Crash Course: Keith Seatman
The aim of this new series is to act as an alternative to the usual interview format, in that we will ask our specially selected guest artist to provide us with a whistle-stop tour of their musical influences and favourite records, as well as a list of their own tracks to investigate by way of an introduction to their music. And for this inaugural instalment we are delighted to welcome Keith Seatman to be the first to take the chair.
My own introduction to Keith’s music came via his kaleidoscopic 2022 album, ‘Sad Old Tatty Bunting’, and my immediate thoughts were that this was exactly the sort of music I would imagine Syd Barrett to be making if he were still with us, and there can be no higher praise than that. But enough from me, over to Keith…
All time influence album-wise is very difficult to pin down. Wire’s ‘154’ is an album that I do always go back to as is Pink Floyd ‘Piper at the Gates of Dawn’.
The 1st song I ever heard from Pink Floyd was ‘Bike’, which just instantly appealed to an 11 yr old me.
I love a good compilation. A few favs when driving are ‘Gather in the Mushrooms 68-74 Psych Folk. Pop Psychedelique’ and the mighty OST to the film ‘Northern Soul’.
I always return to Tangerine Dream’s Zeit and Stratosfear Albums.
Single wise R Dean Taylor ‘Ghost in my House’, Sparks ‘This Town Aint Big Enough for the Both of Us’, Donna Summer ‘I Feel Love’ & Giorgio Moroder ‘From Here to Eternity’.
Influences: Syd Barrett, Pink Floyd, Ivor Cutler, Giorgio Moroder, Radiophonic Workshop, Mark E Smith, Roxy Music/Eno, Kevin Ayers, Cardiacs, Swell Maps, John Barry, Ultravox (with John Foxx), Ramones, Tangerine Dream, Barry Adamson, Northern Soul, Ska, Vaughn Williams, Wire, Sex Pistols, Clash, White Noise, Joe Meek, Billy Childish, Broadcast, Devo.
Tracks to dive into:
Broken Folk. 10 inch single with Belbury Poly:
Avoid Large Places (Album Time to Dream But Never Seen):
The Grand Alchemists Parade:
Consistently Mediocre and Daydreams (Album 2011 ksa001)
Boxes Windows & Secret Hidey – Holes (Album 2013 ksa002)
Around the Folly and Down Hill (Album 2014 ksa003)
My Morning Ritual (Digi Single 2014 ksa004)
A Rest Before the Walk (Album 2015 ksa005)
All Hold Hands and Off We Go (Album 2017 ksa006)
Disjointed Oddities and Other Such Things (EP 2018 ksa007)
Broken Folk (EP 2018 ksa008 Belbury Music)
Time to Dream but Never Seen (Album 2020 Castles in Space)
Sad Old Tatty Bunting (Album 2022 Castles in Space)
Burial At Bevill’s Leam (12inch Single 2023 Castles in Space)
“Keith Seatman’s world is simultaneously charming and more than a little unsettling. On previous outing, 2020’s ‘Time To Dream But Never Seen’, it was all faded seaside glamour. Here he arrives riding a Chopper, giving a seater to formative, half-remembered 1970s nostalgia. So what is it? Musically, it’s a world of psychedelic whimsy that’s neatly summed up in the rich song titles. Opener ‘A Swish Of The Curtain’ is kind of ‘Silver Machine’ meets JAMC with added synthy swirls and curls, ‘The Gnome Zone’ a squelchy melodic theme tune to a lost 70s show about, I dunno, topiary, while ‘In The Fields Round The Back’ is a sinister creep through the woods to reveal a derelict house – a common experience among those who grew up in the 70s. Or is it? Who knows. ‘Jumpy’s Playroom’ features Ghost Box/Belbury Poly’s Jim Jupp, while Broken Folk’s Douglas E Powell adds spooky spoken word to ‘Burial At Bevil’s Leam’. Both collaborations only add further weight to this already impressive adventure. Like all Castles In Space releases, the vinyl release is lush. Nick Taylor’s bold artwork and illustration is as eye-catching as ever, while the hyacinth coloured vinyl will have you cooing in appreciation. ‘Sad Old Tatty Bunting’ then, not so much an album as a transmission from another time.” – Neil Mason Juno Daily (Feb 2022)
“Write his name in the centre of a crumpled notepad, and – as this extraordinary musical
adventure unfurls – let the comparisons explode around it. You’ll end up with Syd Barrett, The Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band, the BBC Radiophonic Workshop, even Tommy Cooper and the remnants of Music Hall. But they’re not influences, nor inspirations. It’s more than that. It’s genetic.” – Bob Fischer/ Electronic Sound (Feb 2020)