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ARAF Collective London is a not-for-profit cultural organisation which provides a dedicated platform for London’s emerging musicians, writers, artists and film makers. Through our regular free-entry gigs, our pub-top lecture series and our now-famous fanzine, ARAF Collective London provides a much needed space for the sharing of creative talent. As a collective we exist to develop and support our members and have amassed a large network of musicians, writers and artists who share our ethos of not-for-profit cultural expression.
THIS MONTH: ARAF COLLECTIVE PRESENT: GIG NO. TWELVE
CANTER-CULTURE VI @ THE HORSE & STABLES, WATERLOO ID PROJECT film / spoken word from LANA BELL/ live music from SELVIN / THE ROPE AND THE COLT / CEASAR and our residents, TRUE COLLECTIVES DJs FOR YOUR LISTENING PLEASURE!
And THIS, THE TWELFTH EDITION of our free zine, SMELLIN’ SALTS Cover: front: ROADWORKS
FOR PERUSAL AT YOUR LEISURE! FRIEND @ FOUR CORNERS CAFE, WATERLOO by H.
... ARAF IS THE FUTURE :
CANTER CULTURE VII : watch this space: coming soon... ARAF COLLECTIVE LONDON THANK PROFUSELY: THANKS AS EVER to JOSH MARRIOTT THE SULTAN OF SUPERIOUR SOUNDS; THANKS to ARAF Artists of the month: RICHARD ETIENNE for his film ID PROJECT; LANA Bell; the bands: SELVIN / THE ROPE AND THE COLT / CEASER & TRUE COLLECTIVES DJs Dom & Ben, Thanks to Dean, Steve & Michael @ THE HORSE & STABLES, Waterloo. Thanks to Cerilan Rogers & The Contributors to this issue of SMELLIN’ SALTS. Thanks to the BLUE ELEPHANT THEATRE, WATERLOO EAST THEATRE, SOUTH LONDON GALLERY & Peckham’s REVIEW BOOKSHOP for stocking our Free zine & helping us to spread the word!
WITHOUT YOU, DEAR READER, THIS FANZINE DOES NOT EXIST !SUBMISSIONS REQUIRED FOR FUTURE EDITIONS Send us your artwork, creative writing, opinions and reviews - A5 sized submissions preferable. Please note this fanzine is printed in glorious monochrome: (colour costs $$$$$$!). FREE monthly print edition of 200 distributed at ARAF events & South London’s best art galleries, theatres, book shops, record shops & recording studios, online publication & incessant tweeting... SO JOIN US. ALL FANZINE SUBMISSIONS TO: firstname.lastname@example.org follow us:
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ALCHEMY ON THE SOUTHBANK
ARAF REVIEWS PURE GOLD: A Festival of Music from Goldsmiths, University of London -Royal Festival Hall, 5th May 2014. What do Bank Holidays conjure up in the public imagination? Cremated barbeque sausage? Synapsecrushing hangover? Dramatically failed DIY attempt with early-afternoon visit to A+E? For me, the first May Bank holiday meant musical alchemy. I was lucky enough to have attended Pure Gold, a day-long festival of up-and-coming musicians forged in that South East London musical mint, Goldsmiths. For one day only, the Clore Ballroom at the centre of the Royal Festival Hall was given over to showcasing an eclectic range of styles, sounds and syncopations emanating from the University’s famous music department. Over the years, many of Goldsmiths’ talented music-makers have worked with ARAF COLLECTIVE LONDON and it was fantastic to see some of them perform at the festival: LITTLE LIAR, who gave an entrancing performance at CANTER CULTURE in February 2014, again wowed the large crowd at the Festival Hall while KING OF HEARTS, whose improvised electronica atmospherically closed our most recent show, brought downbeat calm to the hustle and bustle of the Southbank. This event had over 24 acts performing throughout the day, and whilst I would love to write copiously about every diverse performance, I am forced by word constraints to offer a compressed and abridged account. An account which I hope will still give you a flavour of the event: a musical canapé to describe what was in reality a feast for the ears. Bank Holiday Monday was muggy and the Southbank’s riverside paths were thronged with day-trippers and locals. In the context of the slightly manic atmosphere outside, the mid-afternoon acts offered a space of escape through music. Opening with hypnotic GOLDSMITHS