A denizen of London’s subterranean scene, if Craig Stockwell – known simply as ‘Stockwell’ – isn’t slinging records at East London record store Hidden Sounds, he’s probably playing a party near you. Equally at home playing legitimate club spaces or the unlicensed knees-up at your derelict swimming pool, his sets can oscillate wildly between amorphous esoterica and accelerated BPMs. Drone, IDM and illbient sludge or hi-tek ordnance, it’s sonic alchemy each and every time.
Big things are expected of MEGA METAL, the record label-come-radio show he co-founded alongside fellow Londoner Doppelate. You can check their monthly Netil Radio broadcasts for a taste of what’s to come, and while we eagerly await the drop of their inaugural compilation, Stockwell has taken it upon himself to rewire synapses with a contribution to our ‘Concept In Practice’ series.
Hi Craig, could you tell us a bit about the mix?
It’s the first kinda mix I’ve done of this nature, trying to adapt sounds and tracks into a concept or dialogue, which I really enjoyed. It’s trying to tell a storyline of Alien Intelligence (which isn’t limited to little green men) via sounds, but I’ll leave it to you to decide what’s happening, funner that way.
When and where was it recorded?
It was recorded at my house in Bruce Grove on 2 x 1210’s, 2 x CDJ’s and a Mastersounds Radius v4. Can’t really remember what day now as everything is fucking moulding into one but some time last week.
How would you recommend listening to it?
Semi-lit room, maybe one of those trippy water lamps if you have one, some form of dissociative, wearing a St Patrick’s Day hat.
Can you tell us a bit about MEGAL METAL?
It’s basically an amalgamation of our tastes, we’ve been chatting shit about starting a label for ages so feels nice for it to finally come to fruition. There’s no intense concept behind it apart from a sort of underlying theme to stuff we play and plan on releasing, just interesting shit really for inside and outside the dance. We’ve got a monthly show on Netil Radio also which is on the first Thursday of every month, we usually invite someone on for a guest mix to keep it exciting, can hear those ‘ere.
We’ve also got a 10 track compilation coming out on CD and Digital v soon with some amazing artists involved so keep an eye out.
Do you have any process when it comes to sourcing new music? Any specific places you look or favourite spots to go digging?
I’ve got my favourite online spots that I’ll check up on often; bandcamp, boomkat, discogs, low company, youtube. Unintentionally in alphabetical order. I’ve not been visiting physical stores that much recently but Low Company are always taking my money and that new spot Atlantis Records has some v nice stuff.
How about the last record you bought?
FOQL and Fischerle’s Peronal Wastelands on Paralaxe Editions – it’s actually a tape but a proper warper
Do you have any process when it comes to record store digging?
Not really, I’m not particularly methodical so I just see how it goes, I enjoy taking my time and going through bits that grab my eye or I recognise. Mostly depends on what kind of trip I want it to be.
How did you source the music played in this mix?
It’s a healthy mix of old new and unreleased stuff I reckon, I just kept the concept and dialogue in mind whilst trawling through my records et. and picked out what I thought would make sense. There was a lot of juggling about and swapping things over but yeah got there in the end I reckon.
We’d usually ask what’s next on your agenda, but given the current situation, can you share some of your go-to coping mechanisms for a life in lockdown?
Things are pretty fucked at the moment and to be honest I’ve never been the type of person to have go-to coping mechanisms for situations and this one’s no different. But I like a drink and a party like most others, which is something I would recommend cutting back on during times like this. We’ve all been keeping each other sane via being idiots, cooking nice food, getting out the house for walks (2M RULE!) and keeping clean. Maybe once a week indulge in an in-house knees up.
Should probably sign this also if you’re reading.