Quirky #6: Coming of the Locust


An interview with good friend and brilliant electronic musician Mark Van Hoen (Locust) for Dubspot where he talks about Quirky. Mark was responsible for booking acts at Quirky early on before my tenure and remained an integral part of the night thereafter.


No Bongos, No Stilts: Quirky #2

Fancying myself as an Alan Erasmus of the 90s Ambient-Electronic scene (or indeed my famous sadly decased namesake) I set to task comissioning who I considered to be possibly the Peter Saville of the era to design Quirky’s flyers: Paul Nicholson of Prototype 21 had designed Aphex Twin’s logo, the sleeves for both Ambient Works and for a short time was Richard James’ dancer (a common mistake at the time was that he was actually Richard and the fellow crouching over his equipment was the lighting guy). Nicholson along with other emerging talents like Ben Drury & Will Bankhead, Grant Wilson-Claridge of Rephlex and R-Art’s work for Irdial Discs, I all felt were creating a fresh visual identity for new British electronic music, similar to Third Earth’s designs for Detroit Techno labels. Elsewhere, the new breed of European Techno records were largely packaged with sleeves depicting hippy robots, toga clad Adonises/Hindu Gods, or bad pastiches of Roger Dean, Trevor Key and others synoymous with 70s Progressive Rock album sleeves. James Bignell (my partner and founder of Quirky) is a photographer whose work adorns the sleeves of Locust (Mark Van Hoen) classics like Weathered Well and Natural Composite. We wanted to distance Quirky from the ‘Crustie’ proto-Trance nights popular at the time, proliferated with bongo players and stilt walkers (who were often let in for free). I think and hope that we largely succeeded. (Thanks again to Natalie Abadzis)

Myself, James Bignell, Unknown circa 1994