5W1H 001: Puppet Show

FW106 Puppet Show


James Garvey, aka Puppet Show.


A Singer and Composer and Musictech head and, most importantly, an artist on Fwonk*.


In person, I currently live in the West of Ireland. In previous years I’ve lived and studied in Maynooth (Kildare).


The Present

(I shall wrangle this question into a subject of music)

My music seems to be helplessly retro-tinged, even when I don’t intend it to be (it’s probably the gear I use, or just my ears and brain). Bad form for an artist to not be in command of his work, you’d think, but then again, even worse to be blind or to be too spitefully contra to its tendencies. There’s a 90s Electronic Music feel to almost anything I’ve put out as Puppet Show and at this stage I don’t try to fight it, I just go with the flow.


I’m an artist because, it’s the life for me, it suits how I think and how I view and interact with the world. A great teacher of mine once defined the role of the artist in society as “To reveal society’s soul to itself”

Which for a couple of EPs on a netlabel it’s not really a practical endeavour, but it is the underlying force in my “career” if you will. My Puppet Show EPs are more about self expression and some very conflicting philosophies I current hold regarding art (Plato mixed with Dostoyevsky sort of). The strange/beautiful thing is I feel as if electronic music is probably my worst medium for self expression and that I would even be better off painting then trying to put complex ideas into 90s sounding middle-tempo dance tinged pieces of music. But then perhaps that’s just the grass looking greener. It’s a selfish pleasure, and it’s so selfish that other people look at it and furrow their brow or read paragraphs like this and think “he’s just kidding himself” to which I have no counter, and then I think “why would I do that to myself?” or even “what kind of person would do that to himself?”

At least modern artists put their urinals and messy beds in galleries, and have articles written. But I potter on with all of this, and more brilliantly, this could all just be nonsense so I’m not even saving myself here either.


For this EP I used Reason rewired into Ableton Live. There are a couple of field recordings involved, but they’re so mangled it doesn’t really matter what I recorded them with. Mastered in a wav editor. I used SRH840s to write, mix and master the whole thing, except one of the tracks is quite old (TZ001) and was only recently remastered, but it might’ve been made in either Cubase (and Reason) or Protools with VSTs.

Puppet Show on Fwonk*