Discus Music

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Discus Music is a U.K.-based Avant-garde, free-jazz and electronics record label, run by woodwind, electronics performer Martin Archer.

Discus Music was founded in 1994 by Martin Archer and Mick Beck, and is the CD imprint for over 80 releases by their many and various projects. The sounds to be found on the label vary between electronic rock music, free jazz, extended songform, improvised music, and other releases which simply cannot be categorised.[1] Jazz critic Duncan Heining declared the label's catalog to be "...as fine in quality as it is eclectic in taste and content."[2] Included on its artist roster are British jazz musicians Keith Tippett and Julie Tippett.

American jazz commentator Darren Bergstein recently noted: "Martin Archer’s Discus label is the UK’s best kept secret, in the sense that far more than the imprint’s loyal followers should be aware of its existence. Multi-instrumentalist Archer has built a formidable catalog that is genre-defying in similar ways to contemporaries ECM, Hubro, Sofa, Hat Hut, et al: ostensibly a ‘jazz label’ (which takes the very meaning of the word ‘jazz’ to heretofore unconsidered heights of stylistic fancy), Discus has long transcended such literal trappings (further-out Editions of Contemporary Music, natch), which means that Archer uses it as a conduit to release whatever sonic muse he, and that of his fellow artists, begs to pursue. This has resulted in a broad and consistently marvelous array of work that bridges the divide between compositional rigor and improvisational abandon, whipping elements of each into a heady, ultimately bracing and wholly satisfying, stew."[3]

British comedian and writer Stewart Lee reviewed Discus Music artists Juxtavoices for The Sunday Times, writing: "Martin Archer has been throwing combinations of sonic stuff at sticky Sheffield surfaces since the late 1970s. Assembling the 30 singers of Juxtavoices in atmospheric locations, he channels their breathy extemporisations through texts by Samuel Beckett, Gertrude Stein and the venerable sound poet Bob Cobbing, who would have loved Juxtavoices' inchoate evisceration of Are Your Children Safe In The Sea? Here's a mass exorcism, a whole tribe talking in tongues, 30 full-moon were-Ligetis, and Wicker Man workings wrangled by the Swingle Singers."[4]


  1. "Discus Music - Sheffield". Jazz Near You Sheffield. Retrieved 2019-09-18.
  2. Heining, Duncan (10 July 2013). "Martin Archer: Making A Difference, Doing Things Differently". All About Jazz. Retrieved 2019-09-18.
  3. Archer, Martin. "Discus Music". Discus Music. Retrieved 2019-09-18.
  4. Lee, Stewart. "Juxtavoices – Just Another Antichoir From Sheffield : Stewart Lee - 41st Best Standup Ever!". www.stewartlee.co.uk. Retrieved 2019-09-18.

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