Black Needle Noise / John Fryer



BLACK NEEDLE NOISE is music for the movies you haven’t dreamt of yet…
Musical Soundscapes, Audio Alchemy, Sonic Sculptures, Ambient Black Magic, Glamour & Decay with Grindtronica Overtones…

taking you to a whole new level of Shinier, Richer, Darker, Noise PoP.

So sit back, close your eyes and enjoy the ride…


As one of the most sonically recognizable knob-turners in the last four decades, John Fryer has produced, engineered, mixed such groundbreaking and influential bands and records as Depeche Mode, Cocteau Twins, Nine In Nails (Pretty Hate Machine), Love and Rockets, HIM (Razorblade Romance) among dozens of others. As one half of the legendary 4AD collaborative effort This Mortal Coil, his song “Song to the Siren” (as sung by Cocteau Twin’s Liz Fraser) was described by David Lynch as being high on his “list of all time most beautiful songs.”

As Black Needle Noise, Fryer has assembled a veritable collection of vocalists including Jarboe (The Swans), Mimi Page (Bassnectar), Bill Leeb (Frontline Assembly), among many others and creating a landscape of music with a revolving cast of characters a.k.a. vocalists. “Black Needle Noise is made for the modern listener, the streaming listener,” Fryer explains. “I make the music, give it to a singer to sing, get the vocals back, mix it and release it. I release songs when I want and as often as I want. There are no rules for Black Needle Noise.”

Black Needle Noise is a project in which Fryer engages the listener to enjoy interact with the music. “It’s up to you how you listen to the songs, you can listen to just one or as an album. They all fit together sonically as an album and they all stand alone as individual songs.”

Black Needle Noise started in 2016 when Fryer began collaborating with an array of talented singer from across many genres of popular music, including such artists as, Zialand, Jarboe (Swans, Neurosis), Ledfoot, Andreas Elevens, Antic Clay, Attasalina, Elena Alice Fossi (Kirlian Camera), Betsy Martin (Caterwaul, Purr Machine), Spectra Paris, Bill Leeb (Front Line Assembly, Delirium), Mimi Page (Delirium), Jennie Vee (Hole), Ana Breton (Dead Leaf Echo), Omniflux (Puscifer), Kendra Frost (Kite Base), Andrea Kerr (Colt), Sivert Hoyem, Tara Busch (I Speak Machine) and Dr. Strangefryer.   Primarily writing the music and then giving the vocalists the freedom to write their own lyrics, Fryer is often pleasantly surprised with the end result. “I don’t like to be there when the vocals are done,” he replies. “So when they send me the vocals back, it always brings a big smile to my face as they always elevate the songs to a whole new level… to a level that they can only achieve because of who they are. So it’s like listening to a new song for me, familiar but yet unfamiliar at the same time, but in a very super-duper, cool way.”

Starting out at Blackwing Studios in south London, Fryer’s early career saw him working with seminal bands on the 4AD, Mute, Rough Trade and Beggars Banquet record labels, including Depeche Mode, Fad Gadget and Cocteau Twins. It was his work with the last band, helping to develop their pioneering ethereal and ambient sound, that led 4AD label head Ivo Watts-Russell to recruit Fryer as his musical and producing partner for This Mortal Coil.

Fryer is also known for his production work in the industrial rock genre, working with Nine Inch Nails, Stabbing Westward and Gravity Kills. He also produced, engineered and mixed The Schools’ Spellemannspris (which won a Norwegian Grammy), and mixed the US breakthrough album for Jesus Jones, Doubt. More recently, Fryer has also started his own label, Something To Listen To.


More info on Black Needle Noise can be found here: