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Who is Black Lodge? Rumours: records on Mo’Wax and The Trilogy Tapes, part of an occult northern soul collective, member of the shadowy Gescom, Manchester pirate radio DJ, graffiti artist, Autechre sleeve designer, gong player.

Hot on the heels of his Arcola 12 arrives this collection on a very different tip, Bitter Blood: A Collection Of Archival Recordings was collated from the extensive Lodgewars tape archive. Spectral sound sketches that smudge the edges of ambient, post-punk and industrial, harsh tape hiss buffered by spooling coils of melody, recorded in the upstairs room of a Manchester pub.

Richly cinematic overtones lost in a haze of cigarette smoke and captured on low-fi equipment, Bitter Blood collects recordings Black Lodge has been making across various locations scattered over the North of England and his musical career that runs from the early 90’s up to the present day. Bitter Blood is an alternative universe of left-field pop and post-punk abstraction, somewhat akin to Eno’s Another Green World drowning in a sea of Boddingtons.

Bitter Blood shows a side to this enigmatic artist and project that sits as equally at home within the discography of The Trilogy Tapes as it does within the lineage of rain-soaked, greyscale Northern psychedelia, one that in many ways joins the leylines of The Fall’s spikier moments, the urban abstraction electronics of Skam and the deeply sprawling recording history of Muslimgauze.

Bitter Blood is sonic futurism as heard spiralling outward from the upstairs function room window of The Kings Arms, Salford on a cold winters day.

 

Artwork by Studio Tape-Echo

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