A dossier of illuminations and orientations relating to the work of Daniel O'Sullivan.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

VELD on bandcamp

Got my shizzle together and put VELD on bandcamp. More titles to follow including new Charlemagne Palestine & Grumbling Fur Time Machine Orchestra 2LP on Important Records. For now, feel free to lace my deep dark pockets in exchange for some high grade mean green wax.

Link here.


Thursday, July 27, 2017

Swimming



A music video. Imitating the colloidal dispersion of nitrocellulose and camphor. Crafted by Michael James Lewis for swimmers and landlubbers. VELD is available now on O Genesis Recordings.

Oh and got some dates coming up...

29.07.17 – Irish Museum Of Modern Art, Dublin ('Beneath The Rug The Plants Are Moving' with Mark Titchner and Stephen Dunne)
06.08.17 – Off Festival, Katowice, Poland (w/ This Is Not This Heat)
18.08.17 – Green Man Festival, Brecon Beacons, Wales (w/ Grumbling Fur)
25.08.17 – Sea Change Festival, Totnes, Devon (w/ Grumbling Fur)
02.09.17 – Les Rendez-vous de l'Erdre, Nantes (w/ Charlemagne Palestine & Grumbling Fur TMO) 09.09.17 – Festival Number 6, Portmeirion (w/ Daniel O'Sullivan Sextet plays VELD and other popular favourites)
04.10.17 – Razzmatazz II, Barcelona (w/ This Is Not This Heat)
06.10.17 – Villamanuela Festival, Madrid (w/ This Is Not This Heat)
07.10.17 – Out Fest, Lisbon (w/ This Is Not This Heat)
October 10-20th – DOS presents The Honourable Daines Barrington EU tour (dates TBA)
12.11.17 – Sonic City curated by Thurston Moore, Kortijk, Belgium (w/ This Is Not This Heat) 19.11.17 – Audioscope Festival, Oxford (w/ Daniel O'Sullivan Sextet plays VELD and other unpopular favourites)
25.11.17 – Worm, Rotterdam (w/ Charlemagne Palestine & Grumbling Fur TMO)

Monday, May 8, 2017

VELD JIG

I'll be playing music from VELD and more recent things with a group of wildly sapient sapiens such as Knut Jonas Sellevold (piano, synths), Alex Ward (clarinet, guitar), Frank Byng (drums, percussion), Astrud Steehouder (voice), Leo Smee (bass), Liam Byrne (viol).

Click HERE for tickets.



Tuesday, March 28, 2017

VELD





My debut solo album VELD will be released by O Genesis Recordings on June 30th. It's available for preorder here. Assembled at Tower Gardens Road under sidereal supervision. Cover art by Mark Titchner. Cut by Matt Colton at Alchemy Mastering, Hammersmith. Some blurb from beyond...

Tim Burgess’ curated imprint O Genesis Recordings present VELD, a new solo album of luminous pop incantations, electroacoustic music and shimmering drones from composer and multi-instrumentalist Daniel O’Sullivan. Whether solo or in his varied collaborative projects, O’Sullivan’s work is remarkable in the way it infuses familiar everyday experience with traces of the uncanny, the secret and the magickal. VELD distils these tangled realities into a wonderfully rich and complex record — one of O’Sullivan’s most immediate and moving pop albums to date, yet one that's strikingly dense and allusive, alive with enticing sonic diversions, hypnotic mantras and eerie biomechanical rhythms. 

VELD was written and recorded between 2010 and 2016 while O’Sullivan was living on Tower Gardens Road, during the same phase that also nurtured other collaborative projects including Grumbling Fur (with Alexander Tucker) and Laniakea (with Zu’s Massimo Pupillo). This was also the space where O’Sullivan assembled and arranged Ulver’s 12th studio album ATGCLVLSSCAP and the last two Æthenor LP’s (O’Sullivan’s “automatic composition” group with Stephen O’Malley of Sunn O))) and Steve Noble). The house was a kind of parallel world, an oasis of the strange and the mystical in suburban North London belonging to Ian Johnstone (artist, permaculturalist and muse of the late Jhonn Balance of seminal English experimentalists Coil), who passed away in 2015. The album is dedicated to Ian and his home who, explains O’Sullivan, was a friend, inspiration and grounding space over the years. 

