Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Guapo inteview for It's Psychedelic Baby Magazine

Monday, January 13, 2014

Guapo 20th Anniversary 2014 - 1st concert

Gaupo will be performing on Thursday 13th February at The Rhythm Factory, Whitechapel. London
Doors 7.30pm
More info to follow

Friday, July 05, 2013

The Stargazer's Assistant - Mirrors & Tides, Sivers & Voids Limited Double 10" Vinyl

Now taking pre orders for The Stargazer's Assistant double 10" LP. It comes in a limited edition of 300 copies and includes a download card/code.
Release date is 27th July.
£20.00 post paid for UK residents
£22.00 post paid for rest of Europe
or visit:

Utech Records
Poster sleeve 20”x20”
Black vinyl + download
Edition of 300
Side A
Coral Butterfly
Side B
Mirrors & Tides
Secret Kingdom of the Swift
Side C
Night Soil
Shivers & Voids
Side D
The Dream Kingdom
Patti Jordan
Keith Utech
July 27, 2013
A 2x10” vinyl release from David J. Smith, The Stargazer’s Assistant, incorporating 2008’s acclaimed Shivers and Voids EP on Utech Records and a new three-track EP, Mirrors and Tides, featuring “Coral Butterfly”, “Mirrors & Tides” and “Secret Kingdom of the Swift.”
Eyes closed, ears wide open, we are given freedom to dream the void. Sweeping, intricate, sometimes ominous yet always exuding a warmth and depth of emotion, The Stargazer’s Assistant produces pure cinema of sound.
For the new EP, David J. Smith is joined by Circle vocalist Mika Rättö’, who sings on the heart-breaking “Coral Butterfly”. David also had the honour of playing the late Finnish jazz drummer Edward Vesala’s Sound & Fury collection of unique metal percussion.
Ancient forests, vast plains, billowing clouds, rusted metal hulks, wet rock walls, lights flickering in darkness: these are the subtle visions of The Stargazer’s Assistant.
Born in Stourbridge, 27th August 1970, David J Smith studied fine art before gaining his BA at Cardiff in 1991. He moved to London in 1994 and concentrated on musical projects, including the avant rock group Guapo, which he co-founded.Smith has been playing drums and making music since 1986 and is regarded as one of the UK’s most spectacular and imaginative percussionists. As well as The Stargazer’s Assistant and Guapo, he performs with Cyclobe and the Amal Gamal Ensemble.

Sunday, June 09, 2013

Visitation in Manchester

Guapo show in Manchester 14th July.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

H.O.T.V. review

Nice write-up.

There must be a surrendering, from the very beginning, of any preconceptions about the progressive or avant-garde. Any frequenter of pop music will be entirely uncomfortable at every juncture, but that's the point. We can't apply pop necessities to music which is entirely uninhibited and seemingly uninfluenced, although that's almost certainly not the case. The very concept of a song, which we have grown to understand as a concentrated form, carries no weight in this medium. These aren't even moods or ambiences which can be deciphered through the modern understanding of music and human interaction.

