Echoing Tower Bridge

Tower Bridge, London, 1978

PULp made numerous experiments on the River Thames to do with echo, the use of acoustic chambers and spaces, such as under bridges, affected by varied tidal conditions and sounds made in and through water. When Anne Bean and Paul Burwell first met in 1976, Anne had a drum kit set-up in her Butlers Wharf studio, which connected metal drumsticks to a car battery, closing a circuit with the metal parts of the drum kit which had 9 volt car bulbs attached. This allowed her to be able to ‘drum shadows’. Paul later extended the kit and played it under Tower Bridge with Richard rowing and Anne swimming and vocalising.

This duo Paul Burwell and Anne Bean, have performed in many contexts and environments. They just did a recent performance at Tower Bridge in which PB drummed in a rowing boat with drums and cymbals wired up so that they lit up with the contact of his metallised drum sticks. AB swam and vocalised around the boat with two fish attached to her shoulders and red life boat lights attached to her ankles. The whole scene was lit by flashing lights from river boats and spot lights from the balcony of the warehouse/studio they use. ‘Pulp’ is a new venture and their single captures the intensity of their live performance. I was stunned.

D I Fanzine