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VOL. O1 / S20

Notice: This magazine was put together during April and May 2020, at the height of the - still ongoing - coronavirus crisis. Due to the unpredictable nature of the times, it is likely that any information about the current activities of the businesses featured may already be outdated. Please be sure to check relevant websites or social media for the latest information.

One Hundred Famous Views of Nakano Sun Plaza 045, Part 2: Summer Utagawa Hiroshige/ Richard Koyama-Daniels



elcome to the first edition of a new e magazine focused on vegan food, music, art and more; created by the people behind - and named for - Tokyo’s first vegan bar, hallogallo. We’ve got interviews with vegan bars, cafes and restaurants from the UK, US, and Japan, plus some of our

favourite bands, musicians, and illustrators. There’s also original writing from Paul McInnes and specially compiled playlists by hallogallo’s knowledgeable and enthusiastic regular DJs. We hope you find something to enjoy.

Contents 6. Great Lakes Turning Tokyo vegan, one burger at a time

14. WAVE (We Are Vegan Everything) Healthy vegan food and community events in the heart of Hackney

21. Brian Durr Life in Tokyo with the DJ, musician, and Diskotopia co-founder

30. Cafe Van Gogh On an important social mission with Brixton’s colourful non-profit cafe

36. River Green Casual dining with the National Vegetarian Restaurant of the Year

44. hallogallo DJs Select hallogallo DJs don their thematic hats, and present playlists for your pleasure

52. 1992: Feed Me With Your Kiss Looking back on a formative year in Glasgow with writer and editor Paul McInnes

54. Ella Goodwin Cats, crafts, and trips to Japan with the imaginative illustrator

62. The Tipsy Vegan Tapas and tipples tempting Norwich vegans (and their non-vegan friends)

68. Animal Ghosts Looking for beauty in the wall of sound with Portland’s solo shoegazer

76. The Cherry Wave Soundtracking oblivion with Glasgow’s shoegaze outsiders Photos provided by relevant businesses/artists and credit given where requested. Unless otherwise stated all design and illustration by Richard Koyama-Daniels.



his culinary Owner John Penny tells us about es, and the inspirations, American influenc kly made sense of community that have quic it for burgGreat Lakes a Tokyo must-vis alike. er-hungry vegans and non-vegans


<NOTICE> Since this interview took place Great Lakes has reopened and the menu is now 100% vegan.


GR y name’s John Pen-


ny and I’m from South-


ern California. I’ve lived a bit



of a weird life and have had several wildly dif-




ES the global culinary paradise for chefs and tourists alike — where, in the midst of

endless animal-based treats, I returned to a

plant-based diet. I met someone here who became

ferent careers paths, but food has been a constant

my soulmate, best friend, and moral compass. She

in my life since I was a child. Both of my parents were

gave me the strength and inspiration to be that better

amazing cooks and I credit them with any skills that

version of myself.

I picked up along the way. Any success I have in this industry is owed to their memories.

What are your thoughts on the seemingly meteoric rise in interest in vegan food over recent years? How


hallogallo: Are you personally vegan and if so could

much of it do you feel is driven by animal welfare con-

you tell us something about how and why you came

siderations, how much by ecological considerations,

to that decision. Were you vegetarian first, or did you

and how much by health considerations? Are you op-

jump right into veganism?

timistic that it will continue to rise?

I have followed a plant-based diet for the last

Of course I’m delighted that vegan food is becom-

few years. I had been vegan for half of my 20s. My

ing more mainstream. With more products being re-

health wasn’t great and a friend of mine convinced me

leased all the time, it has never been easier to be a

to give the lifestyle a try and it stuck. In the years that

vegan. I’d like to believe that people are motivated to

followed, my health improved and my life changed for

be vegan or try vegan products for all the reasons, but

the better in many ways. As I’d considered my vegan

I worry that if veganism stops being trendy on Insta-

diet more like a medical treatment than a moral im-

gram, then the ideology will be recontextualized as a

perative, after I’d “recovered” I slowly incorporated

dead fad. In the face of the increasingly devastating

non-vegan foods into my diet until I was back to eat-

effects of climate change and pandemics like we’re

ing the way I had before. My travels led me to Japan—

experiencing now with COVID-19, it becomes impos-

sible to ignore the effects that animal agriculture has

restaurants than any other city, so it means a lot to

on the world. Anecdotally, this is the reason most of

me for customers to choose to dine with us over any-

my non-vegan friends have reduced their meat con-

where else. Music and art are a big part of our lives

sumption or made the switch to plant-based dairy.

and we love sharing that with our customers to build

The sheer volume of data available makes environ-

on the communal spirit. The first thing everyone sees

mental concerns the easiest talking point in support

upon entering the restaurant is a large mural paint-

of veganism.

ed by the amazing local artist Ponzi, representing everyone who helped us to get the shop open. We

When did you open Great Lakes and what were you

are looking to use our currently empty wall to host

envisioning for it at the start? Can you tell us the rele-

rotating works by local artists. I curate most of our

vance of the name?

main playlist, but the rest of the staff are also free to add any songs that they like, with only one or two

Great Lakes opened in December 2019, however it

minor exceptions dictated by me (no Limp Bizkit, for

had been in the works since late 2015. The initial plans

example). As we grow we hope to be able to share

were for a larger restaurant, but I quickly scaled down

monthly staff playlists and curated playlists with our

the size after seeing what kind of spaces were avail-

followers on social media.

able in Tokyo and all the associated costs. Inspired both by a road trip through the Upper Midwest where the highways are dotted with small burger shacks, and by my home state’s most beloved burger chain, I decided to focus on a simple menu in a smaller space. The name is a tribute to my mother and her family who hail from a small town along the shore of Lake Michigan. We’d often visit in the summertime for

I made a promise to myself that I would never add new animal products to the menu

an annual family reunion and even from a young age it was a place that felt special to me. Everyone knows each other and the focus is on family and community.

Great Lakes currently sells both beef and vegan

Here in my adopted country, I hope that Great Lakes

burgers. Can you tell us something about your think-

can be a symbol of honesty, inclusiveness, and com-

ing behind this? What is the approximate split in

munity in the way those people and towns are to me.

sales between the two types? Do you have an idea about which type of people come to eat your vegan

Please tell us something about the decor and general

burgers? Are they mainly vegans and vegetarians, or

ambience of Great Lakes. What type of feeling were

do you find that omnivores are keen to try them too?

you hoping to impart to your customers via your design choices? Is music a part of that, and if so how, and

Quite frankly, when I wrote the business plan I was

who by, are the all important playlist choices made?

not vegan. When my own lifestyle changed, the process of opening Great Lakes was so far along that it

Initially I had hoped to capture the same spirit of the

required some efforts on my part to make the busi-

old rundown roadside taverns and bars that dot the

ness a better reflection of my own values. Opening

Great Lakes region, but many of the materials and

a vegan restaurant in Tokyo was far riskier than a

equipment that I take for granted in the US simply

non-vegan restaurant, so I felt I had no choice but

aren’t available in Japan, or can’t be found at a rea-

to split the difference and see how it went. I made

sonable cost. As a foreigner, I also didn’t have free-

a promise to myself that I would never add new

dom of choice over which spaces I could rent. Be-

animal products to the menu and a promise that a

cause there was too much uncertainty with where we

vegan option would never be more expensive than

would eventually end up, I decided to go for a clean

a meat option. The final promise I made to myself

and streamlined style which could be adapted to

was that within one year I would stop selling animal

any location. With the open kitchen and uncluttered

products completely. I set myself up for the hercule-

design, I hoped to impart a feeling of communion

an task of convincing our meat eating customers to

between the customers and staff. Tokyo has more

become loyal promoters of our vegan offerings, and 9


I wanted anyone eating it to say “this is a not “this is a great

bringing in enough additional vegan traffic to sustain

Many people have tried and failed to make really sat-

the business. The half-and-half approach, however ac-

isfactory plant-based burgers, but you definitely seem

cidental in its conception, has ended up working in our

to have pulled it off. Without giving away any trade se-

favour. Initially beef was outselling the vegan patty by

crets, could you give us an idea of what goes into mak-

a staggering percentage, but after only a few months,

ing them?

the ratio has almost flipped. On a weekly basis, vegan burgers account for more than 50% of burgers sold. I’ve

My biggest goal in developing the vegan patty was

found that in mixed groups of vegans and non-vegans,

that it had to satisfy the same pleasure centres asso-

the people who ordered beef are typically keen to try

ciated with eating a beef burger. I wanted anyone eat-

one of their friends’ vegan burgers, some even order-

ing it to say, “this is a great burger,” not “this is a great

ing an additional burger. Most customers who order

vegan burger.” No amount of flavour can make up for

our vegan burgers are tourists or vegans living locally,

the textural malaise that comes from biting into the

both Japanese and foreign. I’m grateful to all of our

mushy legume-based patties that are often found in

customers who have taken the time to leave positive re-

vegan burgers. It took a lot of work, but I think we got

views for us, but the ones that make me feel particularly

there. The main ingredients we use are shiitake mush-

proud are from the non-vegans who have gone out of

rooms, brown rice, and onions. There are also some

their way to say our vegan burger is one of their favou-

herbs and spices and it’s all bound together with vital

rites, meat or otherwise.

wheat gluten. Our vegan cheese sauce is a little bit more involved and takes over 24 hours to make, but

Your vegan burgers seem to have become famous in

we hoped to replicate the mellow tang of American

Tokyo in quite a short space of time. Do you think we will

cheese. I’m continuing to experiment with vegan chees-

see more similar places opening in the coming years?

es and hopefully later this year I’ll have some fun new things for our customers to try. For those who really

Vegan restaurants and vegan-adjacent shops like

want a junk food treat, try our off-menu animal-style

ours have proliferated around the world in the last

fries, which are fries topped with vegan cheese sauce,

decade. While the numbers are much smaller here in

burger sauce, and caramelised onions.

Tokyo, it feels like there have been more new openings in the last year or so than ever before. I would

Compared to many countries Japan doesn’t have huge

like to see more diverse vegan restaurants open

numbers of vegans and vegetarians, but awareness of

across Japan. I think if operators can get out of the

the concept has grown in recent years. What do you think

mindset of making a “vegan” restaurant and focus

is behind this change, and do you think that awareness

on making convenient and approachable plant-

will continue to grow? Do you think that vegans here will

based food without the encumbrance of healthful-

ever enjoy the type of easy access to plant-based food it

ness or activism, they will find broader success.

seems is now the norm in many other places? 11

I’m not an expert on veganism in this country so my

Can you tell us something about your life outside of

impressions are purely observational and anecdotal.

Great Lakes? What type of thing do you enjoy doing

I think the most obvious answer is that an increase

when you have a day off?

in tourism from around the world has shown the busi-


ness potential in being more accommodating. This

I read a lot and listen to music, along with the occa-

isn’t just limited to vegans and vegetarians either, with

sional video game and Netflix. When I was younger,

chains like Ichiran opening pork-free ramen shops or

I studied both English and music composition and try

some hot springs becoming more welcoming to tat-

to express myself creatively in those mediums, but I’m

tooed guests. I’ve often compared being vegan in

often too exhausted for either. When I do have the en-

Japan now to what it was like when I first went veg-

ergy, I try to make some progress on various projects

an in the US almost 20 years ago. The big difference

I’ve had going for a while. I am grateful to be given

now is how readily information can be accessed via

the opportunity to DJ at various venues throughout

social media, so I think those gaps in understand-

the city, which is a lot of fun for me and something I’ve

ing will shrink fairly rapidly. Upstart vegan businesses

been doing now for the better part of 20 years.

in the US paved the way for what has now become a

After cooking all day at work, I rarely want to cook at

massive industry. I think if vegans in Japan truly have

home, so I’ll usually just make quick salads or some

the passion, then it’s up to us to develop those prod-

rice. When I have the time though, I tend to cook the

ucts. There are a few companies doing it already and

things I miss most from home, which is usually Mexican

there’s clearly an opportunity for more.

food. I’ll also spend downtime experimenting on new

dishes for the restaurant. Currently I’m working on fried chicken. I’m not quite there yet, but it’s been a delicious learning experience. How has the current coronavirus crisis affected your business? Are there any measures you have taken or are considering taking to deal with the situation? I used to live in New York and still have deep ties there, so when the coronavirus situation got bad there and many of my friends had to close their restaurants and bars, I became quite anxious about the situation here. Towards the end of March I switched us to take-out only as I didn’t want to wait for the government to act to protect my customers and staff. By the time the government declared the state of emergency, it wasn’t making sense from a safety or financial standpoint to keep the shop open. We are looking into all available government support measures and still following up on delivery and other options to resume operation in some capacity. When it becomes safe to reopen, we won’t hesitate. I’ve always had the goal of eliminating the animal products from our menu within our first year, but in light of this pandemic being directly caused by the exploitation of animals, I feel like that timeline suddenly moved up. If our future as a business is in jeopardy due to this issue that is outside of our control, then I would rather we go out being the restaurant I truly want us to be. Please tell us your hopes for the future of Great Lakes. It’s been a plan from the beginning to run periodic food and drink specials. I feel like we were just about there before this crisis began, so I hope we can get back in there and have some fun things ready for the summer (or whenever it may be). I’ve been considering some dessert specials, along with some new ice cream flavours. I want to expand our bar offerings a little bit. Smaller bites that aren’t just french fries to encourage people to hang out and have a beer or three. Any changes we make will be deliberate. I never want to be reactionary and add a ton of things to the menu or drastically change our vision. I want us to do the thing we do and do it really well. And that’s making delicious burgers, fries, and shakes. I’d love to go on the road a little bit and maybe do a pop-up at a music festival or two just to show other parts of the country what we’ve been up to. More than anything, I look forward to getting back in the shop with my awesome team and all of our lovely customers. 13


Photo by Hannah Gabrielle More

Caitlyn Badham-Thornhill of WAVE tells us about life in the vegan hub of London, building a community through workshops and events, and following her dreams with the support of a friend.


