Home Diaries 029: Darkroom

We’ve taken a pause from our schedule of CD albums due to our local post office closing, following the outbreak of Covid19. We launched a digital series called Home Diaries, in which we’ll release EPs and albums by an international line-up of artists, with the music created during lockdown and social distancing conditions.

The series reflects a range of sounds, styles and ideas, as each artist portrays their own reflections uniquely. Each release is digital only for now, as we hope to raise what we can to help keep our label ticking over at this time. The releases feature a recurring polaroid image of a small lonely house, with a coloured filter chosen by the artist for each respective release.

In this next Home Diaries release, we welcome UK artists Darkroom, who have been active since the 1990s. Darkroom consists of Andrew Ostler and Michael Bearpark and we have an album due on CD later this year. This Home Diaries was originally two live performances by Andrew, in which Michael was unable to join physically. So he used a cassette with Mike’s previously recorded guitar composition as part of the sessions, so that Mike could still have a presence as a key part of the performance. The resulting two tracks ebb and flow with detail, retaining a live feel yet adopting the quality of presentation you’d expect to come from a studio.

Each Home Diaries release will include bonus PDF liner notes, which has an interview with the artist on how they made the album, what their situation is like, what they have planned, their influences and what equipment/techniques they used.  There are also additional photos provided by the artist as part of the PDF too. Click on the link below to check it out:

-LABEL LINK-
https://whitelabrecs.bandcamp.com/album/home-diaries-029

-ARTIST LINK-
https://darkroomtheband.bandcamp.com/album/home-diaries-029

press release
“Home Diaries is an invitation to artists and musicians to create an album or EP to document their personal experience during the lockdown or social distancing conditions that are upon us, due to the coronavirus outbreak. The series reflects a range of sounds, styles and ideas, as each artist portrays their own reflections uniquely. Each release is digital only for now, as we hope to raise what we can to help keep our label ticking over at this time. The releases feature a recurring polaroid image of a small lonely house, with a coloured filter chosen by the artist for each respective release. We interview each artist and this is included as a bonus PDF with the download. You can also check out the Home Diaries series on Spotify if you prefer, which will be available to stream in due course.

Our penultimate Home Diaries edition is the first and only collaboration as part of the series. UK duo Darkroom – Andrew Ostler and Michael Bearpark – have been active since the late 1990s with releases on Burning Shed and more recently via their Bandcamp site. They are renowned for their extended live performances: rarer following Andrew’s move to Scotland; now even more challenging with the pandemic and resulting lockdown.

Seeking and finding positives through the ‘new normal’, Andrew has been performing as part of streaming event series. Mike was present on these occasions from a distance via guitar recordings transferred to cassette: one from their Edinburgh performance towards the end of 2019, and another, inspired by Scotland, that seeded the recording of their full Whitelabrecs album planned for November 2020. The pieces evolve through multiple shades of colour and dynamics, retaining an open live feel; ‘Arrokoth’ and ‘The Uncut Stones of Night’ are very much of their time, yet combine to make a timeless album experience, with a total running time of 40 minutes.”

credits
Arrokoth

Original recording for Fuzz Bat Live Stream – 31st March 2020
Guitar: recorded at The Darkroom, 2nd February 2019

The Uncut Stones Of Night

Original recording for More Kicks Than Friends – 29th April 2020
Guitar: recorded at Henry’s Cellar Bar, Edinburgh, 13th November 2019

Recorded by Andrew Ostler
Edited, mixed, and produced by Darkroom
Mastered by James Edward Armstrong

Andrew Ostler – bass clarinet, modular synth, laptop
Michael Bearpark – guitar, field recordings

Special thanks: Stuart Fraser (Fuzz Bat), Ned Rush (More Kicks), Elif Yalvaç, New Horizons, Roy Fuller. Go well, LB

Out now! WLR021 Various Artists – Whitelabsounds

This is a proud day for us at Whitelabrecs HQ – we’ve been working hard behind the scenes for a while on our very first compilation album and for this, our packaging/design takes a slight turn. This release continues along the lines of vinyl-effect CDrs of course but this time, we’ve splashed out on creating a small scale fine-art vinyl imitation CDr, which is presented exactly as a professional vinyl LP would, only smaller!

The album sees us make good use of the full space on the disc as we’ve approached our own artists, label friends and established artists alike. The final product sees well-known producers such as Offthesky, Darkroom and The Green Kingdom line up alongside our very own David Kolhne, Jose Soberanes and Ondrej Zajac. We couldn’t be happier with the packaging and the quality of the tones contained on the disc and we hope you will be too.

