2018 List: Mat Fowler

Mat Fowler | Spillage Fete Records | on some memorable things in 2018.

My daughter Agnes taking her first steps this year.

Moving away from London, the city I was born and have lived in for many years to a small city in the countryside called Norwich. Sad to leave good friends and family but the move feels more in line with our own drumbeat.
Time spent walking the Norfolk coastline near Cley-on-Sea being blown around by the winter breezes.

Releasing a collection of my home recordings – ‘A Happy Return’ that also includes my partner Aimée and our daughter Agnes. They span the last couple of years of making in the small home we recently left. Aimée made a painting for the cover that came before the music and seeped into the spirit of all the recordings. Thank-you to anyone who took the time out to listen to it, buy it or write about it.

Hatching plans with fellow Spillagers Kev and Matt for future Bons musical adventures and helping Aimée finalise her painting residency at the Josef and Anni Albers foundation in Connecticut for AW 2020.

Travelling and playing in Japan throughout November with good friends – the Tenniscoats, Markus and Nico as ‘Spirit Fest’ to tour the second album we released this year. We met so many kind people and discovered such a great community of inspiring generous music makers, as well as playing alongside people whose music I have loved like Aki Tsuyuko, Tori Kudo and the more recently discovered Eddie Marcon.

A memorable summers day picnic shared with Aimée and Agnes on the steps of St Mary’s church, that sits quietly alongside the river Thames and is where William Blake married his wife Catherine Blake. William Blake being an ongoing cause of fascination and inspiration.

Amidst all the divisive things going on all around the world this year, I’ve been inspired by the many people that are making efforts to pull people and communities together, however small or large these efforts are, be it through music, art or any other means.

And musically I have found this to be one of the most inspiring years for listening to new music(a couple older but only recently discovered). I’ll list some below, in no particular order.

The Ivytree – Unburdened Light (Recital)
Primitive Motion – House in the Wave (Bedroom Suck Records)
Delphine Dora – Eudaimon (Three:four Records)
Aki Tsuyuko – Empty Talk (Enban)
Penguin Cafe Orchestra – Tribute (333 Discs)
Kama Aina & Hochzeitskapelle – Wayfaring Suite
Pumice – Platelets (Soft Abuse)
Thomas Bush – Old and Red (Men Scryfa)
Drunk Elk – Under Neon Lights (Wormwood Grasshopper Records)
Tenniscoats – Music Exists 4 (Alien Transistor)
Stefan Neville & Hermione Johnson – Scrum (Feeding Tube)
Yuzo Iwata – Daylight Moon (Siltbreeze)
Speedbooth – (ST)
Leighton Craig – Diamond Eye (Bruit Direct Disques)
Maxine Funke – Silk (Feeding Tube)
Esperanza de OTO 2 – Compilation (Hakanairo)
Letha Rodman Melchior – Shimmering Ghost (Siltbreeze)
Mary Lattimore – Hundreds of Days (Ghostly International)