Club Late Music, HIDE Productions and Over my Body join forces to explore meta-collaboration in two new releases

Over the past years, the open-source and collaborative music label and collective Club Late Music (CLM) has made itself known for exploring the production and diffusion of musical projects by connecting artists worldwide that operate at the outer fringes of electronic music. In two new releases—a joint compilation with multi-disciplinary collective HIDE Productions  from Italy and a split EP with Taiwanese Over My Body (OMB) label—the three collectives explore the power of meta-collaboration to foster artistic experimentation in music and visual art and redefine the boundaries of contemporary music creation. CLM, HIDE and OMB share an openness to explore formats, processes and artistic outputs without sticking to a specific genre, scene or type of content but constantly involving new artists and collaborators to question how contemporary music is created.

GUN-X02 HIDE Productions ©Alex Ortiga (SYN) & Griigg, 2023
GUN-X02 HIDE Productions ©Alex Ortiga (SYN) & Griigg, 2023

In April 2017, CLM initiated GUN—short for Global URL Nation. GUN is a network of musicians, designers and creative enthusiasts, based on collaboration, mutual support and the sharing of knowledge, skills and creative resources. For each project in the series, members of the GUN community collaborate with members from another collective or label—exploring the results of cross-pollination and pooling across the global ecosystem of electronic music. The GUN x HIDE compilation is a testament to the collaborative spirit that thrives within these communities. “We believe it’s a great way to take us into territories we wouldn’t go by ourselves, guided by some of the best doing it,” CLM tell us.

Established in 2018, HIDE Productions emerged as a small showcase in Italy, expanding into a multidisciplinary collective that delves into post-digital music, art, installations and software creation. HIDE has been developing experimental instruments and effects as Max for Live devices, which can be used in music production software Ableton Live. The collaboration between GUN and HIDE evolved through the GUN-X series, where GUN community members collaborate with artists from another label or collective. The format encourages artists to question their practice when confronted with others, resulting in a hybrid of different aesthetics. For the project, HIDE members SY/N, T.U. / Capiuz, Coeden & Leden created a sample pack and two Max for Live devices that were used and reinterpreted by AFGA06L, B E N N x Griigg, Cralias, Fungal Mat, jjjacob x P I T, Lukann, Nagruv, Sha Sha Kimbo x xato, & Talita Otović from the GUN community. The resulting 10-track compilation ranges from vaporous synthetic soundscapes to deafening growls, bitter hits and jarring noises.

HIDE Productions, ©Alex Ortiga, 2023

“As a label, we have a very defined aesthetic, we aim to give voice to a specific way of working with sound and to create a way of aesthetic consistency,” Alex (SY/N) from HIDE explains. The pack used contains percussive elements, as well as textures, while others evolve around sound design. “We did not establish strict guidelines for the creation of the samples,” Luca from HIDE, who also contributed to the compilation under the moniker Capiuz, tells us. “A cool twist in this project was to add the devices to the mix. Giving an instrument/effect instead of a sample is, to me, very similar to suggesting a new way of exploring audio material to the participants.”

HIDE Production Ableton Devices, © Luca Favaro, GUI & Alex Ortiga, 2023

The visual aspect of the GUN x HIDE compilation continues the collaborative theme. “For the cover art of the GUN-X series, we always try to also bring a collaborative aspect to it. The same way HIDE provided us with audio resources, we agreed that we would give HIDE visual resources to be reused for the cover,” CLM explain. Alex Ortiga (SYN) and Griigg, representing HIDE and GUN, respectively, contributed to the visual design. The collaboration extended beyond audio, with visual resources exchanged between the collectives, resulting in a visual identity that mirrors the diverse sonic landscape of the compilation. “The different tracks and audio packs evoked to me something corroded and abrasive, a sort of synthetic summoning ritual and at the time I was digging a lot of glyphs and sigils. I thought it would be interesting to propose a few symbols and see how they would be reinterpreted by Alex via the HIDE prism,” Griigg tells us. Alex then distorted and assembled together with other 3D models of Griigg, resulting in the final artwork.

Apex Union, ©GaryChig0o & XTRUX, 2023

While the GUN-X compilations allow to explore with a larger group different processes of creation, artists are normally restricted to expressing themselves through only one track. For their upcoming collaborative EP “APEX UNION” with OMB, CLM chose a different format. “The split format, which is between a single and an EP, gives artists more space to express themselves, to explore concepts or processes more in-depth, whereas with GUN-X formats the identities of each collective might get diluted in the larger mass. Instead, the two collectives are ‘‘confronting’ each other, which creates a nice contrast and discussion,” CLM explain.

Over My Body Mantis, ©XTRUX, 2021
Over My Body KOMA VA, ©Felix Onorato, 2022

B E N N, who runs OMB, has been part of GUN for a few years and has contributed to several projects in the past, including the GUN x HIDE compilation. “We followed the creation of his label from the start and we instantly liked the direction and radicality of it. Some other GUN members (like Capiuz or personalbrand) also participated in some of their releases. Quickly we felt a connection and wanted to organize a joint project with them,” CLM explain. The resulting split EP “APEX UNION” includes original tracks by Bungalovv (GUN) and Lujiachi (OMB), with remixes by Cralias & Dj Würm (GUN), and B E N N & Jondu (OMB), resulting in a drum-heavy, high-octane release. The visual design was jointly created by GUN-affiliate GaryChig0o and OMB collaborator XTRUX. Together they forged a visual narrative that complements the sonic journey of the EP through 3D art. “Visually, the central theme revolves around elements of neurons, reflecting the experimental nature of the EP,” B E N N adds.

Over My Body x Eastern Margins, ©XTRUX, 2023

The benefits of collaborating across global communities are evident in the rich tapestry of sounds and ideas showcased in the two releases. “There’s so much happening all over, people creating fascinating sounds, local and international cultures blending with each other, organizations and local actions taking place, and much more, that we feel an intuitive urge to connect with these people, initiate a dialog to learn about their lives, their vision, their ways of doing and sharing that with our own circles. We believe that more coordination and openness between communities worldwide can really help develop working and healthy alternative models of creation on a bigger scale, based on sustainability, ethical practices, and mutual support,” CLM explain.

Whitepaper V2, ©Club Late Music, 2022

Exciting projects lie ahead for all three collectives. HIDE plans to celebrate its 5th anniversary showcasing a comprehensive collection of everything produced over the years. It also has some more Max for Live devices and fonts in the making. CLM is working on several new projects, including one centered around the use of voices, a project oriented towards musical notations where music sheets were made by visual artists to be then interpreted by musicians, another addition to their UNITED series as well as another GUN-X edition with UK-based artists Morsel. OMB plans to collaborate with artists, release limited-edition merchandise, and present new albums in the coming months, while allowing for evaluation and adjustment.

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