FEATURE: The Fishery Commission – Bunch Of Fives | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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Electronic two-piece The Fishery Commission are back after a lengthy hiatus, opening The Tanners Arms stage (curated by local promoter Endless Window) at NARC. Fest 2017 on Saturday 1st July. They last delighted audiences across the region circa 2006 with their witty and warm take on synth-pop, returning with the brilliant Standard Protocol EP at the end of 2016. NARC. Fest will be their first live performance in eleven years, and is a comeback you really can’t afford to miss! Here local artist and Fishery Commission bleep master Dominic Smith shares five of his (somewhat bizarre) recent eBay purchases…

DYLON® – 50g HAND DYE – Fabric Dye, Black
In a brief return to my days as a failed goth circa 1988, I bought some Dylon to turn a pair of old pants black. The glove split when I was dying my pants and I coloured my right-hand jet black. It took two weeks to return to its normal colour and I had to hide it in my pocket during important meetings. Whilst I was dying my pants I listened to Mort Garison’s Plantasia album. It’s one of those brilliant early synth records from the 1970s. I don’t know much about it, or Mort. But I listen to this a lot when I’m doing stuff. It’s kind of busy and uplifting.

Rotel RT 322 AM – FM analogue separate Radio/Tuner
I stopped listening to the radio for a long time. Then one day over a pint my old band accidentally reformed “The Fishery Commission” and we picked up where we left off, writing a belter of a first new tune. Then one night when I was watching TV my phone beeped. It was BBC Radio 6 saying our tune was on the radio right there and then. What a boost. Since then I have a renewed enthusiasm for radio and I bought an old FM radio hifi brick. But it’s broken and I can only tune in to one station that I think is in Belgium. I’ve kept it though because I like the lights on it.

That Fishery Commission Tune I mentioned is 2and4and6and8 and you can hear it here:

Billy Cobham Crosswinds CD ***NEW***
Sometimes it can take years of getting to know someone before I confess this. But… I like Jazz. Like, I REALLY like Jazz. Of all sorts. From Trad to Free. I go through phases where I listen to specific sub genres on constant rotation, like Scandi Jazz or 1970s Jazz Funk, hence the Billy Cobham album, which has a soulful gem of a tune right in the middle of it called ‘Heather’. It stands out as one of my most favorite late night tunes ever.
Going back to The Fishery Commission for a moment. The reason we stopped doing gigs about ten or so years ago is because I burnt out. I was writing all the music on two old Grey Gameboys at the time. But what people didn’t realize was that I was trying to write Jazz. Not just any type of Jazz, but free Jazz. The problem was, by the time the notes and riffs I heard in my head were filtered through my fingers and then through the Gameboy sound chip, it came out different. Once Andy added vocals and a bit of structure we were making an unintentionally weird sort of pop music. To perform live I had to remember the sound of about 200 to 300 different loops and each one was named after a random hexadecimal number. Someone at a gig asked me what games I was playing live and that was it. I turned down all remaining gigs and almost went full Brian Wilson. But if you listen to some of our stuff from back then – now that you know what I was trying to do, it might make sense. These days we are using a mix of equipment that can even play bass frequencies and I have mellowed in my approach to it all like a fine cheese. It’s still weird pop music, and I like it.

Listen to: Fear not the Fax here:

Chalk board/chalkboard blackboard kids chalk triple pack 32” x 18”
I hate screens. When I work an idea out, I use chalk on chalk boards. Chalk reminds me of a different era, the 70s and 80s. It reminds me of being at school and living a simple life. It reminds me of Snub TV, indie-pop and wasp synthesizers. So, when I need to think about something I shut my laptop lid and write it on my studio walls in chalk.

100% Wool Adults Black Bowler Hat Mens / Womens Fashion Hat Satin Band & Lining
I do like a good old fashioned hat at times and I bought this bowler hat, which is a bobby dazzler. I occasionally wear it when I’m walking my dogs (two hideous pugs that I totally love). Or in the house on an evening when I’m listening to music and reading books and stuff. I think the last time I wore it I was listening to The Sea Nymphs.

Oh, what a lovely way to be…

NARC. Fest 2017 takes place at a multitude of venues across the Ouseburn Valley on Saturday 1st July. The Fishery Commission play The Tanners Arms stage at 7pm.

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