WHO#08 – Paul H Williams – Fallen To Earth
A1: Part III
A2: Part IV
B1: Part I
B2: Part II
Industrial space rock recorded in a bedroom in Beckenham one weekend in the winter of 1981 on a hired Tascam Portastudio and Korg synth with borrowed guitar, bass and FX pedals. Cut by Jason Goz, London, February 2016. Cover image and text by Paul H Williams.
Paul H Williams writes: “A December weekend in 1981 was approaching; the first time that a mate and I would make our own recordings on cheap hired equipment in his bedroom…
I’d been talking to Damon Edge of the San Francisco-based acid punk band Chrome over the phone, late at night from the kitchen in my parents’ flat, since the release of “Alien Soundtracks” in the late 70s. He was a glimpse of another magnificent alien world.
I was bathed in the Industrial culture of the time: Throbbing Gristle, SPK, William S Burroughs and JG Ballard. Making my own cut–ups and finding meaning in the collision of medical and science texts with newspapers and magazines; photographing Thamesmead, Heathrow Airport and Dungeness Power Station on Saturday afternoon explorations.
The weekend was a thrill. We each took turns to create our own music. There were four tracks on the Tascam Portastudio to play with and – after tweaking a Korg synth I had no idea how to use, re–wiring my mate’s electric guitar with multiple versions of the same string because I’d read somewhere that Glenn Branca had done it and discovering the joy of turning the cassette over so you could record in reverse – I’d produced four chunks of sound. It felt like a glorious creative haemorrhage of emotion and noise.
Clutching a cassette master of the weekend’s work I went home to my bedroom to listen to what I’d done wondering where it had all come from. And then at 10.15pm on BBC2 that Sunday evening I watched Nic Roeg’s “The Man Who Fell To Earth” for the very first time. I was transfixed by David Bowie’s performance and completely identified with the alien Thomas Jerome Newton trying to navigate his way on planet Earth. Right then I knew that I had to call the music on that cassette “Fallen To Earth”.
In the mid-90s I heard that Damon Edge had died. Even though I’d only talked to him on the phone and met him a couple of times I felt a profound sense of loss. He was the first real artist I had related to. With Helios Creed he had created whole alien worlds that seemed to make more sense to me than the one around me.
This record is dedicated to his memory and is for the brotherhood of all aliens…” – Paul H Williams, London, 22nd July 2016
Norman Records (UK):
Here’s another intriguing 7” single from the Tapeworm’s non-tape spin-off sub-label The Wormhole. Paul H Williams put together the four short sound chunks on Fallen To Earth in one 1981 weekend, in a friend’s bedroom. They tried all sorts of ways of pushing their limited equipment into places they weren’t meant to go, with lovely electrono-space-noise-chug results.