If you haven’t heard about Nosedrip (better known as Ziggy Devriendt) yet, you should for sure keep your eyes pealed on this talented mastermind. As the founder of Stroom.tv, Ziggy brings electronic music to another level when it comes to online radio in Belgium and also just started a new, and same-titled label called Stroom. Not only does he run these two progressive and intelligent initiatives, he also is one hell of a fantastic DJ with an amazing record collection. Whilst working at Ghent’s best record store Music Mania, playing a monthly slow at NTS Radio and being a big favourite of Red Light Radio itself, it was about time to ask the Ostend-based Ziggy to contribute to the Red Light Radio x Sonos Liner Notes-series. The jaw-dropping mix reflects Ziggy’s amazing taste in music; ambient, drone-masterpieces, (funky) synth-pop, coldwave, post-punk and (neo)-folk combined with his magic touch will show you why. Take it away, Ziggy.
One of the things Ziggy is known for, is his fantastic collection of ambient records. “This is an absolute Stroom.tv classic!”, he tells us. “It’s one of the records that was very influential for starting what we do now.” Mike Rutledge’s experimental ambient track ‘Riddles Of The Spingx Sequence 2’ is just the start of a magical one hour-trip that follows. The British composer, keyboardist and long-time member of Soft Machine released his dreamy, pinging and atmospheric record in 2013, which was his last one up until now. Loads of repetition and female spoken-word kicking in the middle. “It’s time to get ready.”
Elaborating on the ambient soundscapes, Ziggy chooses a record of the Polish minimal underground group Księżyc. Their sound is much described as ‘a mix of ancient slavic folk music, 20th century minimalism, and melancholy ambience remains utterly intact’, which is reflected in ‘MM’, released in 2004. After they disappeared in 1996, they made their final reformation in 2013 as a live formation. Get wavey on this one.
Slightly moving on to the more danceable part of his mix, Ziggy puts on 41 Degree’s ‘Silent Towns’. This new-wave/post-punk gem filled with guitar riddles, echoing vocals and piano plays was produced in 1982 and released by the same titled and own label. The 41 Degrees-project was an alter ego of English man Kevin Eden, following the demise of Slight Seconds (together with Martin Shaw and Pete Hibbert).
‘In Movimento’: Surprize’s answer to funky synth-pop in 1984. A kicking gem released on Belgian grounds - Ziggy’s home since the early days and the country that’s known for its new wave and new beat related sounds. Surprize, however, is an Italian band founded in Bologna and formed by Mirko Pellati, Francesco Garau, Luciano Graffi, GianLuca Patini, Stefano Barbieri, Roberto Serra, Frank Nemola and Claudio Decarli. After three successful records, the band got dissolved in 1984, with ‘In Movimento’ being their very last record. Ziggy’s addition: “This is a recent discovery; new wave from Bologna… Instant favourite!”
Heavily influenced by Joy Division and The Cure: Norwegian band Fra Lippo Lippi definitely brings the goth post-punk vibe that sucks you into the night. A perfect follow-up to Satin Wall’s ‘Dans Les Profondeurs’ with drums and wave-vibes beating through the speakers. All tracks on their same titled album are written by founder and bassist of the band Rune Kristofferson. Ziggy: “When I put this on at home, I constantly get the feeling that I’m transforming into my mom when she was cleaning the house. Just turn the volume up a bit more…”
Ziggy (“I’m really proud of Belgium in the eighties!”) turns to his synth-pop again with Berntholer being next in the mix. ‘Japanese Garden’ was recorded in Brussels, May 1982, and is an example of one the much great records of Berntholer. The pop and avant garde band was active between 1981-1985 and are known as favourites of British radio DJ John Peel. But it was de independent Belgian label called Blue Feather that released their single ‘My Suitor’ without fanfare, and kicked off their short career. Albanian-born singer Drito gives the magic touch to this Japanese-flavoured favourite.
And we’re back at the ambient bases again. Douglas Benfort has been in several groups such as Bouncy Castle and Mr. Wrong and carries multiple aliases like Inertia and Radial Blend. The musician released his ‘Beauty Reports Volume One’ in 1988, covering five tracks including Report Three. Ziggy found this pearl by accident. “It was bet on Discogs… Bingo!”
One of the most interesting labels within the experimental genres is definitely Bill Kouligas’ PAN nowadays. Ziggy picks Helm aka Luke Youngers (owner of the London-based Alter label) contribution to the label named ‘Fluid Cloak’, which is part of the LP ‘Olympic Mess’. His LP is responding to industrial music, dub techno and balearic disco, but ‘Fluid Cloak’ is an upbuilding experimental soundscape with details filling the space. With this LP being his sixth album on the label, he again shows his genius approach to sound design and abstract composition. From hypnotism to unsettlingly spacious tension: it’s all there.
