Sunday, 25 September 2022

Spacemen 3 - Live at The Twisted Wheel, Carlisle 26-06-89


Bootleg 1989

01 Rollercoaster
02 Lord Can You Hear Me
03 Things'll Never be the Same
04 Take Me to the Other Side
05 Transparant Radiation
06 Starship
07 Revolution
08 Che
09 Suicide
10 Revolution

Digging in to my S3 boots now and a show from my (near) hometown of Carlisle. I was too young to attend (and too young to be a fan yet). It doesn't sound like all of the audience were ready for this kind of sonic assault!

The Nightowl Sings - Test Card / Chicago Girls Dream Of Glasgow


Treehouse Orchestra Recordings 2022

01 Test Card
02 Chicago Girls Dream Of Glasgow

The newest release on our label is this single...

The Nightowl Sings is Marc Gillen - Guitars, keyboards, melodica, drum machine and vocals.

All words written by Marc Gillen.

Recorded at home summer 2022.

'Test Card' mixed, manipulated, arranged and produced by Alastair Popple.

'Chicago Girls Dream of Glasgow'  mixed, manipulated, arranged and produced by Stephen Benson.

Photography by Marc Gillen and artwork design by Stephen Benson.


The Brian Jonestown Massacre - Pol-Pots Pleasure Penthouse


Unreleased demos 1991 / Burger Records 2012 / A Records 2017

01 Fingertips
02 E To G
03 Phone Song
04 Thoughts Of You Too
05 Chameleons
06 Evergreen
07 Fade
08 Space
09 Psychedelic Sunday
10 Jazzy Song
11 That Quiet Song
12 Only Trying To Help You
13 Don't Leave Me Here
14 Fade II
15 Memphis Sound
16 Remember Yesterday
17 Fade III
18 The Cure
19 Fade IV
20 The Cure II
21 Fade V

This BJM demo cassette comes from 1991, which pre-dates debut album 'Methodrone' by a couple of years. Information comes from the original owner from a post on the Keep Music Evil forum:

"in the early days, i think there were many bjm cassettes made for friends, venues, radio stations, record labels, etc. that's just how things were done. in light of his story, i do think alan herrick's tape is the first. the 1990 demo is older and a little different from pol pots. some of the songs have different vocal takes, like psychedelic sunday. all songs on the 1990 demo are on pol pots except for a long fade. pol pots has an additional 16 or so songs. anton worked then just like he does now, writing and recording all the time, always bubbling over with ideas, everything a work in progress, little to no second guessing. it was just like you see him work in his berlin studio, except he did it on a fourtrack, a friend's tascam 424.

the collection of music known as pol pot's pleasure penthouse is from a cassette anton gave me around 1991. it's hard for me to remember the date exactly. i had been living in victoria, bc and was passing through san francisco on my way back to costa mesa when i saw anton on haight street and pulled over. it was good to catch up and find out what he was doing. i went inside his flat and met a guy with a big pompadour and heavy makeup, wearing a thrift store cardigan and playing guitar on an empress couch in front of a bay window. that was jeff davies. as anton walked with me back to the car he gave me a tape. i was like, ok, thanks!

the cassette was a tdk, type 1. anton wrote "the brian jonestown massacer" on one side, misspelling massacre, and "untitled - 1991" on the other. he crammed as much music as would fit on a 90 minute cassette. the second the music fades out, the tape ends. i played it hundreds of times on my crappy car stereo in the early 90s. left it in the hot sun, etc. then the tape sat in a shoebox for 15 years, moving with me from place to place. in 2006, i had the cassette transferred to digital at mr. toads in san francisco. the guy who runs the studio, tardon feathered, did the transfer on march 3. i think it sounds pretty good for all the cassette went through, even with the 'lower' sound quality, drop outs, etc.

i gave the original cassette, a roughly eq'd version of the transfer on two cds, and a 88.2Khz .wav version on dvd to anton at the little radio show in los angeles april 21, 2006. we had not seen each other for years. i remember him saying to me, 'looking like a man' and 'thanks, i owe you one.' i also mailed a copy to pierre priot at dead bees records in france a few weeks before, but didn't hear anything. i'm not sure what happened after that, but before long the songs were shared online.

i didn't ask tardon to 'master' the songs because i didn't think it was my place to do so. now, i kind of wish i did. i thought it was going to be this huge discovery and have a proper release and so forth. over the years i've read a lot of comments saying how much people like it, and even though i had absolutly nothing to do with the music, it makes me happy that so many people have been able to enjoy it. it's funny to me to remember how i used to agonize over this in the early 90s, thinking nobody would ever hear these awesome songs. looks like i had nothing to worry about."

The demo was released on cassette through Burger Records in 2012 and as a double vinyl for Record Store Day in 2017.

Tuesday, 23 August 2022

Goatherder - Music For Promenades


TOR088. Released July 2022.