GAMELAN GROUP who were followed by THE AMADÈ PLAYERS, a historically-accurate 18th Century chamber group, PURE GOLD festival immediately cut through the lunacy outside. This serenity was continued with a set from ARAF favourites KING OF HEARTS whose improvised ‘beat production on the fly’ was perfect tailored, like a Saville Row suit, to the Festival Hall’s relaxed vibe. Following the monarch of improv-electronica, was FEN THINKS, a band who filled the space with an invigorating mix of anthemic Patti Smith and Celtic Folk rhythms. ARAF THINKS they are a band to watch. After a quick pint-break, I returned to my seat in time to catch SEMI PRECIOUS who had taken his luscious sample-driven sound and translated it into a live setting with a four piece band. BREAK MIRRORS were a mix of PJ Harvey and Neil Young, bringing all that is great from both sides of the Atlantic to the Southbank. As I noted above, LITTLE LIAR again produced a flawless performance which filled the Ballroom with Maya Yianni’s confessional lyrics and the band’s nostalgic sound. BLED WHITE BOY offered the crowd a wonderfully introspective yet dramatic set which captured the imagination. A band which caught my attention was CITADELLES - a collaborative group centred on the song writing of Adam Fletcher alongside a variety of vocal harmonies and multi-instrumental lines. With a diverse musical vocabulary, from afro-beat to indie and from Rock’n’Roll to Soul, this act was unforgettable. Goldsmiths most hotly tipped Alumna, FEMME, also made a theatrical appearance to share her trademark ‘saccharine-dreamy electro-pop with a heady dose of feminism’ with the assembled masses by the Thames. Throughout the day, RUTGER HAUSER DIGEST provided a fluxus DJ set which used ‘turntables, cassette players, dictionaries, pens, paper, furniture and other artefacts with the power to channel the dead’ to entertain the eager audience between acts. ARAF’s favourite record label, NX Records were also present and we urge you all, if you have not already, to get your hands and ears on their fantastic NX mixtape which contains many of the PURE GOLD artists. See @NXRecords or www.nxrecords.co.uk. There were many more excellent performers in PURE GOLD and it is a shame that I could not report on all the musical alchemists who performed that Bank Holiday. Luckily for you, the Royal Festival Hall PURE GOLD event was only the launch for a large programme of gigs which lasts until July. For more information on the PURE GOLD summer showcase Follow @GoldsmithsMusic or www.gold.ac.uk/puregold/calendar.
LONDON AT DAWN. This month I saw 15 dawns. In the past, this very thought would have filled me with despair. Dragging my weary self home after a long night out amid commuters and children before going to bed in the daytime never felt right.
Even when I first started working nights, dawn was awful. I was tired. I hated everyone. For me, this was bed-time. They had all had a night’s sleep, and I’d been grafting. Nick Grimshaw on the Radio 1 Breakfast Show messed my head up, playing his noisy ‘Wake Yourself Up’ feature and declaring that morning was here. In the winter, dawn meant I’d had to work late, or was on a slow bus. But now, as the year matures and summer is just a few degrees away, dawn is stretching back into the night and I find myself actually embracing it. Being in the City of London between 6 and 7am is a little bit like being backstage at an enormous play. There are window cleaners everywhere and the smell of baking fills your lungs with every Pret A Manger you pass as they prepare for the onslaught of hungry commuters. Out in the suburbs surprising numbers of people start their days by taking to those strange pieces of exercise equipment in the parks. The out-of-town 24-hour supermarkets are frequented only by the most determined drinkers, guaranteeing that the only busy aisle at this hour will be the one with the liquor. The shelf-stackers look on disapprovingly. Just after 8am is when the elderly go food shopping in areas gentrified enough that at normal hours one feels underdressed in Morrisons.