Their influence has audibly seeped into O’Sullivan’s intuitive, exploratory approach to music. His varied work is united by a love of bricolage, a fascination for drawing sounds and ideas from across disciplines and aesthetic worlds into a shared orbit. Traces of his many projects all meet and mingle in VELD: from his solo music as Mothlite to the lysergic songcraft and space-time vortices of Grumbling Fur and Laniakea, the reality-distorting zones of Æthenor and Ulver, the electronic pop of Miracle (with Zombi synth maestro Steve Moore), and his recent involvement with another pioneering London group, This Is Not This Heat. 

While distinctly a solo-led record, VELD is animated by the same roaming, impulsive compositional spirit as his collaborative work. While grounded in pop music — which O’Sullivan describes as the ideal vessel for channelling more celestial energies — its dreamlike soundworld draws inspiration from across both natural and human landscapes. Its influences range from Ray Bradbury (whose story ‘Veldt’ inspired the album’s title) and Gurdjieff to Borges and Anais Nin; St. John’s Wort and Psylocybin to Tottenham Cemetery and Streatham Common; Cocteau Twins and Judee Sill to Alice Coltrane and Tony Conrad. 

Written during a time of great personal upheaval and growth, these are songs steeped in thoughts of change and growth: the joys, fears and strangeness of parenthood and family life, loss and grief, the passing of time. Yet they’re also inspired by the transformative, self-obliterating potential of sound and music — its ability, explains O’Sullivan, to weave together multiple voices, forms and aspects of the self into a unifying whole. So throughout you hear O’Sullivan’s voice merging and phasing with guest vocalists including Linn Carin Dirdal, Jael Reasoner and Astrud Steehouder, as the music surges from astral pop songs (‘Scorpio Rising Blues’, ‘Sabotage Devices’, ‘Luminous Fibres’) to dubbed-out electronics and burning feedback (‘Plutonians’, ‘The Projector’), fractal sound collage and spidery guitar pieces (‘Doe A Deer’, ‘Be Honour You’). The result is a record whose songs evoke multiple universes and other possible realities, making it O’Sullivan’s most unified and self-contained solo work to date. 


Sunday, March 26, 2017

Peru, February 2017

January SAD toppled me this year. A number of incidents involving the intimate nature of teeth became altogether too agonising to bear. So I decided to visit some OLD friends in the Amazon. Some older than I realised. Energetic work with Ayahuasca and Noya Roa under the guidance of Manuel Mahua, Papa Gilberto Mahua and Oscar Rodriguez Reategui in Pucallpa.

Tasting the tears of stars that fruit the fallen trees. Thinking about Milarepa, the art of listening and the development of LUNG-GOM-PA. The awakening of living spirit.

"Home is where all your attempts to escape cease." - Naguib Mahfouz


The restoration of sight. The little machines on another frequency, tirelessly working to repair the damage done and not yet done. The suffering inseparable from joy. The luminous ape in the library of everything. 


The finger pointing at the star is not the star. Resistance to the dropping of the body. Holding breath so very tight. 


Home. The heaving, seething, perpetual blush. The groaning, birthing belonging.


Carried away in play. Lost in recognition. The fibres aligning only to become prideful. The grasping. Let go to nurture. The nature of providing is the practice of release.


Tavener's Magnificat. Band On The Run. Rhythm Of The Saints.


This time I would listen. I would make myself confortable and let her work on me. The astral hospital bed. 


Fanning, combing, inverting. Gondolier of the neural canals. Breathing the prism. Fireflies dimming the grey skinned, fingerless imp. In dark slumber.


The spinning helix, the jealous lover, the trickster. Naughty, clingy Mary Mary.


Watercolours as offerings. Staving off starving.


She made her voice known to me. Distinguishable from the others. To be a child.


The parent of the self. The dilating diaphragm. The pockets of breath between vertebrae. A childish Pieta. 


