Awakenings: live ambient and electronic music

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Awakenings: Performers

John Sherwood/ 4m33s

Personnel: John Sherwood 

Further info: Most of his music is dark, droney, and tinkly, but when he plays live he usually makes it more accessible, even beaty, adding in some tracks from his alter-ego Yorky. He uses keyboards, guitar and software instruments on stage, two or three at a time, mixed live. 4m33s 

Personnel: Adrian Beasley, John Christian and Peter Ruczynski

Further info:
Airsculpture play live, improvised electronic music. All aspects of the music are performed live with no preperation whatsoever. Their pieces are usually lengthy and drifting dreamscapes marked by sprawling cycles of layered sequencer patterns. Harmony and melody add fullness and focus but the main attributes of this music remains texture and mood.

Xan Alexander (also appeared with Stuart Judd)

Personnel: Xan Alexander (& Stuart Judd)

Further info: 
Xan does solo stuff and performs as a member of The Omega Syndicate, he was joined by Stuart for their 2009 set and his since played solo. Stuart does solo stuff as Chromengel and has also played with The Omega Syndicate. This is a new joint venture to try something a bit different.


Personnel: Joseph Donnelly - synths, Kevin 'L' Guthrie - synths, Brian Hutton - guitar, Michael Nelson - guitar, Electra 'C' Smith - vocals

Further info: 
ALTRES are a band from Dundee, Scotland who originally formed in 1983, playing mostly instrumental, improvised electronic music at a time when very few bands, if any, were making this type of music in the UK. This line-up split in 1985, but after a short break lasting 17 years, ALTRES reformed in 2003.


Personnel: Jez Creek and Steve Humphries

Further info: 
Astrogator are UK synthesists Steve Humphries (Create) and Jez Creek (Modulator ESP). They produce electronic music inspired by such artists as Airsculpture, Arcane, Jean Michel Jarre, Radio Massacre International, Redshift, Klaus Schulze and Tangerine Dream. The music of Astrogator is mostly improvised and ranges from abstract ambient soundscapes to intensely rhythmic sequences overlaid with melodic and progressive elements.


Personnel: Richard Wentk

Further info:
The music of Awen features a mixture of old and new electronic styles, from ambient to trance.

Personnel: Andy Pickford and Paul Nagle (and special guest Phil Smillie)

Further info:
Binar were originally rather jokingly called Spank the Dark Monkey, but thought they wouldn't be taken seriously as STDM, hence the name change. 
Their music is improvised live on the night from prepared material and spans the entire spectrum of electronic styles.  


Ron Boots
Personnel: Ron Boots and Harold van der Heijden

Further info:
Ron Boots is from Eindhoven in Holland. He considers himself part of the so-called third generation of electronic musicians. He is the co-owner of the Groove record label and also the organiser of the Dutch E-Live festival. This will be Ron's first visit to these shores for 10 years, his last being at the third EMMA festival in 1995. Live he is joined on electronic percussion by Harold van der Heijden.


Personnel: Jez Creek, Mick Daniel & Phil Booth

Further info: 
Dark improvised experimental electronic music borrowing from styles as diverse as Ambient, Space Rock and the Berlin School. Performed their entirely improvised set to the film 'The Cabinet of Doctor Caligari'

Peter Challoner
Personnel: Peter Challoner

Further info:
Peter Challoner is an electronic musician from the UK creating textural ambient and rhythmic contemporary electronic music. Peter performed his first ever solo live set at Awakenings. Peter is also a memebr of SpirlEye.    

Personnel: Steve Humphries

Further info:
Steve made his first live appearance at the second Awakenings gig in Nottingham on 7.11.04. Though his debut CD (available from Groove) 'Reflections From The Inner Light', which is a tribute to the Berlin School of EM,  was wholly created using Reason software, his live rig is augmented with plenty of proper hardware.

Edge Effect
Personnel: Andy Preston: Synths, Electronics, Video, Computers.