Above: Caitlyn Badham-Thornhill and Sophie Beale of WAVE. Photo by Hannah Gabrielle More


y name is Caitlyn and I am the co-found-

up on a South African diet, which is predominant-

er of WAVE, We Are Vegan Everything. I

ly meat based, so initially it was a hard transition. I

grew up in sunny Cape Town and moved

weaned myself off meat slowly, becoming vegetarian

to London just over ten years ago where I met my busi-

and then becoming vegan. For me this was a long pro-

ness partner Sophie and started a company called

cess because I considered myself a big foodie and all

Cupcakes and Shhht. We first became friends and

of a sudden I had to stop eating the food I was used

very soon after that realising we both had a similar

to. Your entire routine and way of life is obstructed and

outlook on life, we thought it would be fun to try and

requires an entire lifestyle change. Lifestyle changes

follow our dreams with the support of each other.

take time and I was like most vegans, willing to take on this task for the greater good.

hallogallo: Are you personally vegan and if so could you tell us something about how and why you came

What are your thoughts on the seemingly meteoric

to that decision. Were you Vegetarian first, or did you

rise in interest in vegan food over recent years? How

jump right into veganism?

much of it do you feel is driven by animal welfare considerations, how much by ecological considerations,

We are both vegan. I became vegan because Sophie

and how much by health considerations? Are you opti-

had turned vegan and we started introducing vegan

mistic that it will continue to rise?

options to our business. After some time I began ed-


ucating myself about veganism and I felt that the val-

I feel like any sway in human culture towards veganism

ues were pretty good and that there were some things

is a good thing. I don’t really care why people go veg-

I could no longer turn a blind eye to. Once Sophie and

an, I just care that they do. There are tonnes of peo-

I were both vegan, we then converted our entire busi-

ple who have economical, environmental, ethical and

ness to be vegan. We felt it was only right to have our

health based reasons, and I’m happy that they have

business portray our own ethical values. I was brought

a reason to justify for themselves why they are doing

something. I find it weird that people aren’t vegan because of the actual mistreatment of animals. To me that should be the overriding reason as it is a natural human reaction to be compassionate, and to feel no compassion for the mistreatment of any living being is irresponsible. It is also easier to make a decision based on an emotional reaction, so in my opinion I believe

I don’t really care why people go vegan, I just care that they do people are vegan mostly because of inhumane animal killings. But most vegans are vegan for all of the reasons, so it is hard to say. I do feel like the growth in veganism will continue as it is learnt, and the more people learn the more people will convert. With social media playing such a huge part in vegan education, I can only see this wonderful movement growing. when did you open WAVE and what were you envisioning for it at the start? We opened WAVE in January 2019. Our cafe’s location, Cupcakes and Shhht, was being turned into apartments, so we thought it was the perfect time to move somewhere bigger, give the cafe a new name and really push on vegan brunching. Over the 6 years that we

Please tell us something about the decor and gener-

had Cupcakes and Shhht, we weren’t only interested in

al ambience of WAVE. What type of feeling were you

cupcakes anymore, we had grown a massive interest in

hoping to impart to your customers via your design

vegan brunching.


Has the vision of what WAVE is, or should be, changed

Both Sophie and I spend so much time working that we

since the beginning?

wanted the new location, WAVE, to feel like our favourite holidays. So we set it up to feel a bit like Australia’s

The vision of WAVE has managed to stay relatively

Gold Coast, Bali, and Morocco. We definitely motivate

similar to what we envisioned. We were very busy from

a very chilled out atmosphere, with floor cushions and

the get go, so we haven’t really had much time to think

swinging chairs and a large outside area perfect for

about changing anything. We get a lot of new mums

summer chilling.

and lots of young babies, which came as a huge surprise. We think it is because we don’t mind about prams,

Please tell us something about the food you serve. Is

and the atmosphere is nice and relaxed, so mums can

there a concept behind it and if so how did you arrive

feel free to breastfeed if and when they like.

at it? 17


The food we serve is hearty, wholesome, colourful and healthy vegan food. We’re not big believers in meat substitutes as we feel you can get the same feeling from any food just as long as it’s cooked well. We want to show vegans and non vegans that you can eat vegan food and feel great about it too. Like you’re not missing out on anything. Do you feel that the popular image of vegan food as worthy and dull still exists, or do you think that stereotype has been completely put to bed in the last few years? Did the need to combat those old fashioned ideas ever influence your menu choices? Oh yes, definitely. We find it very annoying that people give up on eating or trying vegan food just because of the bad rep or because someone made a dull meal of it once upon a time. It’s kind of our job now to inspire anyone who still feels that way. If people think that vegan food is dull, I don’t think those people have eaten enough vegan food. You can also eat really dull non vegan food, but people are quick to judge because it is something different and people just don’t want to be proven wrong. As one of the founders of Cupcakes And Shhht, what are your thoughts about the massively renewed interest in baking that Britain has seen over the last few years? Do you think that sweets and desserts are sometimes a forgotten, or not very well done, part of vegan catering, or has that also changed?

Above: WAVE interior. Photo by Caylee Hankins. Opposite page: Pancakes and Porridge. Photo by With Love From Frances

Hackney Central is the vegan hub of London, so we are surrounded by vegans and hipsters alike

I think baking vegan always seems harder than it actually

WAVE offers a range of events including yoga and life

is, and people are often put off because of that. But once

drawing. Please tell us something about the thinking

you’ve tried a few recipes it’s really as simple, if not easier,

behind that. Is creating a community an important

than regular baking. I think it’s great that more and more

part of what you do?

people are giving it a go. We have such a nice open space where the doors Please tell us something about your clientele. What type

open all around the building during the summer. So

of people come to WAVE? Do you have any idea of the

we thought it would be perfect to host morning yoga.

ratio of vegans, vegetarians, and people who are nei-

We also offer the space out for any other events like


chakra workshops and cacao ceremonies. It is important to us that people see our space as a place of com-

We are based in Hackney Central, which is the vegan hub

munity. We have a tight family-like team here and we

of London, so we are surrounded by vegans and hipsters

like to keep everyone happy. It’s a genuinely nice place

alike. We have no idea how many people are vegan, veg-

to spend your time.

gie or meat eaters, but we do sometimes get customers who bring their parents or friends in to try the food and

Please tell us something about how the current coro-

they are always very happy and sometimes shocked. I

navirus crisis has affected your business, and any

guess it’s nice to show people that vegan food doesn’t

measures you have taken or are considering taking to

have to be a burger or a kebab for it to taste good.

deal with the situation. 19


Matt Corby

Ben Howard

“All Fired Up”

“Under the Same Sun”

Nick Mulvey

Ziggy Alberts


“Simple Things”

click and collect service on our website for all of our

Kevin Morby

Kevin Morby

food, as London Fields is a short walk away and per-

“Harlem River”

“Beautiful Strangers”

that it will continue to flourish, we will continue to



have awesome customers walk through our doors,

“Here Comes Your Man”

“Waiting All Night”

We have both never been to Japan, but really hope

Kim Churchill


that one day we will be able to. We would love to try

“After the Sun”

“Blind You”

Above: Carrot cake. Photo by Vegans Of London Left: Pancakes. Photo by With Love From Frances

We have closed our business for now, but we look forward to opening soon and trying to get everything back to where it was. We are looking at offering a

fect for picnics. Please tell us about your hopes for the future of WAVE. WAVE is not just a business for Sophie and I, it is a Pinterest page that came to life, over a decade of hard work, and truly a dream come true. We hope

and that we will continue to inspire people with delicious vegan food. We are looking to create some recipe books and get a grab and go product range out on supermarket shelves as soon as possible. Lastly, do you have any particular links to Japan or interest in Japanese food and culture?

the Japanese vegan cuisine scene! 21


The Tokyo based DJ, recording artist, and Diskotopia co-founder talks to hallogallo about the democratisation of music, the delights of Youtube wormholes, and why imperfect recordings resonate with him.



y name is Brian Durr and I co-run the

There’s never been any real limit to the genre of mu-

Diskotopia label with Matt Lyne here in

sic we release, but I think if you take the time to listen

Tokyo. I also write, produce and record

through the catalogue, you can hear a through line

music under the names BD1982, Myakkah, and Dawn

that connects someone who’s a boundary-pushing


club music producer like Silvestre to a legendary figure like Wally Badarou. There’s a spectrum of music we

hallogallo Tokyo: Can you tell us when and how you

both want to showcase and contribute to that I think

started Diskotopia and what your hopes were for it at

eventually finds its way onto the label naturally.

the start? Was there a clear idea from the beginning of what type of label you wanted it to be and has the

Can you tell us something about your own music.

vision for it changed at all over time?

When did you get into making music and what was it that first inspired you to do it? Can you tell us some-

Back in 2010 Matt and I decided to work together in

thing about the equipment you use and how that has

making Diskotopia a label, after being primarily an

changed over the years?

events collective in Osaka. I think the main goals then were much the same as they are now — to release

I first started playing in bands when I was about 13,

powerful music that we both felt equally passionately

on guitar and (attempting) vocals. From there it grew

about. We always have to be in agreement on what the

into more experimenting with a four track recorder,

next release is going to be and it’s got to be a mutually

drum machines, old keyboards etc. Towards the end

agreed situation for something to move forward.

of high school I got a lot more into DJing but circled back to production a few years later. I’ve always really


Can you tell us something about how you find and

liked tactile ways to make music so I’ve been using an

choose the music you release? How do you know when

Akai MPC 2000XL as the centre of my studio for a long

an artist you hear is right for Diskotopia?

time now.

I like to hear little artifacts in music that make it stand out from everything else. Basically for me, too clean fully digital in terms of production. At the base of everything really is how can you best communicate feeling while making use of what’s available in the most interesting ways. It’s always a challenge to decide how much or how little to put in as well; that perfect balance of not going overboard with components or leaving it feeling unfinished. The affordability and accessibility of modern music making technology has opened up possibilities to many who could never have afforded expensive syn-

It’s really fun and challenging to distill the elements of what makes music so emotional and lasting

sounding is boring so I’m not on board with being

thesisers, samplers etc. Do you think that has meant that we get to hear music from a more varied and

I think in terms of my own music I’ve been trying to pro-

wider demographic today than we might have done

duce something that sits alongside other artists I’ve


looked up to over the years and shares some sense of tone and inspiration rather than specific sounds. For

Absolutely. I think that democratisation of music by pro-

example, I’ve been a huge fan of the drum and bass la-

duction tools being made available to everyone is one

bel Metalheadz since I was young, and in the past few

of the best points of consumer technological advances

years really rediscovered how incredible Siouxsie and the

in the past few decades by far. I don’t think that mu-

Banshees were. These are two of my all-time favourite

sic, making it and being able to distribute it, should be

labels and bands, and although my music or music we

limited by finances, social standing or any other gate-

would release on Diskotopia might not sound like either

keeping nonsense at all. Literally everyone now has the

of them, it could perhaps share some tonal or sonic sen-

ability to make music, so it’s refreshing to hear very raw

sibilities. It’s really fun and challenging to distill the ele-

and honest new sounds coming from people all over

ments of what makes music so emotional and lasting for

the world. Not to say there aren’t still some of those

me. Going beyond the actual instrumentation or lyrics

gatekeeping old guards in place within the industry

and tapping into the drive behind what makes all these

but I think we’re seeing a lot of that thankfully crumble

elements work together to form something that I could

away as both musicians and fans can have a more di-

listen to for years and years.

rect relationship and a sense of network building. 7th Door by BD1982. Click artwork to visit the album’s Bandcamp page.

