BRAND NEW RELEASES – Three French Roosters, Hermit at the Fireside and The Golden Gonk


 Yes, folks- today is your LUCKY day…keep readin’ to find out exactly what’s on offer this month…

Three French Roosters – “Sober Doberman Enjoys a Cemetery Sandwich” (Shack in the Barley Productions, shitbar071)

1. Three French Roosters (13:37)
2. The Hymn Sheet (20:30)
3. (A Shot At) Unity (9:41)
4. The Pie Was Still Clucking As I Placed it in the Oven (4:50)
5. Subtle Skull (20:17)

This is the first volume in the ‘The Golden Gonk presents…’ series of free downloads, the simple intention of which is to showcase a variety of acts signed by The Golden Gonk to his Shack in the Barley Productions label.

Download the zip file here (contains both the music and full artwork):

Size – 63.68 MB

Three French Roosters biography by Jamie Azzopardi/The Golden Gonk…

Like many of the great groups of our time, Three French Roosters came into being when the members met while studying together at university. The trio bonded over a mutual love of esoteric music, film and literature and low-priced baked goods- not to mention a mutual disdain for the NME-hyped ‘NY pretty boys in skinny jeans’ indie drivel that was being forced down everyone’s throats at the time- so in order to reflect all of this, the trio decided to start recording and gigging together more or less instantaneously. Yes- the year was 2002…THE FIGHT WAS ON, folks!!

The group’s early live gigs were guerrilla-style affairs held in university lecture rooms, halls of residence during student parties and in local pubs on open mic nights. Quite often the gigs consisted of the trio improvising on ‘prepared’ instruments along to home-made audio loops, detuned radios and conceptual video collages made up of scenes from hardcore European sex films from the 1980s, gory slasher flicks, bizarre foreign adverts, footage of extreme political unrest, banned cartoons and other such controversial oddness. As a result, word soon got out about the ‘extreme’/unsettling nature of the live show, which lead to a certain amount of opposition from a few ‘right-on’ students, who would often attempt to derail gigs by chucking eggs and flour over the group as they played, amongst other things. After a fairly serious fight broke out during one such gig in 2003, the group decided to cease all live action for the time being and concentrate on crafting an album, which they hoped they would complete before the end of that year…

This was not to be- despite recording hour upon hour of material during 2003 and throughout their remaining time at university, as well as working on music individually back at home once graduation was over, none of them could face whittling down the mass of sound into anything resembling a ‘defining statement’. Hell- they couldn’t even decide on a name for the group!! Indeed- such was their haste to begin their audio assault on the unsuspecting student nation of Northern England back in ’02 that they never actually settled on anything, figuring they could “always think of one later”…

Much, much later as it turned out!! It was December 2011 when the trio decided they would finally commit to ‘christening’ the group (the name Three French Roosters was chosen as a reference to the fact that they each used to wear rooster masks during live gigs to conceal their identities and also because the first gig they ever played took place in the run up to Christmas and there’s that song “The Twelve Days of Christmas” with the line about the “three French hens”…except it’s guys in the group, hence roosters…something like that anyway!!) and most importantly that they would finish that damned album and let me put it out on my label!!

Anyway- six months on from this I’m extremely pleased to say that said album “SOBER DOBERMAN ENJOYS A CEMETERY SANDWICH” is now 100% finished and is available to download absolutely free of charge through this website (see link above)!! This avant-garde masterpiece contains recordings from every year of the group’s existence, including sections of surviving audio from some of their legendary early live shows, right up to music allegedly recorded mere weeks ago!! If you enjoy deeply disturbed yet weirdly playful stuff like early Nurse With Wound, Richard Youngs and Simon Wickham-Smith‘s collaborations, Throbbing Gristle, Kluster, late period John Fahey and Kemialliset Ystävät (and let’s face it- who doesn’t??!!) then you’ll lap this shit up. Snag a copy today!!

Unfortunately with the release of the album, the group have come to a decision to officially call it a day. They’ve promised that they’ll donate one FINAL piece to a forthcoming sampler album I have planned, but other than that they feel their work here is done!! It’s been a pleasure working with ye, dudes…


R.I.P. Three French Roosters (2002-2012)

One last thing- if anyone who knew/knew of the group back in their university days has any photographs and/or video footage from their gigs etc, then they would be most grateful if you could get in touch via this site and pass it on to them through me. Thanks!!


Hermit at the Fireside – “Hermit at the Fireside” (Shack in the Barley Productions, shitbar072)

1. Rumination 1 (10:02)
2. Rumination 2 (10:02)

The second volume in the ‘The Golden Gonk presents…’ series.

Eerie, ritualistic improvisations on an old fireplace from Hermit at the Fireside, which is a solo project of one of the former members of Three French Roosters.

Ultra minimal bumps and knocks echo into pained metallic screeches in these two hugely intimate and personal ‘ruminations’, captured in an abandoned house somewhere in the North of England one gloomy February afternoon a while ago…

A fantastically atmospheric EP.

Download the zip file here (contains both the music and full artwork):

Size – 18.58 MB


The Golden Gonk – “Truncheon + The Dreaming Brain” (Shack in the Barley Productions, shitbar073)

1. Truncheon (29:29)
2. The Dreaming Brain (29:36)

The third and final new release this month is volume 12 of the Free Gonk series…

Featured ingredients: nightmarish horror synth, a vast expanse of fuzzy psychedelic doom, weird robotic blues, hypnotic loops, sweet minimalist melody, harsh atonal guitar mangling, three dimensional pastoral drones, vaporous arcs of free floating voice, chiming nocturnal harmonics, field recordings captured beneath a blazing early-summer sun…and much more…

“Truncheon” and “The Dreaming Brain”…imprisonment and freedom in a little under an hour…

All sounds recorded and mixed in May 2012.

Download the zip file here (contains both the music and full artwork):

Size – 54.30 MB


Many thanks if you choose to download any of this fresh batch!! It’s been a stressful few weeks getting everything ready in time, but we got there in the end!! I hope you enjoy the music. As ever, any feedback is much appreciated, so please get in touch if you have something to say about the sounds.



There are still a few stray copies of the very, very limited “Laying Low for a Living” CD-R knocking about at Shack in the Barley Productions HQ, so if you still haven’t purchased this fine slab of prime Yorkshire dronage, now’s your chance!!

There’s a sample from the album on the official Shack in the Barley Productions SoundCloud page…

If you’d like to buy a copy, it’ll cost you a mere £3.00, plus postage costs. Send an email to…

…with your location and I’ll get back to you with the total price and my Paypal address.

Thanks to everyone who’s bought copies so far!!


That’s about it for now. No rest for the wicked, though- I’ll be spending the next few weeks recording some brand new Golden Gonk material which will hopefully see the light of day a bit later in the summer!!  

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