HARDHOUND

Scorch Trio – Luggumt

Author: Colin | Published: 28/2/09

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Artist:Scorch Trio
Title: Luggumt
Label: Rune Grammofon
Year: 2004
Designer: Kim Hiorthoy
Type of music: Scorching
Notes:

Atom TM – Liedgut

Author: Colin | Published: 22/2/09
Previous Skull Disco Next Scorch Trio – Luggumt

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Artist: Atom TM
Title: Liedgut
Label: Raster Noton
Year: 2009
Designer: “Moderne Typographie, Satz und Gestaltung wurde durchgefürht von Linger Decoree und Michaela Kessler, mit tatkräftiger Unterstützung durch Olaf Bender.
Type of music: Electronica, hymnal
Notes:

Skull Disco

Author: Colin | Published: 15/2/09
Previous Re-photographing Next Atom TM – Liedgut

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Artist:Shackleton, Appleblim, Gatekeeper plus remixers
Title: Pics 1-4: Soundboy Punishments, pics 5-8: Soundboy’s Gravestone Gets Desecrated By Vandals
Label: Skull Disco
Year: 2007, 2008
Designer: Art/lettering: Zeke S. Clough, CrippaXXXalmquist
Type of music: Dubstep and all sorts
Notes: The big Dubstep labels, Tempa, Hyperdub and Skull Disco all have some kind of design ethos. We’ve already featured Tempa’s The Roots of Dubstep. I’m not a huge fan of Hyperdub or Apple Pip’s functional design approach, but these Skull Disco covers are unmistakable. It’s difficult to imagine not liking Zeke Clough’s humorous mashup of monsters rising up South America/Egypt/his own id. Now that the Skull Disco operation has been shuttered, I wonder what the next look will be for Shackleton.

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Re-photographing

Author: Colin | Published: 15/2/09
Previous Fonotone Records, Frederick, Maryland Next Skull Disco

You may have noticed – at least we hope you have! – that the quality of the photography on Hard Format has improved in recent months. That can be attributed to a fair amount of experimentation paired with investment in a macro lens, tripod and some decent card for backgrounds. All of which put a lot of the older posts to shame. Soooo, I’ve begun re-photographing the worst of the early posts. If you’re interested to see the new pictures, they’re here:

Chain Reaction
Spekk
Dock Boggs
Scott Walker
Autechre
Kruder and Dorfmeister

More to follow, time and energy permitting…

Fonotone Records, Frederick, Maryland

Author: Colin | Published: 8/2/09
Previous Words Next Re-photographing

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Fonotone Records

Fonotone Records

Fonotone Records

Fonotone Records

Fonotone Records

Fonotone Records

Fonotone Records

Artist:Various including Joe Bussard, Tennessee Mess Arounders, Jolly Joe’s Jug Band and Blind Thomas
Title: Fonotone Records, Frederick, Maryland
Label: Dust to Digital
Year: 2005
Designer: Art, direction and design: Henry H. Owings, Chunklet Graphic Control, hue, tint and brightness: Susan Archie, World of Archie
Type of music: Bluegrass, backwoods country
Notes: I was very happy to receive this as a review copy a few years back – quite apart from the music, it comes with a bottle opener! Fonotone Records was the last label to release 78s (not sure whether that’s worldwide or just in the States). The label was run by the inimitable Joe Bussard, avid/infamous record collector. This is a classic reissue, the cigar box containing treasures like a whole wad of postcards, record labels, a big book overflowing with details, pics, etc and of course the aforesaid bottle opener. Not forgetting the five CDs.

Oh and anyone who knows who the star was behind Blind Thomas gets a gold star. I’ll give you a hint in case you’ve no idea – he’s been featured before here in the early days of Hard Format. Answer’s at the bottom of this post…

The tone of the notes is playful and affectionate throughout:

I climbed the brick steps of a visitor centre and made my initial enquiries. Behind the counter stood two elderly matrons of the town, Luella and Darlene. At first they serenaded me with well practiced “Welcome to Frederick” greetings, but upon my mentioning the name Fonotone, their singsong chatter stopped, and their faces underwent a transformation into twin visages of what William Burroughs once described as “the mean, pinched, bitter evil faces of decent church goin’ women.”

Fonotone Records: for the best in old time playing and singing…

Blind Thomas was the one and only John Fahey and Fonotone released his first recordings.

Last and probably least, here’s my review, written for Signal to Noise magazine.

Words

Author: Colin | Published: 4/2/09
Previous Planned new section: The Designers Next Fonotone Records, Frederick, Maryland

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Okay, Hard Format is mostly about images, but on stumbling across Wordle I couldn’t help but wonder what words on the site would stand out and here they are. I guess it doesn’t pick up on individual pages as words like CD and Vinyl would be biggest otherwise.

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