Friends you lost to objects they cultivate a ghost in the stuffed and the glass eyes and paint.


Traveller of the arteries. Navigator of hidden realms.


Baptismal submersion. Spitting perfume. The crown and the fingers. 


Arcana. The shell is a perfect, purple cell. The song where everyone nuance contains a new lesson, another curvature in the undiscoverable sphere.


Don't be shy. Be flexible. Don't interrupt. 


We were all children. We knew not.


The woman of the stars, the man of the roots. The behaviour of the observed is affected by the observer - on this we can all agree.


My home. Her final transmission. "You don't have to make any big decisions yet my son."


Service. Gratitude. Patience. Forgiveness.

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

JELLY III

Third epidose of JELLY ON YOUR SHOULDER on Soho Radio. Devoted to the eternal spirit of sound and deep listening. Transmitting mashups of Pauline Oliveros in imaginal Tuva, People Like Us vs John Tavener, Kraftwerk vs Charlemagne Palestine, Toru Takemitsu (dreamweapon mix), Plastikman vs Phill Niblock, Coil vs David Crosby, Neon Sardinia, Little Jimmy Scott in dub and more.

///O\\\

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Mothlite /// Donald McPherson split 7" on End Of The Alphabet

New Mothlite tune "Thumb On The Vine" lathe cut 7" on NZ label End Of The Alphabet split with South Island guitar hero Donald McPherson. They're all gone but you can listen/buy the digital on bandcamp.

https://endofthealphabetrecords.bandcamp.com/album/the-land-behind-the-door-thumb-on-the-vine

JELLY ON YOUR SHOULDER - EPIDOSE II

Now streaming the second instalment of our Soho Radio transmission. Heavy aureole from Ex-Easter Island Head, Psychic TV, The Trees Community, Elizabeth Clare Prophet, Shirley Collins, Dr. Chittibabu, Steve Moore, Lungfish, I Roy, a duet that never happened between Cosey Fanni Tutti & Don Cherry, etcetera.

Monday, September 12, 2016

JELLY ON YOUR SHOULDER



STREAM THE FIRST EPIDOSE OF MY SOHO RADIO TRANSMISSION JELLY ON YOUR SHOULDER. ENTER THE CENTRE OF A MONDAY AFTERNOON.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

\\\ H A Z E L ///



The fifth Æthenor album is upon us. Her moon is liquid. Conceived amidst haze. Italia MMX.

Hazel is the 5th record from this group of eclectic travellers, who bring their considerable pedigrees together in unexpected and original ways. Looking at the people involved, it would be reasonable to expect a massive blowout of sound, but everyone plays with remarkable and effective restraint. The music is atmospheric and layered, with bits and pieces of identifiable rock moves peeking out from under a thick blanket of hard-to-identify drift. Based on live recordings made on a lengthy tour of Italy in 2010, the recordings have been extensively edited and supplemented, but without losing the elemental sound of a group playing live together. While there’s plenty of weird ambient sound to be heard, this isn’t a sound-effects/”pedalboard” record. Like the preceding “En Form for Bla” album, Noble’s drums anchor the music. The drumming is spare and considered, sometimes lashing out with abstract punctuation, and other times laying out a Can-like groove. O’Malley’s guitar is also restrained, providing a bed for O'Sullivan's constantly morphing Rhodes, synths and electronic effects. Kristoffer Rygg contributes a rousing vocal incantation to “Ermanna” and peppers the mix with ghostly modular details. Like their other records, this is not really like anything else out there right now. Sleeve designed by Stephen O’Malley. CD is in card folio printed by Stumptown Printers. LP is in Stoughton Tip-On Jacket, pressed at RTI, and includes download card.

Pre-order HERE.
 

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

\\\ F U R F O U R ///


LP version pressed on virgin vinyl and packaged with artworked inner sleeve and free download coupon. First 300 LPs pressed on translucent green vinyl. CD version in 4 panel mini-LP style gatefold package. OUT ON THRILL JOCKEY RECORDS, September 22nd 2016.

