listen further: colectivo futurecast 021

  • Lawrence Roberts
  • Further Listening
  • Manchester, UK
  • Blog | Twitter
We first discovered Manchester based Lawrence Roberts via twitter. Gradually we started noticing that our tastes in music were pretty much aligned and it was only a matter of time before we got him to do a mix for our Colectivo Futurecast series. Lawerence currently runs the archival and music exploration blog Further Listening; on it he writes short blurbs about artists and projects he finds essential, not only from a musical standpoint, but also from a conceptual one. On this mix, Lawrence explores the realm of avant-garde electronic musics to absolute perfection, resulting in a deep, bass-centric selection best suited for headphone listening on late nights.

Artwork borrowed from a painting by British artists Ben Nicholson.

CF: how and where was this mix recorded?

The mix is some current listening and a few old favorites, it’s a headphone mix really. I would say that 80 % of my listening is to ‘electronic’ music, and the mix showcases some of the diversity that makes this genre the one to keep up with, in my opinion. The mix is not recorded live, i’m no DJ (yet!), I put it all together using Audacity.

CF: what were your first incursions with electronic music? where do you presently stand, musically speaking?

My first big musical step came during the early-00s whilst at high school (pre-broadband), exploring my local library’s ‘electronic’ cd section beyond the ‘Ibiza Anthems’ compilations. I loaned two Boards of Canada albums and an Aphex Twin remixes compilation, which instantly translated to purchases. At around the same time I started to set my minidisc to record the Breezeblock each Monday evening, so I could listen back to the show whilst doing my weekly paper round. That show really expanded my mind, and my ear.

A decade later I’m based in Manchester, UK, my job doesn’t involve music but much of my spare time is spent buying, listening, talking and reading about music. The North of England is a great hub of electronic music, we have the Modern Love Label operating out of Manchester putting out local artists like Demdike Stare, Claro Intelecto and (now Berlinite) Leyland Kirby. There’s Autechre over in Rochdale, Philip Jeck in Liverpool, SND and The Black Dog in Sheffield, I could go on…

CF: tell us about your current project, Listen Further. what is the concept behind the project?

I’ve been running the Listen Further project for about a month now, it currently exists as a Twitter and Tumblr stream running concurrently. It’s a little corner of the internet where I can post about current listening, online music resources and draw together some connections. I decided to stick to Tumblr and Twitter for now because I can keep it brief to read, a gateway straight into music or a quick connection elsewhere.

Last month I ran a feature where I posted a pick of six unreleased Burial tracks that have been chopped out of radio mixes and posted on Youtube by fans. This is the type of thing I’ve seen talked about on forums but never seen the videos collected in one place before. I also ran ‘Further with…’ features on two albums, creating imaginary (and subjective) ‘further listening’ lists. My first choice was Boards of Canada’s ‘Geogaddi’. I listed neighbors The Incredible String Band and Stereolab’s early sampling of numbers stations as key reference points for BOC. Amongst the other selections were Broadcast and Mordant Music, as I hear so much of this album’s influence in the current hauntological trend.

CF: what do you normally listen to at home? which are your top three favorite albums ever?

In terms of listening at home, I find myself going through podcasts and mixes on weeknights – listening to newer stuff, and the playing older favourites on my record player at the weekend. Things that often grace the turntable at home: Kraftwerk, Cocteau Twins, Oneohtrix Point Never, Drexciya…

Three favorite albums:

1. Grouper – Dragging a Dead Deer
2. Basic Channel – BCD I/II
3. William Basinski – Disintegration Loops


CF: what is your favorite thing about living in Manchester?

Best thing about living in Manchester is the dedicated promoters working like crazy to bring artists here to play!

CF: how do you expect Listen Further to grow in the future?

I hope to get more people involved in Listen Further in the future, the more the better I guess in terms of variety! Just working to establish an initial flow for the tumblr/twitter feeds at the moment before putting out a call.