Re:Sound 2023

Manchester City of Literature project

For year two of the Re:Sound project we paired musicians Abnormal Sleepz, LayFullstop and HMD with archives at Greater Manchester Libraries.

The artists connected with librarians and archivists to explore, uncover and ultimately create new work across a range of musical styles in response to their findings. The artists were then paired with local community groups: Pendleton College, 42nd Street and The Seben Project to empower them to create in response to these new tracks, the themes and materials. You can listen to the original tracks by our artists, which sample and are inspired by the archives, as part of the project below.

Abnormal Sleepz – Moss Side Score

“This piece was created as a response to audio archives covering the Moss Side riots. The riots stemmed from building tensions and pretesting at the local police station due to police mistreatment and racial abuse. This then spilled into the streets of Moss Side which was documented through the local news outlets and radio. I have used live audio to create a musical response that tells a brief story through sound, mainly covering the journey of emotion. The score takes a small journey from small tension building into chaos and fear which then transitions into hope and resolution, still maintaining the initial feeling throughout. I have used live interviews from the streets during the riots and the voices of reporters and local residents, partnered with orchestral and atmospheric sounds as well as rhythmic drums to achieve this.”


42nd Street X LayFullstop – World Gone Mad

“Having sieved through the amazing and vast choices of archives hosted at Manchester Central Library, I chose an interview that disclosed the Caribbean tradition ‘Nine Nights’. This is a celebration consisting of mourning, music and togetherness that is held for nine nights after a death of a person.

The song ‘World Gone Mad’ embraces the various emotions someone may go through whilst experiencing grief, as well as paying homage to  Caribbean sonics and euphoria.

This track was created in collaboration with community group 42nd Street.”

HMD – Voice of the Past

“My mother is an exorcist. I have always been attracted to the eerie, the shadowy and the esoteric. The archives gave me such range to work , because as far as 1960 there were people who were experiencing paranormal activities.

My sound design and style choice is directly influenced by techno, 80’s pop and African rhythms. When brought together with the audio clips I choose. It created a spooky Voice Of The Past. Just in time for Halloween. Thank you to Caroline, and the team at Manchester City of Literature for this opportunity.”


To celebrate the exciting new creative work that’s been created as part of the Re:Sound 2023, a launch event was held in October at Manchester Central Library to share with an audience, talk with the artists and hear more about the thought that went into the tracks and the stories behind them, whilst bringing the community groups together to reflect on the process and voices that came out of the archives, music and togetherness.

You can see some of the creative work that was on display below; these included textiles, films, music tracks, sculpture, projection and more.

This has been made possible by The National Lottery Heritage Fund awarding Re:Sound a grant, raised by National Lottery players.