Saturday, 14 December 2013

I need a doctor , i got a bad case of a Urban Love Ulcer


Since joining the addictive world of social media, Twitter to be precise, i found myself discovering a underworld of cool underground Electronica. Especially in Scotland, where there isn't a shortage of imaginative and creative producers. One that really stuck out for me is a prolific and highly talented artist from Edinburgh, now hiding in the Underworld of Glasgow's tech heads and Electronic wizards. Today people, i would like to introduce you to one URBAN LOVE ULCER

The first piece of his trademark Instrumental's i remember hearing was the groovy and slightly sinister sound of Sulphur Cloud. U.L.U has a nifty knack of making a tune sound like it is overdubbed with different instruments. On this particularly piece it's just Synth. 

It's clearly evident that he is heavily influenced by Film scores , especially on Grand Guignol. A nod to David Lynch's Twin Peaks i would say, Also very Portishead (who also share the same musical vision.) Though U.L.U says it was inspired by the spaghetti Westerns from Sergio Leone and Ennio Morricone.

Jet Engine People  A tune which reminds me of the theme to John Carpenters In the Mouth Of Madness.  With it's rock base, another love of U.L.U music styles, so much so he has a Rock n Roll band 

A natural progression surely was for him to get his own show? No, i was shocked too! But pleasantly surprised, after believing all producers just hide behind the music. U.L.U can be seen in the flesh and in action playing his love for all things Rock N Roll with a sprinkling of his own tunes thrown in. He worked his way through Ideal Boot Camp Before getting his Badge of owner by now presenting his own show on every Monday night from 22.00-24.00 ( British Time) Expect quality tunes and Anarchic fun.  

I've asked artists that i have loved and plugged over the year if they would contribute a Christmas themed piece or cover, many have obliged. Here is the warped piece and a exclusive tune for your ears from URBAN LOVE ULCER 

A twisted take on the Xmas Carol: Silent Night. Like the Salvation Army carol Singers dropping acid in a Indian Restaurant . Mines a L.S.D laced lentil Curry.

I manged a Q & A with the Man this week, here is the result:

Hey Malc,
Hope all is good with you?
You may have found Silent Night on Soundcloud - apologies in advance!
I've answered those questions, there were some tough ones man!

1. What's your name and where do you come from?

Pete Howard, born/raised in Edinburgh, living in Glasgow

2.Urban Love Ulcer, where did you get the name and picture?  (simple, effective but disturbing) 

I was planning to create my own electronic music in the early 90s and this seemed to combine similar kind of names around at the time, with the stomach ulcer i was suffering from as well. I was pretty young to have a stomach ulcer, but i ate a lot of microwave meals back then. My logo was actually based on a photo i found of a tomato in a cup of water, which looked potentially disgusting without being overly unpleasant - almost, nearly representing an ulcer of sorts. I did use a real picture of an ulcer for a while, but it wasn't very strong as a logo. The tomato in a mug graphic serves as an easily recognizable international symbol for unusual electronica.

3.You really have an eclectic taste in your styles of Electronic music ( Vangelis,John Carpenter j.m.jarre etc) who's your biggest inspiration?

I think most of my inspiration comes from a lot of random things - i'm  a massive fan of rock n roll and punk, and there's probably elements of the Velvets, Led Zepp etc that have seeped in there, but i always tried to move into new genres from the beginning of ULU. Subconsciously, i think influences can come from anything really. My family are very musical, so i absorbed a lot of influences from them as a child too. I remember a family holiday as a boy where i got gastroenteritis and spent 4 whole days vomiting solidly to a soundtrack of Equinox and Magnetic Fields. This was a pivotal moment for me.

4.Name your first Electronic vinyl, C.D or Tape?  ( depending on your age?) 

1st single i bought was S-Express - theme from S-Express, what a tune!

 Less impressive was my first cassette, bought when i was about 5: 'The Very Best of Showaddywaddy'.

5.If you could have sound tracked one movie, name it?

There's a lot of soundtracks i really like from great films which have massively inspired my output - so i'd have to pick a movie with a disappointing soundtrack which i could improve upon. That being the case; i'd maybe pick Schwarzenegger: Commando just because the steel drum insignia is way over-used - i think it's prolific composer James Horner's work. He could of easily written another theme just to add a bit more texture to the soundtrack. If there was a film about Urban Love Ulcer, i'd want some involvement there for sure.

6.In the world of Electronica, who would you most like to Collab with?

I'm not sure the way i create ULU music makes me a good candidate for collaborations to be honest - perhaps Dr Dre? He seems like a decent chap. 

7.Can you remember the first piece of music you created?

I've been creating noises since before i can remember, but the first ULU track was 'Das Ghoul' in 1993 - it was recorded live, torturing an old keyboard that i borrowed from school.

8.can i get hold of your album's and C.D and will their be a new physical album on the way?

I'm currently working on a new album, but there's a lot to do yet. If people want to buy a physical album, i can get some made up - however, my music is immediately accessible to people online, and this is where i feel it can disturb the most people. 

9.Personally i would love to see a live set, any chance of this happening in the new year? 

Unless i stripped the tracks down a bit, i don't think it would possible at the moment. I'd need a lot more musicians to perform most of the tracks i'd want to play and it probably wouldn't really sound like Urban Love Ulcer by that point either. It might be easier just to start another band with songs they could create by themselves! 

10.what is your most prided piece of tech toys or vintage keyboard?

Guitars are my favorite items. My white Les Paul is pretty special.

11.Your music is solely instrumental, ever tempted to bring in a vocalist or sing yourself? 

Yes, i am currently collaborating with a couple of vocalists and i'm excited to see where that takes things - however, i may in time take on vocal duties too. 

12.You have your own rock n roll show that goes out on a Monday live, how did this come about? 

I first heard about Idealclubworld on Twitter, they have a real infectious passion for all good music, particularly house, techno and underground electronic sounds. I got totally hooked and they opened a sister station 'Ideal Bootcamp', which gave aspiring DJs the chance to try out on live radio. I signed-up and played rock n roll kind of stuff, which is probably what i know best in life. I really enjoyed the buzz of live radio and they are really fantastic people, so i took the opportunity to join the main station. It's an inspiring and talented team of music fanatics, who have taught me loads of things.

13.You're also a musician in Glasgow based The Hallions, tell me a bit about them? 

The Hallions are a 4-piece band made up of myself and 3  like-minded dudes who i met at university once. It's a wild rock n roll/punk band with a tremendous ability for improvisation - very much the antithesis of what Urban Love Ulcer do in fact. Our songs are played differently every time and it is a powerful sound. We play gigs sometimes too - there might even be one in 2014.

15. Nearly Xmas, if you could have any thing as a present, what would it be?

A Playstation 4 would be cool.

16. Finally if you could play any festival in 2014 what would it be?

Glasgow's West End festival is nearby and there is a Greggs on Byres Road

Clearly not a fan of Fine Cuisine but definitely a lover of mighty fine quality music. 

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