Do you think that access to those raw and new sounds accelerates the absorption of underground ideas into the mainstream? There’s definitely the case of “mainstream” mining independent circles for fresh ideas and tropes, but I think this has been happening for the last century really, and is unfortunately an ingrained aspect of the music industry. Can you tell us something about your personal musical tastes and how they relate to your own music and the overall sound of the releases on Diskotopia? Is there music you enjoy that bears no obvious resemblance to what you do and if so do you think it may still have an influence in some way? 25

The design aesthetic of the label has definitely been carefully considered from the beginning Diskotopia has a very strong and consistent design aesthetic across all releases. Can you tell us something

Top: Diskotopia co-founder Matt Lyne, who records as A Taut Line. Middle: Distraction Provisions, Lyne’s 3rd solo album under his A Taut Line moniker. Click on the artwork to visit the album’s Bandcamp page. Bottom: A still from the the directorial debut of Matt Lyne, “Where Memory is Traded” from the Diskotopia album Invisible Cities by Memotone. Click image to watch the video. .

about the thinking behind it, and about the artists and


designers involved? Was it always the intention to create something that tied together as a whole? The design aesthetic of the label has definitely been carefully considered from the beginning. We were working almost exclusively with Shaw from Neithercorp who is based in Osaka and had been friends with Matt for quite a while before we started the label. Aside from designing a huge chunk of our catalogue, he also built the label’s website and designed a custom font for the logo. He’s a super talented and humble gentleman who definitely deserves massive credit in helping to establish the visual identity we’ve developed. More recently Matt has been handling the artwork, and I think continues to create something very idiosyncratic that speaks to the content we’re releasing. Matt’s also been working on more video content as well. He made his directorial debut for “Where Memory is Traded” a track from the latest Memotone LP Invisible Cities which we released in March 2020.

You are a longtime resident of Japan. Can you tell us

of live performances, clubs etc, it’s pretty difficult and

something about how you came here originally and

I don’t really have any idea how that’s all going to

why you decided to stay?

change going forward.

I first came here to work in 2005 and really felt com-

How has the crisis has affected you personally? Are

fortable straight away to be honest. I met my partner

there any measures you have taken or are considering

just two weeks after arriving in Kyoto and we’ve been

taking to deal with the situation?

together for fifteen years now. We spent time in the US and then came back to Japan a few times for family

We are both lucky to have other jobs outside just the

situations, but settled on raising a family here in Tokyo.

label. That helps us to continue with the label digitally as usual, but some future physical release plans have

Can you tell us something about your feelings towards

gotten a little dashed with everything that’s going on.

the Japanese music, art, and culture scenes?

There’s obviously a lot of people who aren’t in this same kind of position and personally I’ve been trying to just

I really appreciate the amount of dedication to craft

support with Bandcamp purchases. I’ve been staying in

that Japanese art culture is built on. You don’t often

as much as possible and working from home, sneaking

come across people who just talk about doing some-

in time with various sketches of new material.

thing, they actually have the time and effort to back up their work. That’s not always the case in my experi-

Do you have any thoughts about the future of music

ence of other places.

consumption? Do you feel there are any positive sides to the rise of streaming services, or is it mainly bad news

Are there any aspects of Japanese culture that you

for artists and smaller labels?

wish received more attention overseas and any that you think are overrepresented in the foreign media?

I’m not really sure how much further out from the source music listening habits can get to be honest. I think that

I don’t really have strong opinions about how Japa-

streaming is a reality that labels need to accept wheth-

nese music, art, and culture is (over) represented in

er they like it or not, since it’s how the majority of the

the foreign media to be honest, but I guess I would like

listening public discover artists and consume music on

to see more focus on what kind of material is being

a daily basis. I prefer to manually update my iPod Shuf-

made by the 9-to-5ers who are DJing for next to noth-

fle every week with different music, but I know a lot of

ing every weekend while still working tirelessly on their

people don’t have time for that and would prefer just

own productions every day. There’s a lot of people I’ve

riding playlists all day. It’s not like artists make nothing

had the pleasure to meet who continue doing their

from streaming, but it’s laughably skewed at the mo-

creative endeavours purely out of love for the craft

ment with how much platforms are taking versus how

and I think that aspect should be made a bit more

much the actual artists should be receiving.

apparent, especially in the current climate of chasing likes and sponsorships.

How do you personally discover new music?

The current coronavirus crisis is already having a disas-

I still really enjoy the process of actively searching out

trous effect on many parts of the music scene. How

new music and having my mind blown by new or old-

would you encourage music lovers to help any artists,

er artists I haven’t heard before. Just going through

small labels, independent record stores, music venues

Discogs, starting on a particular label or artist and

etc that may be struggling?

skimming through catalogues. Finding out that one producer of this record went on to do this other thing

Bandcamp has been a huge component in directly

two years later with someone from another country etc.

helping artists and labels during this current world-

You can get lost in these kind of wormholes and also on

wide crisis. I think that anyone who considers them-

YouTube actually. I think a lot of people will agree that

selves a fan should be financially supporting those

the YouTube experimental and niche music algorithms

artists anyway, but especially now that there’s an ex-

have gotten quite good and you can really find a ton of

cellent path to get at least some funds across. In terms

insane material. 27

Do you still buy or use any physical formats? I’ve actually been buying CDs a bit more in the past few years. Initially just because of some older reissues that never made it to a digital release and that was the only format available. There was one incredible Underground Resistance label compilation on CD I found, Interstellar Fugitives, that helped kick a few more CD purchases. Most recently I picked up a copy of Drab Majesty’s Modern Mirror on digipak CD release, one of the best records I’ve heard in a long time by far. Please tell us something about your hopes for Diskotopia. Are there any planned releases in the near future? We have a few projects lined up for 2020 that may be slightly altered due to the coronavirus situation, but overall we’re moving ahead as usual. Nothing is overly preplanned usually, so we like the catalogue to get built naturally as the material presents itself. There’s a forthcoming second album from Aemong on the way. I’m super excited about it and really feel lucky to be a part of its release. My attempted description of the music wouldn’t do it justice but I’d definitely say it fits neatly into one of those decade-after-decade return listens 100%.

Diskotopia Fall / Winter 2019-2020 Free Compilation 15 exclusive cuts from label mainstays, Diskotopia affiliated artists, and friends. Featuring Dawn Undercover, Greeen Linez, Aemong, Silvestre, Myakkah, Kym Sugiru, BD1982, Ando Laj, and Memotone. Click the artwork to visit the album’s Bandcamp page. Downloaded the album for free or on a name your price basis.


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The co-owners of the nonprofit Brixton enterprise tell hallogallo about life in “one of the most beautiful restaurants in London”, making delicious food that “happens to be vegan”, and their mission to provide training for people with learning disabilities.



’m Steve (S). I’ve got more than 20 years expe-

(S) I’ve been vegetarian for two thirds of my life, and

rience of managing services for adults with dif-

vegan for the last five years.

ferent vulnerabilities such as addiction or mental

health problems, but have always harboured desires

(B) I became vegetarian when I was 11 years old. I

to open a vegan social enterprise.

was watching a netball match and had bought a beef burger at half time. I opened up the bun and stared

I’m Bonita (B) a recent co-owner of Cafe Van Gogh

at the patty for quite some time slowly registering the

(Steve and I went into partnership last July) and head

fact that it had once been part of a cow. About five or

chef. I’ve been a chef for eight years (since I was 22)

six years ago I started educating myself more about

and initially worked in non vegan places, but decided

where both meat and dairy came from. I read “Eat-

about four or five years ago, after turning complete-

ing Animals” by Jonathan Safran Foer and watched

ly vegan, that I would solely focus my skills on plant-

undercover Slaughterhouse videos on Youtube. I was

based cooking.

horrified by what I saw and transitioned to a vegan lifestyle.

hallogallo: Can you tell us something about how and


why you first decided to become vegan. Were you

What are your thoughts on the seemingly meteoric

Vegetarian first, or did you jump right into veganism?

rise in interest in vegan food over recent years?

and what impact you think this

How much of it do you feel is driven by animal welfare considerations, how much by



ations, and how much by health considerations? Are you optimistic that it will continue to rise? (S) It’s great! People are waking up, people’s cog-

In the UK 95% of people with a learning disability are not in employment. We find this to be scandalous

has on the restaurant itself and the people involved in the programme. (S) In the UK 95% of people with a learning disability are not in employment. We find this to be scandalous. This cohort of people want the same things in life as us; a sense of purpose, a sense of team camaraderie,

nitive dissonance is being eroded. So many of the planet’s problems can be

independence and some cash in their pockets. In-

whittled down to being caused at least in small part

terestingly these are all aspects that we’ve lost to

by the exploitation of animals – particularly this

certain degrees in this lockdown.

pandemic, which has affected millions of people and paused global normality.

(B) Steve founded the business and formed the social enterprise aspect of the cafe. Since going

(B) I think it’s fantastic. I feel like people usually con-

into partnership, I work alongside volunteers in the

sider going vegan for one reason initially, whether

kitchen and teach them cooking and prepping skills

that be animal welfare or the environment, but once

depending on their capabilities. I have found that

you delve into it and do more research you are ex-

cookery is a great way to build someone’s confi-

posed to a whole wealth of other reasons on why

dence or social skills, particularly if I’m guiding them

it’s beneficial. The younger generation in particular

through a recipe from start to finish and they can

is more conscious of climate change. I am confident

see the final outcome of all the various steps. The

this will be a driving force in expanding the move-

actual physical distraction of cooking also puts less


pressure on our volunteers to socialise, which in turn can open them up to chat with our kitchen team, for

when did you open Cafe Van Gogh and what

instance when discussing tasks that they are under-

were you envisioning for it at the start?


(S) Five years ago in September, with a simple mission; a memorable visit, great food, lovely service and the knowledge

Do you feel there are enough places providing similar opportunities for people with learning disabilities?

that spending with us contributes to our social

(S) There are a few

mission of training people



The real








learning disabilities


issue to be tackled how-


ever is to Please us



all venues in the


about your reasons for providing training for people with learning disabilities

hospitality sector to consider



from this cohort where they can.


The general feel is a combination of Van Gogh paintings, Frida Kahlo’s colour palette and a small botanical garden!

We’re housed across two floors, joined together by a wrought iron spiral stair case. The cafe is full of plants, and in warmer months we have use of a courtyard area, again made tranquil with plants and a trickling water fountain. Our playlist is really important to us, it really does set the scene, and is frequently mentioned in reviews of the cafe. It’s sometimes romantic, sometimes uplifting, sometimes cool, but always eclectic. Do you feel that your community mind-

(B) The space is full of colours and plants, which adds to

ed approach has an effect on how Cafe Van Gogh is

the positive atmosphere customers feel when they walk

viewed by your customers? Do you think that it inspires

through the door. The general feel is a combination of

greater loyalty when people know that you’re not just

Van Gogh paintings, Frida Kahlo’s colour palette and a

there to make a profit?

small botanical garden!

(S) Yes. we’ve got a really lovely set of customers, and

Please tell us something about the food you serve. Is

their support has been great, particularly during these

there a concept behind it and if so how did you arrive

harder times.

at it?

(B) Definitely. There is a real community feel to the

(B) I try to write menus as a reflection of what I would

space. We have many regulars and regulars who know

like to eat. Seasonality is important, particularly as veg-

regulars! People seem happy to support the cafe when

etables are such a focus for us. Indian food has always

they can see we are training volunteers to learn work

been a passion of mine (I worked in a vegan restaurant


in southern India for three months) and I try to expand my knowledge of other cuisines as much as I can via the

Please tell us something about the decor and gener-

internet, recipe books, travelling and going out to eat.

al ambience of Cafe Van Gogh. What type of feeling were you hoping to impart to your customers via your

Do you feel that the popular image of vegan food as

design choices? Is music a part of that too?

worthy and dull still exists, or do you think that stereotype has been completely put to bed in the last few


(S) We’re privileged to be housed in what is considered

years? Did the need to combat those old fashioned

be one of the most beautiful restaurants in London.

ideas influence your menu choices at all?

(B) Definitely not. There has been such a huge move-

Please tell us about your hopes for the future of Cafe

ment in the past few years, and vegan food has

Van Gogh.

evolved so dramatically in such a short space of time. I think there is still a gap, particularly in London, be-

(S) We hope to reopen whilst there are blue skies, so we

tween ‘Healthy’ Vegan restaurants and Junk food veg-

can enjoy using the garden. We are currently running a

an restaurants. I like to think Cafe Van Gogh is some-

crowd funding campaign to raise funds to renovate our

where in the middle. We endeavour to make delicious

downstairs space so we can specifically train people in

food that happens to be vegan.

barista skills.

Please tell us something about your clientele. What

Lastly, do you have any particular links to Japan or in-

type of people come to Cafe Van Gogh? Do you have

terest in Japanese food and culture?

any idea of the ratio of vegans, vegetarians, and people who are neither? Do you feel that the ratio has

(S) I’ve never been to Japan, but have eaten some

changed over time?

amazing vegan Japanese food on the west coast of the USA. I love sushi and seaweed and am excited to

(S) We have a lunch crowd, who are often workers at

get to understand the intricacies of a whole new inter-

local businesses to us, they are less likely to be vegan,

national cuisine .

but they always say they enjoy the variety and healthy aspects of the food we offer. Away from Lunch, at

(B) I have never been to Japan, which has always been

weekends and evenings, we find that people are happy

a niggling thought at the back of my mind. I would ab-

to travel across London to visit us. It’s likely that about

solutely love to go, and in particular immerse myself

75% of these customers are vegan. We also have a

in the food culture. It is a cuisine I have never properly

crowd of loyal locals, and we try make the effort to re-

explored on a personal level, and that is something I

member our regular customers names. In London this

would very much like to change.

serves to create an immediate connection with them and people seem to enjoy this. (B) We have lovely customers, which adds to the general feeling of friendliness in the cafe. Quite often we will have a couple, or two friends come in, one of whom is vegan and the other not. The non vegan can sometimes be sceptical when looking at the menu but leave surprised and happy that they enjoyed the meal. That is always a great feeling for me. Please tell us something about how the current coronavirus crisis has affected your business, and any measures you have taken or will consider taking to deal with the situation. (S) We’ve had to close the business, cease trading and cease all of our training for the time being. We are talking to a local charity that works to support older people in the community, about food deliveries to them, using a network of volunteers in the community to help with distribution. 35


Chris Avey, head chef and owner of River Green, voted National Vegetarian Restaurant of the Year 2020, tells hallogallo about surprising people with his flavourful vegan cooking and life under lockdown in a picturesque village on the edge of Norwich.



I’m optimistic we could be at the start of a movement that could lead to a tipping point for the environment, animals, and the human race


’m Chris Avey, 54 years old, head chef and own-

There has always been a compassionate argument

er of River Green in Norwich. I’ve been a profes-

for vegetarianism and veganism, as well as health

sional chef for 15 years, before that, cooking was

concerns. In recent years there has also been growing

more of an obsession or a hobby. I had a career in art

awareness of animal sentience and increasing concern

and design having trained in theatre design in the

about the role of animal husbandry in climate change,

1980s. I am the only chef in Norwich who can toss a

and the decreasing standards worldwide in farming.

pancake whilst riding a unicycle. Oh, and I went to the

All of these have coincided with a new creativity and

same school as Mick Jagger (not at the same time, I

availability in vegan foods and ingredients, and and

hasten to add!)

unprecedented levels of communication, spreading the message of veganism. I’m optimistic we could be at the

hallogallo: Are you personally vegan and if so could

start of a movement that could lead to a tipping point

you tell us something about how and why you came

for the environment, animals, and the human race. For

to that decision. Were you Vegetarian first, or did you

my part, I think my best contribution is to continue to

jump right into veganism?

put delicious vegan food in front of people and let them make up their own minds.

I was a vegetarian for 30 years before becoming vegan. You could say I was a ‘late developer’ or ‘slow to

when did you open River Green and what were you

catch on’. When I qualified as a professional chef I

envisioning for it at the start?

trained classically, learning to cook meat too. I cooked for meat eaters until I took on my own vegetarian

River Green started as a vegetarian restaurant in 2011,

restaurant. The more I cooked vegan dishes the less I

as a project between a vegetarian chef and a vegan

wanted anything to do with animal products - the last

businessman. I got involved four years later, having sold

time I prepared any meat was for my fathers’s funer-

my previous cafe in Norwich. Looking for a new project,

al, and I vowed not to cook any animal products from

I was asked to take on the kitchen at River Green after

then on.

standards had been allowed to slip. I saw that it needed a makeover and a lot of investment. I put a lot of

What are your thoughts on the seemingly meteoric

my own money into the business, and later bought out

rise in interest in vegan food over recent years? How

the original partners who wanted to go on to their own

much of it do you feel is driven by animal welfare con-

projects. The mission statement of River Green has al-

siderations, how much by ecological considerations,

ways been to create delicious food without exploitation

and how much by health considerations? Are you opti-

of animals, people, or the environment. I followed this

mistic that it will continue to rise?

to its logical conclusion by veganising the entire menu. 39

How has the vision of what River Green is, or should

The award was bitter sweet; It was a pleasant sur-

be, changed since the beginning and what were the

prise... we did not even know we had been nominated.

reasons for any changes?

The publicity was great. We built on it, and having had a poor 12 months previously (the whole industry has

Apart from changes to the menu to make it more veg-

had a trying time), it was a welcome boost with about

an, the original vision for River Green was of a ’cafe’.

three weeks of increased interest and custom. Of

However, by the time I took it on, it had already devel-

course, that also brings increased pressure as people’s

oped into more of a restaurant, and we have largely

expectations are raised! Then however, things came

dropped the ‘cafe’ part of the original name. My main

crashing down as Covid19 struck and people were

concern was to introduce seasonality, locality, and

told to avoid restaurants, and then we were forced to

provenance to the menu. By using food in season, it


would be fresher, healthier, cheaper, and have fewer food miles.

Please tell us something about the decor and general ambience of River Green. What type of feeling were

River Green won the award for National Vegetarian

you hoping to impart to your customers via your de-

Restaurant of the Year 2020 in the first ever V2 Vege-

sign choices? Is music a part of that, and if so how,

tarian and Vegan Awards. Can you tell us your feelings

and who by, are the all important playlist choices

about this and what it has meant for you personally


and for your restaurant? Did you find that the public-


ity attracted customers from further afield, and did it

The building housing River Green is a former bakery

spur on more local people to make a visit?

dating to the late 1800s in a picturesque village on the

Many cultures have their own speciality dishes that are vegetarian, vegan, or vegan adaptable edge of Norwich. It is less ‘trendy’ than some of the new vegan places, and as such is less challenging for older people and families. Many people come to River Green for its relaxed and casual feel - service is friendly and unhurried. The decor is calming with natural tones, but we also have a great building with views outside over the village green.We use Spotify for music playlists, but I often leave my staff to have their choice of music to play. It helps if they’re happy, to serve customers well. I have to step in just occasionally, when thing get too loud or jarring or disturbing in any way! Please tell us about the food you serve. Is there a concept behind it and if so how did you arrive at it? My menu is built around seasonality and local produce, but takes influences from cuisines all around the world. Many cultures have their own speciality dishes that are vegetarian, vegan, or vegan adaptable, and these often work with local ingredients. I enjoy researching and adapting recipes, veganising some of them along the way, and developing new techniques too. When I became a vegetarian, there were few meat replacements and so I got used to cooking with fresh vegetables and fruit, pulses, nuts and seeds. I think food should be simple and unprocessed, which is why I avoid modern imitation meats; they may be ’plant-based’ but they have been processed beyond recognition and I don’t use them. We also specialise in serving gluten free food and catering for special diets, including soy free, nut free, and yeast free amongst others. Do you feel that the popular image of vegan food as worthy and dull still exists, or do you think that stereotype has been completely put to bed in the last few years? Did the need to combat those old fashioned ideas ever influence your menu choices? 41

We find that River Green is a great place for meat-eating grandparents to bring their vegan grandchildren (or vice versa) I became a vegetarian in the 1980s, when vegan

are still omnivores, but of the remainder, the propor-

food was barely credible, and vegetarian food was

tion of vegans to vegetarians is much higher than in

synonymous with ‘healthy’ food, which was invariably

the early days. Many young people who come to the

heavy, whole grain, soggy, and regularly, brown. I

restaurant who were just children when it opened,

think that image has persisted much longer than the

have gone straight to veganism as they have grown,

food itself actually did. The British food scene under-

whereas previous generations may have dallied with

went an ingredients revolution in the 90s and early

vegetarianism before trying veganism.

2000s, and vegetarian and vegan food went along with that too. I like the surprise in people’s voic-

It seems that a thriving restaurant scene has been

es when they have been brought to the restaurant,

developing in Norwich over the last few years includ-

maybe against their will, and hadn’t realised how fla-

ing a fair number of vegan places. could you tell us

vourful, and fresh it can be.

something about that and your place in it. Do you feel that being outside of the city centre has any af-

Please tell us something about your clientele. What

fect on people’s awareness of River Green?

type of people come to River Green. Do you have any idea of the ratio of vegans, vegetarians, and peo-

Our position outside the city is advantageous as it

ple who are neither? Do you feel that the ratio has

feels very much like the countryside, but is only 20

changed over time?

minutes walk into the city centre, so we are also very much part of the Norwich community. Whether there


Many of our customers are older, many are fami-

is anything special about Norwich which has led to it

lies. We have space to host larger groups than other

being such a great place for vegans, I am doubtful. I

restaurants, and the environment and menu are not

suspect that the preponderance of vegan restaurants

challenging or confusing. We find that River Green

may simply be a clustering that results from random

is a great place for instance, for meat-eating grand-

distribution! However, when River Green opened in

parents to bring their vegan grandchildren (or vice

2011, there were very few such restaurants. Now

versa). I would say that the majority of our customers

there are many.

Please tell us something about how the current coro-

event. I hope we can pick up where we left off, but in

navirus crisis has affected your business, and any mea-

the meantime we are building our relationship with

sures you have taken or are considering taking to deal

the local community, most of whom are not vegan,

with the situation.

and I hope this will grow and develop.

Following the lockdown we have closed our doors but

Lastly, do you have any particular links to Japan or in-

continue to serve the local community with supplies

terest in Japanese food and culture? If so please tell us

and meals to cook at home. I am currently doing this

something about that.

on my own, having sent the staff home on government support so they can isolate. We are dealing with the sit-

When I was an artist I hosted a student from Japan who

uation week to week, but are aware that it will be a very

was learning tromp l’oeil painting. She taught me some

long time before we see anything like the restaurant

Japanese cooking techniques and got me interested

culture we were used to.

in the food. Though I haven’t visited Japan yet, there are many places in the UK to eat Japanese food and

Please tell us about your hopes for the future of River

take inspiration. I have been making my own vegan ver-


sions of some classic Japanese dishes, sometimes using local ingredients, like Norfolk Asparagus sushi, and

Over the last two years I have been building up a

other dishes such as Tofu Katsu, and a vegan version

teaching kitchen in the restaurant hosting workshops

of an Okonomiyaki. Last year we had a local Japanese

and classes in vegan cooking. The teaching kitchen

restaurant come and do a vegan Pan-Asian pop up in

has also been a venue for our ‘Chef’s Table’ private

our restaurant. We worked with them creating vegan

dining. At the start of March we did our first Supper

dishes, and their chef brought his skill and expertise to

Club in that space, and this was due to be a monthly

delight a mixture of customers from both restaurants. 43


DJs sel ect

Loosely themed playlists by some of the DJs who have helped to make hallogallo events such a cheerful voyage of musical discovery



5. Sheriff Lindo And The Hammer “Eastern Bloc” Ten Dubs That Shook the World I Found this as a reissue at Jet Set Records in Kyoto back in 2005 and have kept it in constant rotation since then. Moody, tape-saturated Australian digi-dub alchemy.


These songs all remind me of Autumn in some way; ei-

6. Dirk Desaever

ther through having listened to them a lot during those


months in the past, or just having some kind of essence

Collected 1984 - 1989

about them. Works well played in this order too I think!

I Took the very well-respected advice of Boomkat and acquainted myself with Dirk Desaever through this excellent compilation. I Absolutely love everything about this tune and just wish it was three times as long.

1. The Damned

7. 19 Gadi Pirms Sākuma

“Shadow of Love”

“Pāri Upei”


19 Years Before the Beginning

I love this LP, and Shadow of Love is definitely in my top 5 Damned songs of all time. The atmosphere cuts through every time and watching the promo video is next levels too.

Following up on a killer reissue of NSRD, champion-grade label Stroom released a 19 Gadi Pirms Sākuma compilation that is unbelievably excellent. Early 90s Latvian electronic/newwave that transcends dimensions.

2. Neon

8. SPK

“Sentimental Love”

“In The Dying Moments”


The Myths Collection Part Two

I Wasn’t familiar with Neon until a few years ago, but songs like this make me think they’re possibly the greatest Italian band after Goblin.

Super cavernous, vibed-out tribal cinematics that never fails to spark ideas.

3. Samhain

9. Bourbonese Qualk

“Let the Day Begin”

“Return to Order”


Preparing for Power

I think Samhain is Danzig’s best project and this entire record is actually perfect for autumn listening. This particular song has just a touch of a new wave flourish here and there that pushes it to the forefront.

Absolutely legendary and groovy example of how far BQ could take things.

4. Outlaw Compound

10. Siouxsie and the Banshees

“Deep Mouthed”

“Land’s End”

New Primitive


I love that this record is “inspired by Norwegian explorer Thor Heyerdahl’s 1947 Kon-Tiki expedition, exotica, cocktail culture, magick and other manifestations of the escapist tendencies that characterise modern times.”