Somewhere, in the still-remaining quiet places of London, Grumbling Fur is at work. This being is the joint manifestation of Alexander Tucker and Daniel O’Sullivan which, since 2011, has birthed a series of increasingly focussed albums of psychedelic pop. Their new album, Furfour, is a record that’s the sum of a dizzying array of creative projects by two key figures in an esoteric underground still thriving despite the pressures and pains of modern London.

Furfour gradually emerged over three years of writing and recording at 147 Tower Gardens, the strange ivy-shrouded house that Tucker and O’Sullivan once called home. It’s an album whose warm heart is shaped, say Grumbling Fur, by birth, loss, friendship, death, those things that happen to us all. Yet as ever with this duo, it’s altered through fantasy and sci-fi, Carlos Castenada, shamanic mind warp, house ghosts and meditation.

It’s in many ways remarkable that two such distinct personalities with their roots and much of their activity in the cultural left eld can combine in a record that sounds so rooted, focussed, and accessible. 2016 is a already a year of intense activity for Tucker and O’Sullivan outside of Grumbling Fur: Tucker’s latest comic was featured in Art Review, a full publication, World In The Force, will follow on Breakdown Press, along with a new solo album. O’Sullivan has been at the core of the wildly successful This Heat reconstitution, and with Massimo Pupillo of Zu recently released Laniakea. As part of Ulver, he released ATGCLVLSSCAP, an pan-zodiacal excursion in sound, and later this year there’ll be a new album from Æthenor (a collaboration between O’Sullivan, Steve Noble and Stephen O’Malley). In the guise of the Grumbling Fur Time Machine Orchestra, Tucker and O’Sullivan have just released a 12” of ROSE, their collaborative piece with Turner Prize-nominee Mark Titchner, who in turn produced the artwork for Furfour. There’ve also been a series of live collaborations with Charlemagne Palestine.

This breadth of operation frees O’Sullivan and Tucker to create simple, hypnotically engaging songs from paradoxically freeform beginnings. Shaping the lot are their long-standing shared musical affections, a polyglot music encompassing orchestrated poptones, collage, dub and beat-making as well as experimental and drone elements: touchtones might include Faust, Arthur Russell, Penguin Cafe Orchestra, Moondog, Michael Nyman, Gate, Syd Barrett, Stereolab, Vibracathedral Orchestra, Ashtray Navigations, Cc Hennix and Madlib. The 12 songs and interstitial abstract pieces that make up Furfour were created not out of structure or theme, and rarely began at the beginning. Instead, Grumbling Fur work by generating sounds and ideas first and then moulding structures and ideas around this. “Songs are about including the process in the finished piece and spontaneous ideas are laid down and a structure starts to emerge from this source,” they explain: “first thought best thought is our motto”.

On Furfour, Grumbling Fur is joined by This Heat’s Charles Bullen and Isobel Sollenberger from Bardo Pond on some tracks, all part of Grumbling Fur’s quest “for kindred spirits, open souls and players we respect.” This goes for each other, of course: “It’s often a case of both trying to work around each others ideas to balance and include one another’s voice,” they explain of the song-writing process.

Working in their own home studios, Grumbling Fur blew on the embers and Furfour began to glow. It’s a curious, generous-hearted and organic-sounding record that has its mood set by the easy harmonising of O’Sullivan and Tucker’s voices as they oat melodiously above clackering rhythms of "Milky Light," strings as celestial beings in "Silent Plans," scraps of half-heard spiritual texts and, conversely, the synth pop banger of "Acid Ali Khan" which sounds, as one writer once summed up Grumbling Fur, “like Depeche Mode in a stone circle”. Golden Simon and Heavy Days, meanwhile, describe the many horizons of the pop landscape that Brian Eno painted in Another Green World. Musical history is stuffed with male songwriting partnerships eventually driven apart by ego, but Grumbling Fur lift their music above the quotidian by making it about each other, a realisation that only by understanding our own human relationships can we comprehend how we might exist in part of something bigger. “The band is as much about our friendship and shared love of music, art, literature, lm, comics, goddesses and gods,” they explain: “Joy, bliss, friendship and expression are the central keystone to the Fur universe.”


