1201_Alarm is a collaborative music project which is quite unlike any other, taking on board quantum physics; some of the world’s best-known scientists; lasers; tesla coils; Manga and the phenomenon of audio illusion, each track is uniquely head-spinning. Led by multi-instrumentalist and composer, Steve Thompson, Hello_World is the debut album by 1201_Alarm, a project which has inevitably taken over three years to reach its conclusion, given the sheer scale of its concept, musicality and collaborative nature. Telling the story of Mankind’s embracing of technology over the last 50 years and looking ahead to future interactivity, the album also features contributions from such disparate talents as Jim Al Khalili; Helen Czerski; Libby Jackson; Aleks Krotoski and Marcus du Sautoy.
Based in Kent, Steve Thompson’s 1201_Alarm traces human’s adoption of technology since the Apollo era and looks forward to how the future between Man and machine may look. On the album, the acoustic instruments (trombone, trumpet and sax) represent the human side and the electronics (synths, laser harp, tesla coil and rarely used instruments such as the Japanese Tenori-On) represent the technological side. Embracing the work of synth Gods such as Jean-Michel Jarre; jazz; electronica; trip-hop and the works and ideas of everyone from Nobel Prize-winning scientist Richard Feynman (who also guests on..yes, bongos!) to the renowned sceptic, James Randi, Hello_World is a celebration of science and technology and an ever-shifting music box of pure joy.
Hello_World continues its unconventional approach with a CD and double vinyl release, the fourth side of which features of double groove, meaning that the track which plays depends entirely on where the needle hits. Alongside driving his beloved DeLorean car (best known from the film Back to the Future) and building retro computers, Steve has staked his claim to be one of only two people to have played live at both the opening and closing events of the 2012 London Olympics; a residency at The Globe Theatre; gigs with artists as diverse as Robert Smith, Kylie Minogue and Jamie Cullum and playing on the very final TV show by the legendary Two Ronnies. If he isn’t hacking into a quantum computer live on stage and reprogramming it to compose music (it really happened…from a stage in London to a computer in New York!), look out for him on ITV’s The Chase around February!