Basically the season of Autumn in song form, right?


Note: Depending on song availability playlist may be incomplete.

5. The Wake


“Crush the Flowers” Testament (Best Of) This song seems a bit ahead of its time. It’s got great lyrics, synths and a good solid bass line. Incidentally, the B-side to the single is titled “Carbrain” which is particularly brutal/ist area of Cumbernauld near Glasgow.

< PAUL MCINNES > Original writing by Paul McInnes on page 52

Growing up in Glasgow in the 80s and 90s hearing bands

6. Heavenly

from Sarah Records was a real breath of fresh air. The bands

“Our Love is Heavely”

on Sarah Records reminded me of shambolic Glasgow

Le Jardin de Heavenly

bands such as The Pastels and Orange Juice, but because

I met singer Amelia Fletcher after a Heavenly gig at The Cathouse in Glasgow in the early 90s. She’s very nice and this is one of my favourite Heavenly songs.

the label was based in Bristol it gave it, for me, an air of cosmopolitanism. I’m still a huge fan of Sarah Records.

1. Another Sunny Day

7. Talulah Gosh

“You Should All Be Murdered”

“Talulah Gosh”

London Weekend

Was it Just a Dream?

Such a beautiful, melodic song with such sinister lyrics and title.

A precursor to Heavenly, Talulah Gosh was the epitome of twee. It’s probably a gateway song into the world of Sarah Records for many people.

2. Brighter

8. The Sea Urchins

“Things Will Get Better”

“Pristine Christine”

Singles 1989 - 1992


I didn’t really pick up on Brighter at the time but this song has a real Pastels vibe to it which I like.

Encapsulates everything about Sarah Records. Twee, jangly, charming and infectious.

3. The Golden Dawn

9. Heavenly

“George Hamilton’s Dead”

“C is the Heavenly Option”

Air Balloon Road

Le Jardin de Heavenly

Another Glasgow band on the Sarah Records roster with a brilliant song title. It’s a bit punky and also a bit reminiscent of early Pastels records.

The addition of Calvin Johnson, from Beat Happening, makes this record. His voice is so distinct that it sounds a bit funny. It’s also an indie disco favourite.

4. The Field Mice

10. The Orchids

“If You Need Someone”

“I’ve Got a Habit”


Thaumaturgy + Other Singles

One of the best songs of all time.

This song has the lyric, “I’m drinking Irn-Bru and I’m thinking of you.” Essentially, this is my teenage life in a sentence.

LISTEN ON SPOTIFY Note: Depending on song availability playlist may be incomplete.



5. Amin Peck “Love Disgrace” Love Disgrace Moody Italo disco - a favourite.


It’s 2020 and the Italo disco spaceship hasn’t left us yet.

6. Sylvi Foster

All Aboard! You’ll still hear these jams played out by


House/Disco DJs around the globe.

Hookey Absolute nonsense english is common in Italo disco and this track is a great example.

1. Cube

7. Lama

“Somebody Told Me”

“Love on the Rocks”

Two Heads are Better Than One

Love on the Rocks

A standout Italo track - the English is great and the lyrics offer some real songwriting and emotional depth. Like a lot of Italo tracks this one has brief moments of pop brilliance during the chorus that will get you hooked to it.

There’s a huge amount of Italo disco covers of popular songs, but this cover of Lucio Battisti’s Il Veliero is one of my favorites.

2. Plustwo

8. Lowell

“Stop Fantasy”

“No Matter”

Melody/Stop Fantasy

No Matter

303 on bassline duty.

Another example of an Italo track with good lyrics.

3. Clio

9. Daniela Poggi


“Break Up”


Cielo/Break Up

Clio’s Faces is one of the most popular Italo disco tracks for its distinct sound, but their earlier single Eyes is just as catchy.

I’m surprised this one isn’t more popular - it’s a bit lo-fi but a really great pop track.

4. G. Race

10. Miro

“On Fire (Instrumental Version)”

“Safari of Love”

On Fire

Carly/Safari of Love

Instrumental Italo perfection.

Miro’s safari feels more like a psychedelic trip through space but I’m not complaining.


Note: Depending on song availability playlist may be incomplete.


5. Bernard Herrmann “Main Title” Twisted Nerve Music that sticks around for a long time after listening.

< YUKI >

I love soundtrack music for its ability to take me on a jour-

6. Goblin

ney. For this list I thought it would be good to take several


different kinds of journey.

Suspiria A capital H Horror theme with amazing electronics. Perfectly suits the visuals.

1. Ryuichi Sakamoto

7. Francis Lai

“Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence”

“Vivre Pour Vivre”

Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence

Vivre Pour Vivre

Sounds like travelling through the city by train as the dawn breaks.

One of my favourite guys.

2. Marvin Hamlisch

8. John Carpenter

“Theme from The Swimmer”

“Escape from New York”

The Swimmer

Escape from New York

Beautifully sorrowful music with a feeling I can easily understand, but don’t necessarily want to.

A brilliant tune that sounds simple at first, but requires two brains for in-depth listening.

3. Percy Faith

9. Barry Vorzon

“Moon Over Miami”

“Theme from The Warriors”

American Serenade

The Warriors

Just lovely. I can happily fall asleep to this.

I love the flanged sound running through this. Every part of it fits together nicely.

4. Henry Mancini

10. Bill Conti

“Mr. Lucky”

“Gonna Fly Now”

Music from Mr. Lucky


Mr Henry Mancini always takes me somewhere else.

Maybe slightly tamed by overfamiliarity, but the last half will make you feel completed.

LISTEN ON SPOTIFY Note: Depending on song availability playlist may be incomplete.



5. Michael Hoenig “Departure From the Northern Wasteland” Departure From the Northern Wasteland 21 minutes of this soaringly hypnotic voyage into Berlin School electronics passes in no time at all.


Although these songs are (with one notable exception)

6. Gong

not really flotation tank type of stuff, I find them all med-

“A Sprinkling of Clouds”

itative or transporting in some way. They take me away


from myself and allow me to dream; freeing my mind to

A deep, occasionally dark, space exploration that makes you forget everything - including, by the end of the song, the beginning of the song.

bask in golden sunsets, glide away over icy desolation, and look back in wonder from the Karman line.

1. Goran Bregović

7. Buffalo Daughter



Le Temps Des Gitans/Kuduz


An indescribably beautiful dreamlike song from Emir Kusturica’s brilliant film Time of the Gypsies.

A joyful, inventive, self-propelling, celebratory song that comes through your speakers like light through a stained glass window.

2. Philip Glass

8. Agitation Free

“Etoile Polaire (North Star)”

“First Communication”

North Star


A hugely uplifting piece of music from Philip Glass’s soundtrack to Barbara Rose and François de Menil’s documentary about sculptor Mark di Suvero.

A shimmering sunrise of a song with really imaginative jazzy guitar playing.

3. Steve Hillage

9. Popol Vuh

“Garden of Paradise”

“Oh Wie Weit ist der Weg Hinauf”

Rainbow Dome Musick

Letzte Tage - Letzte Nächte

Exactly how you imagine a piece of music commissioned for the “Rainbow Dome” at the 1979 Mind-Body-Spirit Festival in London would sound. But even more so. And even better.

A heavy meditation with chanting and a dense repetitive riff that fills all the space in the room and forces you to focus.

4. Robert Fripp/Brian Eno

10. Glenn Branca

“Evening Star”

“Sym No. 1, Movement 1”

Evening Star

Symphony No. 1 (Tonal Plexus)

Gazing at the beautiful cover painting by Peter Schmidt and losing yourself to this album feels like a reset for a tired brain. Has an unusually invigorating serenity.

A mind-sharpening 11 minutes of the same chord on electric guitar, honking horns, and (what sounds like) Animal from “The Muppets” on the drums. But even more so. And even better.


Note: Depending on song availability playlist may be incomplete.

hallogallo is not affiliated with Bass Pale Ale. This is not an endorsement of Bass Pale Ale




n “11/22/63,” Stephen King’s seminal novel from 2011, the protagonist Jake Epping finds a storeroom cupboard that transports him back to 1958. It’s ridiculous but one of King’s most inclusive works which can best

be described as a Stephen King novel for people that don’t usually read Stephen King. When I read “11/22/63” I started wondering what year I would choose to return to if I had the chance. It didn’t take long before the year 1992 popped into my head. What a year. My 4th year of high school in Glasgow, the year I fell in love for the first time, my first visit to a real pub (a pint of diesel and a Pernod and black if you please) and my real musical awakening. Early 90s Glasgow was pretty grim, to be honest. Not the multicultural, artisanal hub that it is nowadays. Pubs were pretty rough, the streets after dark were dangerous and the atmosphere was troubled as the IRA and religious divide that split the city in half still loomed large. It was however, for a 16-year-old indie rock kid, a brilliant time to be alive.


My older brother and his friends had already put

Morrissey (pre-racist knob era), Velvet Crush (drum-

me on to bands such as Sonic Youth, Pixies, Babes in

mer Rick Menck gave me a signed drumstick after the

Toyland, Mudhoney, The Pastels, The Field Mice, The

show) The Wedding Present (I snogged my friend’s

Smiths, Sebadoh, Slowdive, Joy Division and so on

brother’s girlfriend at that and got into a sea of shit for

and we spent our weekday evenings glued to his re-

it) and Glasgow bands such as Captain America (later

cord player talking about albums, songs, gigs and re-

Eugenius) BMX Bandits, Superstar and Melody Dog.

cording John Peel and Mark Goodier sessions off the radio.

There were electrifying indie discos too at places like Rooftops and Helter Skelter at The Mayfair (now

My brother took me to the Rollercoaster Tour that

home to the legendary Garage nightclub) and we

year at Glasgow’s cavernous SECC. As any Glaswe-

mixed pints of cider and passed saliva in bars such

gian would tell you the SECC is a shit venue for mu-

as King Tut’s Wah Wah Hut, The Griffin, The Variety

sic. It’s too big and the music just fades into the ether.

and Speakers Corner. Pubs were smokey as fuck, pints

When we heard, however, that the lineup was Blur,

were priced between £1.10 and £1.50 and a tenner

My Bloody Valentine, Dinosaur Jr. and The Jesus and

would last you all night (transport and a bag of chips

Mary Chain we couldn’t really resist. We met up at

on the way home included).

the legendary Griffin pub on Elmbank Street before-

Things seemed to be a bit easier then. No gadgets

hand with some of our friends and then stoated over

or social media, no people pointing temperature

to the SECC. I don’t remember Blur being much cop (I

guns at your forehead or warning you to stay indoors

think Damon Albarn pranced about the stage with a

due to pandemics. Britpop consequently managed

traffic cone on his bonce) and that Dinosaur Jr. were

to destroy this happy equilibrium and turned Brit-

just a dishevelled wall of noise. The standout of the

ain into a loutish nucleus of lads and ladettes and in

night was My Bloody Valentine who were second on

which every pub for the rest of the decade pumped

the bill and, subsequently, just about blew our heads

out pallid Blur and Oasis songs. If that wasn’t bad

off. Gloriously messy, ramshackle, charming and bril-

enough, the last wave of this ill-fated movement,

liant. The opener was “Only Shallow” and I still have

which included groups like Marion and 3 Colours

hearing trouble to this day due to this gig (and their

Red, pretty much killed it all alongside Tony Blair and

previous visit to Glasgow a few months earlier with

his eldritch grin.

Teenage Fanclub supporting). I copped off with a Stir-

1992, coincidentally, was also the year I started

ling University student who, when she asked me where

to get seriously into literature. It was the year I fell

I studied, I spurted out “Glasgow Uni,” even though I

in love with Oscar Wilde, Milan Kundera, James Kel-

hadn’t even sat my Standard Grades (Sottish O

man, Bernard McLaverty and Tennessee Williams

Levels) yet.

whose “The Glass Menagerie” entranced me due

In 1992, gigs seemed to merge into

its inclusion of the Francois Villon line “Ou sont les

each other and we pretty much went

neiges d’antan?” which translates as “Where are the

out twice a week for the whole year

snows of yesteryear?” This line alludes to the imper-

seeing artists and bands such as

manence and evanescence of youth and memory, and their ultimate (and unfortunate) dissolution. I didn’t understand that line too much when I was 16 but it means a lot to me now as memories and stills from my younger years become muddied and obfuscated and I grow old with the songs of yesteryear playing quietly in my head.



Illustration by Ella Goodwin

The popular Norwich-based illustrator and ‘fancy things maker’ tells us about her fantastical childhood influences, her big boned cat, and her love of rural Japan.


Above: Ella Goodwin, photo by Emily Jane Lovell. All illustrations and product design by Ella Goodwin.


