i’m delighted to be able to present the latest instalment in my occasional series The Dialogues. In this episode, i’m in conversation with the composer and performer John Wall, whose work i’ve very deeply admired for many years. Wall and i got together over the summer, and our conversation took place within his studio, affording him the opportunity to illustrate our discussion with numerous audio excerpts, many of which are included in the edited recording. In addition to exploring the techniques and development of Wall’s 22-year career in electronic music—during which time he has gradually evolved from working with chunks of sampled acoustic sound into a world constructed from tiny electronic slivers—we explore a variety of associated topics, including sampling, compositional decision-making, collaborations and many other related issues.
Ever since they were first released, getting hold of John Wall’s CDs has been a somewhat difficult task, so i’m thrilled also to announce that 5:4 has teamed up with Wall to make his hard-to-find back catalogue available via the blog. For information, audio samples, reviews and to order please visit the newly-created 5:4 Shop (all sales go to and are handled directly by Wall). Wall’s more recent releases, featuring collaborations with Alex Rodgers and Mark Durgan, can be obtained via the Entr’acte label.
In addition to those played by Wall himself, i’ve included in the Dialogue a liberal selection of pertinent excerpts from throughout his output to clarify and elaborate upon some of the points made. A complete list of these excerpts can be found below, followed by the download link; alternatively, you can stream the episode via MixCloud.
Finally, i must say a huge thank-you to John Wall and his partner Kay for their time and hospitality, and also to Allon Kaye for his assistance. Wall’s amazing music deserves to be known about, heard and appreciated by a significantly wider audience, and it’s my sincere hope that this Dialogue can be a helpful and tantilising starting point for the unitiated, and provide some interesting insights to those already familiar with his work.
List of excerpts:
- Construction VI: stem (from Constructions V-VII)
- Construction III: rumble/hard/abrupt (from Constructions I-IV)
- Stunde Null I (from Alterstill)
- Alterstill (from Alterstill)
- Cphon (from Cphon)
- Track 5 (from 139)
- Construction IV: dro/ickt (from Constructions I-IV)
- Construction I: stat/unt/dist (from Constructions I-IV)
- Track 2 (from Works 2006-2011)
- Construction VII: luxi var (from Constructions V-VII)
- Part II (from Hylic)
- Track 2 (from Work 2006-2011)
- Rafia Longer (from Rafia Longer)
- Statis (from Fractuur)
- Part I (from Hylic)
- Work 2011-2014 (from Work 2011-2014)
- Fractuur (from Fractuur)
- MutaVariations (15) (not currently available)
- Mutapool (2005-6) (not currently available)