A more appropriate take would be that these are swathes of creativity, unabridged and unapologetically vast. Opener, 'The Pilman Radiant', is a lumbering, prehistoric beast; meticulous and repetitive, purposely so. We get a circling of the frenetic sound, altering the prominent voice through wild guitar, bass and percussion. These are exo-sounds where the instrumentation is free from the restriction and dilution of structure, allowing ambitions to be as they are, not as they would be. There's a metronomic aspect, not just in the percussive sense, but in the way that phrases seem to serially return with sequential arpeggios that feedback against swathing underlying intensity. All seem to be cast indistinctly into an abyss which achingly forms them together into a tangible, collective sound. And that is 'The Pilman radiant'.
Their ideas have been defined as "controlled chaos" with dissonant sound somehow jarring yet almost resolving. Much of the listening experience is subconscious, and likewise, it seems that the music itself is subconsciously driven. It seems like human intervention hasn't had any bearing, as though the barriers, and transparency, of conscious thought have been at least subdued. There's a fundamental familiarity with the sound which perhaps goes beyond music as a means of entertainment and rather uses it as a tool for spiritual ceremony.
At times, and during second track, 'Complex #7', the connection to what we understand as music is indeed spurious. With electronic fizz punctuated by linear pulses as though the record were on 'Stand-by'. Yet despite the lack of reference or context there is a fundamentally affecting quality, perhaps in the timbre of the undertones. 'Tremors From The Future' echoes, as much experimental/progressive music does, the preceding decades; reinterpreting an approach. But rather than repeating, or falling to cliché, Guapo take experimentalism into an exciting sphere. The stereo sound of the headphones begins to sway while the arpeggiated theme intertwines sub-plots laden with mute scratches, creating a deep 3D collage to comprehend.
Even the concept of what an album ought to be is challenged. Time's influence seems fickle as the listener is immersed into the extra-terrestrial, multi-dimensional, the cyclic and the dissonant. Ninety-five minutes is filled (really filled) with six tracks that are typically diverse. But actually, diversity isn't that typical is it? Originality in aspect and perspective that doesn't cower under the far reaching umbrella of pop; and that's the one thing that is exclusively human: The potential of art. From a sound which seems wholly inhuman, the very fact of its existence exemplifies the possibilities. Harnessing ambiguous sound and shaping it, weaving it together beneath others, applying the human element is what makes this ultimately beautiful. It is a maximalist, seismic event; almost inconceivable. Yet it was.
Rating: 7.5/10


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Sunday, January 20, 2013

Released 29th January

Prepare yourself for an experience that’s simultaneously otherworldly and assaultive. On paper, the music of Guapo reads like a riddle – the British quartet’s sound is based around ideas like controlled chaos, atonal harmony, uplifting darkness, and beautiful destruction. Nothing about the band or their work seems to adhere to even the most open-minded set of preconceptions about the meaning of umbrella terms like “rock,” or “progressive,” or even “experimental.” But when you abandon the need to reconcile any of these concepts with each other, and simply let their latest album, History of the Visitation, speak for itself, everything becomes radiantly clear.
History of the Visitation is the ninth album from the forward-looking foursome. This album finds them following through on the kind of epic constructions that sprung forth from their albums like Five Suns and Black Oni.
The record is dominated by the 26-minute tour de force “The Pilman Radiant,” offset only by the 11-minute journey “Tremors from the Future” and the considerably more compact sonic sculpture known as “Complex #7.”
The band currently comprises drummer and founding member David J. Smith with mainstays Kavus Torabi (CardiacsKnifeworld) on guitar and James Sedwards (Nøght) on bass, joined by recent addition Emmett Elvin (Chrome HoofKnifeworld) on keyboards.
In addition to the new studio album, both the CD and LP versions include a live DVD of the group from their 2006 and 2007 USA and European tours. This is the only live footage of the band available to the public and features former member Daniel O'Sullivan of Ulver and Sun 0))).
Only 300 copies are available from us of the high quality vinyl pressing, which comes in a stunning gatefold jacket and which includes the DVD and a digital download card.

Tuesday, January 08, 2013

History of The Visitation Vinyl

You can now  order History Of The Vsitation via;

 Deluxe vinyl LP with gatefold sleeve. Includes live DVD together with artwork and digital download card. CD/DVD format coming soon. Official release date 29/01/2013

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Thursday, March 03, 2011

Steve Beresford + Angharad Davies, The Stargazers Assistant & Disinformation LIVE

Steve Beresford + Angharad Davies, Disinformation, The Stargazers Assistant + David Knight - live at "The Origin of Painting" closing event, Usurp Gallery, Sun 13 March 2011, 3pm to 7pm