Further info:
The work of Edge Effect is an attempt to blend high-art sensibilities with Punk Rock's do-it-yourself ethic. His main focus is dark-ambient electronic music, but he's also engaged in video work & other artistic projects.  


Personnel: Steve Munslow and John Sherwood

Further info:
Entity is Steve Munslow (HyperEx Machina) ably assisted by John Sherwood (4m33s). They make live electronic music. 


Ethereal Electric Elixir
Personnel: John Sherwood, Lee Shepherd, Michael Daniel, Phil Booth and Steve Palmer

Further info:
EEE was formed by John Sherwood to fill the gap brought about by another act he  was due to perform in being unable to play and has grown into an interesting live project. Features John and other guest performers The 2009 performance featured Steve and Lee, the 2010 performance featured Steve, Michael and  Phil.

Norman Fay

Personnel: Norman Fay

Further info:
Electronic sketches played on analogue synthesizers and diverse instruments by Norman Fay of Vietgrove. Norman's first solo set at Awakenings was an improvisation for modular synths. 

Personnel: Michael Daniel (& Lee Shepherd)

Further info:
Hashtronaut is currently earth based in Liverpool, England. Plays synthesizers, guitar and bass. Hashtronaut sort of played his final gig at Awakenings in 2010, though it was also the final performance of Pollard, Daniel & Booth. He is also a member of Pylene 50 and Cerberus

HyperEx Machina
Personnel: Steve Munslow

Further info:
HyperEx Machina is the ambient alter-ego of the harder edged Hyperdriver aka Steve Munslow from London. His music is ambient with sequences and arpeggios, drifting soundscapes and unnerving contrasts. Occasionally it breaks out into moderate beats, but is always very melodic and involving.


Personnel: David & Jules

Further info:
Ion is a new solo venture by the established UK musician, David J. Hughes. Ion is an attempt to get back to basics, to shift the emphasis away from keyboard chops and screaming solos and towards a more symphonic and more mature and  more relaxed state of mind. Performances often include work from David's other projects, SkinMechanix and T-Bass UK

Modulator ESP
Personnel: Jez Creek

Further info:
Modulator ESP produces improvised experimental soundscapes using synthesizers, sampling, sequencing, looping and processing to create strange worlds of sound somewhere between '70s space music, noise and dark ambient drone. His sets run the gamut from dark ambient to sequences and have become more experimental of late. He is also a member of Astrogator, Cerberus and Quadra


Personnel: Stephen Palmer - guitars, synths, ethnic things, plus production

Further info:
Mooch were formed in 1992 by Steve Palmer. There have been a number of different line-ups over the years, but now Mooch is back to just Stephen. Mooch is space rock, psychadelic, electronic or whatever else Stephen fancies. Steve has also appeared twice with Ethereal Electric Elixir.  

The Omega Syndicate

Personnel: Dave Gurr (of Demeter Falls, The Phoenix Project, C.H.A.O.S and Architexture), Xan Alexander plus special guests including John Sherwood and Rob Clynes

Further info:
David and Xan met through a mutual friend and began working together in June 2002. The music of The Omega Syndicate is constantly evolving and the line-up is constantly expanding to include a diverse range of musicians.

Parallel Sun/ The Glimmer Room

Personnel: Andy Condon and OJ

Further info:
Andy refers to himself as a bedroom recording artist, keyboard fetishist and convicted technophile. The Glimmer Room's sound weaves chopped up breaks and beats with lush synthesis and melodic instrumentation to form atmospheric, layered soundscapes. Live he is joined by OJ of The Jupiter 8 on guitar and laptop. Their early Awakenings sets were as the Glimmer Room, but they have recently decided to perform together live as Parallel Sun, which is a project designed for live performance.

