Hannah Peel

The electronica/brass band hybrid queen faces the quick-fire question machine

So a remix album, eh?

“There was something uncanny that happened when creating the ‘Mary Casio’ album, it was as if by creating it as a character, the music didn’t feel like mine. I adore the end result, but after the release it felt like perfect open source material for others to play with. It’s not often you get the free reign with a colliery brass band, so everyone was really up for creating their own space journeys.”

Are you a fan of the remix in general?

“I’ve found lots of new music that way. Good ones always send me on a journey to explore the original, to see what’s making it work… I feel like a detective dissecting things.”

It’s tricky to put your finger on the appeal of remixes of familiar songs. That must go double if you made those tracks in the first place?

“They become soaked into your brain and it’s hard to see past the version you love! I like to take risks though and the original ‘Journey To Cassiopeia’ felt like it should be shared and explored much like its original story.”

How did you go about choosing remixers?

“This all started because Arvo Party asked if he could do a remix ast autumn and I loved what he came back with.”

They are all independent producers and artists. How important is the whole independence thing for you?

“Massively important. I feel creatively free and in control and although there’s a lot of hard work outside of creating music, the positives are hugely rewarding when it works. I make music to make more music.”

But if Sony came along waving their chequebook…

“Ha! Well I don’t think a major label would have funded me to create and release a synth/colliery brass band album to start with… but they could licence it for sure! Being independent means my team and I have control, we can choose what to release and when, there’s a wonderful network of artists out there and we all help and encourage each other. ‘Particles In Space’ was a way to support and bring attention to some of those artists who I think are captivating.”

Did the remixers all have free reign, or were there rules, like DO NOT MESS WITH MY MUSIC!

“Everyone knew to begin with that their intergalactic path would be a divergent journey to Mary Casio’s, so the rules were simply play with it and make it your own.”

Is it interesting to hear how others interpret your work?

“Yes, I collaborate a lot but this approach, letting go, feeling a little distant yet totally absorbing, was breathtaking.”

Did you worry that you’d not like some of the mixes?

“Of course, a tiny bit, but ultimately I trust the artists involved and knew they wouldn’t send anything that they didn’t want out there.”

Are there any particular favourites here?

“Like birthing seven children, I love them all no matter what individual personality they have. This collection seems to cater for every mood.”

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Sir Was

Pulling up a chair and making himself comfy in the face of our quick-fire line of questioning, it’s Sir Was