‘Stasis Is Death’ – RIP Sandwell District (or ‘Sandwell Deceastrict’)

As it was delicately put “I smell an art student”…

…but that doesn’t entirely take away from the loss of one of our favorite labels, that just in the last 12 months has been getting the credit it deserves. Sandwell District became ‘buy on sight’ records followed by ‘purchase-entire-back-catalogue.’ Still calling each other c**ts and discussing broken shoulders from bar fights with each other – as per the Wire feature last issue – perhaps it was time to call it a day before the world was robbed entirely of one of the three talented producers that made up Sandwell District at the hands of the other core members.

As well as producing incredible plates month after month Sandwell as a label also worked as a history lesson, making us dig a bit deeper in to the history and values of the involved members, introducing these pioneers to a wider audience and projects that weren’t even on their own label. The fact that Karl O’Connor (Regis) was making the tracks on White Savage Dance as early as 1988 is simply mind-blowing. And while the first five years focussed around underground techno releases from Karl, John Mendez (Silent Servant) and David Sumner (Function) under various guises, the last 12-15 months has seen the collective branching out with new artists such as Rrose and throwing themselves in to increasingly experimental projects.

Still, evidently the live show will live on and records will still be produced on different labels, you’ll just have to actually do a bit of research before buying this time around.

Here’s a few of our favourites from their time together.

A day after the announcement they also posted a mix on their blog, which you can download here, check the tracklisting and image below.

Black Time – A Boring Day For The Boredom Boys
Cabaret Voltaire – Protection
The Satyrs – Yesterday’s Hero
Eric Random – Fade In
Front – Polaroid
Powell – The Ongoing Significance Of Steel And Flesh
Delia Derbyshire & Barry Bermange – Falling
Stephen Mallinder – Cool Down
Sandra Electronics – Clean Air
Snowy Red – Sinkin’ Down
Karl O’ Connor and Peter Sutton – Paralyzing
Vatican Shadow – CIA Contractor Freed Over Pakistan Killings
Young Hunting – Embers From The Pyre
Malaria! – Kaltes Klares Wasser
The Vivids – Mt Radiant
Ike Yard – Night After Night
The KVB – In to the Night
Regis – Blinding Horses
Sandwell District – Untitled B
John Maus – The Crucifix
Minny Pops – Secret Story
Throbbing Gristle – Exotica
Avrocar – Maiden 39
In Trance 95 – 21st Century European Temptation
Raime – You Will Lift Your Frame Clear
Throbbing Gristle – United
Sandwell District – Untitled A
HTRK – Slo Glo
Aphex Twin – I
Death in June – Crush My Love