Traffic Report No.1: Charlie Brown’s Roundabout

The first in a series of films from London’s traffic black spots. Over the next few months I will be visiting areas in and around London where levels of congestion regularly merit mention on nation traffic reports. Places whose names have become part of the national consciousness.
First up, Charlie Brown’s Roundabout in South Woodford.

Traffic Report No.1: Charlie Brown’s Roundabout from Spaceship Pictures on Vimeo.

A Girl and a Gun

So this is the Bond covers album that my Crock Oss alter ego features on. It also includes fantastic versions of all the Bond themes and other music associated with the series. A lot of work has gone into this and it’s available for free from 23rd October 2015!

In addition there will be a very special edition of the Union Chapel in Isnlington on 007th November to celebrate the launch. I’ll be playing The Man with the Golden Gun in collaboration as well as featuring on some of the other songs too. I’ve also manufactured some incidental music to play between the acts that I’m quite proud of.

The details of the show can be found here.

Documentary test

I few months ago I created this documentary test using the music I created from field recordings of Chigwell ROC Post and some excepts from the first interview I conducted.

Now summer is approaching, and looking busy with many projects, I need to start trying to schedule some interviews with more ex-ROC personnel. If you have already contacted me I should be in touch soon, but I am still looking for more people to interview. It probably won’t take more than an hour of your time and I think it would make the piece all the more interesting. I can be contacted via this blog or at

Hatfield Peverel

From the beginning this was unusual. I arrived near Hatfield Peverel Royal Observer Corps post on a cloudless day. The post, clearly visible from the A12, stood exposed in the middle of a ploughed field. Normally these posts are just by a footpath or behind a hedge, in this case I felt I should seek permission to cross the fields to the post. Knocking on the door of what I hoped might be the farmer’s house I was greeted by an elderly couple and an even more elderly lady who told me the land belonged to Lord Rayleigh, but they were sure it would be fine as long as I wasn’t planning to do any shooting, “Only photos!” I didn’t quip.

Having negotiated the muddy field, taking care not to step on any of the freshly sprouting crops, I found the post. There was an old Orlit B aircraft observation tower and an underground post. The shaft had lost its lid and their seemed to be a lot of rubble inside, but the ladder seemed secure so I descended.

The view up the shaft at Hatfield Peverel

The view up the shaft at Hatfield Peverel

The post was in a very poor state, the hatch lid was at the bottom along with a lot of broken concrete. The thing I noticed after the mess was that someone had affixed a poppy to the BPI shaft. Then I saw that ‘Rob Baines, 15.11.2014, Lest we forget’ had been gratified on the wall. Finally I saw some tobacco and cigarette papers on a dry piece on concrete.

I had to assume that these things were connected. Very recently someone had paid tribute, with poppy, inscription and offering, to a departed friend. Was Rob Baines an ROC member? Was the site chosen just because it had some military connection? Perhaps Rob and his friend had played down here as children, the post has been out of service since 1968. I do not know and I am not sure if I want to know.

What I did know, immediately, was that anything I created from my recordings there would not form part of the wider project. Somehow it seemed that it would not be appropriate. It has taken me just over two months to come back to these recordings and create a piece of music, perhaps a tribute to Rob Baines.

Tributes to Rob Baines left at Hatfield Peverel ROC post.

Tributes to Rob Baines left at Hatfield Peverel ROC post.

And this is where another unusual occurrence took place. Once I get going these pieces come together fairly quickly and I had the shell of it worked out. I wondered if, through pitch shifting, I could create a kind of spectral ‘Last Post’ at the end of the piece. So I tried. When I looped and overlapped the high C at the end I thought I heard something odd. I listened again and their it was. A choir had materialised in the music. They were faint, but they were there.

Mark S. Williamson at Hatfield Peverel ROC post.

Mark S. Williamson at Hatfield Peverel ROC post.

Review of ‘Walthamstow Marshes’ from das klienicum

Although my German is not great, and Google’s is worse, this seems to be a fine review of Walthamstow Marshes:

“länger schon wollte ich Euch auf diesen release aufmerksam machen. aber irgendwie passte es stets nicht. mittlerweile aber ordnete sich “walthamstow marshes” ganz vorzüglich in die vorherigen bzw. nachfolgenden posts ein. es handelt sich bei diesen feldaufnahmen, die in einen einzigen track von über 17 minuten kulminieren, um sounds, die an einem nachmittag im londoner eastend in einen recorder gepresst wurden, um sie später etwas manipuliert an den mann zu bringen. leider erschien dieser release nur in einer 10er cdr auflage, so dass man ihn nur noch digital geniessen kann. es hat etwas gespenstisches und zugleich voyeristisches, dem treiben zuzuhören, sei es dem stimmenwabern, dem vorbeiziehen eines flugzeugs, das in der betrachtung durchaus intimen charakter tragen kann, sei es das vorbeirauschen von autos, das rattern eines zuges, das vermeintliche winden, allesamt zu einem soundcharakter verwirkt. mark s. williamson zeichnet für diesen track verantwortlich. neben spaceship, unter diesem moniker veröffentlichte er “walthamstow marshes”, betreut er weitere projekte wie missing robots, mark and rebecca williamson, crock oss und und und. nachfolgend der track, lasst Euch ein wenig mitnehmen.”

From das klienicum.