3 ring pulls, 2 50p coins, a Smirnoff Ice lid, and the proximity tone from a metal detector - not the typical compo- nent sounds of a club-focused electronic release, but maybe not so bizarre to those familiar with the concept of record label No Real Value.
NRV releases by commissioning electronic musicians to create tracks from a series of sound recordings (record- ed by label founder William Green aka Aggborough). The label’s ethos is to explore the value of sound when associated with a particular time, event or location through the context of underground electronic music. Each release has a theme, and it is left entirely to the artists to decide how to best use the source material.
Dirt Fishing is the follow-up to ‘Slag Heap’ NRV001 (a split 12" made up of sounds recorded in a slate mine).
This time it comprises of recorded sounds encountered during a day of metal detecting on Walthamstow marshes. The recordings include the direct output from the proximity sensor on the metal detector, ambient field recordings from the environment, conversations with friend and fellow dirt fisher, Glen, and separate sounds recorded by knocking, tapping and rubbing the found items.
Following a series of critically acclaimed releases on OTB Records (4.1 from Resident Advisor), Aggborough has been slowly and patiently working his way into the hearts and minds of techno fans across the world. Alongside his own Aggborough interpretation, the artists commissioned for this release are One Track Brain, and Dudley Strangeways.
A1: Aggborough’s aggressive, rhythmic interpretation could maybe be interpreted as six minutes inside the head of an obsessive (troubled?) metal detector. The throbbing of blood circulating around the ears and brain of a frantic ‘dirt fisher;’ interspersed alarms and sudden shocks of clanging metal all come together to make an exhilarating experience - 6 minutes inside the head of a man who you wouldn’t want to be stuck in a lift with.
A2: Belgian techno producer and OTB Records owner, One Track Brain’s track focuses on the terrain. Rather than conjuring up images of electronics and technology, the listener is guided through the gritty earth below the device. Little muted glimpses of conversation can be heard from above ground as the magnet hovers overhead.
B1: Where grit and obscurity characterises the A-side, a clinical, scientific approach is taken by Dudley Strange- ways. Taking up the full 12 minutes of the B-side, the piece seems more like an interpretation of the randomness of the proximity sensor. The reassuring predictability of the percussion is offset by scattered blips, somehow comforting and disconcerting at the same time (a juxtaposition typical of minimal, and which Dudley has become a master of ).
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