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The 4am: 21 – Sleep Department

The 4am is a selection composed entirely of music sent to me by artists. If you want your music (I’ll also take field recordings, noise and spoken-word) to be played on The 4am, email your 128kbps-plus mp3 files directly to Include your website address, please. The 4am is of no set length and is released on no set schedule. The 4am doesn’t survive without new music. If you like the 4am, please tell people.

The podcast feed for The 4am is:

(web archive) (iTunes)

21: Sleep Department


(The download link above should work. If you’re in Chrome, I’ve found that you need to just click it, not right-click and try “save link as”. In other browsers, “save to target” might also give you a bit of gyp. Any problems, please use the comments thread. Ta.)

Jimmy and the Binliners – “Walk It Out” (0:31)

Mysterians – “Shivering Sands” (3:10)

Taphead – “Bells of the Chapel” (5:37)

Dav Yuk Bon – “Ennui” (7:40)

MILD MAYNYRD – “Nordic” (2:10)

AM – “Colors” (3:23)

Hello. Brief liner notes follow.

Yes, I’m opening with “Walk It Out” again. I don’t care what you think of me. I would make podcasts out of nothing but 31-second pieces if they all made me smile like that one.

From here: it’s all sleepy and swoony stuff. I like to use a bunch of the ambient/microtonal/shoegazey stuff in one go. Just don’t loop it, or after thirty minutes Jimmy And The Binliners will blast you awake.

I dunno if the Mysterians named their piece after my book SHIVERING SANDS or the seafort of the same name. It didn’t bias me. Really. It is old-style ooeeeoooo spookylicious.

Taphead, like Mysterians’ “Nigredo,” is a regular on my message board, I believe. This also did not bias me. A fair number of musical types hang out there. Taphead says of this, “It’s got bells and whistles, neither of which are what they sound like.”

Dav Yuk Bon‘s “Ennui,” also entitled “that i would find you,” is by his description “ambient aggro, somewhere between paranoia and ambient.”

MILD MAYNYRD offers no link, and says only “I make Hip-Hop for friends who rap, but I also make Electronica/Industrial stuff. I’ve finished one EP and am working on another. A small taste is enclosed.” Again, I think you can find him on Whitechapel, and google gave me this.

AM sound a bit confused: their covering note reads in its entirety “an email was forwarded to me about sending music here.” I wonder if they were threatened, or commanded by some shadowy unknown force.

Thanks for reading this far, and thanks for listening. If you liked it, please tell people, so these musicians can grow their audiences and eventually buy food with money.

Published in podcast


  1. Thanks for adding a listing of the artists. It’s how we buy their stuff. Ta man.

  2. Phil K Phil K

    Wow the Mysterians are a great find thanks

  3. […] of the few positions it’s comfortable in at the moment. I’ve been playing the latest 4am podcast and poking at e-mails for about 90minutes now. It’s clearly going to be a long day. Tagged […]

  4. […] Warren Ellis » The 4am: 21 – Sleep Department. infect others: […]

  5. Kim Kim

    I second what Phil and Carrie said. Plus, general thanks for doing these.

  6. Gil Gil

    Very cool stuff.

  7. Drax Drax

    I must be the only person having a problem with this. Both the download and the itunes podcast subscription arrives truncated, weighing it at only 3 minutes and change.

  8. Warren Ellis Warren Ellis

    One other person has said the same, on the LJ feed. Honestly no idea why. Anyone else?

    (downloading it myself from the link now, and it’s a bit slow, but not truncating. Am on Chrome, WinXP.)

  9. Drax Drax

    Well, I listened to the entire mix via the player: It’s great, awesome, thanks!

  10. datarez (Ryan) datarez (Ryan)

    The iTunes feed shows 3 minutes but then just keeps playing when it gets to 0:00 left. Weird timecoding issue I guess. It’s all there for me at least.

  11. I was able to download in Itunes, but it only played the first 3 minutes. I opened the same 35mb file in Windows Media and it played fine.

  12. Cheers, Warren!

    What a thing to see when you’re back from two weeks of internet abstinence (i.e. holidays) eh? Wonderful. Glad you liked it. Very grateful.

    PS. The track was named after the fort, but I did have a couple of extracts from the essays in mind, as well.

  13. 9thGear 9thGear

    Same 3min problem as other people here, though mine does not keep playing after the 3mins as someone else experienced.
    Downloaded it with Firefox (right click, save as) and had the same 3min problem.

    Downloading by simply left clicking. Shall report back on results.

  14. Warren Ellis Warren Ellis

    This is really weird. So sorry that you guys are getting fucked around by this. Can’t work out what the problem is. Will consult with Ariana over the weekend.

  15. 9thGear 9thGear

    Yeah, it’s still only 3 minutues long.
    Although it plays fine in Windows Media Player.
    Good stuff though.

  16. Just raising my hand as another person who has it truncated by iTunes (and by extension I can’t get more than the first 3 minutes on my iPhone).

    It does play the entire thing if I use the preview function in Finder though.
    The file I downloaded is 36.1 MB and Finder reads its duration as 30:04, if that’s useful for Ariana to know.

  17. Also:
    Quicktime reads it without problem.
    It also let’s me save it as an m4v file that iTunes can then read (but with a duration of 27:35 including approx 5 minutes of silence at the end.)

    Also also:
    GarageBand reads it without trouble and once again I can simply export it from there and iTunes is fine (with duration 30:10 including approx 7 minutes of silence at the end).

    Edited silent chunk out in GarageBand.
    Now plays perfectly with a perfectly sensible duration of 22:36

    Anyhow! Thanks for the lovely stuff to listen to while I work (or momentarily procrastinate from it as the case may be just now).

    Nerdily yours,


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