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Judge #5 : Oct 2007 - Jan 2008

tony X & rhys Y - noisestar_music


WINNER ! - 'Zeitgeist Part 1' by GNOD
"The quantity and quality of tracks which these guys have posted is amazing.
This track in particular we chose for it’s subtley (although they are shortlisted here for everything they have online, unfortunately we had to pick only one track). The tendancy seems to be for bands with a lot of members to rely on numbers to build everything up to a huge volume, especially in a live environment as this recording is. It’s very hard to manage a quiet, controlled atmosphere when you have a lot of instruments or musicians, it takes a great discipline and understanding between the individuals involved to achieve this.
The mix of sounds used and created is awesome, a really fine balance between acoustic and electronic.
We’ve seen lots of bands trying this type of thing in various ways over the years but it’s rare to find a group of people who can pull it off as naturally and elegantly as GNOD.
This is totally in the spirit of what we try to do at Noisestar – therefore, the winner!"

2nd - '5%' by APHELION
"We just totally love everything APHELION has up on the site. Super dark - super hardcore. Not to everyones tastes I’m sure and if you’re not into this type of thing you’re probably thinking “But it’s just a load of random noise…” – believe us it is certainly not random and there is definitely a large gap between good and bad noise. Would love to know more about what equipment is used to create these monstrous recordings….. genius."

3rd - 'FIghts Already Fought' by MIKE LORD
"This is such an incredibly accomplished piece of song writing it just had to go into the short list. It’s not particularly experimental or ground breaking and it’s not going to change or challenge the way people make music from here on…. But sometimes you just want something tried and tested with a good hook line and a beat. Something to make you feel good – which this does superbly. Simply a brilliant slice of pop music which, we felt peoples attention should be drawn to."

shortlisted - 'Immelman Turn' by CHEVALINE
"This one is a right slippery little track. The way the reversed samples kinda slide in and out of each other is brilliant. A simple technique, sure – but a valid one and when it’s done well it can make for some well mind bending audio…."

shortlisted - '1920' by CIXXX J
"The maniacal speed of this track is what does the trick here. Would love to DJ this through a massive PA in some filthy dive warehouse party. “Drill ‘n’ Bass” – what a great concept for a musical genre."

shortlisted -'Black Vomit' by DOKKEBI Q
"I (tony) went to see DOKKEBI Q at the last CARBON LOGIC LIVE night. Alphamonkey was banging on about them for ages, but you know what it’s like when someone’s trying to enthuse about music sometimes -? Basically, he was raving about it and his description just made it sound like it was gonna be terrible. Well, I went along anyway and was just blown away… They’re one of those bands which kinda shouldn’t work – but it does and it’s amazing! If you ever get a chance to see this live I highly recommend you have go to experience it at first hand.
Oh yeah, and “Black Vomit” how rad is that for a track title?"

shortlisted -'30+' by ROTEUS
"Slow burning and strangely calming this one. The bursts and rushes of heavy dub styled drums are like distant thunder – or certainly the onset of something terrible, like an impending natural disaster of some description. The twinkly electro stabs overriding the track add a feeling of stomach churning enevitability.
Well, that’s how this track makes me feel anyway…. Nightmarish. (tony)"

shortlisted - 'Alligator' by SNORKEL
"Again an artist with a whole heap of great tunes on here. It’s the drums on this one in particular. Just great live percussive craziness. Throw in the mucky synth bass line and the jabs of brass and it’s sounds like a the soundtrack to some psychedelic car chase from a 70’s TV cop show. Wicked cool."

shortlisted - 'Dope Heroes feat. Food 4 Animals' by EARLYMAN
"There’s a lot of hip-hop artists on CARBON LOGIC right now and this track stuck out from it’s peers by a long way - yet we’re not entirely sure why to be honest….. That dirty, bumping electro bassline, the slick production, the very natural flow of the lyrics… ?
So much Hip-hop of recent years seems to be just re-packaging the same old thing. We think this offering from THE EARLYMAN is a fresh and intelligent take on a genre that so much of the time seems in serious danger of becoming a parody of itself. It’s one of the few genres where there is still a great deal of room for creativity without going over the top and alienating fans. Nice work for finding that fine balance here…."

shortlisted - 'Juggernaut' by RAVEN CONSPIRACY
"It’s tricky to do this type of very chilled, minimalist type thing whilst managing to keep the listeners attention. There’s a lot of music out there in this vein which makes it hard work to find the diamond in the rough as it were. This is one such little gem and I’m glad we came across it here."


noisestar_music was set up by tony X and rhys Y around spring of 2003 initially as a live promotion platform for their own bands and projects.

Tony had just moved to London, Rhys had arrived a few years before. They had been playing gigs in London for sometime as members of
30dayHex and Princess Headbutt. Both bands at the time having members living in various parts of the UK meant wherever they gigged it would involve a fair amount of travelling around.

In their own words;
"Although we recognised the importance of playing in the capital these always seemed to be the lamest gigs. Constantly being ripped off by promoters and venues alike, with zero hospitality, expecting us to fill venues without us seeing a penny of the door and having to play on completely irrelevant bills. This was certainly not the case throughout the rest of the country where people were glad to invite you to their town or city to play, would take good care of you and if possible pay you."

"We decided something should be done as we were coming across more and more great bands who refused to play in London purely because of the same problems we were encountering."

"We started out by drawing up a no bullshit set of rules which still apply to the way we run the label today. noisestar has always been run and always will be run as a non-profit making enterprise.
From the off it was decided that any money made, after costs of hiring venues, equipment, sound engineers etc. on any given night would be divided and given straight back to the bands. In addition there was always a basic rider of beer and the offer of floor space to sleep on.
Concentrating on bringing artists from outside London to be able to play in front of an appreciative crowd, we unwittingly managed to create a catalyst, bringing together several other independent UK labels and a whole host of unsigned bands from all over the UK, Europe and the US."

"After 3 years of doing the gigs we decided to change direction a little and concentrate on releasing some records. Again the DIY aesthetic applied."

"Our releases are predominantly on vinyl formats - just coz we're such junkies for it ourselves. The artists we have chosen to date are based on our own tastes, usually on the more experimental side."

"Our selection process goes something along the lines of;
- 'this band are fucking great'
- 'yeah, they releasing this through anyone?'
- 'no'
- 'cool, we should do it before someone else does...'
although usually because no-one else will.
The process is based entirely on the music and not finding 'radio friendly' unit shifters as with the majority of labels."

"Anything we make from a release goes straight back into costs of the next record(s). The bands themselves get exposure through press and an agreed amount of copies as payment which they can do with as they wish.
Our one stipulation is that the bands are pro-active and gig regularly, which we help them with wherever possible. Every project we involve ourselves in is about helping to promote the artist because we believe that people should know about them. We still do the odd event - but just when we have something really awesome that we want to shout about, we try to make them very special, eclectic and intimate affairs."

"All of our releases are limited edition and obviously amazing or we wouldn't have anything to do with them in the first place. We're totally down with what Carbon Logic are trying to achieve - it's about bringing together like and open minded people - which can only be a good thing."

"The most recent noisestar release is by the much talked about SHIT & SHINE, who gave us a little gem of an album titled 'CUNTS WITH ROSES'. This record is the most indicative release to date of what noisestar is all about;
Loud, challenging, with a big two fingers up to a very shallow industry....."


Links and Information: – home of SHIT & SHINE

Competition shortlist

Nov 2007 - Jan 2008