Fringe and Underground Music Group


Fringe pop event poster

The Fringe and Underground Music Group was set up in 2016 by Lisa Busby, Stephen Graham and John Harries. It is based in the Music Department at Goldsmiths and runs themed events in relaxed and inclusive settings that bring together creative practice in and academic research on fringe and underground music.

Fringe and Underground Music Group is supported by a Goldsmiths public engagement grant and by the Popular Music Research Unit.


Space of Making Pamphlet Series - Live Launch

11 May, 2018, Lewisham Arthouse

The Fringe and Underground Music Group at Goldsmiths launched a pamphlet/printed edition series entitled Spaces of Making on 11 May at Lewisham Arthouse.

Based broadly on themes of physical, digital, social and conceptual/ideological space, the first run of pamphlets featured contributions from artists and musicians Charles Hayward, Marlo Delara, Sharon Gal and Richard Phoenix.

The launch event for the pamphlet series featured authors presenting their pamphlets, as well as live sets from Lizzy Laurance, Grey Sea Over A Cold Sky and Scrounge, and a DJ set from Tpongle.

Marlo De Lara created a sound piece for her presentation, which can be heard here.

An image gallery of the Spaces of Making pamphlets can be viewed below.

Please e-mail if you are interested in buying physical copies of the pamphlets, or using them in any format.


Hayward Side 1
Hayward Side 2
Phoenix Side 1
Phoenix Side 2
De Lara Side 1
De Lara Side 2
Gal Side 1
Gal Side 2


12 February 2022, Adam Bohman at Goldsmiths

As part of The Centre for Sound Technology and Culture’s conference, Assemblages and their Affordances, Adam Bohman was interviewed by Stephen Graham and performed text-based vocal pieces and improvisations.

9 July 2021, Beyond the Avant-Garde? Rethinking the Vanguard in British Music since 1970

This one-day symposium looked at avant-garde music in the UK since 1970, covering Bowie, post-punk, modernist composition, electronic dance music and more. It examined ways that the history and historiography of ‘vanguard music’ in the UK since 1970 could be traced, documented, and rethought.

The symposium included papers from twelve international academics, with a keynote discussion led by Profs Georgina Born and Benjamin D. Piekut.

The symposium was co-hosted by the Fringe/Underground Music Group and States of Flux (University of Manchester)

7 May 2021, ‘Etudes’ by Sharon Gal - An online presentation & talk

Etudes by Sharon Gal is a collection of scores and propositions, presented as a deck of 78 cards, with text on one side and colour on the other.

A music, performance and art resource, the work acts as a catalyst to inspire and trigger the imagination. It’s an open score with interchangeable possibilities, to be played alone or with others. Etudes is an invitation to play, engage, contemplate and explore; to enhance and expand one’s experience, thinking, practice and performance.

This event included an introduction to the deck by Sharon Gal, with demonstrations and audio-visual contributions from guest musicians / artists, including Steve Beresford, Angharad Davies, Tim Parkinson, Chas de Swiet, Guy Harries, Blanca Regina, Rod Stasick and Yoni Silver.

28 April 2018, The Great Hall, Sharon Gal: Feel The Noise

‘Feel the Noise’ is a living and evolving sound sculpture, introducing an inclusive and egalitarian approach to composition and performance through collaborative music-making. The guitars are played through hand-held mini amplifiers, using a technique that produces low-volume feedback and continuous notes. The players move very slowly, affecting the ambience, projecting their sound and combining it with others, working together to shape and sculpt the sonic material. The piece highlights the relationship between sound and space by exploring and responding to the specific characteristics of the performance environment, architecture and acoustics. 'Feel the Noise' offers artistic engagement, play, and creative exchange as a means to learning and bringing together, presenting a democratic space and collective ownership.

Performers: Yoshiki Ichihara , Mike Whyte, , Donna Matthews, Rick Jensen, Christopher Bailey, Felix Macintosh, Suke Driver, Sam Enthoven, Victoria Major, Guy Harries ,Tarik Haskic, Dee R Fry, Jamie Turner, Jacqueline Grant, John McGrath, Shereen Elizabeth, Paul Reynolds, Geraint Warren, David Little, Alexandra McGlynn, Aurelia McGlynn-Richon, Edoardo Biscossi, Tom Richardson, Grahame Painting, Lisa McKendrick, Curt Parr, Jon Klaemint Hofgaard , Steve Beresford, Ged Flood, Laura Sampson, Gryphon Rower-Upjohn, David Webb.

Feel the Noise was supported by the Fringe and Underground Music Group, and produced in collaboration with Blanca Regina and Steve Beresford.

Longplayer Day 2017

21 June, Various locations

Longplayer Day 2017 is a 12-hour peripatetic cross-disciplinary festival celebrating the recently announced partnership between Goldsmiths and Longplayer by Jem Finer. Events take place across London locations: beginning at Goldsmiths (New Cross) and concluding with celebrations at Trinity Buoy Wharf (Poplar).

The Fringe and Underground Music Group contributed funds to support Áine O’Dwyer's performance of Annea Lockwood's ‘Piano Transplant No. 1, the permanently prepared piano’. O’Dwyer’s performance on Lockwood’s Piano Transplant No.1, the permanently prepared piano, is the first since the work was created in the 1960s.

Full schedule of events for the day is here.

