Incus Recordings

Inspired by Bailey's duo with Han Bennink, Sonic Pleasure (Marie-Angelique Bueler) and T.H.F Drenching sent a brick-and-dictaphone improvisation they’d recorded in a Liverpool Airport disabled toilet to Bailey. Bailey, impressed by the collage artwork and a Manchester postcode, sent them his number and invited them to play at his house on Downs Road, with a very young Alex Ward and Tony Bevan. Built on the percussive duo of Pleasure and Drenching, what follows is one of the weirdest and most underrated Incus records.  "Recording it was lovely. We just did it more-or-less straight through. I think there was only one tune that we didn't include. Derek was in a good mood, and he'd brought mince pies for everyone since it was coming up to Christmas 2002. Everyone's playing really well, all of us are communicating really well. I was proud that Derek let me come up with the titles and the band name I miss Derek, because I didn't feel at all like I'd finished playing with him.”  -THF Drenching, 2017 “At the launch of the Incus CD Limescale aboard Sybil Madrigal’s Boat-Ting venue on the Thames I heard some punters complain at the back: ‘Where’s Derek? I came to see Derek Bailey and I can’t see or hear him!’ It was difficult to explain that, with Limescale, Derek had found the nirvana he stumbled on in drummer John Stevens’s Spontaneous Music Ensemble: the extinction of the ego in a musical collective. Limescale was built on the foundation of the Bueler–Calton rhythm section as surely as the SME was founded on Stevens (or the Joseph Holbrooke Trio on Oxley), and Derek loved it. So right near the end, he rediscovered the collectivity which he’d enjoyed when he first played free music in London.” –Ben Watson --- Tony Bevan / bass clarinet Alex Ward / clarinet Derek Bailey / guitar Sonic Pleasure / bricks T.H.F Drenching / dictaphone --- Recorded at The Moat Studio, London in December 2002 by Toby Hrycek-Robinson. Layout and design by Karen Brookman-Bailey.

Limescale - Limescale

Released in 1998, this was Bailey's first solo record after the magical number of 7 years - realised after a long period of playing with just about anybody that made sense to him. The artwork for the original CD is just textures in greyscale, the font Times New Roman and on the inside sleeve of there are no notes, just the word 'listen' in lower case. Ken Hollings wrote in The Wire upon its release, "this is the end of a dialogue."  'Takes, Fakes' starts with an abrasive 13 min live recording from a '97 concert and builds through eight gaunt and nuanced acoustic studio cuts, each snipped and selected by Steve Beresford. Once we get to 'Dead She Dances', arguably the keystone track on the record, each miniature starts to make sense as Bailey reads a deathly description of a female from his pal Peter Riley's poetry book 'Distant Point'. By the time he picks up his electric Gibson it feels like the perfect solo release - super raw and with purpose. A gem from '98 for sure. In fact, Brian Olewnick called it the best record of 1998. Oosh.   --- Derek Bailey / guitar --- 1 & 10 from a solo concert recorded by Paul Tyson, September 1997. 2-9 studio recordings by Dave Hunt, produced by Steve Beresford, May 1997.  Post Production by Tony Robinson, and desgin and layout by Karen Brookman.  Acoustic guitar built by German cello maker Henner Hardenberger.  Electric on 10 is a Gibson 175. 

Derek Bailey - Takes, Fakes and Dead She Dances