I can’t believe it’s 10 years since one of my all-time favourite albums was released: Remembering Machine, by Secret Archives of the Vatican. How time has flown.
I remember getting my hands on the album for the first time. It was a cold winter’s night in Croydon, and was my first meeting with Vince Millett and Louis Counter, who form the core of the collective. I’d discovered their music online and was playing tracks from their Babylon Halt
album, which had been 10 years in the making and I really enjoyed. I’d never actually met the guys in real life but we’d been chatting online and said we should meet up one day.
Vince was waiting on the corner just outside the pub and we both recognised each other immediately, being similarly “hirsute” and “well-toned”. Vince has gone to live up to the well-toned moniker, whereas I still remain in “inverted commas”. On the way in to the pub he pressed a CD-R of Remembering Machine into my hands and said it was the new album. This was only 6 months after Babylon Halt, so I was surprised at the speed of its release, but I was interested in hearing it.
Vice, Louis and I got on like a house on fire and I’ve been a big fan of their music ever since.
I couldn’t listen to the album until I got home, but when I did I was a little surprised. This wasn’t “son of Babylon Halt”. It was weird. With glitchy beats and almost subsonic basslines. This was new territory for me. I’m not sure I liked it.
I persevered listening to it, and something changed. This album grew … and grew … and grew on me. Just like all the great albums I had listened to my life: Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon, Joy Division’s Unknown Pleasures, James’s Laid, Massive Attack’s Mezzanine, Leftfield’s Leftism and Underworld’s Second Toughest in the Infants. These are all albums I’ve been unsure of, on first listening, but which still give goosebumps today. Part of the soundtrack of my life and I remember the day I got them vividly.
So, if you haven’t heard this album, then I implore you to get down to bandcamp and pick up your copy today. If not least, because it’s Vince’s birthday today, and it would be a fitting birthday present for him! Go on! You know you want to. I promise you’ll not be disappointed.