Moonbow

SIREN affiliate Eleanor Hardwick aka Moonbow comes through with the latest installment of the SFS mix series.

The multi-disciplinarian spends their days doing photography and directing videos and her nights making exquisite avant-garde pop and playing out belting techno. Eleanor basically knows whats what, and does more in one day than I do in several months.

This mix has been in the works for a minute now, so I am extremely stoked to be able to share it with you. Eleanor also answered some questions about music and stuff.

Tracklist:

Delo – S-Wer
Errorsmith – Superlative Fatigue
Bromley ft. Dread MC – Last One
Loom – Dog In The Fight
West Norwood Cassette Library – (Everytime You Touch Me) I Get Hype
Yumeka – With Attitude
J-ZBEL – SELECTA!!!
DJ Next – Dreams And Reality
Textasy – Blow Your Head
Trust Image – Sun
DJ Funk – Pussy Ride
Mannik – Addicted (150 Mix)
Textasy – Booty in the Jungle
Bay B Kane – Hello Darkness
Doc Scott – Here Comes The Drumz
Future Primitive – Infect Me

Thank you so much for recording the mix, really appreciate it! For the uninitiated out there, introduce yourself and tell us a little about SIREN, please?

I’m a non binary producer and DJ based in London, and I also work as a photographer and visual artist (which I am fortunate is also another huge passion of mine). People often tend to either know me as the photographer or the music maker/music lover (and not often both), but I love all these things equally and pour every ounce of energy into them that I can. On top of that, I form part of SIREN collective: we throw parties, have a radio show on NTS, run workshops, write articles and release mixes – all with the aim of diversifying the techno and electronic music scene. I guess I try to do a lot of things, mostly because I love and hate this world and am always trying to navigate how to find the good in it.

When I make music, it is a very personal and conceptual outlet for me – an attempt at a simple synopsis would be that it fuses industrial rhythms with organic samples, vaporwave sounds, washy synths and poppy shoegaze vocals. Compared to my production, my DJing tends to be a lot more dance floor ready (unless if for radio) – covering vaporwave, bass, breaks, electro, trance, jungle – generally the side of techno that is very dynamic and melodic, with a hint of cheekiness and dreaminess.

Tell us a little about the mix. Did anything influence you while recording it?

I was at ://about blank in Berlin last year, it was about 8am, and it came to me that if I removed all the consonants from my full name, I would be called EE AI. I decided that EE AI is my artificial intelligence alter ego: EE AI doesn’t need to sleep because they only think in 0s, 1s, and vowels,  their style sits somewhere between a character from The Matrix and LeeLoo from The Fifth Element, and if they had a heart (which they don’t, because they’re a robot) it would beat at 150 beats per minute.

I was asked to play a DJ set on New Years Day at an afterparty with the set time of 1.30pm, and I knew that the only way Moonbow could stay awake that long would be with the help of their cyborg sibling EE AI. I felt like an entire lifetime was vacuum packed between New Years Eve and New Years day, and by the time my set time came around, I was running on a very strange adrenaline and a tube of “Energy Gel” that my friend Ed had fed me – essentially 1000% of your daily intake of vitamins and energy in one slurp, made for marathons. What happened next was what became this mix: I closed the party and those who remained were dedicated and wild. Normally I spend hours crafting quite conceptual and un-danceable mixes, but this one is pure intuition, energy and having fun. 

What was the last record you bought? And, where is your favourite spot to go record shopping?

An astral industries ambient compilation. I bought it at Rye Wax, which is my favourite record shop and venue. Every time I go in there, I can guarantee I’ll bump into someone I love, they’ll put on a sick night, they’ll recommend you a great record. And you can eat really tasty patatas bravas there.

What is your earliest memory of the club?

My big sis used to take me to a lot of psytrance raves in Whitechapel when I was sixteen. I think I spent more time in the chill out rooms chatting shit with strangers surrounded by fluorescent art than I did actually dancing. I also used to go to HEAVEN a lot because it was £1 to get in on a Monday night. I love a club where you can dance on plinths, not to mention they would screen Ab Fab on rotation in the chill room.

What was the last book you read? And does literature influence your music at all?

I get so indecisive about reading, I tend to read several books at once very slowly. Currently it’s Metahaven’s Black Transparency, Joan Didion’s The Year Of Magical Thinking, Arkady & Boris Strugatsky’s Roadside Picnic, Ursula LeGuin’s The Left Hand Of Darkness and Frantz Fanon’s Wretched Of The Earth. The last book I remember finishing was The Edible Woman by Margaret Atwood.

Literature definitely influences my music. I am currently working on a concept album that tackles a lot of political thoughts, particularly about technology and war, via a sci fi fantasy story line. The idea is that it will be released alongside words and visuals in a zine / book form. So you can see the relevance of the previous list of books that I’m reading. I also find literature an influence on my lyrics – particularly Miranda July, Patti Smith, Margaret Atwood, Joan Didion. I like to link small moments of absurdity to emotion, romance and politics. I tend to have ten different notebooks of nonsense on the go at any given time that are a mess of poetry that no one ever sees, to do lists and ideas … and eventually a lot of them get transformed into lyrics.

I’ve became really obsessed with film scores recently! Whats your favourite film score / soundtrack at the minute?

Mica Levi’s Under The Skin soundtrack.

Send me a link to a photo / piece of art you always go back to?

This is really hard. Don’t make me do this! Trying to answer this is like opening Pandora’s box. There is an endless sea of art that I wish the entire world could know about. I’ll mention that I was tempted to send you Nick Waplington’s Living Room photo series, any photo by Gregory Crewdson, Pipilotti Rist’s “Ever Is Overall” video piece, virtually any song by Bjork, the collaborative relationship between photographer Kristin Lee Moolman and stylist Ib Kamara, and the drawings of a recent Instagram discovery of mine, @maletearz69. I’m going to settle on saying that Kazimir Malevich’s Black Square changed my entire perception about fine art after I saw it in person, so I always go back to it: http://www.tate.org.uk/context-comment/articles/five-ways-look-Malevich-Black-Square .

And finally, what’s 2018 got in store for Moonbow?

I am playing my first headline live show in London, at Birthdays in Dalston on 31st January. We have a huge SIREN party coming up at Bloc in February. I have several releases coming up. I’m already thinking about album 2 because I’m impatient. I also think we might have a little more to see of EE AI this year too.

 

www.eleanorhardwick.com