Shackleton’s musical output began in 2004 when Ian Hicks of Mordant Music released an early track called Stalker, which later appeared on Rough Trade’s ‘Best of 2004’ compilation. Soon after this, in 2005, Shackleton started his record label Skull Disco.
Skull Disco’s releases were idiosyncratic both musically and visually. Often comprising double A-sides from Shackleton and Appleblim, the music was a peculiar mixture of ritual percussion and heavy bass which had as much to do with more experimental and avant forms of music as with their dubstep and techno contemporaries. With strong support from BBC Radio, Hardwax record store, Resident Advisor, FACT and The Wire magazine (which featured him on their front cover in December 2010), the label achieved widespread respect in the underground music world and a cult status amongst fans.
In 2009 Shackleton decided to close down Skull Disco. It had become an unlikely success but he felt it was time to move on after ten 12”s.
His first release after Skull Disco was a full-length album titled Three EPs on Perlon records, which appeared in the end of year lists of publications as diverse as The Wire, Groove Magazine, FACT magazine, Resident Advisor , Pitchfork and Little White Earbuds. In 2010 Shackleton was invited to re-record one of his live sets from London’s famous Fabric nightclub for release as part of their mix-CD series. This served well as a tool to demonstrate that unconventional and demanding music can function on dancefloors. In 2011 Shackleton collaborated with long-term friend Pinch for an album on the Honest Jons label.
Although the Perlon, Fabric and Honest Jons releases were certainly successful, these works were topped by the 2012 release of The Drawbar Organ EPs/Music for The Quiet Hour. Released on his new Woe To the Septic Heart label, this record saw Shackleton moving into much more unconventional territory. Music for The Quiet Hour was particularly demanding being comprised of one long narrative piece separated into five sections and shared more characteristics with American minimalism, avant drone and serialism than with any of the more established electronic dance music genres.
More recently, Shackleton has consolidated his position as dancefloor destroyer with his Deliverance trilogy whilst also confirming himself to be a maverick avant electronic music pioneer through his work with Ernesto Tomasini, the cult singer, performer and artist whose history spans experimental theatre, cabaret and collaborations with Othon, Marc Almond, and Sleazy. This collaboration has culminated in the universally well-received album, “Devotional Songs”, released on Honest Jon’s records in July 2016.
Full discography : https://www.discogs.com/artist/342363-Shackleton