Walking home when the street lights go off is unexpectedly uplifting. The sky turns a wonderful tone of blue, dotted with fading hints of stars and planes, with a thin line of light on the horizon. The streets are relatively calm and still, and I am buffeted by icy winds as the sky morphs into the grey haze that will linger for the rest of the morning, while I rest my head. Goodnight London by MONEY sings in my ears and I discover what litter is left behind from the night before. The following are some of my morning findings, the stories behind which are intriguing and unknown: Broken bottles. Smashed panes of glass with no obvious local source. Exploded slugs. Trails of sick in dribs and drabs that echo an unfortunate person’s stumble home. Bursting bin bags topped with more sick. Police road block outside the Queen of Hoxton. A full loaf of bread, still in its wrappings. I gave this one to the homeless man who sleeps on the corner of City Road and Featherstone Street. I hope he got it. A pair of shorts. The first few pages of Chapter 5 of some book. Lots of men standing around looking at paintings, bicycles, clothes and plastic bags full of stuff outside a locksmith’s. Several unattended crates of oranges and limes: very difficult to resist stealing. Read more from Sophie Armour at: email@example.com
present: SUPER FUMES @ Open School East, De Beauvoir Town, N1
wish you’d been here
Minutes from the ever-lively Kingsland Road, Open School East is attempting a cultural revolution. Situated in the former Rose Lipman Library, the School exists as a free study programme for 12 associate artists who are supported in their development through a series of lectures and talks from international and local artists, theorists and curators. The result of which are locally focused projects which ‘aspire to build a community of interest and to foster social, cultural and intellectual exchanges between people from all walks of life.’
This, combined with an audience dressed in various paper costumes, was quite a sight. Paper themed food and drink had also been laid on which included paper bags of kale cooked with wasabi, Japanese steamed rolls, white onion salad and, of course, White Russians.
Peabody did not disappoint. Jake Caleb’s Jazz Accident, which graced the stage at the Horse, had in these papery surrounds been reborn as DR Peabody are Craftwork. Executed with vigorous use of a smoke machine and allusions to the gentle world of craft, the band shared tales of those ‘muscle-bound hounds’ one encounters in suburban parks, Ray Bradbury’s sci-fi adventures, and brutalist architect Erno Goldfinger’s concrete genius. Dr Peabody However, instead of paying fees, every were followed by We. Dressed like Klaus associate artist is given one day a Nomi with gloss black boxes on their month to devise or assist with public heads that obscured their faces, the band activities in and around the building. It executed a faultless set of their highly was in the context of these events that stylized, Devo-esque sound. Replacing I encountered Super Fumes! - night of the ‘I’ from the song’s lyrics with ‘We’, live music organized as part of Andrea tired jukebox-standards were reborn in Francke and Eva Rowson’s the Wish B-movie style surf tunes with threatening, You’d Been Here project. This month’s monotone lyrics. ‘WE Want To Hold Your Super Fumes contained ARAF’s favorite Hand’, WE Will Always Love You’, ‘WE’LL post-punk monty pythons, Dr Peabody Be Your Mirror’ all became somewhat along with the fantastically subversive frightening, yet brilliant subversions of and hard-to-Google, WE. The theme was classics. paper. On arriving we were presented The night ended with DJs Crystal with a range of paper accessories: from Clear and Radio Anti blasting painfullypaper ties and dickie-bows to waistcoats danceable early 1990s house music into and ruffs. I went for a tie, cracking the Hoxton night. Paper Costumes, White some painful joke about ‘formal wear’, Russians, Brutalism, and shiny black boxes: and headed to the space. The room there is little more I could ask for on a was full of rolls of paper, every one May evening. Wish You’d Been Here’s attached to the ceiling and which slowly next event should be a date in anyone’s unravelled themselves across the floor. calendar. Follow @wishyoudbeen
I don’t care for your explanations When speakers hold dreams Of mine I could chill in this club toilet reading jokes on the walls For the rest of time Song lyrics, make up, just art, spilled wine in here, always lose myself in music to find myself in life Write away the mess, man - make a mess of rhyme! Weather forecaster politely predicts sunny spells in her blood red Lipstick of a smile, a smile almost Smudged... And I’m still singing but really Shouting I predict a riot, or to be polite I prefer a riot of the heart please on my favourite remix track, on my favourite bass of a basic fundamental heart aching beat, with lipstick Mud - all over the walls – graffiti kisses on the backs of shopping malls. I’ve seen nothing, so I’ve seen it all. Sometimes you won’t hear art if you don’t listen to the rise as much as the fall, and How strong our own voices Persist, resist depend on each other until they Throw a mic at you and you catch This time your own style – amplified, louder than August thunderstorms after a heatwave lightning strikes, your human life dignified, the city still blurred with complicated meanings But beautified when the street-light falls on your cheeks – get ready to smile to London. But as you still wait northbound on the northern line, you know you’re just getting lower And lower.Your smile isn’t around right now; please leave a message after a heartbeat. Just speak, tell me what you told me last week, that sorry is a word everyone says More than I love you, more than you are my alarm clock so sing and I’ll wake up again. LANA BELL
Read more from Lana Bell at: firstname.lastname@example.org
