Half High is a new project by Matthew Hopkins and Lucy Phelan of Naked on the Vague, and right at the bottom of this text is a short promo video to give you an idea of where they’re heading. Curiosity piqued, we got in touch with Lucy and Matt to get some more information about the new project. We’ll speak to these guys in greater depth once they have a release out, which is likely to happen by the end of the year.
If you want to see Half High playing, you can see them at Sound Summit next month, or you could go see Pete Swanson at the Red Rattler on Friday night. Maybe you could even do both.
Why did you form Half High? What were the circumstances.
The idea for Half High arose out of some jams Lucy and I did years back which were abstract, ambient-type soundscapes. These pieces had a similar sound to some of the stuff NOTV had done such as the Mickey Mouse tape, and Twelve Dark Noons soundtrack, but seemed to suggest something different somehow. Whilst we were both living in Belgium earlier this year we decided to revisit this sound, and think about how it could evolve into an audio-visual project.
What is the difference between this and NOTV?
Basically we wanted to work on a new project that wasn’t limited to being a ‘band’ in the strictest sense. We wanted to explore sound making that could have a number of outcomes such as recordings, video, installations etc. Half High uses a much different set up to NOTV – more tapes, electronics, ambiance, and room for improvisation work to create more of a damaged new age kind of sound.
Is NOTV still operating?
Not at the moment. We’ve been on an extended break for about a year now.
You guys seem obsessed with clocks. Why?
Clocks are incredible devices if you think about the power they have in governing our lives. There is an almighty existential horror to this fact. But they are also just lumps of wood and plastic with printed numbers and ticking parts, [so] why do we rush around like they are ‘real’? Measuring time is essential I suppose, but it’s so absurd that we somehow manage to mechanically monitor such a mutable, abstract thing.
The duo also played live to air on a Belgian radio station back in May. It’s spooky.