncy castle breasts and where other dreamers dream of serial killers or seeing dead family members, or taking baby elephants for a walk, or having discos for one in the middle of the ocean and so much more. I’m really proud of this record. It’s psychedelic in its truest most cerebral form”
Who’s on “The Dreamcatcher Tapes Volumes 1 & 2”? Who are the dreamers? “Although our long time collaborator Maxine Peake wasn’t on the very first tape (her dream ended up on LTD edition split 7” ERC single we did with Pye Corner Audio) - she was the first dream that we soundtracked when I came up with the idea of doing the concept record. However, on the new vinyl and tape box set - she opens volume 1. Across the 2 volumes there’s film maker Carol Morley, Andy Votel from Finders Keepers records, John Doran from The Quietus (who also wrote the albums brilliant sleeve notes), acclaimed writers Benjamin Myers & Adelle Stripe, musicians such as Evangeline Ling from the group Audiobooks, Lias Saoudi from my ‘semi fictional band’, The Moonlandingz and fat white family, Sidonie from The Orielles, journalists /writers Wyndham Wallace (he wrote Lee Hazelwood’s brilliant biography) and Daniel Dylan Wray amongst a whole array of musician friends, eccentrics and people with actual proper jobs!”
Why did you chose Castles in Space for this release? “Jim Jupp at Ghost Box records suggested them to me so I looked into them and saw they were doing loads of really great strange little bespoke electronic record releases. I think that because this is a very niche limited run release, it required a label that was willing to treat it like a piece of art and not a throwaway mass produced commodity.
So making sure the packaging was special, the artwork was bang on point and the sleeve notes were written by a writer we like all were very important to us. “It was also important that we could turn it around from the finished recording to being in people’s hands really quickly as Dean and I have another ten projects between us on the boil - and so far, Castles in Space have been true to their word. It’s an artists label done with love and there’s not many of them about anymore - believe it or not.“
“The Dreamcatcher Tapes Volumes 1 & 2” is an immense collaborative achievement which makes for a thoroughly compelling, and gloriously disorientating listening experience.
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