Compilations are a favourite of everyone. The Lyttle Folk’s ‘A’ Soalin’ is part of one of them: the wonderous Classroom Projects released on Trunk Records in 2013. A' Soalin' and Jimmy Whalen are their only tracks that have seen the daylight, but that maybe makes it much greater. The singing kids voices in this beautiful folk piece will definitely blow minds and is originally part of a private album from 1966. Apart from the fact that it’s pressed by St. Michael’s School (Burton Park, Petworth), there’s little known about this group that consisted of five girls. “This is actually a tip from my girlfriend!”, Ziggy tells us. “It’s part of an amazing compilation!”
‘I was a hoe, and I was a junky’, says John Fosser with an angry but vibrant voice. Ziggy’s choice of Savant is no wonder; the band released their ‘The Neo-Realist’ on Kerry Leimer’s well-known and highly respected Palace of Lights, which was Leimer’s support to the growing community of experimental composers. Savant’s ‘The Neo-Realist’ was later on reissued by RVNG Intl. Ziggy: “It’s one of my top-5 all-time favourite records; I found my copy in a bookstore in Brugge.”
Ziggy propels on with a beautiful classical piece from American composer Daniel Lentz, which was actually a tip from Red Light Records’ Tako Reyenga. Close your eyes and let yourself float into the magical word of Lentz brimming of twinkling sounds and dreamy vocals. As John Schaefer once perfectly described: “Daniel Lentz was a revelation, with his witty deconstructions of pop music processes and the inscrutability of the avant-garde.” Simply breathtaking.
From the classical piece to true Belgian minimal wave with Alain Neffe and his Human Flesh-project. ‘The 35th Human Attempt’ got released in 1985 on his own and experimental label Insane Music, with ‘Lies’ being on the A2-side of the stunning record. The vocal-aspect within music seems to be something Ziggy likes as the own voice within ‘Lies’ sway you into his calm world. Another fact: Alain is no stranger to Ziggy, as he will be compiling the second release on Stroom called ‘An Introduction Into The Insane World Of Alain Neffe’. Ziggy: “It’s one of the hundred killer tracks Alain Neffe has ever made. Super proud to release a compilation by the man himself on Stroom soon!”
Again, an electronic experimental drone-piece from Belgium with graphic designer and musician Mathieu Serruys being responsible for the soundtrack this time. For this EP, Serruys got inspired by moods, scenes and sceneries of La Coquille et le Clergyman (1982), which eventually turned out in a sound spectrum full of reflections of bewildered states of mind that created this avant-garde masterwork. Serruys debut LP ‘On Germaine Dulac’ on his own label ‘B.A.A.D.M’ shows his way of making music with loads of broken tape records and just one synth, and definitely mark his talent. Ziggy’s addition to Serruys’ ‘A Tongue That Extends To Infinity’: “He’s from the same area as I where was raised and turned out to be a killer musician. La Coquille et le Clergyman (1928) from Germain Dulac is a big tip!”
When you put Monaco, United Kingdom and Belgium in a blender, you get the extremely flavoured 48 Cameras. The group consists of David Coulter (UK), Yves Dellicour (BE) and Nick Grey (MO), who’ve put out many releases ever since 1985. Their spoken-word, experimental and neo-folk sound even got labeled as the ‘Non-Music’ genre by Discogs, but that’s definitely not what describes their music best for sure. Though, the moody, dark and mysterious sounds seem to find the spotlight in Ziggy’s mix for Red Light Radio and Sonos. Ziggy: “48 Cameras is lead by J. M. Mathoul, who worked very post-internet before it was even there. Just a shame that he doesn’t share the same vision as me, haha.”
Ziggy closes off with a Dutch underdog from back in the days: Ton Lebbink. Lebbink was known as the bouncer at Paradiso in his younger years and even worked as a fitness coach, but it was his love for writing and poetry that made him use poetry within his music and produce unique Dutch records during that time. Both Ziggy and artists such as Young Marco have been adoring the man himself for his danceable, fiercely and yet intelligent work. His track ‘Voetbalknieen’ is one of his successful records, but ‘Stil Thuis’, which means ’Quiet At Home’, is one of these hidden masterpieces as well. But there’s more to Ziggy: “It’s one of the first records I’ve bought at Music Mania (Ghent), where I’m working at the moment. During that time, it became a rediscovered record store.” What a trip.