Discover: Karl Hyde


Karl Hyde @ Abbey Road

Karl Hyde is a delightful man. He brings light in.

As a dedicated follower of the electronic group Underworld for 20 years now, I’ve come to love the cheeky, wistful, obscure yet ethereal thoughts-manifest-as-sound, dropping from his lips between the delicious beats that fellow member Rick Smith conjures forth.

And now Karl has taken the long awaited B-road down through his travelling thoughts across the ‘Edgelands’ of home county Essex, UK. It was always a case of when and not if this came around, for the poetic talent this man has needs natural outlets, so like a river needs an estuary it also needs a source and a beginning.

His album ‘Edgelands’ sees Karl hook up with another talented producer Leo Abrahams (Brian Eno, Pulp, Marianne Faithful), to lay down an atmospheric sound collage capturing  “the beauty of decay, tyre marks, crude graffiti, industrial noise, overheard conversations, epidemics of coffee bars and nights on the back seat being driven through cities by drivers who never sleep. A celebration of people’s idiosyncrasies, mapping out my journeys with the stories they tell, edgelands where city meets scrub, where ragged ponies grazed annexed fields and the air smells chemical.”

To help promote the album BBC Radio 6 Music enlisted Karl to create and host a 2 hour ‘6 Mix’, a great sonic drift through the inspirations that helped influence and define Edgelands. I urge you to listen before it’s no longer available, it’s a real treat!

Karl Hyde – 6 Mix on Mixcloud

Also here’s official video to first single ‘Cut Clouds’

To compliment the album Karl has also produced a documentary to be released as a special edition CD/DVD. Going deep into the hinterland of London’s great river Thames, he embarks on a quest to document the surroundings and lives lived from North Essex down to Barking, the title of Underworld’s last album. As the documentary is yet to be released here’s the description from Karl & Rick themselves;

‘The Outer Edges’ is a collaboration with acclaimed director Kieran Evans (Finisterre, Kelly + Victor). The film tracks a peripheral route from north Essex to the Thames; a journey that follows the flow of the River Roding from its source to its conclusion at Barking Creek and along the Thames Gateway to Tilbury. Stopping off at allotments, boxing clubs, Saturday markets and working men’s clubs, the film celebrates the vibrant energy and attitudes of the people living and working within London’s invisible borders – the unmapped boundaries that Hyde crossed each day to record the album. Cut entirely to a soundtrack made up of deconstructed Edgeland tracks, The Outer Edges offers a fascinating insight into lives lived along the edges of London. The Outer Edges will be premiered at Sonar Sound in Tokyo on April 7th, and then released as part of the  Edgeland CD/DVD package on April 22nd.

Not only that but Karl is a talented artist in the painty, inky sense of the word, being a founder member of graphic design collective Tomato and also creating exhibitions such as  “Whats going on in your head when your dancing” at La Foret Tokyo.

This video was filmed and shown on Fashion tsushin TV, Japan. For more info go to: http://karlhyde.underworldlive.com