’m Ella and I’m an illustrator, designer and fan-

far too many extra dinners and is expanding by the

cy things maker from the UK. I run my business

minute. She says she’s just big boned.

under the name Miss Ella, because it’s what my

husband calls me - I’m not sure why. I’m based in Nor-

Your artwork often has a dreamlike or fairy tale feel-

wich with aforementioned husband and a silly stripy

ing to it. Can you tell us something about the inspi-

cat called Tiger.

rations behind the world you portray in your art? Are there any books or films that you feel particularly

hallogallo: Your artwork is full of animals, cats in par-

helped to mould your imagination as a child, and any

ticular. Please tell us about the reasons for this. Do an-

that still really grab you as an adult?

imals hold some special meaning for you? My favourite books as a child were “The Patchwork


The first illustration I ever sold was a cat sewing itself

Cat” by William Mayne and Nicola Bayley and “The

a catsuit. Her name was Percy and she was inspired

Ship’s Cat” by Richard Adams and Alan Aldridge,

by a kitten my dad had adopted when I was visiting

yes I am that predictable. I also loved the detail and

him in Italy. Her full name is Persephone, hence ‘she’ is

creepiness of books like “Struwwelpeter” and a rath-

Percy. That character was ongoing for quite a while in

er odd book called “The Bunyip of Berkeley’s Creek”

lots of different illustrations (to the point that my dad

which was all about a Bunyip trying to find out who

wondered if his cat should get some commission). I al-

he was. I think I related to that ‘who am I’ theme even

ways obsessed over cats as such beautiful all-knowing

at 5 years old - I’m still not sure. What they all have

beings, but also they were simply easy to anthropo-

in common is the high level of detail, fantasy and ad-

morphise and have fun with in different illustrated sce-

venture, whether through a dream world or on the

narios. I have a super fluffy cat called Tiger who likes to

actual high seas. I would certainly say that a love of

assist by needling me and simultaneously hypnotising

detail and dreamlike escapism is what I try to put into

me with her ridiculous anime eyes. It works; she gets

my own work.

Despite the otherworldly atmosphere your pictures sometimes conjure, they always seem very cheerful and positive. Is that just an expression of your personality, or have you made a creative decision to leave out any darker elements?

I guess things are not necessarily obvious and it’s the e m p t y spaces that leave the viewer to relate in their own way

Ooh, that’s an interesting one! I think that as I’ve grown an audience that’s so varying in age, I do tend to leave out some of the darker stories that inhabit my sketchbooks at times. Or I put a lighter perspective on it. Having said that a book I wrote and illustrated a while back, “Needlefeet”, was about a girl with needles for feet who was imprisoned on a sewing machine that was stripping the moon of its insides. I guess the story to that wasn’t so light, but the way in which it was illustrated was. A book I’m working on at the moment has come out of feeling very black for a period a while back, but the book itself is really about how to move past that, so it is quite positive. I think I would struggle with putting the black bits out there in any visual way

either way. Sometimes I then move to digital for bold-

but this is something I am going to really think about.

er graphic work that I’m going to use on products like

I guess things are not necessarily obvious and it’s the

dolls, homewares and accessories. But with one off il-

empty spaces that leave the viewer to relate in their

lustrations I use a combination of pan pastels to put

own way.

blocks of colour down, graphite and coloured pencils, and watercolour. I’ve also been playing with gold leaf

Can you tell us something about your illustration pro-

and transparencies lately. I’m really keen to continue

cess? Do you always draw and paint by hand, or do

to get messy with materials and escape digital realms,

you combine traditional techniques with digital? If so

but I still also use Procreate and Photoshop to play

has the balance between the two changed at all over

and tidy up with. I notice that a lot of previously digi-

the time you’ve been creating?

tally led illustrators are enjoying playing with more traditional materials lately, and I think there is something

I am forever switching. At the moment I am trying to

of a resurgence in traditional experimental work. I like

explore more traditional techniques simply because I

to be able to see the artists hand, the finger prints,

enjoy the process and the accidents that come from

the messy lines, but I do struggle with my own and still

not being able to ‘undo’. I always start with traditional

can’t stand tidying up. 57


You make and sell many beautiful products including handmade jewellery and dolls. Were you always interested in craft, or did it come later as a way of rounding out and giving life to the characters from your drawings? Can you tell us something about how you learned the techniques you needed and wether it came to you naturally? I always made things growing up, whether it was a Sindy sofa from a block of wood, or dresses out of old curtains. I was an only child and portable screens were yet to be invented - boredom is so important! I studied theatrical costume at London College of Fashion for a time and made costumes and crazy disco dancing outfits in south London. I went on to study BA and MA animation in Norwich and became really interested in making and animating puppets. So combining all of those was quite a melting pot, culminating in a love of making characters and writing stories for them. I liked the idea that I could pass on the love of making and hence I also sell them as kits with instructions for others to learn and enjoy the process (hopefully!). You seem to have fans and devotees of your products all over the world. Has the internet had a big impact on how people get to know about your work? Do you think crafts people producing work on a small scale may have a better chance of making a living from what they do now than they would have had 20 or 30 years ago? Is being involved in online communities an important part of what you do?

The stories for the characters write themselves, there is no planning, they just fall out of the air onto the page

Yes, yes, yes. Without Etsy I would never have been able

Yes, I love writing stories. To go to a retreat on an

to make this a business; it’s such an intuitive platform

island and have the pure focused time to write and

to set up a shop on. I have my own website too, but I

illustrate is something I dream of. The stories for the

started with Etsy and feel pretty thankful for it. Social

characters write themselves, there is no planning,

media has been an absolute essential alongside it. I do

they just fall out of the air onto the page. Possibly

get stuck in internet holes sometimes, and it can be

they are absolute nonsense, but so far people have

a drain, but the connections made are so worthwhile.

been polite about that! But reading, writing, stories,

I’ve met so many amazing and kind people and have

they are the foundation that hold all of my worlds to-

often gone on to meet them in person too. I’m in var-

gether. I’m working on illustrating a poem for a book

ious forums and groups full of lovely makers who all

at the moment, and I want to complete the illustra-

support each other and share. People used to hold

tions on a short story I wrote about Stromboli the vol-

their cards close, but I think now everyone understands

cano and some snow leopards. I was concerned that

the importance of collaboration and sharing ideas.

the main character being a volcano may only appeal to me. I guess it would be a challenge to illustrate

Your handmade dolls are often accompanied by a

someone else’s writing - illustrating to a brief is what

small book telling the character’s backstory. Is writing

I struggle with the most, which is why I tend to go my

something you’d like to do more of and if so what type

own way rather than freelance. Perhaps it would be

of thing would you like to work on?

a good challenge to get out of one’s comfort zone. 59

You are a frequent visitor to Japan. Can you tell us

dai with lots of stops offs along the way.

what the initial attraction was? Did Japan surprise

My favourite part of Tokyo is Koenji and the sur-

you on your first trip, or was it similar to the mental

rounding districts - there’s so much to explore. I love

image you previously had of it? Can you tell us some-

the fact that what feels like a quiet residential street

thing about your favourite places to visit in Japan

will suddenly be full of shops and bars as shutters

and any that you are hoping to visit in the future? Do

open and DIY signs appear on the street.

you think you will continue to return throughout your life?

The last couple of times, I visited the Seto Inland Sea and that is somewhere I would happily live out my days. Naoshima and Shodoshima in particular, with

I first came to Japan in 2004. I was writing my disser-

pink sunsets, floating cranes and blue hazy islands

tation on Japanese Youth Culture and Identity. My

all around. My Fox and Lucky Cat characters’ story

mother was doing some work for a university in To-

is based on Naoshima, and my Lucky Cat print is in-

kyo so I was able to tag along (which was really just

spired by evenings on the dock there.

an excuse to visit Japan!). I’m not sure I could pinpoint the initial attraction but as a teenager I loved

Can you tell us something about how the current

“Neuromancer” by William Gibson. The futuristic

coronavirus crisis has affected you? Has it had an

underbellies that backdrop it contrasted with beau-

impact on what you do, and what measures have

tiful honed crafts, made it seem, from a distance, like

you taken or will you consider taking to deal with the

the most interesting place on earth. Like a storybook


of traditions and beautiful art alongside sci-fi and neon. I also loved the FRUiTS books, the DIY aesthet-

I can’t get into my studio in the city centre but I can

ic and originality, the bravery, and the gentle quiet

work from home so that’s fine. I am just missing all of

nature of those I’d met from Japan, so there were

my books. My business is still functioning so far, par-

many swirling reasons and attractions. I thought the

ticularly as I sell kits and many people are looking for

bright lights of Tokyo were what would appeal to me

things to do or for ways of sending gifts. My printer

the most, but although I love Tokyo I have found that

and other suppliers have shut down for the moment

the rural areas and the smaller islands hold the most

though so I’m a bit worried how that will go when I

magic. Most of all, the kind and welcoming nature of

run out of stock. But for the moment it’s all okay, and

everyone I have ever met there has been an inspira-

we are safe and the sun is shining. I’m also using my


sewing skills to make scrubs and do some poster de-

I’ve been back four more times. I’ve gone north to

sign for our NHS heroes, so at least I feel like I can do

Hokkaido, south to Nagasaki and Kagoshima and in

something useful when so many have it so bad. It’s a

between to Tokyo, Kyoto, Osaka,

challenging time and I guess it’s just a case of finding

Nagoya, Hiroshima, Sen-


ways of adapting until this passes.



The owners of the speakeasy style diner tell hallogallo about their journey from Norwich market, avoiding “hippy happy” notions of vegans, and watching a lot of “Boardwalk Empire”.


We wanted the ‘only vegan of the family’ to feel comfortable bringing all their non vegan family and friends

thought to, the practises that are prevalent in the animal agriculture industry. I was horrified by some of the things I learnt, particularly the sorrowful lives dairy cows lead. At the time I had my then one year


old dog Duke, who was my first pet, and I guess I felt a much deeper connection to the suffering of these e are Michelle McCabe and Cheryl Mul-

animals when I considered how much I loved him and

lenger, and are co-owners of The Tipsy

couldn’t bare the thought of him suffering in any way.

Vegan. I (Michelle) have always worked in

hospitality and have worked in and managed restau-

What are your thoughts on the seemingly meteoric

rants, bars and live music venues in London and the

rise in interest in vegan food over recent years? How

US. Cheryl was a PE teacher prior to us starting in the

much of it do you feel is driven by animal welfare con-

food business, with a keen interest in all types of fit-

siderations, how much by ecological considerations,

ness and sports as well as healthy eating.

and how much by health considerations? Are you optimistic that it will continue to rise?

hallogallo: Are you personally vegan and if so could you tell us something about how and why you came

I think the rise in veganism has been relative to the rise

to that decision. Were you Vegetarian first, or did you

in social media and the ease at which information is

jump right into veganism?

spread globally. People are so much more informed now on the ethical, social and environmental impact


Yes we are both Vegan. It was an instant decision

of consuming animal products. And yes, I believe it will

while watching the documentary Vegucated. I really

continue to rise as our younger generations learn from

wasn’t aware of, and had never given considerable

an earlier age and are not conditioned through tra-

dition and culture etc. They have their own collective

a casual dining experience where dishes were avail-

culture that is founded on factual information, and in

able that were recognisable to diners, and at a price

turn society appears to be much more environmental-

that was affordable. At the beginning our focus was

ly conscious.

more heavily on vegan substitutes. We wanted to show people that eating vegan didn’t mean giving

when did you open The Tipsy Vegan and what were

up any of your favourite dishes such as burgers, pasta

you envisioning for it at the start?

etc. But now, with the huge rise in vegan junk food and how readily available it is, that isn’t such a necessary

We opened in June 2017, having had a small but very

part. Our own food choices have evolved, so that has

popular vegan diner food stand on Norwich Market

naturally transitioned to the dishes we create at work.

for two years. Veganism was starting to boom and we

We offer a lot of world tapas dishes such as Bao Buns,

had had this dream of being the first vegan bar and

Borek, Arancini, Coconut Tofu, and Oyster Mushroom

restaurant to open in Norfolk, and so scouted out the

Inari. I think because we have built up such a loyal cus-

perfect location and went from there.

tomer base, and they enjoy our food, there has been an openness to trying these foods and we’ve received

How has the vision of what The Tipsy Vegan is, or

great feedback!

should be, changed since the beginning? Please tell us something about the decor and generI would say we have evolved in terms of the refine-

al ambience of The Tipsy Vegan. What type of feel-

ment of dishes, with the nutritional element now play-

ing were you hoping to impart to your customers via

ing a bigger part. Our core values have remained the

your design choices? Is music a part of that, and if so

same in that we wanted to create a restaurant that

how, and who by, are the all important playlist choices

very much felt like any other eatery you would go to;

made? 65

We wanted the ‘only vegan of the family’ to feel

Please tell us something about the food you serve. Is

comfortable bringing all their non-vegan family

there a concept behind it and if so how did you arrive

and friends, in the knowledge that there would be

at it?

something on the menu for everyone, and that the surroundings were not geared towards judgment of

Our style is very much casual dining and we offer a

non-vegans. We also didn’t want to portray that old

large tapas menu to encourage shared dishes. It’s

‘hippy happy’ notion that some people have of us.

proved super popular; firstly for the vegans that just

Our decor is a 1920’s style speakeasy, for the plain

want to try everything because they get super excited

and simple reason that we were watching a lot of

for an all vegan menu, and then secondly, for those

“boardwalk empire” during the purchasing phase.

not sure about vegan food but who want to give it a

That is literally the reason. And I have always had a

go. The small plates allow for some tasting without be-

huge love and appreciation for bourbon and old style

ing fully committed to one main meal.

classic cocktails, so it all kind of fitted together in this intimate little restaurant space we had managed to

Do you feel that the popular image of vegan food as

acquire. But yeah, “Boardwalk Empire” was the pri-

worthy and dull still exists, or do you think that stereo-

mary inspiration! The music has evolved even more

type has been completely put to bed in the last few

than the food I think! We started off with a very jazz,

years? Did the need to combat those old fashioned

1920’s style, and while it suited day time it didn’t al-

ideas ever influence your menu choices?

ways work on a busy weekend or for evening service.