Charles Hayward performs, with support from Gabriel Manzi and Charlie Loane

17 May 2017, RHB 167

This concert featured Charles Hayward playing a solo set of drums, voice, zigzag and swirl, songs in quantum funk, never the same twice, no click, no fixed zero point; ideas put to one side, this rocks. 'The music does not exist in its own orbit it is completed by ears, minds, bodies, the interplay between intent and perception. From This Heat to now: Forward Music!'

Goldsmiths Popular Music students, Gabriel Manzi and Charlie Loane, provided support.

Vicky Langan shows and discusses her work

13 March 2017, RHB 155, EMS

This artist talk featured the sound and film artist Vicky Langan.

Vicky showed and discussed her work in RHB 155, which is located on the ground floor of the Richard Hoggart Building in Goldsmiths, in the Electronic Music Studios.

Entry was free and open to the public.

[De][Re] Constructing Pop Territories

9 November 2016, RHB 167

[De][Re] Constructing Pop Territories was a seminar and concert that examines blurring lines between experimental and popular musics

It combined live musical performance, discussion and academic papers in an examination of the cross-fertilizing lines of influence between various experimental and popular musics, which muddy boundaries in fruitful and often perplexing ways.

We kicked things off with an hour long discussion featuring scholars Rachel McCarthy and Adam Harper, and then moved on to performances and artist talks from Olan Monk, Jacob Samuel and Lisa Busby & Gabriel Bohm Calles.

Fringe and Underground Musics Group is supported by a Goldsmiths public engagement grant and by the Popular Music Research Unit.

Fringes, Outsides and Undergrounds: The aesthetics and politics of unpopular music

9 May 2016, Richard Hoggart Building and Students’ Union.

Musical forms such as noise, extreme metal, performance art, experimental techno, free improv and more take inspiration from both popular and art traditions without being fully identifiable with either.

These forms exist either on the fringes of, or outside, commercial and cultural mainstreams, both in conventional musical centres such as London and Berlin and further afield, in South America, Japan and China.

This one-day conference and concert included 18 scholars and researchers presenting papers on themes emerging from these fringe, underground musical practices.

The conference also included an evening concert in the Student’s Union at Goldsmiths, which featured Sharon Gal, Marlo Eggplant, Celine Dior, Rose Dagul, Sly and the Family Drone and DunningWebsterUnderwood.


0945-1015: Registration and Introduction (RHB 137a)

1015-1145: Parallel Sessions 1&2

Session 1: AUDIENCES AND NETWORKS, Chair: Stephen Graham (RHB 137a)

Susan Fitzpatrick/Stuart Arnot (York St John): In happy dissensus: The audience of the No Audience Underground

Chris Anderton (Southampton Solent): Sonic archaeology: curation, cultural memory, and fan labour

Safa Canalp (Humboldt-Universität): Towards a Theory of Subcultural Transfer in Un-Popular Music Studies

Session 2: NOISE, CONCEPTS, PRACTICES, Chair: Lauren Redhead, Canterbury (RHB 137)

Véra Vidal: The Boston underground network

Ariane Gruet-Pelchat (Université Laval): Noise as self-subversion

Stan Erraught (Bucks New University): Unpopular or Nonpopular?

1200-1330: Parallel Sessions 3&4

Session 3: FRINGE AND UNDERGROUND POP MUSICS, Chair: Lisa Busby, Goldsmiths (RHB 137a)

Christopher Haworth (University of Leeds): Mapping Underground Musics: from Microsound to Vaporwave

Adam Harper (University of Oxford): Unpopular pop? The roles of pop in underground musics

Rachel McCarthy (Royal Holloway): Pop or pastiche: Underground music and the failure of postmodern satire

Session 4: IMPROVISATION AND ITS CONTEXTS, Chair: James Bulley, Goldsmiths (RHB 137)

Alexander Hunter (Australian National University): Musical Anarchy in the Academy: Using free improvisation to deconstruct musical hierarchies

Thomas William Smith (University of New South Wales): Performing The Generic

Artur Vidal (Crisap, UAL): Hélène Smith's 'vocal utopias' and Derek Bailey's non-idiomatic improvisation: locating Free Improvisation within the history of modernity.

1445-1615: Parallel Sessions 5&6

Session 5: EXTREME METAL, Chair: John Harries (RHB 137a)

Keith Kahn-Harris: On the fringe of the fringe: metal's ‘outsider artists’

Joseph O’Connell (Cardiff University): ‘Suffer Louder’: the cultural politics of the American metalcore canon

Owen Coggins (Open University): Drone Metal Minimalism

Session 6: THE POLITICS OF FRINGE CLASSICAL MUSIC (6), Chair: Silvia Rosani, Goldsmiths (RHB 137)

Lauren Redhead (Canterbury): ‘The Reason Why I am Unable to Live in my own Country as a Composer is a Political One’: the Politics of Self-Alienation in the Music of Chris Newman

Alexi Vellianitis (University of Oxford): Like a ‘North Korean gymnastic displays without the totalitarian ideology’: Youth Disobedience and Civil Unrest in Anna Meredith’s 'HandsFree'

Andy Ingamells (Birmingham Conservatoire): Grandchildren of Experimental Music

1630-1700: Closing Remarks, Book Launch and Wine Reception (RHB 137a)

1800-2100: Concert (Student’s Union)