Eat Static

A techno-based, UFO-obsessed side project of Ozric Tentacles' Merv Pepler (keyboards, drum patterns, samplers) and Joie Hinton (keyboards, samplers) along with synth player Steve Everitt, Eat Static formed in Frome, England in 1989. After making their initial appearances performing before and after Ozric shows, Eat Static issued their first few singles on their own Alien label before signing to Planet Dog, debuting with the album Abduction in 1993. The follow-up, 1994's Implant, proved so successful that Peplar and Hinton exited Ozric permanently; the Epsylon EP appeared the next year, with the Bony Incus EP surfacing in 1996. A year later, the album Science of the Gods was released on Mammoth Records. In 2000, a mixture of loungecore, exotica, and their sci-fi asthetic re-emerged with the album Crash and Burn.

For the following year's In the Nude!, Eat Static expanded their range with '60s psych and Latin influences. After the release of the album, Pepler spent some time with side projects. In 2003, he issued Supernatural Jazz as Dendron, his drum'n'bass alter ego. A year later he collaborated with Tangerine Dream's Steve Jolliffe as Hi-Fi Companions, whose debut album, Swingers in Paradise, was released by Twisted Records. Pepler also worked with Propellerheads' Will White as Flexitones, and the duo issued the full-length Joyrider in 2005. Eat Static returned in 2007 with De-Classified, which harked back to the sounds of Implant and channeled the energy of the group's shows.

Early in 2008, Pepler became Eat Static's sole member when Hinton left the group to spend more time with his family; that July, the Arabian and jazz-inspired Back to Earth was the first album released by the new lineup. Several live and archival sets followed over the next few years, including 2009's Revisitation: The Singles 1993-1998 and 2013's The Peel Sessions: Peel Your Head. For 2015's double album Dead Planet/Human Upgrade, Pepler revisited the modular synthesis of Eat Static's early days and collaborated with artists including Robert Smith and Gong's Steve Hillage. Everitt returned for 2017's Last Ship to Paradise, which he and Pepler created using only modular synthesis. ~ Jason Ankeny

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