The Tapeworm presents…



TTW#108 – Kumo – Day/Night

Cassette only – limited edition of 125 copies
Buy in the TouchShop

Art by Sayako Sugawara

A: Day
B: Night

Written, performed and produced by Kumo in SE23.

“From a starting point of two field recordings taken from the balcony of my flat in South East London, one was taken during the day the other at night, the rest of the music was built up in response: synths and theremin played as karaoke to the sounds of the estate. Accompanying, mimicking, occupying the spaces between the deliveries, planes, dogs, birds and the kids next door writing grime tunes. ‘Day’ was written, performed, recorded and mixed in the flat during daytime with only natural light, ‘Night’ under cover of darkness.” – Jono Podmore, London, 16.xii.2017


Kumo aka Jono Podmore – Professor of the Practice of Popular music at the prestigious Hochschule für Musik in Cologne, Germany – is best known latterly for his tireless work curating and managing the archives of Krautrock pioneers Can. In this respect, his masterstroke to date has been assembling the essential “The Lost Tapes” boxset.

Work under his Kumo alias across multiple releases, performances, DJ sets and installations has included collaborations with the likes of Irmin Schmidt, B.J. Cole, Jaki Liebezeit, Mr. C and Jose Padilla. His ongoing Horrorshow multimedia venture brings together live soundtracks and short films, and his established group Metamono finds new life in vintage analogue and hand made electronics, releasing two albums, and Secrets of Nature - Sounds Unseen: live electronic music for silent British film.

His label Psychomat was brought back to life in 2017 with two new single releases and more are planned. Jono is currently working on the score for feature film The Giaour, a book about Jaki Liebezeit’s life and theories, and teaches Tai Chi in London.

A release party for “Day/Night” will happen in London on 17 June 2018, when Kumo performs as part of the Crystal Palace Festival.


Electronic Sound (UK):

Kumo is one of the various monikers of Jono Podmore, who is also Professor of the Practice of Popular Music at the Hochschule for Musik in Cologne, working most recently to curate and manage the archives of Can.

This release consists of two elongated field recordings from the window of a London flat – one taken during the day, the other at night – and adds a layer of electronic instrumentation. Podmore worked on each piece only in the hours in which the original recordings were made.

“Day” begins with low-level atmospheric sounds, the distant traffic noise and turning over of the air are meditative and calming. And then suddenly there rises a metallic spin, as though an alien object has slowly dropped from the sky and settled above the estate. “Night” has a similar if slightly more malevolent feel, the barking of dogs and rumble of traffic adds to the sinister twinge of the artist’s synthesiser and theremin.

Doucumentary Evidence (UK):

“Day / Night is the embodiment, for me, of what Brian Eno conceived of for ambient music when he was laid up in bed listening to classical music and environmental sounds together. Podmore’s approach has a delicateness of touch, a sensitivity to his natural surroundings and a powerfully imaginative way of electronically responding to the sounds he hears.” [click here to read the full review]

Monolith Cocktail:

eleasing a myriad of ‘micro-scale’ peregrinations via his revitalized imprint Psychomat and now through the London-based cassette tape label Tapeworm, Jono Podmore once again channels his longest running alter-ego as Kumo for another serialism style trip into the unknown.

Finding a suitable home for his latest experiment with the highly conceptual Tapeworm (a label with an aloof roster of projects from serious thinkers and avant-garde artists alike, including the late Derek Jarman, Stephen O’Malley, Philip Jeck and Can’s one time front-of-house shaman, Damo Suzuki), the professor of ‘popular music practice’ at Cologne’s Hochschule für Musik, sometime Irmin Schmidt foil and guiding light of the Can legacy (the recent Lost Tapes being just one project he helped put together and produce), and founding instigator of the rebellious analogue adventurers Metamono, imbues a set of field recordings with decades of electronic experience.

Lifting off from the concrete of terra firma into alien Kosmische amorphous realms, his Day/Night moiety converts the environmental sounds (from mopeds to barking dogs, the sonorous bass boom of a subwoofer drifting from a car stereo, to city landscape birds squawking and commercial airplanes flying overhead) he recorded from the balcony of his South East London flat into something often mysterious and even at times transient. Both tracks are undulated with Tangerine Dream ambient machinations and oscillations, and ethereal siren trilled Theremin: left to linger, waft and occasionally ascend above the looming hovering clouds.

There are subtle differences between the two aspects of the same day of course; the movements and appearance of nocturnal wildlife and the human inhabitation of Podmore’s estate reverberate on the ‘Night’ recording; inverted owl-like signature sound and orbiting satellites overlap with darker stirrings and the visage shimmers of an unknown presence.

A Kosmische and avant-garde electronic panorama, viewed from a concrete vantage point, Podmore’s efflux styled synthesis convolutes the 360-degree city environment with engineered sounds to create another quality ambient drone and kinetic recording. If you like early Cluster (Kluster even), TD, Orb, even early Kraftwerk, and a lifetime of cerebral techno minimalism then track this tape down. You better be quick though, as it’s limited to only 125 copies!

Delusions of Adequacy:

Adopting ambient methodologies traceable back to the most vintage primordial experiments of the mid-to-late-’70s and earlier, Jono Podmore (trading here solo as Kumo and also known for roles in Metamono, Cyclopean and assembling Can’s “The Lost Tapes” archival boxset) the cassette-only “Day/Night” is a curiously contrary affair. With Podmore eking out reactive and scene-setting sounds from synths and Theremin around interwoven field recordings collected from the balcony of his South East London flat, the two thirty-minute sides of tape are openly in thrall to Brian Eno’s early Ambient series.

With the “Day” side we therefore find Podmore working around the found sounds of dogs barking, traffic-heavy roads, overflying aircraft and ornithological wildlife chatter with drifting elemental drones and balmily burbling electronics. On the “Night” side, proceedings take inevitably murkier turns as many of the same as well as a few different outdoor aural infusions are joined by subterranean sonic strata, that move between ethereal expansiveness, eerie echoes, buzzing études and John Carpenter-ish claustrophobia. Many of us headphone-encased commuting city-dwellers can be guilty of screening-out too many of the various forms of real-life surface noise– as scholarly dissected in Damon Krukowski’s thought-provoking Ways Of Hearing podcast – for hermetically-sealed listening experiences. What “Day/Night” cleverly reminds us is that unexcluded and unfiltered urban sounds can supply some unexpectedly intriguing source material for imaginative sound sculptors.


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