Tuesday, January 24, 2012

The aesthetics of Ghost Box

Ghost Box Music is an English independent record label, established in 2004 by Julian House and Jim Jupp.

In an interview with Cyclic Defrost, Jim Jupp commented; “Part of a theme that’s ongoing in all the Belbury Poly records, and I think all of the Ghost Box records is a tradition of British science fiction, where you’ve got on the one hand the setting of a very traditional background, with very ancient things, but you’ve got this weird, cosmic stuff happening at the same time. A lot of old British sci-fi books – John Wyndham, for instance – have these really mundane, quaint little village settings, but all of a sudden something really freaky and cosmic appears in the middle of it."

I love this song 'A great day out' from Belbury Poly - From an Ancient Star

Releases on the label (presently encompassing The Focus Group, Eric Zann, Belbury Poly, Roj and The Advisory Circle, and a rerelease of a Mount Vernon Arts Lab album) tend to share a common design aesthetic - all record covers so far have been by Julian House, with an acknowledged debt to the iconic design of sixties Penguin Books paperbacks.

Ghost Box had a defined aesthetic from formation; Julian House commenting: “ ...the best way to put our stuff out was to start a label.. There was such a richness to the references we both shared, not just musical.. It made sense that we could put releases out which had this complete world attached to them.. A set of things united by a design identity, fragments of real or imagined books, collections of images, films, links... Something people can become lost in and want to be a part of.."