Internationally known as a free improviser on piano and electronics, Steve Beresford also composed scores for 3 feature films and numerous TV shows and commercials. Steve has worked with hundreds of musicians, including Usurp Gallery performer Najma Akhtar, and Derek Bailey, Han Bennink, Ivor Cutler, Ray Davies, Christian Marclay, Evan Parker, Adrian Sherwood, Otomo Yoshihide and John Zorn. In 2009 Steve performed "Ephemera" by Christian Marclay, solo at The Louvre, and Steve recently performed "Indeterminacy" by John Cage with comedian Stewart Lee and pianist Tania Chen. Angharad Davies is a violinist active in contemporary, improvised and experimental music, whose freelance projects include work with artists such as Tony Conrad, Kazuko Hohki, Jim Thirwell and Mark Wastell. Since 2002, she has been exploring and expanding sound production on the violin by extending the sounding possibilities of the instrument.

The Stargazer's Assistant is the solo project of artist and Guapo percussionist / founder David J. Smith. Initially born out of the need to incorporate a sound element into David's large-scale sculptural installation "The Other Side Of The Island", since 2007 The Stargazer's Assistant has evolved into a fully formed musical entity, producing a series of highly composed and labour-intensive CD recordings, and live improvisations which focus on eclectic and subtle percussion performances which exude warmth of emotion. David Smith will be joined by David Knight on electric guitar and effects. David and David also perform together in The Amal Gamal Ensemble.

Disinformation is an art project primarily known for pioneering work with electromagnetic induction effects produced by the sun, lightning, the National Grid, and (as currently exhibited at Usurp Gallery) photographic flash equipment etc. Disinformation partly evolved out of its author's involvement (as a ground observer) in the Istochnik-Ariel laser antenna experiment on space station MIR. Since then Disinformation has exhibited in a nuclear bunker, bank vault, trawler and railway tunnel, at The Hayward Gallery (alongside Christian Marclay and Brian Eno), at Palais de Tokyo (Paris) and (for the MTV Awards) in Barcelona's Olympic Stadium, had 12 solo exhibitions, and collaborated with musicians such as Jim O'Rourke (from Sonic Youth) and saxophonist Evan Parker.

Usurp Art Gallery & Studios
140 Vaughan Road
London HA1 4EB
Admission Free

Usurp Gallery is 2 mins walk turning right out of West Harrow tube, West Harrow is 20 mins from Baker Street by Met Line towards Uxbridge. Usurp Gallery is open Thursdays to Sundays 2pm to 7pm. Please note 3pm start time for the March 13 concert.

Guapo update

Following a year's hiatus in 2010 Guapo are currently resuming work on a new album for Cuneiform Records.

It is with regret we announce our split with keyboardist Daniel O Sullivan but are happy to announce his replacement as Emmett Elvin.
Both David J Smith and Kavus Torabi have played previously in Chrome Hoof with Elvin who also plays keyboards in Kavus Torabi's psychedelic band Knifeworld.
Guapo wish Daniel O Sullivan all the best with the many projects he is involved with.

The new album will see a return to the 'long form' composition of Five Suns and Black Oni while covering much ground previously unexplored by the group.

David J Smith has been editing and mixing the footage and audio from the performance of Five Suns at NearFest 2006 with artist & filmaker Tai Shani and engineer Antti Uusimaki. A memorable day in many respects, not least for the fact that the band were rushed through the night in two taxi cabs from Phillidelphia after our van broke down, leaving barely enough time to down a coffee before gracing the stage that afternoon. The results will be available as a bonus DVD with the new album on Cuneiform in 2012

Guapo will be resuming live duties in the Autumn and are planning a number of dates in the UK and mainland Europe in October followed by a short USA tour in November including a performance at John Zorn's N.Y. venue The Stone as part of Cuneiform's festival there.

Dates will be forthcoming when confirmed.

Many thanks for your continued support.


