Desolate Spools

Location: Sheffield

Est: 2013

Potted History: Set up in 2013 as a cassette label to support the Sheffield production power house fronted by Dean Honer and Adrian Flanagan’s prolific Eccentronic Research Council outfit, Desolate Spools is, as Adrian puts it, “home to their curious collaborations and folkloric sonic tales”.

“We liked the idea that if we wanted to put out a soundtrack to an imagined film tomorrow, we can just do it,” says Adrian. “With bigger labels, it’d be six months of concepts, flowcharts, graphs and lawyers. Over the years, I’ve managed European tours and looked after various band projects, dealt with promoters, agents, press and pluggers, plus, more importantly, I’ve produced critically acclaimed records with my co-conspirator Dean. I guess surviving within the record industry, while simultaneously keeping ourselves on its fringes for close to a decade, is what qualifies us to run a label. And so Desolate Spools was born.”

Mission Statement: “To turn what was once known as the industrial North into the cultural North,” proclaims Adrian. “We may no longer make coal, but we definitely make culture. We also want to make electronic art-pop music eccentric again!”

Key Artists & Releases: “The first volume of Eccentronic Research Council’s ‘Dreamcatcher Tapes’, where we soundtracked a bunch of people’s dreams, was one of the most interesting releases. It was reissued this year on vinyl, with a second volume, by our pals at Castles In Space.

“More recently, we’ve been imparting our production skills and Yoda-like guidance upon some new spunky eccentric electronic pop artists and we’ve just released our finds and collaborations to the world via the ‘Wayward Freaks From A Synthetic Street Volume 1’ compilation.

“It features a young kid in New York called God Hole who is great, a gentleman in Sheffield called Wet Man, an electro Euro crooner called Dimitri, a weird basement acid duo from Salford called Adult Entertainment and an eccentric chap who lives on a boat at Camby Island called Damp Carpet. Plus there’s a new ERC ft Maxine Peake track and some late night synth jams between myself, Dean Honer and Sean Lennon under the alias The Valhalla Dale WMC Band.”

Future Plans: “We’re hoping to do individual releases with some of the artists from the compilation,” reveals Adrian. “Beyond that there’s no real plan. I see Desolate Spools as a stepping stone to something bigger for the acts. It would be nice if they took us with them as their producers if anyone came calling waving a cheque book. Whatever happens though, we aim to put a lot into them, knowing that what we will get back is a spiritual cleansing of our chakras.”

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