Pollard, Daniel & Booth

Personnel: Brendan Pollard, Mick Daniel and Phil Booth aka Pollard/Daniel/Booth

Further info: 
Brendan is half of Rogue Element, he is a big fan of vintage gear and makes his music using Mellotrons, modular synthesizers and other analogue goodies. His music evokes that of '70s Tangerine Dream at their peak.Pollard/Daniel/Booth performed sets at Awakenings in 2009 and 2010 and bowed out as part of Hashtronaut's farewell performance

Radio Massacre International
Personnel: Steve Dinsdale, Duncan Goddard and Gary Houghton

Further info:
Radio Massacre International perform retro improvisational EM and space rock usings sequencers, synths, samplers, guitar, bass and drums. 'From seemingly minimal templates, RMI generate complex patterns of electronic textures that merge and mutate to become pleasantly crafted harmonics of cosmic proportion.' (MATT HOWARTH Sonic Curiosity). RMI have so far performed twice at Awakenings, once in 2005 at Leeds (released as Antisocial) and more recently in 2010 at Burton, where they were joined for their first piece by dancers from Paget.. 

Nick Robinson

Personnel: Nick Robinson

Further info:
Repetition and Intuition are the key factors behind Nick's music. He uses the guitar as an organic sound source in conjunction with looping technology and treatments to build soundscapes. His pieces are born, evolve and die away. 

Second Thought

Appearances: 30.09.05

Ross Baker

Further info:
Ross is an electronic and often ambient artist from various locations in the United Kingdom. His music conjours images and soundtracks of various places in his head, via ambient soundscapes, industrial rhythms and a heavy load of field recordings.

Skin Mechanix

Personnel: David Hughes

Further info:
Skin Mechanix make music with dance rhythms fused with throbbing retro sequences and fiery electronic soundscapes, strong melodies and challenging arrangements, all fused together into a magical melange, to occupy a new territory which is perhaps unique in the UK synth music scene. David now performs under the Ion name, but sets still include music from SkinMechanix


Personnel: Peter Challoner and Neale Haddon

Further info:
Spiraleye produce contemporary improvised electronic soundscapes. Neale plays guitar and guitar synth whilst Pete plays keyboards, synths and does the rhythms.  

Peter Tedstone

Personnel: Peter Tedstone

Further info:
Peter uses a mixture of real vintage analogue synthesisers and virtual analogue software synthesizers for his live performances. For Awakenings, Peter will be donning his retro hat.

A skillful mixture of Berlin School style EM, fastened with the driving forces of England School aggressiveness and percussion was how Peter's music was described in one review. 


Personnel: Norman Phay (synths/ guitar/ bass/ programming) and Mark Bailey (guitar/ bass/ programming)

Further info:
Originally formed in 1986 this line-up has been in place since the 1997 release 'Orbus Tertius'. They have just released the follow-up 'A Little Apocrypha' after 8 years. Vietgrove's music is like a cross between Prog Rock and traditional EM. Live they add more ambient and Berlin School elements to their improvisations.

Von Haulshoven

Personnel: Eppie E Hulshof

Further info: 
Von Haulshoven does not like the average "top 40" music but loves electronic soundscapes and sequenced rhythm parts. He makes stone age sequences combined with smack you in the face FX and orbit strings. Doing this for over 30 years. Making music just for fun, "I aint no business man". Eppie came over in 2009, we hope he will return someday.

Terje Winther

Personnel: Terje Winther

Further info: 
Terje is from Norway is a member of WintherStormer. He uses old and new analogue synthesizers to create his music. Inspired by the Berlin school of electronic music, with influences from Klaus Schulze, Tangerine Dream, Jean Michel Jarre and Ashra as well as prog-rock and kraut-rock of the 1970s. Terje improvises vast electronic sound-spaces. His first performance in the UK was at the Hampshire Jam Jam in 2008. His performance at Awakenings was an epic undertaking, details of which are on his website, and the recording was released as 'awaken in England'

René van der Wouden

Personnel: René van der Wouden

Further info: 
Composer and producer of electronic based music. Founding owner of REWO Records. Started with making music when 5 years old and taking piano lessons from the age of 8. Both parents very musical and supported René from the very first beginning.

All content copyright 2014 Jez Creek
All music copyright belongs to the respective artists