new mix show! vervine004

It’s been a while again since our last one – here’s the latest Vervine show which as usual, is hosted by our label owner Harry Towell.

This fourth show in the series includes recent Whitelabrecs pieces from the likes of The Dead Bell, Yuya Ota, Tum Tum, Bledi Boraku and Mardit B. Lleshi, Philipp Bückle and Martijn Pieck, Matteo Cantaluppi, Glåsbird and a track from Andy Cartwright’s forthcoming album ‘Beyond the Noise’. It also features plenty of other ambient music, some folk, indie, downtempo, disco and electronica.

The cover artwork for this one was taken on a visit to Burghley House in Stamford, through a small round portal with a green colour filter. The sun-worn colours are apt as we move into summer!

Here’s a mini player/link to the show which you can check out on Mixcloud:

01 ElodieVent Blanc
02 Bledi Boraku – Mardit B. Lleshi Tema
03 Matteo Cantaluppi Messian
04 David Cordero Oma
05 Andy Cartwright – Mended Environment
06 North Americans The Nighthawks Are Our
07 Philipp Bückle & Martijn Pieck Grains
08 Wil Bolton Of Ruins
09 Tum Tum Twenty Seven
10 Seabuckthorn What was once
11 Lucinda Chua Golden
12 Observatories Sapphire Waters
13 blochemy sien
14 The Dead Bell Forgotten Reveries
15 Hummingbird Turrēs
16 Yuya Ota Daydream
17 Glåsbird Inyeug
18 John Haycock Nyonks Jarabi
19 Fabiano do Nascimento with Arthur Verocai and Vittor Santos’ Orquestra Fonte
20 Meg BairdStar Hill Song
21 Ruby GoonCold Wind
22 Hagan Textures
23 Vicmari With Or Without (ft. Shiloh)
24 FenomenomOut Of Control
25 Pharoahs Invisible Mile
26 Pools Penwick Pool
27 Roman Rauch Bumble Beat
28 Rim Kwaku Obeng Believe In Yourself

Out Now! Tum Tum – A Tree Hollow

Also new for May is ‘A Tree Hollow‘ by Texas, USA based composer John Paul Thompson who records as Tum Tum. This record is a conceptual album in which there are three movements and nine tracks. It is inspired by both by Dr. Li Wenliang who became prominent in the early stages of the Covid-19 pandemic, and the artist’s own personal experiences. This album is out now in a run of 100 CDrs, in our signature gatefold vinyl-effect packaging. If you follow us on Bandcamp (Click HERE) we’ll make sure you’re the first to hear about future releases. Or you can become a subscriber and receive our monthly newsletters by clicking HERE

press release
“Tum Tum is the project of composer John Paul Thompson, who is based in Texas, United States. He is from a family of musicians and began his own journey with the violin at the age of 8 before moving on to guitar, piano, and eventually synthesis and sound design. John Paul also previously ran an independent record label called Pandarosa Records, producing multiple albums and performing alongside several acts in the label’s roster.

Wider artistic initiatives also play a key part in John Paul’s work, with his enthusiasm for photography and his work in music licensing with Chicago-based Comma Music. He is also co-founder of Easyside, an arts + food non-profit working in East Fort Worth. This wider creative lens transforms the series of compositions in this album ‘A Tree Hollow’, into a conceptual album in which there are three movements and nine tracks.

The backstory of this record is told by John Paul in the following album introduction:

“I heard the term ‘a tree hollow’ described in a radio story memorializing the death of Dr. Li Wenliang one year after he passed due to COVID-19. Dr. Li had been the first to sound the alarm and he died of the virus in the nascent days of the global pandemic. “You find a tree hollow in the forest and seal your written secret in there so you can feel better,” Huang Zhisheng, a professor and researcher at the Free University Amsterdam explained of the Chinese tradition. Since his death Dr Li’s lingering social media presence had posthumously transformed, and people were sealing messages on his unattended page – ‘Will I pass my graduate exams tomorrow, Dr. Li?’ – ‘Dr. Li, I pet a cute orange cat today! I’m happy!’ – ‘I can’t’ – ‘I don’t understand.’

In 2018, as I prepared to move away from Chicago with my wife and daughter to rejoin family in Texas, we received news of a friend’s disappearance, then of their death. We pushed the move date forward to make it to the funeral and made a hasty goodbye to our home. Two months later we learned of our niece’s death, stillborn within weeks of her due date. Shortly after that funeral, a family fracture emerged that cast a dark shadow of doubt over our decision to leave Chicago.

In the oppressive Texas rains of late 2018, I began rebuilding a studio in the spare bedroom. As we emerged from grief, as family bonds were slowly restored, as trust in others and ourselves was replenished, and as we found focus and budding purpose in our Fort Worth community, I began writing these pieces – for myself. I eventually decided to share a few of the tracks in early 2019 but ended up sitting on the work for over two years, first delayed by my own self-doubt and then by the cataclysms of 2020. In the face of such global and systemic tragedies, what could I say?

It wasn’t until I heard the story of Dr. Li in February of 2021 that I found a renewed interest in this project. These pieces had been a tree hollow in the forest, into which I had sealed my secrets so that I could feel better. That was enough for me, but moreover, I found hope that there might be enough room in them into which an audience might place their own secrets.


Written, produced and mastered by John Paul Thompson
Cover artwork by John Paul Thompson –
Art and design by Andrew Heath

Packaging photos

Here’s a glimpse of the packaging files, which you can see via the slideshow below: