In the past three years, one of the hallmarks of Irish music has been ‘collectives’, collaborative indie labels growing connected audiences and trading advice. Most of these are based in a specific county: rap/hip-hop label PX Music in Limerick, for example. Lots of good music comes out of it, but these micro-scenes can feel very separate, which is why it’s exciting to see alternative labels Hausu of Cork and Burner Records of Dublin collaborating with Actualacid and Marcus Woods’s ‘Smith’.
The track has been in the works for a year, with the psychedelic electronica Actualacid (aka Jack Corrigan) and the more ambient Woods trading instrumentation back and forth: Corrigan would add drums and Woods synths, before Corrigan took the resulting song and shredded it up to the nth degree.
The result is a melding of both artists’ styles: Woods’s ambient synths run through the track while Actualacid’s kaleidoscopic Aphex-Twin electronic beats jump around it, giving the track a warped and fractured push-and-pull feel. Interspersed throughout the track is a sample of The Fall’s frontman, the endlessly quotable Mark E. Smith. All proceeds from the single are going to bail funds across the USA.
To quote Marcus Woods: “The track is a loud fucking mess but it’s exactly what we wanted from it.”
With plans in the works for a live event sometime after the current situation ends, hopefully this won’t be the last time these two labels cross over.