Colliding Lines is a nonprofit publisher and collective dedicated to experimental literature and performance. We produce high quality collaborative projects crossing artistic disciplines, and support creative practitioners to take creative risks.
Our priority is facilitating new work, drawing on the ideas of participating artists to create a professional realised final product – released via radio, podcast, cassette tape or print publication. Our programme has included ‘Reanimation’, a series of live film resources; ‘Interchangeable’, an exquisite corpse -style game where artists pass work secretly between each other; and a visual poetry series pairing graphic artists with writers to create collections of all-new work. We run a monthly radio show on Resonance Extra, syndicated out as a podcast on all major platforms.
The following are a number of audio works produced by Colliding Lines and our collaborators, incorporating free improvisation, film scores, spoken word, sound collage, field recordings and pre-composed music. Some are intended for broadcast, some are intended for release as an EP or LP. Some are looking for a home. We hope you enjoy what you find here.
RE: H O M E – Nick Murray
H O M E is an anthology of new visual poetry. The project asked ten poets to submit work for reinterpretation by five typographic artists. Neither poet nor designer spoke to each other, and neither knew the other’s work prior to this project. The resulting pieces represent two perspectives; each poem possessing a new meaning created collaboratively between text and design. Project sound designer Nick Murray created an audio accompaniment to the book – building a sonic landscape around each poet’s voice, soundtracking the shifting mood as we wander poem-to-poem. This recording is available in physical form as part of ‘River . Pathway . Static’, first in a series of cassettes where artists respond to the preceding tapes artist in one continuous collaboration.
Cover Design: Angharad Hengyu Owen
Birth: A Psychedelic Odyssey – Nikki Marrone & Gaze is Ghost
Beginning life as a long-distance collaboration, the ‘Lifelines’ EP is a series of poems and soundscapes – spoken and scored respectively by Nikki Marrone and Laura McGarrigle (Gaze is Ghost). At time of recording both artists were first year mothers, and it’s here the collection finds its core themes. Alongside darker moments, reckoning with intergenerational trauma, there are moments of wonder pulling you through the darkness. As titled, ‘Birth…’ is a vivid, all-sensory journey described powerfully, intimately by Marrone. The EP is said to be “both a reclamation and celebration of the body after birth; an exploration of both challenge and potential.”
You can find ‘Lifelines’ as a digital download through our Bandcamp, or on Spotify. Gaze is Ghost’s latest album ‘Lapis Cobalt Indigo Blue’ is out now, and Nikki Marrone will be releasing a new collection later this year.
Image: Nikki Marrone
Sad Bops from Lonely Warsaw – /weirdtoday
Polish Radio Experimental Studio began in 1957 under the Soviet occupation of Poland. The studio produced analogue and digital musical illustrations in an attempt to make experimental music for film and documentaries. Being under strict authoritarian rule, art was beholden to the social realistic expectations of the time and though this didn’t affect the created sounds it did limit their use. It wasn’t until sound archivists at Ableton pulled these samples out and made them public access did their full potential become possible. Antosh Wojcik is a poet and makes music under the name /weirdtoday. In his own words “I’m Polish-English by heritage, which is something that bleeds into my artistic exploration. I feel a bit like a faux Polish person still, I don’t really feel I can claim it just yet… part of this experiment was to work with a Polish archive, and create little vignettes of electronic music out of strictly Polish-designed materials. This is an experience of listening to some tunes but also listening to poems that reflect on my existence or my disconnect to my home home, which is Poland.”
Podróż – Reuben Kyriakides
‘Reanimation’ was a monthly live series asking musicians and sound artists to re-score otherwise silent short animated films, each month curated around a different era of film history. The series was principally interested in the power of music and sound to shape narrative in collaboration with non-verbal narratives. ‘Podróż’, meaning “the journey” in Polish, is a 1970 film by Daniel Szczechura. Nothing happens. A stationary passenger takes a train journey, looking out the window as the musical score is syncronised to the passing of pylons and other features of the landscape. When he finally arrives, the passenger wanders up a tree-lined path before heading back again, changed by the experience. Reuben’s new score reflects the monotone rhythms of the journey with samples of a piano, destroyed in sync with the passing scenery. Upon the passenger’s arrival, the harsh electronic landscape gives way to melody in what feels like relief at a burden lifted.
