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Monday, 14 December 2015

Mind How You Go Now

Like a lot of other people who grew up in the 1970s one of my recollections is of government public information films where various everyday happenings promised death or at least severe injury- rugs on floors, plugs, roads, water, electricity, the countryside in general. A few years ago I was in a record shop and having been aware of the Ghost Box record label saw an album by The Advisory Circle ( the work of Jon Brooks). The man behind the counter recommended it, saying it was inspired by public information films alongside with musical influences like Broadcast, krautrock and soundtracks. I bought it on the spot. It's undoubtedly retro but there's enough going on for it to be much more than an exercise in nostalgia. The synths are warm and clean, the drums pitter-patter. It's haunting in places, evoking that world of Sunday afternoons, grey skies and damp British weather. This album and the whole series Ghost Box series of albums are beautifully packaged too if you need another incentive.

This clip compiles some of those public information films and in the grimmest of ironies features Jimmy Saville warning people about danger.


Michael Doherty said...

Have you heard Pye Corner Audio, similar concept, also had a couple of singles on Ghost Box? I'm well behind the crowd on this one as they've been releasing records for several years now, but I really like them . Black Mill Tapes Volume 1 would be a good place to start.

Simon said...

I moved from London to the West Country about 6 years ago now. For the first couple of winters my daily early morning commute back into London(about 6am) through the dark countryside was soundtracked by Ghost Box. Can't listen to them now because that spooked my head for a bit. My favourite sleeve designs by a mile too.

Presumably you know about Number Stations, which sit rather nicely with all of this.


Simon said...

This was my favourite release on Ghost Box.


Jake Sniper said...

Try Jon Brooks album "Shapwick" a great ambient piece

Anto said...

Put your fag end out! Properly!!

londonlee said...

I like Ghost Box in small doses then I start to feel like I'm watching television at school

'We Are All Pan's People' by the Focus Group is one of the best album titles evah

The Swede said...

I have't seen any of those Public Information Films for 45 years, but remembered them all, virtually word for word. I've clearly been scarred for life.