THE iD PROJECT : A FILM by RICHARD ETIENNE CANTER CULTURE VI will showcase clips from the film: here is Richard to tell us more... This year marks the 10th anniversary of my father’s passing, so to honour his fond memories of Dominica I’m producing a documentary which follows my Dominica story. Walk with me... 2001. Late evening, somewhere in London: [me watching TV] “Ah man, this is terrible!” [Dad sitting at his bureau with back to TV] “What’s wrong son?” “there’s nothing good on TV” “Okay...so why don’t you just make the type of telly YOU want to watch” That was my Dad. All about the common sense. Fast forward five years and I bought myself a video camera and never looked back. Problem was, by the time I made my first film, the rare blood disease sarcoidosis had already called time on my Dad’s 51 years of existence and there was so much about his fascinating life before my birth I had yet to learn. ‘The iD Project’ is a documentary which will showcase Dominica’s history and beauty through my personal journey of selfdiscovery, as I visit my father’s birthplace for the very first time. My hope is that The iD Project will educate and inspire young people to do something similar, whilst maintaining a cross-generational appeal. As well as delving into my family history, I will explore the island’s natural landscape and social history, with contributions from Dominican visual artists, musicians, historians and politicians. This film will discover the REAL Dominica and the people who create the culture of this beautiful island as I go about putting a small, uncelebrated country, firmly on the map.
So where exactly is Dominica? Good question. Dominica is an island in the Caribbean Sea, located about halfway between the French islands of Guadeloupe (to the North) and Martinique (to the South). Wait...did you mean Dominican Republic? Nope. Totally different place: this is another reason why I can’t wait to release this film!
Richard Etienne- Director/Writer Here I am (right) pictured with Dominica’s top contemporary artist Earl Etienne after discovering we were related! ABOUT ME:
Everything I have learnt about film-making over those five years has brought me to a place where I feel ready to tackle a project on the scale of The iD Project as it takes me halfway across the world (4121.9 miles / 6633.6 km to be exact) to the birthplace of my father and extended family in the hope of making something truly moving for all watching. The happy contributors and I welcome you to be a part of something special. mydominicastory.com
Do one thing every day that scares you, and preferably someone else too. Bluetack a breadknife to the ceiling of your bedroom. Devour everything pill-shaped you find on the floor. Lock yourself in a suitcase, and for no reason at all stare into a mirror, repeating ‘This is not me. This could never be me.’ Cleanse yourself in fear, son. Discover its topography and charge through it, blindfold. Hang from its steepest cliff. Good to know that you’re alive, but better to know the opposite arrangement. Its décor, the doorman’s perfume, and so on. Then make yourself dinner and attend your low paid job. Andy Owen Cook read more at: andyowencook.com
cu·rate was a group exhibition that aimed to explore contemporary curatorial practice through interdisciplinary collaborations between artist and curator. The exhibition was held at The CASS Gallery on Whitechapel High Street in May. cu·rate is co-curated by Phoebe V. Bradford, Natalie Craven & Abigail Shamah of MA Curating the Contemporary at London Metropolitan University in partnership with the Whitechapel Gallery. How do you define ‘curating’ in the context of this exhibition? The exhibition focuses on artist, curator and audience as the three fundamental roles which we believe make a successful show. Unlike a retrospective where all the work already exists, the majority of the works on display in cu•rate are new commissions. These works were formed out of an ongoing relationship between ourselves and the artists who have reimagined past work specifically for the exhibition. The exhibition doesn’t attempt to define what curating is, it is an exploration into the ideas and processes connected to the action of curating. This process has been shown through our online presence on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook, where we have been continuously engaging in discussion with our audience. How do the artworks within the exhibition relate to the meta-theme of ‘curation’? Every artwork in the exhibition is one that has arrived through unending discussion between the artists and curators. For us, the display should not be considered the final product. The artworks displayed do not carry the meta-theme of curation in themselves; it is the process of how these artworks arrived in the space and how they gradually disintegrate in reoccurring themes of transience and constriction of the exhibition. How did you use the space of the CASS gallery within your exhibition? The CASS Gallery is a tricky space; it’s not a white cube and is in a state of deconstruction itself. The building used to be a bank and still maintains its cashiers desk and marble entrance. With this in mind, we were very set on utilising the unusual features of the space with site specific works and commissions. Holly Hendry’s work perhaps best displays this; ‘Cornered’ (2014) is a piece we specifically proposed for the cashier space, and takes form as an inflated latex sculpture which protrudes through the empty window frames. What do you feel is the current status of art exhibition and curation in London? That’s a very difficult question. The status of curation is certainly on the up, with numerous MA Curating courses popping up all over the country. Curation has also become very fashionable, and the term is being loosely referred to in fashion, music festivals and online blogging; it has become the new word for editing. As for art exhibitions in London, gallery-going has become more embedded in our everyday, culture with visitor numbers continuously rising every year at large institutions like Tate Modern and the Royal Academy. Is it time that curation was treated as an art form itself? No. We consider curation as a process and collaboration between artist, curator and audience. This is not something that should outshine the artworks themselves, therefore should not be considered an art form in itself. This was not the intention for our exhibition; curation is a process not a medium.
