About

I have been interested in electronic music and working with sound since an early age. My (very) early efforts included borrowing my brother’s mono tape recorder and creating versions of pop songs while hitting the microphone to produce a variety of percussion sounds. I used the same tape recorder to record music from the radio – a particular memory was standing for a whole morning in May 1975 waiting for Kraftwerk’s ‘Autobahn’ to be played on Radio 1. I wired up my sister’s electric fan powered toy organ to a mains adapter to give it more juice, programmed a Casio VL tone synthesiser and created multi-track productions by borrowing the family stereo and endlessly overdubbing and bouncing tracks onto another tape recorder. I also surreptitiously snuck in to the school chapel at lunch times to work out how to play tracks by Joy Division, New Order, Gary Numan, Ultravox and others on the organ. I was fascinated by all the textural possibilities when playing around with the various organ stops.

On joining University I began making music with a BBC B computer and spent many hours using the University's 4-track tape studio to produce electronic music and tracks for a range of projects (including one on the ethics and creative possibilities of sampling, and another on the then emerging house music genre). In 1986 I began work as a tape op at Strawberry Studios and Yellow 2 Studios in Stockport, working on a variety of band, BBC orchestra and other sessions, and with John Pennington on electronic music productions. While at University I developed a strong interest in media and cultural theory that provided the backdrop for my later research.

Meanwhile I had joined Leeds industrial-electro band, WMTID working alongside Richard Rouska. We eventually worked with Dave Goodman (Sex Pistols producer and sound man) on the WMTID album 'Electric Church' at his Gypsy Hill London studio. Around this time I sold half my record collection to buy a Yamaha YS200, a Casio SK-100 sampling keyboard, a Roland TR-626, a 4 track Tascam portastudio and Audio Technica mic and began working on EDM projects at home.

On entering lecturing full-time in 1991 I further developed my music technology and research interests – teaching analogue and digital studio production, establishing music production facilities and developing an interest in sonic arts. A research project, Popular Music and/in Digital Culture completed in 1996 encouraged me to further pursue research in the fields of electronica, punk and post-punk and cultural identity.

I am currently producing music under the artist names obe:lus and have further research and music projects planned for the near future.