Our first manager was a larger than life Texan who is

Yes, that image has definitely been put to bed due

a huge music lover. She created a smasher of a play

to the sheer number of products that are now on the

list, and still to this day puts our lists together. It’s a

market that are far better alternatives to the prod-

mix of speakeasy jazz, Americana, rock, Motown, folk

uct they are imitating. As I mentioned, this did mas-

and some early 90’s jams thrown in. Our Tipsy Vegan

sively influence our menu at the beginning, but now

playlist is on Spotify if you want to check it out.

our focus is shifting towards a more sustainable long

term diet choice. There is a lot of unhealthy vegan food

Please tell us something about your clientele. What

available nowadays, which I know was born out of the

type of people come to WAVE? Do you have any idea

need to combat the notion that vegan food was all rab-

of the ratio of vegans, vegetarians, and people who

bit leaves and grass. I fear we are going too far in the

are neither?

opposite direction though, and we as restaurants need to provide more balance in the dishes we are creating.

I would say with us, more so than other vegan restaurants, our clientele is 50/50 in terms of who is vegan and who isn’t. We are well known as the place to bring

We are well known as the place to bring your non vegan friends and family in order to change their mind

your non-vegan friends and family in order to change their mind. We get so many customers that say they aren’t vegan but trying to cut down on meat, or they’ve heard such great things that they just wanted to try. Please tell us something about how the current coronavirus crisis has affected your business, and any measures you have taken or are considering taking to deal with the situation. Well we have been completely shut down now for two weeks, which is the longest our business has been closed since we first opened. Norwich is pretty much like a ghost town now which is surreal. We initially toyed with the idea of offering delivery, but we

You serve a great range of drinks including local

feel a responsibility to our staff to help them to remain

beers, cocktails and wines. Please tell us something

at home and stay safe as much as possible. As vegan

about your selection process and how important a

food is so readily accessible at supermarkets I don’t

part it is of creating the type of atmosphere you want

see it as a necessity to open. At this time we need to

for The Tipsy Vegan. Is it fairly easy to find good veg-

prioritise health over money and we will just have

an beers and wines in Britain these days?

to weather the storm as much as we can.

As with the food, we just wanted to create a bar that

Please tell us about your hopes for the fu-

offered creativity and uniqueness to complement

ture of The Tipsy Vegan.

the dining experience. Its all about the whole experience for us and if we can show that swapping egg

My only genuine hope at the mo-

for aqua faba makes a banging sour, or adding some

ment is that we can reopen!

vegan chocolate to your espresso martini takes it to the next level, then we have all the more chance of

Lastly, do you have any partic-

convincing people that choosing a vegan lifestyle

ular links to Japan or interest in

doesn’t have to be restrictive or boring. We have a

Japanese food and culture?

great selection of local beers and Norwich is known as the vegan capital of the Uk, so our brewers are

I absolutely adore Japanese food

very on trend with marketing the fact that they are

and culture. We are very lucky

vegan. Wine companies are still a little behind in la-

to have two amazing Japanese

belling, and when we first opened we used a wine

restaurants in Norwich - Shiki and

supplier that was based miles away to ensure our list

Ciscoes Pan Asian - which we eat

was always fully vegan. However, other distributors

at whenever we get the chance. It

are now savvy to the fact that vegan drinks are a big

genuinely has been on top of our

business and it is much easier to get full lists from

list to visit, so am looking forward to

suppliers on what is and isn’t vegan even without the

immersing myself in the culture some

labelling telling us so.

time soon! 67


The Portland based solo shoegazer tells hallogallo about focusing on melodic and beautiful sounds, recording in quarantine, and changing his approach with each album.



y name is Cliff, I’m 30 years old and live in

I’ve always liked guitar-focused music, and very vis-

Oregon, U.S.A. When I’m not making mu-

ceral music. In high school I played guitar and wrote

sic, I’m a photographer and I watch a lot

songs in a band called Love Is Blonde. We made re-

of movies. I studied film in college.

ally intense post-hardcore type music with screamed vocals and a lot of riffs. I’m focusing more on melodic

hallogallo: Can you tell us the origin of the name An-

and beautiful sounds now but I still can’t resist incor-

imal Ghosts?

porating heavier elements like breakdowns and lots of distortion. Once I moved to college and left my friends

I have a lot of reverence toward animals. I read a lot

I grew up with, I had to learn how to make music that I

of depth into their silence, and I’m fascinated with the

could produce all by myself so I started learning more

idea that we’re unable to comprehend what animals

electronic and hip hop production.

experience. Animal Ghosts felt like a concept that was surreal, and maybe either scary or comforting, or both.

Can you tell us something about your personal musical tastes and what impact you think they might have

Can you tell us when and how you became Animal

on the sound of Animal Ghosts? What music do you

Ghosts? What type of music were you hoping to make

think has most influenced your sound, and what mu-

at the beginning and has that changed over time?

sic do you enjoy that bears no resemblance at all to what you do? Do you think influence is sometimes

I decided to make music as Animal Ghosts in mid-

more about feelings or atmospheres that have some

2019. I was working corporate jobs for years and not

personal resonance rather than specific sounds or

focusing on music, and felt very unhappy, so I had the


epiphany that I needed to put all my passion back into music if I wanted to feel like myself again.

For over ten years The Radio Dept. has been my favourite band. They’ve influenced me as a human and


Did you play in other bands before Animal Ghosts and

as a musician, I don’t connect with any other music

if so were they similar to what you do now?

the same way as with theirs. In terms of music outside

I love to discern a really catchy beautiful melody from within the wall of sound of the shoegaze/dream-pop genre, I really like jazz, particularly cool jazz from the late ‘50s and early ‘60s. I have some deep roots in hip hop. Sade and Frank Ocean are also very important to me. The music I resonate with the most makes me feel something specific, or reminds me of a particular time and place for which I’m nostalgic. Certain music in my life has given me new feelings altogether, and that’s the most influential stuff.

Above: Animal Ghosts’ new album Will. Click on artwork to visit the album’s Bandcamp page.

What do you think has led to the massive renewal of

I’ve had a slightly different approach for each album

interest in shoegaze, a genre mistakenly presumed

so far. With my self-titled album I made a lot more jan-

dead by many in the mid-1990s? Do you think that

gle-poppy stuff and slower tunes for whatever reason,

the internet has helped to spur global interest and en-

and played around with electronic sounds a little more.

thusiasm for shoegaze by connecting fans and bands

With Wild I challenged myself to only use guitar, bass

who may have otherwise felt isolated?

and drums, and it’s almost all pretty straight forward and punk inspired, and it’s almost all distorted. Then

I don’t think shoegaze ever really went away. You can

with Wane I didn’t constrain myself and ended up in-

dig online and find really cool albums from every year

cluding some heavier sounds from back in my hard-

since the ‘90s. While I don’t think it’s a mainstream

core days, and some of it is more distorted than ever.

genre, I think you’re right about the internet and social

With my new album Will I challenged myself to play

media playing a key role in linking all us weird types

with more clean guitar and reverb, and effects like cho-

together from around the world who listen to this vis-

rus, and different guitar tunings. I think my favourite

ceral, emotional music in our rooms. I do hope new

shoegaze to listen to has a big wall of sound, whether it

and young people are discovering and finding interest

be a wall of distorted fuzzy sound, or lush clean rever-

in the genre because it’s really great. I’d love to see it

by sound, and I love to discern a really catchy beautiful

keep growing.

melody from within the wall of sound.

Countless bands across the world identify as shoegaze,

Can you tell us which of the classic shoegaze bands or

many with vastly different sounds to each other. As

albums mean the most to you, and also recommend

well as the classicists and purists, there are those who

any more modern ones that you feel people may have

have taken it in a more hard rock or heavy metal influ-


enced direction, those who have given it a more electronic or ambient sound, and those who have added

Brian Jonestown Massacre’s Methodrone is amazing,

a sort of pop sheen. Where do you feel the sound of

one of my all time favourites. Secret Shine’s Untouched

Animal Ghosts fit in amongst all of that? Are there any

is another one. Catherine Wheel Ferment. Loveslie-

of these diverse directions that you particularly enjoy

scrushing Bloweyelashwish. Of course I listen to a lot of

and any that leave you cold?

Loveless and Souvlaki. 71


I like to take old photos of mine and add different shimmery or distorted effects to them, almost like pedals on a guitar

Can you tell us something about your equipment set up? Are you constantly searching for new effects pedals and gadgets, or do you have a trusted selection that you stick with in every situation? I use a Fender Jazzmaster guitar, and I also have a Jackson Soloist I use. I have a small selection of guitar pedals at this point - I’ve been investing in some more. Most of my sounds are created from customising different pedal and amp set ups inside the recording software, so I’ll just plug my guitar into my laptop through a preamp. A lot of my songwriting and producing starts improvised, so it’s helpful to have a clean guitar recording that I can then posthumously add effects to. With this new album I’m incorporating some of my favourite overdrives like Blues Driver but also playing around with new stuff, and figuring out how to make songs with more clean guitar tones. Your music comes accompanied by beautiful and mysterious looking photographic imagery. Is that an important part of what Animal Ghosts is all about? Are they your own works, and if so do you consider yourself a visual artist as much as a musical one? So far every visual component of Animal Ghosts has been created by me. I’m also a photographer. I do 35mm and sometimes instant film photography, so I’ve got a huge back-catalogue of images I can use to keep my Instagram page interesting and unique, as well as creating new photos. I like to take old photos of mine and add different shimmery or distorted effects to them, almost like pedals on a guitar. 73

Portland has a famously vibrant music scene. Can you

I think streaming has been good for musicians who

tell us where Animal Ghosts fits into that? Are there

are able to go viral and grasp onto the collective con-

any bands or artists you can recommend? Are there

sciousness. I think it’s good that artists can bypass the

any venues that you think are doing a great job?

music industry if they want and have indie careers, creating and distributing their own music through the

Lazy Legs is a band from Portland and they’re really

internet. But yeah, I’ve made essentially no money

cool. Elliott Smith was also a Portland guy, he’s essen-

from streaming platforms. I really appreciate those

tial. I haven’t been to concerts in a long time. There

who have shown their support on Bandcamp. At the

was a place called Satyricon that I used to play at and

end of the day, creating music makes me feel more

see shows at a lot, but that closed down. If I went to

fulfilled and happy. I’m not making music as a job to

see a concert, it would probably be at Mississippi Studios or Dante’s, maybe Hawthorne Theatre. I have too much social anxiety to go to large venues.

Yeah I would really love to visit Japan and play music there!

The current coronavirus crisis is already having a disastrous effect on many

get rich, so I don’t have a lot of complaints about that. Please tell us something about your hopes for Animal Ghosts. Are you working on any new music or planning to re-

lease anything in the near future?

parts of the music scene. How would you encourage music lovers to help any artists, small labels, inde-

I’ve got a new album Will, which has been how I’ve

pendent record stores, music venues etc that may be

stayed sane and busy in this quarantine self-isolation.

struggling? Please tell us something about how it has

It’s on Bandcamp and is now available on streaming

affected you personally and any measures you have

platforms. I hope things can return to normal soon,

taken or are considering taking to deal with the situ-

because I want to focus more on creating a good live


performance experience. I’ve also been talking with a few people about putting together some kind of

It’s really tough for everyone. Some bands can’t prac-

split EP. I love it when artists collaborate on a project

tice or record right now. Luckily I do all my stuff from

like that.

home and play all the instruments, so my music recording hasn’t been affected. I also know a lot of people

Lastly, do you have any particular interest in Japa-

have been laid off from their jobs, so a lot of fans don’t

nese bands, music or culture? Is there any chance we

have disposable income to spend on albums right now.

may see you play live here one day?