Friday, May 6, 2016

ROSE

Grumbling Fur Time Machine Orchestra presents music for Mark Titchner's ROSE. More info soon.


Thursday, March 24, 2016

LANIAKEA /// New Zero Kanada






We'll be playing our debut concert in Quebec at Festival International Musique Actuelle Victoriaville on May 22nd. We'll be joined by Jessica Moss (Silver Mt Zion) on violin and Peggy Lee (Dave Douglas, Wayne Horvitz, etc) on cello. Read about the festival here. In addition, Massimo and I will be playing a warm up show at Magasin 4 in Brussels on May 18th. Details here. Hope to see you there!

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

LANIAKEA /// Fairwarped Rosemullion

11,5 x 11,5 inch collage on lithograph print to accompany the LANIAKEA LP on House Of Mythology. Limited edition of 25, titled, signed and numbered. Pre-orders here.

Monday, February 22, 2016

The Green Ray /// Wilkinson Gallery

THE GREEN RAY 
Curated by Andrew Hunt

The Wilkinson Gallery

27 February - 10 April 2016
Opening: Friday 26 February, 6-8pm


Danai Anesiadou, Anna Barriball, Ant Farm, Juliette Bonneviot, Matt Copson, Phil Coy, Jeffrey Dennis, Adham Faramawy, Travis Jeppesen, Nicholas Mangan, Xavier Mary, Mike Nelson, Lisa Oppenheim, Daniel O’Sullivan, Katrina Palmer, Yuri Pattison, Elizabeth Price, Sophie Sleigh-Johnson, Mathew Sawyer, and Michelle Ussher

After party performances by Mathew Sawyer, Daniel O’Sullivan, and The Magnetic North (Simon Tong, Hannah Peel, Erland Cooper). Free entry.






Tuesday, February 16, 2016

L A N I A K E A




Recorded at 147 Tower Gardens with Massimo Pupillo. A Vessel. A big sonic wave goodbye to my friend Ian Johnstone. Out soon on House Of Mythology. 


Some bumph written in the third person...

LANIAKEA IS HOME. 

A reflection of our galactic supercluster, Daniel O'Sullivan (Ulver, Grumbling Fur, Æthenor, Mothlite) and Massimo Pupillo (Zu) invoke eternal vibrations devoted to living spirit in perpetual becoming. Cosmic hymns and atomised riffs slowed and stretched to unveil a pantheon of sound in particle form. Drawing on a rich tapestry of influences ranging from the plainchant of Hildegard von Bingen to Alice Coltrane's vedantic tapes to the monolithic bass frequencies of Godflesh. Laniakea investigates the micro and the macro in hermetic ubiquity. As above so below.

Recorded at 147 Tower Gardens former home to gentleman satyr and Coil affiliate Ian Johnstone (and former residence of DOS), this music was conceived soon after Ian's untimely passing. An exercise in how to transform grief into grace. How to allow grace to transform space. How space can transmit information and be transformed in sound. A space so charged with life and energy and art and magick that only the physical presence of two vessels were needed to manipulate a variety of instruments and the atmosphere provided all the rest. Daniel was custodian of the suburban dwelling in which Ian Johnstone poured enormous love and energy. Clad in dark stained wood, a dense menagerie of power amulets and the sidereal painting of Austin Osman Spare, Ian shared his home with the late Jhonn Balance of Coil up until his death in 2004. In the process of packing an immense cabinet of curiosities into cardboard boxes, Daniel was visited by his friend Massimo (now resident of the Peruvian jungle and student of shamanic power plants) and in the midst of a great grief sounds began to flow with little discussion. Only to celebrate the artistic and human heritage of dearly departed friends through music. Hence Laniakea was born. And started sailing home.




Monday, February 8, 2016

T R I P M A N I F E S T B E I N G S

A selection of collages I've been making over the past year or so. I'll be showing a few of these and performing live at the opening of 'The Green Ray' at The Wilkinson Gallery on Vyner St. 26th February - 10th April.