As you can imagine, most of the 100 copies have been gobbled up by our subscribers however, at the time of writing copies of this album are still available – to find out more or grab a copy, you can click the link below or on the image above to listen. To avoid missing out on future releases, you can join our mailing list HERE

https://whitelabrecs.bandcamp.com/album/whitelabsounds

Whitelabrecs low-run releases will be made available suddenly without official release dates, meaning they’re likely to sell out fast. The best way to keep informed is to join our mailing list which can be located through our website menu.

press release
“Since we began running Whitelabrecs in January 2016 we’ve managed to put out 20 albums covering the varied ground of the Ambient scene and featuring artists both new and established. Usually by the time that this many releases have amassed, most labels will have created at least one compilation or sampler but rest assured, we’ve been working behind the scenes for several months on our very own ‘Whitelabsounds’.

Our very first compilation album features a CDr full of top drawer Ambient and Experimental music featuring well known artists in the scene such as Offthesky, Maps and Diagrams, The Green Kingdom, Wil Bolton and Darkroom as well as contributors to our discography and other friends.
The album is presented as a small-scale fine-art vinyl LP imitation package, with a printed outer photographic/graphic sleeve, white card inner sleeve and a printed vinyl-effect CDr. There’s not a rubber stamp or white label in sight, as we wanted to present something truly special and hopefully, the start of a series.

The sounds contained within the disk are to be seen as a mood board of the various shades of modern Ambient music, with darker drones concocted from electronics and light noise sitting alongside beautiful electro-acoustic pieces, framed as a sort of mosaic. Every tile tells a story as each artist’s environment, experience and influence helps shape their sound. Somehow, the whole body of work becomes greater than the sum of its parts and that brings us to the artwork, a photograph of tessellating mosaic tiles taken in Pompeii, Italy.
Some tiles are worn and disintegrated whereas some are smooth and clear, perfectly reflecting the tones that can be heard on this inaugural Whitelabsounds compilation.”

Catalog number WLR021
Mastered by Tim Diagram
Photography by Bethany Towell
Artwork by Harry Towell

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Coming soon…Various Artists | Whitelabsounds

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This is a proud day for us at Whitelabrecs HQ – we’ve been working hard behind the scenes for a while on our very first compilation album and for this, our packaging/design takes a slight turn. This release continues along the lines of vinyl-effect CDrs of course but this time, we’ve splashed out on creating a small scale fine-art vinyl imitation CDr, which is presented exactly as a professional vinyl LP would, only smaller!

The album sees us make good use of the full space on the disc as we’ve approached our own artists, label friends and established artists alike. The final product sees well-known producers such as Offthesky, Darkroom and The Green Kingdom line up alongside our very own David Kolhne, Jose Soberanes and Ondrej Zajac. We couldn’t be happier with the packaging and the quality of the tones contained on the disc and we hope you will be too.

This will be released to our subscribers first, so to avoid missing out be sure to sign up to our mailing list so you hear about it first!

Please note, this is a CDr, not a vinyl record!

Whitelabrecs low-run releases will be made available suddenly without official release dates, meaning they’re likely to sell out fast. The best way to keep informed is to join our mailing list which can be located through our website menu.

press release
“Since we began running Whitelabrecs in January 2016 we’ve managed to put out 20 albums covering the varied ground of the Ambient scene and featuring artists both new and established. Usually by the time that this many releases have amassed, most labels will have created at least one compilation or sampler but rest assured, we’ve been working behind the scenes for several months on our very own ‘Whitelabsounds’.

Our very first compilation album features a CDr full of top drawer Ambient and Experimental music featuring well known artists in the scene such as Offthesky, Maps and Diagrams, The Green Kingdom, Wil Bolton and Darkroom as well as contributors to our discography and other friends.
The album is presented as a small-scale fine-art vinyl LP imitation package, with a printed outer photographic/graphic sleeve, white card inner sleeve and a printed vinyl-effect CDr. There’s not a rubber stamp or white label in sight, as we wanted to present something truly special and hopefully, the start of a series.

The sounds contained within the disk are to be seen as a mood board of the various shades of modern Ambient music, with darker drones concocted from electronics and light noise sitting alongside beautiful electro-acoustic pieces, framed as a sort of mosaic. Every tile tells a story as each artist’s environment, experience and influence helps shape their sound. Somehow, the whole body of work becomes greater than the sum of its parts and that brings us to the artwork, a photograph of tessellating mosaic tiles taken in Pompeii, Italy.
Some tiles are worn and disintegrated whereas some are smooth and clear, perfectly reflecting the tones that can be heard on this inaugural Whitelabsounds compilation.”

Catalog number WLR021
Mastered by Tim Diagram
Photography by Bethany Towell
Artwork by Harry Towell

Coming soon… Various Artists | Whitelabsounds

We’re keeping further details fairly close to our chest, but we wanted to share a project that will be ready to drop very soon: our very first compilation album!

This will be released in a bigger run than our usual fifty copies and will include work from Whitelabrecs’ contributors such as Spheruleus, David Kolhne, Ondrej Zajac and La Petite Vague as well as a few friends we’ve drafted in such as The Green Kingdom, Offthesky, Maps and Diagrams and Darkroom.