“A more than satisfied portcullis is finally being lowered after almost 20 years,” says Ian Hicks
Ian Hicks aka Baron Mordant has announced the end of his Mordant Music label. After nearly 20 years and 99 releases – “just shy of a ton to avoid blues taxation...” – the label rounds things up with three final releases. Notably, the finale includes the concluding 22nd episode in the Travelogue series: a “GRATIS to everyone,” says Hicks.
But why now? “I'm knackered after almost 20 years of swiMMing in the cross-cu(rre)nts as well as my recent addictions to both bar billiards and Plants Vs Zombies...” explains Hicks over email. “I'll still be making library production MMusic,” he confirms, referring to his career as a library music composer, “and burrowing deeper into my EMS Synthi-A.”
The first release for Mordant Music was in 2001 with a CD booklet – without a CD – called “Nijmegen”. Admiral Greyscale aka Gary Mills would join Hicks in running the label for a while, departing before 2009 song collection SyMptoMs. The MM002 release was a badge, followed by a Baron Mordant 7" Baud With You/Shot Away. The label's reputation grew with hauntological album Dead Air in 2006, a field recording series The Travelogues would launch in 2007, and three-parter The Tower ran between 2005-2009. Beginning in 2012, a collaboration with Nick Edwards under the name eMMplekz began to make regular appearances on the label, as would Edwards's solo work as Ekoplekz, alongside artists Tod Dockstader, Vindicatrix, Cosmic Dennis Greenidge, Some Truths and Shackleton, among others. Simon Reynolds wrote about haunted audio purveyors Mordant Music, Ghost Box and Trunk Records in The Wire 273. Any favourite releases in the history of MM? “The whole MM catalogue – it's one long single track and I'm proud of all the releases & artists, warts 'n' all...”
The final three releases are: some “unheard Cornwallian tracer fire” with Pyramids Of Space’s FROM AtoM; the label's last full length from Baron Mordant with Mark Of The Mould; and “chalking up its 22nd beano & buffers bookend” Mordant Music Travelogues 22: ‘The Bar’s Gone'.
Stream “The Internet Did It” from Mark Of The Mould and an exclusive stream of Travelogues 22.