old-fire

kscope records

Posted by on January 17, 2017 in ,


The first dedicated Post-Progressive label, Kscope launched in May 2008 (with new albums from its first signings The Pineapple Thief and No-Man, and reissues from genre leaders, Porcupine Tree). An artistically focussed and sympathetic home for an evolving, flexible and adventurous style of music without boundaries. Kscope is as concerned with packaging and artwork as it is with music and has established a distinctive visual, as well as musical, identity.

Seven successful years after its auspicious beginnings, by continuing to utilise a combination of both new and established talent, Kscope offers a creative nurturing point for like-minded artists. The label has given a springboard for previous unknowns such as Nordic Giants, Iamthemorning, Nosound and North Atlantic Oscillation, greater exposure for the likes of The Pineapple Thief, Sweet Billy Pilgrim, Crippled Black Phoenix, Gazpacho, Katatonia and No-Man, and achieved significant chart success for Steven Wilson and Anathema.

In celebration of this dedicated, forward-thinking label, we’ve packed our stores with their records, all from just £5, check out some of our highlights from their roster below.


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Old Fire – Songs From The Haunted South

Though The Earlies may not quite be a household name, the two kaleidoscopic albums that the Anglo-American quartet released last decade – 2005’s These Were The Earlies and 2007’s The Enemy Chorus – still exert a rare pull on those who have heard them. One quarter of the band, Texas-born John Mark Lapham, has crafted a spooked, hazy album under the name Old Fire; part Americana and part ambient, and originally begun with singer-songwriter Micah P Hinson, it’s been a decade in the making.

Lapham’s ’90s electronic work has certainly informed his work here, but Songs From The Haunted South appears to be primarily inspired by the dark ’80s dream-pop of This Mortal Coil, as well as the lighter drifts of Brian Eno’s most gaseous pieces. As on This Mortal Coil’s albums, most of the songs are covers, helped along by a varied cast of guest musicians and vocalists, including multi-instrumentalist DM Stith, Swans guitarist Thor Harris, and Tom Rapp of ’60s psychedelic folk veterans Pearls Before Swine.

Song choices are similarly diverse: Shearwater’s “Helix” is here based around a weighty Rhodes piano, while Jason Molina’s “It’s Easier Now” comes enriched with martial snares and tremolo guitar. Other selections are more out-there, with Psychic TV’s “The Orchids” given a tumbling treatment like Nico’s “These Days”, before being enveloped by uncoiling Ebow tones.
Lapham’s ethereal instrumental tracks are also crucial elements to Songs From The Haunted South, with the opening “Old Fire 3” building to a hazy, reverbed crescendo, and the synthetic choir on closer “Deadhouse Dream” reminiscent of Popul Vuh’s soundtrack to Werner Herzog’s Fitzcarraldo. Even Old Fire’s overly reverential version of Low’s “Laser Beam” can’t disrupt the gloriously spooked mood that Lapham builds up throughout this immersive record.

cd: £5


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The Anchoress – Confessions Of A Romance Novelist

Garnering comparisons to John Grant and Lana Del Rey, The Anchoress’s concept driven compositions were the talk of the music press in 2016.

Multi-instrumentalist, songwriter, PhD & producer Catherine Anne Davies (who also plays in the live line-up of Simple Minds) sums up her album’s overall concept as, “Partly a concept album narrated by the titular potboiler author, partly a series of imaginary character pieces, and partly a deeply personal outpouring from someone who’s been through a fair amount of personal hell.” Whichever way you choose to describe The Anchoress’ compelling debut ‘Confessions Of A Romance Novelist ‘(co-produced by Mansun’s frontman Paul Draper) one thing’s for certain, this is something truly different.

Co-producer Draper has helped Davies capture a collection of songs on which she has played a variety of instruments, including piano, guitar, flute, omnichord, mellotron, wurlitzer, glockenspiel, and celeste. The 2CD edition includes a bonus disc of 5 brand new acoustic versions, featuring string arrangements from Gillian Wood.

cd: £5


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Steve Hogarth & Richard Barbieri – Arc Light

‘Arc Light’ is a collaborative release from Steve Hogarth (Marillion) and Richard Barbieri (Porcupine Tree). A 5-track mini-album and ‘little brother’ to the splendid ‘Not The Weapon But The Hand’, ‘Arc Light’ features 4 new tracks and a new version of ‘Intergalactic’ featuring Aziz Ibrahim (Stone Roses, Ian Brown) on guitar.