In an ideal world, where would you like to stage your next exhibition? Since opening cu•rate, we have toyed with idea of taking the exhibition to other spaces in London and perhaps further afield. In an ideal world we would curate an exhibition internationally across several public spaces and institutions. follow: @cu_rate, Instagram: cu_rate and Facebook: cu·rate (event) or website: curate2014@ wordpress.com
CANTER CULTURE: ARAF NEWS FROM THE HORSE’S MOUTH
As I hope you all know, ARAF COLLECTIVE LONDON organises a variety of events across the Capital with regular musical gigs at SE1’s finest equestrian-themed venue, THE HORSE AND STABLES. Elementary My Dear Watson: CANTER CULTURE V : April Last month’s
CANTER CULTURE had all four elements. (We tried for five but Bruce Willis was unavailable.)
EARTH (ASHES TO ASHES, DUST TO DUST, if the women don’t get you, the liquor must.) In a sombre mood, DR PEABODY’S latest incarnation JAKE CALEB’S JAZZ ACCIDENT (Corny Meadows, Chester Highstreet and Randy Heritage) shared a musical tribute to jazz great Teddy Benry who six years ago entered the bat cave at Chester Zoo and never left… AIR (GUITAR) The venerable ZEIGLER CO. offered a hurricane set which filled every inch of THE HORSE with blues/fusion riffs and three part harmonies. FIRE (MAN SLAM) Our in house wax-workers, TRUE COLLECTIVES, introduced the HORSE to the hottest grooves in vinyl.Their tracks were so hot, in fact, that the venue’s fire alarm went off (repeatedly). WATER (WATER EVERYWHERE, BUT NOT A DROP TO DRINK) The chilled improvised electronica of KING OF HEARTS soon quenched these (hypothetical) flames with a set of majestic, glitchy sonic soundscapes interwoven with laid back break-beats.
The Darling Buds of May: CANTER CULTURE VI: 23 MAY SELVIN THOMAS is a London-raised singer, songwr iter and musician who studied Commercial Music at the University of Westminster. He has performed in a number of choirs and as a backing singer, most notably singing for Nelson Mandela with UK soul legend Omar. His eclectic and original sound testifies to his diverse musical tastes and influences, with artists such as Tracy Chapman, Stevie Wonder, Ella Fitzgerald and The Beatles among his main inspirations. iD PROJECT : Throughout CANTER CULTURE VI we will be showing clips from Richard Etienne’s iD PROJECT film, introduced by Richard himself. THE ROPE AND THE COLT hijacked their name from a 1969 Spaghetti Western and attempt to channel the filmic escapism that the Cowboy genre brought to postwar suburbia: Think Billy-the-Kid in Basingstoke or Calamity Jane in Croydon. LANA BELL is a poet who writes for ‘I am Hip Hop Magazine’ and is part of the Barbican Young Poets group.
CEASER initially worked with some of biggest names in the UK Grime scene but soon moved his sound towards the unique cocktail of reggae, rap and garage for which he is known. His first release ‘Blue Lights’ was an underground success and received critical acclaim. CEASER is now working on ‘The Story of Karl Williams’, a multimedia project which includes music, film and text. We welcome CEASER to the HORSE. Right: Dr Peabody presents Jake Caleb’s Jazz Accident at CANTER CULTURE
Who said concrete couldn't wear braces?