Spitting Feathers Review

Nice review in French here of Spitting Feather’s CDr with Olie Brice and Philip Marks. Some plans afoot to do some stuff with this group later in the year.


David Birchall (guitare), Olie Brice (contrebasse) et Phillip Marks (batterie membre de Bark!) démontrent en une heure un goût pour une improvisation aérée. Que taillent quand même quelques gestes incisifs et augmente une recherche sonore qui impose à Birchall l’usage d’effets variés. Changeante, la musique du trio intéresse.


Terrascope Reviews

Reviews of the solo Acoustic Textures and Spitting Feathers CDrs on Black and White Cat Press from Terrascope.

“Using a selection of found objects and an acoustic guitar, David Birchall has created an intriguing and listen-able improvisation on his latest album “Acoustic Textures”. Containing seven tracks, the album serves up a wide range of moods as an apple, windscreen wiper, plectrum and a twig are employed to great effect with “Signs of Hope on our Archipelago”, the album opener, setting the standard scraping and rattling into your ears with a preciseness and deftness of touch that ensures the sounds are never wasted. As the tracks bleed into each other, more chapters than individual pieces, it is hard to distinguish them, but the magnificent springiness of “City Smells” will make you chuckle, whilst the delicate shimmer of at the beginning of “Another Apocalyptic Vision at Breakfast” soon turns into a darker and intense drone, bringing the album to a conclusion that is far from the playful middle section. A fine piece of improv that flows wonderfully.

Also featuring David Birchall (Guitar), as well as Olie Brice (Bass) and Phillip Marks (Percussion), “Spitting Feathers” is an energetic free improv collection that finds the players in harmony with each other snatches of melody peeking out from behind shards of noise, scrapes, rattles and clunks, the moments of silence vital punctuation within the pieces. Over seven tracks the musicians prove themselves to be inventive and alive to the possibilities presented by the other players with “Wall of Horns” and the more percussion led “Fine Words, Butter No Parsnips” proving wholly satisfying to these ears, whilst opener “”Sat There Like Piffy on a Rockbun” has moments the sound like The Clangers on a large dose of LSD, or maybe that’s just me!”

Some new reviews

New reviews in French & English of BBM and solo CDrs from Monsieur Delire over in Canada:

BIRCHALL/BRICE/MARKS TRIO / Spitting Feathers (Black & White Cat Press)

Une nouvelle micro étiquette qui publie des CDr. Les deux premières publications mettent en vedette le guitariste David Birchall. D’abord à la guitare électrique, en trio avec Olie Brice (contrebasse) et Phillip Marks (percussions). Improvisation libre européenne – techniques déconstruites, jeu équilibrant instant présent et écoute des autres. Le produit physique est peu soigné, mais ils ont du talent.
A new micro-label releasing CDrs. First two out feature guitarist David Birchall. First on electric guitar, in a trio with Olie Brice (doublebass) and Phillip Marks (percussion). European free improvisation– deconstructed techniques, playing that balances in-the-moment-thinking with attentive listening. The physical product is crude, but they are talented chaps.
DAVID BIRCHALL / Acoustic Textures (Black & White Cat Press)
Et le voici cette fois à la guitare acoustique, dans un set solo de guitare acoustique préparée. Sept pièces, 33 minutes. Il y a de très belles choses ici, des sonorités nouvelles, bien maîtrisées, qui donnent le goût de le voir en action, de savoir comment il s’y prend. Plus remarquable que le disque en trio.
And here he is at the acoustic guitar, in a solo prepared guitar set. Seven tracks, 33 minutes. Some beautiful stuff going on here, novel sonorities, well mastered. This record’s best feature is the fact it makes you want to see him play live, to see how he does it. More unique than the trio record


Spitting Feathers review from Foxy Digitalis

nice review here of  recent cdr with Phil Marks and Olie Brice on Foxy Digitalis from Mike Pursley

“On “Spitting Feathers” the talented trio of David Birchall (guitar), Olie Brice (double bass), and Phillip Marks (percussion) produce a clattersome tonal plinking evoking teeming machines con- and de-structing a stone and iron metropolis. These players bear witness to cityscapes from afar and subterranean tunneling within. Behold negative inroads into earth and positive accreting termite tracks’ organic sculptures. Textured like sweetgum balls and quickening taunt over time-lapsed riverbeds dried and cracking, fissures spring forth. Hybrid popcorn improvisation. Shaky excavations. Crystalline. Players bestow handfuls of precious stones by the handful, but uncut and unpolished and still one with the coarser material. Mathematical. Lyrical (but stammering). Space and time within an assemblage of geometric planes. A meaningful collection of shards and slivers.”

Touching Extremes review of “Spitting Feathers”

Guitarist David Birchall, double bassist Olie Brice and percussionist Phillip Marks recorded these seven improvised tracks in Manchester, October 2011. The interplay is distinguished by a fair degree of concentration in large quantities of succeeding events: no room for lingering silences here, though one clearly detects the attention with which the players listen to each other. Quite significantly, the timbral wholeness sounds crunchily lumpy, positively appetizing and rather nonconventional in spite of the customariness of the instruments utilized. In “Wall Of Horns”, Birchall extracts infinitesimal particles of feedback and iridescent picked droplets as Brice’s arco spreads harmonics all over the place, moulding frequencies until they sound like drunken flutes; Marks counterpoints with charming snippets of assorted percussive belongings. “Back Spasm” hiccups and hobbles amidst several kinds of controlled contractions, delivering us from the urge of locating a regular beat (something that you’ll never find in the abundant hour of this CD). Just a pair of examples of what the trio can do, often in condensed temporal stretches. Focused listeners are challenged without resorting to gratuitous aggressiveness, thus allowing a more than partial comprehension of the mechanisms lying at the basis of the instrumental interaction.

see here for original context.

Spitting Feathers

We got a CDr release together for the tour with thee Birchall/Brice/Marks Trio.

Its called “Spitting Feathers” and has 7 tracks on just under an hour long. We recorded it to tape last year with Karl in The Milkroom at Hotspur Press.

You can hear the first two tracks here:



Thanks to the good people of Bolton, Lancashire and as ever Bertrand Russell for track title guidance.

There’s still some copies available for £6 including p&p or fiver at gigs. Email me here if you are interested in a copy.