Zoon van snooK
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Zoon van snooK

Bristol, England, United Kingdom | INDIE

Bristol, England, United Kingdom | INDIE
Band EDM Acoustic


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Zoon van snooK"

One of the stand out tracks from About Face Musik’s mix: Zoon Van Snook‘s Bibliophone.

Amazing melody, crunchy little sounds and immense progressive synth layering. Not to mention samples using books and a guitar/drum crescendo of biblical Bibliophone proportions. A track this good always leads me to a bit of digging around and the findings?… Lets start with this neat little video:

An interview with Stephen Merchant and Alec Snook ended up backing into a corner whilst managing to tout Bibliophone on BBC6 Music. Luckily, Stephen realised how good the track actually is and proceeded to ask about the samples and the madness behind it:
Stephen Merchant Interview BBC6 by zoonvansnook

If you like Bibliophone, Alec also has a talent for remixing, with several available on his Soundcloud, including remixes of Dextro, Radiohead and an awesome Caribou sounding remix of Darwin Deez, below:
Darwin Deez ‘Up in the Clouds’ (Zoon van snooK Remix) by zoonvansnook

If like me, you find yourself kneeling in the face of Alec Snook genius’ productions, you can purchase Zoon Van Snook’s four-track EP ‘Interviews and Interludes’ from the Cookshop Music website, iTunes or Juno which also features this amazing track – ‘Troublesome Trucks’. - A Strangely Isolated Place

"Muchos Beautifulness!!"

Bristolian electronic maverick zoon van snook brings a wonderfully diverse sound on his début album,
having decamped from Brighton's Cookshop label to join the ace mush label in the states.
What makes this record so damned charming is Snook's deployment of fragments of found sound which
skitter effortlessly around the songs; sometimes rhythmically, sometimes melodically. There's chiming
xylophones & the odd accordion wheeze, along with all manner of plucked instruments chopped &
manipulated to within an inch of their life, however if this all sounds a little too nice & pretty, fear not!
Balancing the light are some more serious & sinister moments, with tracks such as `cuckoo' throwing
in arpeggiated bass lines & heavy drums underpinning unsettling chord changes. This is a great
record that falls somewhere between the playfulness of Mum & Tunng; and the sound manipulations &
melodics of Boards of Canada & Four Tet - eccentric Oddtronica brimming with invention & wit! - Tecca Beats

"Zoon Van Snook: A Kitchen-Sink-and-All Producer"

It’s been a good amount of time since folks started drooling over whatever might be called IDM. In fact, it’s been such a long time that subtle variations on the made up genre have insinuated themselves into the culture of electronic music. Foltronica or laptop folk kinda make any sense as placeholder names - folk music is passed down from generation to generation. And if samples of acoustic instruments wind up being included in electronic musics, it all seems valid. But there is, obviously, that old journalistic problem of trying to slot everything new into an old place.


Zoon van snooK, serving as one of this new things getting pushed around, does clearly owe a debt to a few of the decade’s earlier kitchen-sink-and-all producers – Four Tet, Caribou, etc. With those two references, though, it’d be easy to gloss over van snooK’s penchant for amped up electronic dance music. This isn’t just pastoral folk strumming shot through with a beat or two cribbed from Portishead. Present on his first long player (Falling From) The Nutty Tree, released through Mush Records, are the prerequisite fey countryside tunes. But all those quick step electro based shenanigans temper the calm melodies.

“Plainsong” begins with what sound like some tripped out marimbas either snatched from a recorded and gussied up, or played live and digitally manipulated so as to eventually make it all sound like a gamelan composition. The rhythmic back to this sounds something like a distant thunder clap – but not one that would frighten a sleeping kid. More like a bit of thunder we know is going to eventually bring about showers needed to water some crops.

What winds up being amazing about not just “Plainsong,” but van snooK’s disc in general, is the quick shifts in tone. Sticking with that same song, a portion functioning as a bridge to a third section incorporates distant droning monk singing before stepping off into a dreamy, piano based section.

All that talk of disparate sounds sharing equal space, though, doesn’t mean (Falling From) The Nutty Tree is void of out and out dance tracks. “Cuckoo,” the album’s second track, shuffles off willfully digital sounds, perhaps best accompanying a race scene from a futuristic sci-fi flick where everyone’s tooling around in space ships.

By now, if you’re set to enjoy this disc, you already know. As for fence sitters, any apprehensions are probably going to be bared out at some point here – better just stick to Rounds. - Rap-Talk

"ZOON VAN SNOOK: (Falling From) The Nutty Tree (Mush)"

Organic and electronic, this album from Bristol keyboardist Alec Snook is quite a departure from the usual. Neither caught up in trying to be the next hipster thing or shooting for some Etienne Jaumet symphonic joint, it's just a series of curious, often lovely, instrumentals that you can really let your mind travel with. The term kitchen-sink electronica is applied to this style of music making and I'll go along with it. - Communities.Canada

"Zoon van snooK Preps New Full Length; (Falling From) The Nutty Tree"

Bristol based music creator Alec Snook aka Zoon van snooK has a new full length ready for release on Dec. 7, 2010 on Mush Records. The album ignores a formulaic approach and explores various soundscapes and genres. Journey through the experimental sounds of a mad scientist and lose yourself within layers of acoustic and glitched out electronic synths thrown into a roaring explosion of beats and vocal compositions. Alec takes audible cues from influences such as Four Tet, Boards of Canada and Múm and the end result is a sonic collage of epic proportions. - Deftune.com

