Sound sculpture is an overused analogy in music circles, especially techno, but it becomes a fitting term to use for the productions of Stewart Walker.
Influenced by the work of Alexander Calder, a sculptor of large outdoor pieces called "stabile" (abstract mobile-like pieces made of sheet metal), Walker composed a set of stark, hypnotic tracks of minimalist techno for his first full-length, released on Mille Plateaux in 1999. Growing up in Atlanta, Walker listened to the Beatles and played guitar in a folk style learned from his parents, who had played in a folk group during the '60s. He moved on to alternative rock in the '80s, then fell in love with the first wave of intelligent techno during the early '90s, artists like 808 State, LFO, Aphex Twin, and the Orb. After a post-graduation visit to England in 1992, Walker fell into the burgeoning techno underground and began experimenting with electronics by the mid-'90s. Walker made contacts around the world via e-mail and phone, releasing his first material, the 1997 single "Amphetamine Sulphate," via Detroiter Sean Deason's Matrix Records. A year after that, he earned an EP release, Artificial Music for Artificial People, on Cristian Vogel's Mosquito label. Another single for Matrix ("Stoic") preceded the release of Stabiles in 1999, on Mille Plateaux, which initiated a series of full-length releases. Walker collected various compilation tracks among a few unreleased items for the Reclamation: 1997-1999 collection. 2003's Discord (with Geoff White) and Live Extracts, 2005's Grounded in Existence, and 2007's Concentricity followed. ~ John Bush, Rovi