01 Sea Barn
02 Dubmill Point
03 Piano #1
04 Lapse
05 Music for Promenades
06 The Hayton Tapes (Vocal Drone)
07 Chichester House
08 W. Rag
09 New Years Day
10 Postmodern Grief Possibilities

Another release from the Cumbrian label of artists and friends. This time, it's my own music.

All music performed, recorded, edited and produced by Stephen Benson, October 2020 to October 2021.

Guitar, voice and effects on 'Music for Promenades' and piano on
'Postmodern Grief Possibilities' by Emily Ford.

Drums on 'Postmodern Grief Possibilities' by Steve Orchiton.

Voices on 'The Hayton Tapes' by Felicity Cromack, Emily Ford,
Stephanie Gardner, Gareth Hodgson, Ricardo Marzo, Camille Matton,
Asha Nicholson, Nick Taylor and Samantha Staniforth.

Mastered by Jonathan Sharp.

Cover art by Stephen Benson.

"Recorded during a pretty awful period...a collage of sounds and ideas that document that time. An avant-garde meditation on loss and grief." - Stephen.

Available for free streaming/download or as extremely limited vinyl pressing from Bandcamp.

Sunforest - Sound Of Sunforest


Deram 1970

01 Overture To The Sun
02 Where Are You
03 Bonny River
04 Be Like Me
05 Mr. Bumble
06 And I Was Blue
07 Lighthouse Keeper
08 Old Cluck
09 Lady Next Door
10 Peppermint Store
11 Magician In The Mountain
12 Lovely Day
13 Give Me All Your Loving
14 Garden Rug
15 All In Good Time

1970's 'Sound Of Sunforest' is the only album this American/English trio produced.

This is a baffling album; half of it has mind blowing psych folk the other half can be fairly terrible. The good stuff really makes it worth though.

I made an E.P. of the tracks I like, this really is a strange one.

The Byrds - Tomorrow's The Day


Self made compilation 2021 (Recorded 1968)

A1 You Ain't Going Nowhere
A2 I Am a Pilgrim
A3 Lazy Days
A4 Hickory Wind
A5 Pretty Polly
A6 All I Have Are Memories

B1 One Hundred Years from Now
B2 You Don't Miss Your Water
B3 Reputation
B4 You're Still on My Mind
B5 Pretty Boy Floyd
B6 Nothing Was Delivered

The alternate Byrds history continues. This time, its my re-imagining of the Gram Parsons era and the late 1968 recordings.

I've maintained a lot of the original album, but favour some of the outtakes. These tracks have a little more of the 'original' Byrds sound. That being said, I am a huge fan of the original 'Sweetheart Of The Rodeo'.

I made a cover using the same Jo Mora illustration the Sweetheart image was taken from.

If you're interested, here are my other Byrds albums, recompiled:

1966 - Byrds '66
1968 - Tomorrow's The Day
1969 - Byrds '69

Friday, 29 July 2022

The Nightowl Sings - These Dislocated Isles


TOR087. Released June 2022.

01 These Dislocated Isles (Part 1)
02 These Dislocated Isles (Part 2)

The latest release from Treehouse Orchestra Recordings.

Marc Gillen - Vocals, Drum Machine, Electric Guitars, Keyboards, sounds & samples.

All music and words written by Marc Gillen except ‘Lighthouse’ written by Marc Gillen and Alastair Popple. 

Version of ‘Lighthouse’ sample used prepared by Alastair Popple.

Recorded at home October 2021 to January 2022.

Mixed and edited by Stephen Benson.

Mastered by Jonathan Sharp.

Artwork and design by Emily Ford.

"These Dislocated Isles, and the lighthouse is broken. The last several years has been a heady trip, sometimes dark and long, sometimes baffling and strange, always surprising, always changing. Strange times indeed as I often hear people say. 

Lucky for me, I’m still here to hear them call out, still enjoying the glimpses of light and euphoria when they bolt from the earth and sky.
Feelings and events (personal and communal) have come and gone like quicksands on a ghost beach. Themes emerge and permeate in the ether.

Divorce, bouts of loneliness, falling madly in love and re-marrying, the joy of DIY and punk noise, depression (mostly of dear others) have all featured as constants in my mind casting a tangled web. STICKY.

Add to this constant social and political upheaval, Myopia (everywhere), attacks on the common good, serious illness, lucid dreaming, near death flirtations and explosions of art, song, love and future fever dreams and you have a cerebral headfuck.

This thirty-minute (or so…) TONE POEM (HA!) is a reflection on our personal and shared dislocations, mentally, physically, politically, socially, geographically, economically and spiritually. I pieced it together at the end of 2021 intending to perform it live. Alas, illness has prevented this as yet.

For now, here is A version of These Dislocated Isles for prosperity, bundled up inside tape and digital space, making little sense but holding onto something…. for something (people). 

Thanks for listening, everything is possible.


Whoever you are, no one belongs here more than you." - Marc

Free download and extremely limited cassette available from our Bandcamp.