Friday, September 25, 2009

Thursday, September 03, 2009

Monday, August 31, 2009

Black Metal Jeans

The Norwegian based design agency ANTI is launching a new black denim label. Working with graphic design, illustration, digital solutions, concepts and identities for others we decided to develop a brand of our own. The brand is built around Norwegian culture of darkness and the origin of True Black Metal. We are naturally influenced by the darkness surrounding us, our nature and the music scene reflecting this. Embracing the dark culture and the visual aesthetics surrounding the genuine Norwegian inspired our first line of Black Denim Jeans. / "The Exorcism of.." DIRECTOR Marius Tharaldsen DIRECTOR OF PHOTOGRAPHY Marius Tharaldsen GRIP & LIGHT TECHNICIAN Gripservice / Espen Zubi DESIGN Anti / Fredrik Melby ART DIRECTION Anti / Kjetil Wold PROJECT MANAGER Anti / Kenneth Pedersen KILLUSTRATIONS Justin Bartlett GAFFER Marius Tharaldsen DANCER Vilde Victoria Madsen ASSISTANT CAMERA Frederik Rolfsen STYLING & MAKE UP Marthe Kveli Valeberg STYLING Rico Iriyama ADDITIONAL HAIR Marthe Hov Bjerke EDIT MotionBlur / Erlend M. Knudsen RED CAMERA Motionblur / Espen Horn STUDIO Zone5 MUSIC "Jewled Turtle" by GUAPO

Monday, June 08, 2009

R.I.P Hugh Hopper

29 April 1945 - 7 June 2009


Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Monday, March 30, 2009

Blow Up

6 page feature on the family... Guapo, Æthenor, Mothlite, Miasma etc...

Monday, March 23, 2009

Guapo vs GMEA

Guapo meets GMEA

From the Rock in Opposition website...

"During the Rock In Opposition Festival 2009, GUAPO (UK) will work with the GMEA from September 14th-17th on the sound spalization of their music. (GUAPO vs GMEA). Several performances will take place in the second hall of the "Maison de la Musique" on the 18th, 19th and 20th of September. A fantastic opportunity to discover the meeting of Rock and Sound Research."

Rock in Opposition Festival (Curated by Roger Trigaux of Present and Univers Zero)

Other acts announced:

Univers Zero
Koenji Hyakkei
The Muffins
Charles Hayward

18th, 19th, 20th September 2009

Maison de la Musique
Cap'Découverte - 81450
LE GARRIC (Carmaux)

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Empire & Daughter Isotope vs Arnolfini

Presented by Spike Island and hosted by Arnolfini...

Tai Shani's
"Empire & Daughter Isotope"

Saturday 28th March 7pm
16 Narrow Quay, Bristol BS1 4QA
Tickets £3/£2

An Exclusive Ritual Extravaganza performance
An Epic Synthetic Grey Magic Sacrifice and Resurrection of 12 Uncorrupted Virgins!

Featuring a live score by masters of Doom / Avant Prog, GUAPO...

A performance created by Tai Shani: A Minnie Mouse High Priestess conducts the ceremony, while above looms the spectre of notorious Satanist Anton LaVey, re-enacting his famous 1964 Jaybird Magazine poses. With the participation of The Forever Travelling Salesmen, Walking, Talking, Living Sex Dolls and The Messenger Majorettes.

From the dead the 12 shall rise, strangely animate but dead already and dead again, more than ever before, Daughters Isotope: THEY ARE DEAD, WE ARE NOT, WE ARE YOURS.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Thursday, February 05, 2009


6th February 2009

Pump House Gallery and Implicasphere present a unique happening with live bands, DJs, smoky films, smoked delicacies and lots of smoke machines. Expect sonic and visual spectaculars from 10-piece glam death disco outfit Chrome Hoof and psychedelic compositions by Guapo. Among those spinning smoke-infused records will be DJ/producer Andrew Weatherall, Nick Stroud from JazznotJazz and Muscleheads.

£8 + £1 booking fee per ticket / £6 ICA Members + £1 booking fee per ticket in advance.

All tickets will be £10 on the door.

Thursday, January 22, 2009