Illustrated Tapes 089: 666 MPH

Curated by Tom Gooch
17.12.20

spoti.fi/3r4Sw0i



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Tom is an artist and illustrator from Nottingham, currently based in South East London

Heya Tom. Can you tell us a little bit about your tape and your song selections?

Hi! The mood I want to invoke with my tape is a slyly contented, cool feeling that ultimately relaxes you. This may seem odd, as the playlist is predominantly meaty and heavy (peppered with some groovy rock n’ roll) and I understand that most people don’t find relaxation in that sort of thing, but to me these songs bring about a meditative state of intense calm, which makes me feel humbly confident in a slow, thought-out way.

What direction did you take with your cover art, and what was your process?

I love being as detailed as possible and really wanted to go all out with this image. Not being able to get to the studio during the second lockdown meant it was 99% created on the living room table, but I recently treated myself to a decent pair of headphones so managed to enter the aforementioned state and got immersed in the music and the details.

The bloke in the image is what I imagine the end result would be if the feeling I described in the first question could be extracted, rolled in a spliff and smoked - although I’m gutted I forgot to give him a headband. I was originally going to add colour but I think the black/white gives it a trippy spin and an added layer of confusion, which I like. I’ve been enjoying the work of Spain Rodriguez, Jim Woodring and (of course) Robert Crumb lately - so the idea of it being a black and white acid trip seemed right to me.

What are your fave album covers, records with a great music and artwork combo, or musical projects with a visual component?

I’m fairly into photography and as a result find myself drawn to album artwork that has an interesting photo.

With that in mind there’s Cold World - Dedicated to the Babies Who Came Feet First. Not hugely into the band but I’ve always loved everything about that album cover.

Dedicated to the Babies Who Came Feet First – Cold World
2008, Deathwish


Deftones - Around the Fur. One of my favourite albums, I bought it when I was in school and my friend’s twin sister saw it and thought I’d bought a porno. Really suits the album I think.

Around the Fur – Deftones
1997, Maverick / Warner Bros.
Art Dir / Design: Kevin Reagan Photography: Rick Kosick

In terms of illustrative stuff :

Iron Monkey - Our Problem. I got into Mike Diana’s artwork a year or two ago and lost my mind when it dawned on me I’d been seeing his work on one of my favourite albums since I was 15. The rest of the image is something to behold too. Mike Diana’s work looks like what Iron Monkey sound like, I always think.

Our Problem – Iron Monkey
1998, Earache
Artwork: Mike Diana


Oozing Wound - Earth Suck. I’m a huge Oozing Wound fan and love that a band like this would have an album cover like this. I’ve tried to find who made it but haven’t been able to.

Earth Suck – Oozing Wound
2014, Thrill Jockey
Artwork: Sam Nigrosh


Honorable mentions:
  • Mudhoney - Superfuzz Bigmuff
  • Foot - The Balance of Nature Restored
  • Johnny Truant - No Tears for the Creatures (was always fascinated by this artwork growing up, reminds me of A Series of Unfortunate Events. Bit of an original idea for the cover too).
  • The Heavy Eyes - The Heavy Eyes
  • Fuzz - II

What did you listen to growing up?

As a young kid I really loved stuff like Chili Peppers, Arctic Monkeys, White Stripes, The Strokes, Nirvana etc. Then I heard Duality by Slipknot aged 13 which single handedly made me into a full on greebo, which I still am now to be honest. Had the classic greebo/emo phase - Slipknot, From First to Last, Bring me the Horizon, Glassjaw etc. Me and my friends also fully rode the Djent wave and spent a few years listening to nothing but Periphery, Monuments, SiKth, Tesseract, that kind of thing.

Hardcore, punk and mathcore is something I really got into in my teens too, but then as I left my teens settled on doom, stoner, sludge and everything that comes with that: Kyuss, Sleep, Solace, Clutch, Eyehategod, Sabbath, Om, The Sword, Clutch, Bongripper. I would always be listening to the slower heavy stuff growing up during the other phases but it’s the one that stood the test of time and the one I actively engage with most now. Had a good few hip-hop phases too.

And what’s on heavy rotation for you at the moment?

My favourite band that’s come to me in the past year or two has been Whores., they’re one of those bands where I can listen to the entire discography and not get bored, and they’ve skyrocketed to being one of my favourite bands of all time. I think they’re super underrated too, they’re categorised as noise rock but they’re just so blisteringly heavy I don’t know why they’re not more well known. The song I’ve included in the list is one of my favourites, there’s something very cathartic about someone yelling ‘Let’s see how low I can go’ at the top of their lungs.

As well as the heavy stuff I’m a huge fan of 60s/70s era rock music of all kinds - and at the minute I’m obsessed with a band from the 70s called Fanny. Again, super underrated, and there’s a half-hour Beat Club video of them on Youtube that showcases their best songs, it’s great and I think everyone should watch it.

What’s happening in your creative world at the moment?

There’s one or two commissions on the go, but since getting a full time job in September my free time for drawing has become limited! I’ve spent the best part of the last month on the drawing to accompany this tape, I really wanted to get stuck in.

I released a small comic book earlier in the year, and I’m now (slowly) working towards another release, more of an anthology of different comics and drawings over the past few years. I’ve got plans knocking around for a full length graphic novel, and will hopefully start the process of annoying publishers and sending work to various places in the new year.

Where can we find you?

Instagram (@6ooch) is where I’m most active.
tom-gooch.com
last.fm/user/SupaGorgoniza  - This has been keeping up with what I’ve listened to since I was about 15. Probably gives a better idea of my music tastes than anything else.

Thanks, Tom!
Mark