You can find all scores from the Reanimation series on our Soundcloud. The latest series was cut short by the pandemic, beginning in February 2020 and with its second (and final) show in March 2020.
Photo: Sophie le Roux
Swell Dispersion – Stephan Barrett & Sylvia Hallett
River. Pathway. Static. takes field recordings as its starting point, capturing walks undertaken daily by musician Stephan Barrett. Along the River Lea, through Tottenham Marshes and across Downhills Park, Stephan and his collaborative partner Sylvia Hallett pay attention to the ordinary; the worlds that exist in cracks in the pavement that every day we fail to see. Throughout the piece they perform between, behind and within these landscapes, their interventions and responses almost imperceptible from naturally occurring sound. The project was conceived in response to themes of home, location and environment, and the two musicians again worked in the isolation that defined 2020–21 for so many. The binaural recordings have been edited and curated, though the integrity of the environment has been retained – ensuring that the sonic landscape the two musicians find each other within is (almost) as rich and detailed as the landscape itself.
Image: Nichola Scrutton
Word of Mouth – Nichola Scrutton
Word of Mouth is fixed medium work (4′), using human voice as the only sound source. Structurally the piece uses gestural phonemes to project a range of non-linguistic vocal sounds on the breath, which are extended and woven together to evoke metaphorical and spatial associations. An award-winning composer, experimental vocalist and artist, Nichola Scrutton works across a range of mediums and processes. Nichola was awarded a PhD from University of Glasgow (AHRC funded) in 2009, and is currently developing a new body of work with support from a Creative Scotland Award.
We’re delighted to have worked with Nichola on the artwork for the above release, ‘River . Pathway . Static’, and from here discover more about her varied and rich catalogue of work. You can find out more about her Nichola and her artistic practice here.
Image: Nichola Scrutton
Shadowplay – Wesley Freeman-Smith & Kyriakides
Originally a text-based performance piece, ‘Shadowplay’ was intended to be experienced only as written word – a live show with white words in a dark room, projected in front of audiences as two musicians created a claustrophobic, apocalyptic live score. The spoken version you find here was created for radio by author Wesley Freeman-Smith and producer Theresa Elflein, taking as its score one of the many live performances by Jacob and Reuben Kyriakides. The concept of the piece is a wildly successful pandemic: a virus spreading not through physical means but through words, its lone narrator trying desperately to save the last vestiges of language before it corrupts and is corrupted by the contagion. The spoken word radio version of the piece is intended as a finale to the project. Created before the pandemic, the fictional setting became reality and it became harder and harder to imagine the piece retaining its original meaning and purpose in light of all the events that unfolded in 2020.
Photo: Wesley Freeman-Smith
Stay – Catching Shadows
Catching Shadows are a three-piece, long-distance spoken word and soundscape project by musicians Theresa Elflein, Christina Kaniclidou and writer Wesley Freeman-Smith. Produced for the radio episode ‘(dis)Embodied’, this track was the first experiment for the project as a trio – with Christina joining as guitarist shortly prior to this. The music here was created live entirely over video call, with the resulting sounds edited and composed post-improvisation. Interference was minimal, keeping the spontaneous spirit of the original performance alive. Similarly, the words were an experiment in linking different dream-like images together into a single narrative, often based on extracts from the map-poem ‘If you love me’ (pictured above). The map poem was created by Freeman-Smith with words from himself and from poet Nikki Marrone.
Catching Shadows have produced a number of one-off pieces for festivals and art exhibitions, a collaborative EP with electronic artist Anna SchuSchu, and have a full LP coming in 2022.
Photo / Words: Wesley Freeman-Smith & Nikki Marrone
Dreams – Christina Kaniclidou
Produced for Colliding Lines’ radio show, this section again formed part of the episode ‘(dis)Embodied’, themed around non-physical spaces and experiences of inhabiting and not inhabiting the body. In the midst of the first lockdown (as seen from the UK), conversations were held with participants who spoke about the sometimes-vivid dreams and disturbed sleep patterns experienced by many during this period. The piece is essentially an ambient radio interview, with guitarist Christina Kaniclidou creating a textural landscape within which subjects give candid interviews and informal poetry readings. Interviewees include Becky Varley-Winter and Jami-Lee Marren, and the segment was originally aired 21/05/20 on Resonance Extra.