I think it’s really helpful if people recommend music to their friends. If you find a band you like, encourage your

I love this question! Some bands from Japan I like are

group of friends to follow their social media accounts

Oeil, Hartfield, Pasteboard, She Her Her Hers (Ste-

and listen to their music. If you still have disposable in-

reochrome), Juvenile Juvenile. I have a weak spot

come, definitely buy the album directly from the artist if

for city pop like Mariya Takeuchi and Hiroshi Sato.

possible instead of streaming it. Some artists are doing

My number one favourite novel is “Snow Country” by

streamed concerts through platforms like Twitch. A lot

Yasunari Kawabata. I love Zatoichi. I also love Yasu-

of record stores have closed their doors but still do busi-

jiro Ozu movies and have a lot of them on DVD. My

ness online. So if you have the disposable income, I’m

friends and I had a movie watching group called Set-

sure they would really appreciate the support.

suko Harem where we watched a bunch of Setsuko Hara movies. Oh, and I watch a lot of anime. I’m cur-


Do you have any thoughts about the future of music

rently watching Slam Dunk which is very silly and fun.

consumption? Do you feel there are any positive sides

So I guess a lot of stuff from Japan I like is kinda old…

to the rise of streaming services, or is it mainly bad news

Yeah I would really love to visit Japan and play music

for artists? How do you personally discover new music

there! I’m vegan so I would be especially interested in

and do you still buy or use any physical formats?

visiting hallogallo.

e t isi pag ov k t amp or tw ndc a ar on m’s B ck Cli albu ch







The guitarist and singer of the Glasgow based heavy shoegazers tells hallogallo about the charms of a Big Muff, being a shoegaze purist, plus shares his favourite Japanese music.



i, folks. Thanks for asking us to do this! My

Can you tell us when and how The Cherry Wave were

name’s Paul and I’m the singer and guitarist

formed? What type of music were you hoping to make

in Glaswegian shoegaze band The Cherry

at the beginning and has that changed at all over the

Wave. I’ve been in a few different musical projects

years? Do any of you play in other bands?

in the last 20 or so years, but since The Cherry Wave formed in 2012 this has been my main musical outlet.

The band was formed in the most unsatisfyingly modern way possible - via the internet. I had written a few

hallogallo: Can you tell us the origin of the name The

bits of songs that I wanted to flesh out and possibly

Cherry Wave? Is there a certain image or feeling you

release at some point, so I put an ad online looking

hoped to convey to people via your choice of name?

for musicians to start a shoegaze/noise pop project. I came from a hardcore/punk rock background and I


There’s no particular meaning as such to the name,

hadn’t played any music like that before at all and it

but I’ve always been someone who likes things to

was an entirely new direction for me. After a few false

look aesthetically pleasing on the page, regardless

starts with unhinged idiots and excruciatingly irritating

of actual literal meaning. I’ve tended to employ that

morons, a guy who had recently moved to Glasgow

same impulse when writing lyrics too, and I liked the

from Sheffield replied, and he was a drummer called

way those words looked together. When I originally

Adam. That was when everything clicked and he and I

envisioned the name though I felt like it could’ve also

have been a constant in the ranks despite various oth-

been the name of some sort of 1960’s isolationist

er parts of the band’s line up changing on every full

Californian LSD drenched cult that lived in the hills

length album we’ve released so far. The initial ideas

and wrote pamphlets about how the government are

I had were quickly recorded, very DIY, and the result

poisoning the water supply, which I also liked.

can be heard on the band’s Bandcamp page as the

Demo. The style of the band’s output has changed over

The classic shoegaze bands have obviously been a

the years, but I think even from that first demo there’s

huge influence on us, but I didn’t grow up on those

various sonic threads that run through every single re-

bands and I think the combination of discovering

lease. I don’t want to keep making the same record, but

shoegaze but being from a heavier and more abra-

I also don’t like it when bands stray too far from what

sive musical background has certainly influenced our

their initial instinctual sound was. A couple of the band

particular brand of shoegaze. Since the likes of Noth-

have projects outside of The Cherry Wave, namely Anti-

ing and Whirr exploded there seems to be a million

guo, which is Bobby’s (bass) post punk/‘90s emo band,

other ex-hardcore/metal guys doing shoegaze, but

where he sings and plays guitar, and also Odd Flowers,

we formed in 2012 and it wasn’t a thing at all then,

which is a new punk band that Ryan (guitar) is playing

so I think we were coming from a fairly unique angle

bass in. I personally find it impossible to maintain more

at that point. We played a show recently with Slow

than one band or I’d be seriously verging on sponta-

Crush, who have blown up pretty big in shoegaze

neously melting.

terms in the last year or two. They told us they’d been listening to us for years and that our Blush EP that

Can you tell us something about your personal musi-

came out in 2013 had been an influence, and I think

cal tastes and what impact you think they might have

that particular EP’s influence can be heard on numer-

on the sound of The Cherry Wave? What music do you

ous ‘heavy’ shoegaze bands nowadays to be honest.

think has most influenced your sound, and what music

The influence of atmosphere as you call it is some-

do you enjoy that bears no resemblance at all to what

thing I’ve always been conscious of. Black metal and

you do? Do you think influence is sometimes more

crasher crust are two genres that I adore and per-

about feelings or atmospheres that have some person-

sonally have drawn a ton of influence from in terms

al resonance rather than specific sounds or structures?

of atmosphere and feel with The Cherry Wave. Born 79


Against, Black Flag, Hüsker Dü, all these type of bands have had a huge influence on the feel of our stuff too, but you may not be able to pick up on these influences immediately. What do you think has led to the massive renewal of interest in shoegaze, a genre mistakenly presumed dead by many in the mid 1990s? Did it ever really go away, or was it just temporarily ignored in the press as they focused on new things? Do you think that the inter-

Can you tell us which of the classic

99% of them are just dross post-rock bands doing instrumental crescendo-core with one fuzzy bit in a 16 minute song about

shoegaze bands or albums mean the most to you, and also recommend any more modern ones that you feel people may have missed? You’ll have to excuse the mundanity and predictability of my answer, but Loveless by My Bloody Valentine is the one for me and always will be. People probably haven’t missed them as such, but personally when I think of modern shoegaze, I think of No Joy's Ghost Blonde and Ringo Deathstarr's

net has helped to spur global interest and enthusiasm for shoegaze by connecting fans and bands who may have otherwise felt isolated?

Color Trip. Both of those were and


still are a big deal for me. I'm pretty chuffed that we’ve been able to play a couple of shows with both of those bands too. One release that may have went under the

I assume the internet has had a big hand in it. I also think the huge boom in interest in effects pedals and guitar gear has had some influence. It definitely never

radar a bit I suppose, is a self-titled EP that came out


went anywhere. There’s always been people making great shoegaze, even when it wasn’t a big deal. When we released our demo in 2012 I think most people had forgotten shoegaze was ever a thing. But bands

ly shows had one of Glasgow’s biggest music blog writers of the time describe our set as “Decent sound.


Can you tell us something about your live set up? Are you constantly searching for new effects pedals and equipment, or do you have a trusted selection that


Heard it all before in the ‘90s though.” Haha. Countless bands across the world identify as

immediately after that EP, but it’s an absolute gem of a record and had a pretty big impact on me.

like Astrobrite had been releasing non-stop fantastic music during that ‘forgotten’ period. One of our ear-

in 2012 by a band called Honeyslide. They split almost

you stick with in every situation? As much as I enjoy trying different pedals and effects, for me personally all I need and inevitably always re-


turn to is a Big Muff and sometimes a delay. Nothing complex or intricate at all. Primitive and minimalist. A

shoegaze, many with vastly different sounds to each

Fender Jazzmaster, a Big Muff and a loud amp, and

other. As well as the classicists and purists there are

I’m eternally happy

those who have taken it in a more hard rock/heavy metal influenced direction, those who have given it


Your music is sometimes moody and dark sounding

a more electronic/ambient sound and those who

but very often takes an uplifting and hopeful, if mel-

have added a sort of pop sheen. Where do you feel

ancholy direction. What do you think inspires that?

the sound of The Cherry Wave fit in amongst all of that?


It’s something I’ve actually heard multiple people describe us as. Melancholic hopefulness seems to have

I suppose I’m more of a purist. I like to hear shoegaze

emerged naturally from us. It wasn’t something we sat

when a band describes themselves as shoegaze. I

down and sought to accomplish, it’s just what we’ve

understand that there’s a wide spectrum, but

collectively produced without consciously thinking

honestly, so many bands now just use the tag

about it. It’s probably something to do with being from

to get traction online when 99% of them are

Glasgow. The city’s influence permeates everything we

just dross post-rock bands doing instrumental

do. It’s been a constant well of inspiration

crescendo-core with one fuzzy bit in a 16 min-

for me both lyrically and sonically

ute song about drizzle.

since the inception of the band. 81


It’s an extremely violent, abrasive and gritty city, but also a very funny, friendly, and beautiful city and I think that personality dichotomy has weighed on me greatly. Can you tell us something about the music scene in Glasgow and where you fit into it? Are there any bands or artists you can recommend? Are there any venues that you think are doing a great job? We’ve always been outsiders in regards to the scene in Glasgow. We’ve never attempted to ingratiate ourselves to anyone and always said what we think. Naturally this attitude doesn’t win many friends within the business or the scene and we’ve had countless run-ins and falling outs with promotion companies, blog writers, DJs, venues and other bands. None of this has been purposely seeking confrontation, rather I’ve just refused to engage in the fawning and crawling required to enter into the circle of preferred musicians. While the band has probably suffered in some ways because of this (not being invited to play certain shows/festivals etc, and most Scottish blogs and radio acting like we have never existed), at least we know we didn’t give anyone a fucking inch when they thought they could exploit us or talk down to us. That’s good enough for me. The opposite has been true outside of Scotland though generally. We’ve always felt love from the US, Japan etc. We released music on an American label and we have been close to releasing music with a Japanese label a few times. The current coronavirus crisis is already having a disastrous effect on many parts of the music scene. How would you encourage music lovers to help any artists, small labels, independent record stores, music venues etc that may be struggling? Please tell us something about how it has affected you personally and any measures you have taken or are considering taking to deal with the situation. Just buy the band’s music and merch I suppose. Food banks etc could do with it more than some daft wee guy from Scotland’s band. It hasn’t really affected us as a band. We never really made any money at all and we haven’t been rehearsing because our new record just came out. Personally though, it’s a horrific situation and I just want to get through it.


I have 10 records I love, and I just listen to them on a loop, haha Do you have any thoughts about the future of music consumption? Do you feel there are any positive sides to the rise of streaming services, or is it mainly bad news for artists? How do you personally discover new music and do you still buy or use any physical formats? The good thing is that bands can just release their music. No need for labels for that. That’s a great thing. A huge thing. Record labels are generally absolutely fucking reprehensible rodent bastards and the less influence they have, the better. Honestly, I don’t discover much new music. I think I’m at the age where I have 10 records I love, and I just listen to them on a loop, haha. Please tell us something about your hopes for The Cherry Wave. Are you working on any new music or planning to release anything in the near future? We’re always writing separately, and I’m sure we’ll come together at some point and get something together. Either that or I’ll just record the next The Cherry Wave album by myself at home on a four track, and it’ll be 60 minutes of unlistenable obscure noise-gaze with a dour Glaswegian man who sounds like he’s just woke up mumbling over it, and it’ll be released on DIY cassette to an audience of 2 people, haha. I guess my hope for the project is that it continues no matter what. A war of attrition. Like a cockroach wandering over a decimated wasteland that’s been wrought lifeless by an invisible and unending death-bringing virus. Ideally I want The Cherry Wave to soundtrack that oblivion Lastly, do you have any particular interest in Japanese bands, music or culture? Is there a chance we may see you play live here one day? We’d love that. That’s the dream! Some of my favourite bands of all time are Japanese. Namely, G.I.S.M, Confuse, Oeil, Disclose, Gloom, Clams, Bloodthirsty Butchers, Boris, Incapacitants, Sigh, Gallhammer, Merzbow, Coffins. So many great bands of all genres! 84

Click on artwork to visit each album's Bandcamp page

(in no particular order)



“Nih Nightmare”

“The Curse Of Izanagi”


Hail Horror Hail

Kinoko Teikoku



“Apoptosis “


As Loud as Possible



“Strawberry Cream”

“Distort Japan”

Urban Twilight

Equalizing Distort



“People Are Nuclear Poisoning”

“The Holocaust Of War”

Nuclear Addicts

Disclose / Framtid

Bloodthirsty Butchers





Gloomy Lights




“Blood And Bone”


The Other Side of Blasphemy



“Answer = Chaos”

“Pier 39”

Noise Attack Devastating

Animal Magnetism

Tokyo City



“P-NUT BUTTER irony”

“Paso Inferior”


Paso Inferior


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