Sdtrk: ‘Cries and whispers’ by New order
About a week ago, the Missus had to stay in bed, so she could recuperate from a minor tear she somehow received behind her knee. As she was bored — apparently she’s read every book and magazine in the flat several times over — I suggested she occupy herself with something constructive. As Shi-chan pondered the idea for a couple of minutes (and I surreptitiously hid her Hello Kitty vibrator), she snapped her fingers, and asked me to retrieve a box of C90s that were on a shelf in our closet, as well as a pen & notepad, my four-track recorder, and my headphones. ‘I think I’ll finally have a go at mastering those Inorganiksubset tracks,’ she said with a smile. ‘Ah!’ I replied, and wandered off to the livingroom to play some more Warriors Orochi 2.
Back during the mid-Nineties, when she lived in the north of England, Sidore was the bass player and backing vocalist in a band called Inorganiksubset. Well, they were technically a band, but they weren’t pursuing it professionally or anything. The other three members were Sabrina (guitar, samples), Gia (drums), and Emma (lead vocals, synthesisers, rhythm guitar): Sabrina was a friend, Gia was a fellow student from Maitland College of Fine Arts in Leeds, and Emma was Shi-chan’s girlfriend at the time. As they each had a metric ton of effect pedals, they were pretty much a shoegazer group, but they were leaning towards the more discernible-vocals end where Slowdive and Lush reside.
They had fun when playing and whatnot — they even managed to score two successful live performances at a Goth night at their local club — but Inorganiksubset dissolved under the combined pressure of Gia having to return home to Florida, and Sabrina’s increased workload at her office job effectively forcing her to quit. Over the course of nine months, though, they managed to finalise a handful of songs, and committed them to tape. Yes, tape; remember, these were the heady days before .mp3s.
Now, Shi-chan had been holding onto the masters for years, as she just hadn’t gotten round to mixing them down, but her newfound spare time gave her the opportunity to finish the lot up. So she did! She’s signed out with a website called Figment, which caters specifically to music groups like hers, and you can check out the profile she created for Inorganiksubset here, which also showcases their one and only release, ‘Die Sonne im Nebel’. It should go without saying that if you have an account there, she’d love a review from you!
The first time I’d heard those tapes was maybe a year into our relationship. I was really impressed, and I have to say that their sound was familiar, yet like nothing I’d ever heard before. I asked Sidore if she thought that, provided there was a chance the four of them ever got back together, that they’d reform the band; she shook her head resignedly. ‘It’s not like it was an accrimonious split or anything, but the way things are these days, we barely even keep in touch with each other. I’ve really not heard from Gia or Sabrina since the middle of the decade, and it’s been even longer since any of us have heard from Emma.’ She smiled though, pulled her headphones back on, and pressed the Play button. ‘It’s alright, though, cos it’s like these songs trap everything in amber. Now I have a proper soundtrack to my memories’
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