‘Not The Weapon But The Hand’ was the 2012 debut album from the cult hero collaborative. It featured appearances from Danny Thompson on double bass, Chris Maitland (ex Porcupine Tree) on drums and Dave Gregory (XTC) on guitar, bass and string arrangement Steve Hogarth is best known as the frontman of Marillion, the progressive rock legends that he joined in 1989, following spells in The Europeans and How We Live. In addition to the 12 albums Marillion have released in this time he has also recorded and toured as a solo artist, under the name ‘h’.

In recent years Richard Barbieri has been a core member of Porcupine Tree playing keyboards on all the band’s albums since 1993 as well as releasing two solo albums, Things Buried and Stranger Inside. Prior to this, it was in the new-wave pioneers Japan that he originally came to prominence, helping to create the ground-breaking synthesiser sound that defined the band and influenced the likes of The Human League, Duran Duran, Gary Numan, Talk Talk and a whole raft of artists to follow.

cd: £5


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North Atlantic Oscillation – Lightning Strikes The Library: A Collection

Lightning Strikes The Library features North Atlantic’s most highly praised offerings to both the prog and electronica worlds. Known for their unique combination of sonic complexity and melodic intrigue, North Atlantic Oscillation have released three albums of delicately intelligent music, and frontman Sam Healy has recorded a warmer, intimate take on the band’s sound as part of his solo project SAND.

Their second album, Fog Electric, features twice on Lightning Strikes the Library with the 2012 burners “Soft Coda” and “Expert With Altimeter”, and among the four tracks from their 2014 album The Third Day “Glare” has previously only ever been available digitally.

cd: £5


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Steven Wilson – Insurgentes

2009 debut studio album from writer, producer & Porcupine Tree founder & member, Steven Wilson. Comprising 10 tracks that range from ballads and anthems to all-out industrial noise assaults, the dark, cinematic, and richly textured album represents two years’ worth of creative output and numerous recording sessions worldwide in studios from Mexico City to Japan and Israel. Wilson recruited a stellar cast of guests to work on the album including bassist Tony Levin, Porcupine Tree drummer Gavin Harrison, and keyboardist Jordan Rudess (Dream Theater), alongside Japanese Koto player Michiyo Yagi, British guitarist Sand Snowman, and jazz flautist and saxophonist Theo Travis

cd: £5


also in the offer

Anathema – Distant Satellites

Ian Anderson – Homo Erraticus

Richard Barbieri – Things Buried

Blackfield – Welcome To My DNA

Blackfield – IV

Paul Draper – EP1

Engineers – Always Returning

Gazpacho – Demon

Gazpacho – London

Gazpacho – Molok

Gavin Harrison – Drop

Henry Fool – Men Singing

IAmTheMorning – Belighted

Mick Karn – More Better Different

Lunatic Soul – Lunatic Soul

Lunatic Soul – Lunatic Soul II

No Man – Flowermouth

No Man – Speak

Nordic Giants – Build Seas, Dismantle Suns

North Atlantic Oscillation – Fog Electric

Nosound – Northern Religion Of Things

Nosound – Lightdark

Pineapple Thief – What We Have Sown

Pineapple Thief – All The Wars

Porcupine Tree – Recordings

Porcupine Tree – Octane Twisted

Porcupine Tree – Stupid Dream

Porcupine Tree – On The Sunday Of Life

Receiver – All Burn

Sand – Sand

Se Delan – Drifter

Bruce Soord – Bruce Soord

Bruce Soord With Jonas Renske – Wisdom Of Crowds

Sweet Billy Pilgrim – Motorcycle Amnesiacs

Tesseract – Polaris / Errai

Ulver – Childhood’s End

Ulver – Live At The Norwegian National

Steven Wilson – Cover Version

Steven Wilson – Transience






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