"All Music- '(Falling from) The Nutty Tree'"

Bristol seems to constantly produce a stream of musicians who are proud of creating a sound that's at once something that could only be produced by their city but doesn't sound anything like what most stereotypes of what "English" music is. Zoon van snooK's debut album finds the one-man band of Alec Snook continuing in that vein -- (Falling From) The Nutty Tree may have its moments of random whimsy, often in song titles like "Shall He? Shanty" and "Ee'm Yorn," but always does so in the context of beats, basslines, and what sounds like a lifetime's worth of scrounging funk, dub, and techno efforts from all over the place. (A couple of moments bring the kind of extreme shadows and drama familiar from the Massive Attack/Portishead/Tricky wing too, but songs like "The Two Knives [Cuckoo's Reprise]" are much more the exception than the rule.) Unlike a lot of at-home electronic experimenters who seem to emphasize a fussed-over politeness, there's an easy, playful swing on songs like "The Cross I'd Bear," chimes and distant flutes set against steady shuffles and early Eno keyboards, while elements ranging from acoustic guitar parts, kalimba melodies, and vibraphone crop up throughout, and often to sparkling effect, as on "Plainsong." Meanwhile, the busier, part machine/industrial moodiness of "Half Term (8:08)" is as much relaxed warm contemplation as hyperactive beat collage, a nice drop-kicking of a feeling and aesthetic from sources like 2001 and Blade Runner into a new century. Above all, it helps that Snook is clearly embracing the possibilities of full sonic construction as its own raison d’être -- it's the same conceptual leap that Four Tet ended up pursuing, and if Snook is following to some extent in that artist's slipstream, he does so with his own individual voice already taking stronger shape. - All Music

"Lodown Magazine-9/10"

It’s been a while since we featured the debut EP the ‘Snook operator’ cooked up for Cookshop, and now he’s back with a full-length, finally (has it been two years?), dropping on Mush records for a change. And a marvellous mush it is; Oddtronic soundscapes, pastoral layers haunted and beautifully spoilt by quirky samples; epic, choppy and plucked worlds where sounds collide at their most promiscuous. When we last spoke, he described the still-unfinished LP like this: “You can expect layered melodies upon a series of homemade clicks and whistles, punctuated with tacit glimpses of someone else’s life”.Dead-on, yet you never quite know which parts’s supposed to be tongue-in-cheek, or when Alec (that’s Mr. Snook) is unsmiling, but that ambiguity actually makes it even greater in all its nutty wickedness. 9/10 - Lodown Magazine

"The Groove Seeker: Zoon van snooK's (Falling from) The Nutty Tree"

As Zoon Van Snook, UK-based oddball producer Alec Snook has released his debut album, (Falling From) The Nutty Tree. It’s a chameleonic kind of record; Snook uses everything from folk, jazz, hip hop, and IDM to create his style of cut-and-paste electronica.
Though the album has its scattered and weird moments, Snook’s knack for melody and rhythms make for an approach that is more contemplative than erratic. With plucked and chimed melodies over heavy, glitched-out beats, the record has a warm, well-textured sound.
Aside from Snook's support of English indie bands I Am Kloot and Skunk Anasie, listeners received their first taste of his aesthetics with Snook's 2008 four-track EP, Interviews and Interludes. The song “Bibliophone” from that record is a stuttering display of found sounds, household objects as percussion, reverse sampling, and temporal masking that makes for an experimental, glitchy IDM odyssey.
But for (Falling From) The Nutty Tree, Snook has scaled back the weirdness by withholding arrangements that stumble all over themselves. Instead, he comes off more refined and a lot smoother, and he still finds fun sounds to use as driving percussion.
Much like The Books or early Four Tet, Snook uses familiar sounds to make electronic masterpieces: lightly strummed acoustic guitars, chopped-up ukulele licks, jazz-inflected piano riffs, drawn-out accordion chords, and cut-and-mixed vocal samples. Album opener “Shall He? Shanty” is a subtle and simple arrangement of stringed instruments and wind chimes, showcasing Snook’s ability to make naturally paired sounds just discordant enough to make tracks exciting and engaging.
There is something enticing about lead-off single “Cuckoo,” which, unlike the rest of the album, is an electrifying dance track with heavy kicks and dirty synth pulsations. Snook serves "Cuckoo" two ways on the record, demonstrating his knowledge and respect for melody by reprising the tune’s basic chord structure in “The Two Knives (Cuckoo’s Reprise),” giving listeners a spare piano version of the same song.
Tracks like “Sculptress” transform Snook into an indie-folk guitarist; the first half is a collage of catchy, simple arpeggios programmed and arranged to striking effect. By the track’s end, everything swells into a beautiful blend of ambient sounds and sparsely layered electronic tings.
The aural arc on "Sculptress" seems to be the mantra for the whole album. In terms of mood, the album is a gentle mix of experimental and accessible, with hypnotizing picked chords at the center. While these familiar sounds — tracks like "The Cross I'd Bear" and "Ee'm Yorn," — draw enough attention, it's the kooky synthesizer sounds and large array of weird percussive embellishments that make the tracks idiosyncratic to Zoon van snooK.
- Alarm Press

"Snook the kook does some analogue-digital descrambling and pottering about and comes up with a bedtime story from the lounge"

Alec ‘Zoon van’ Snook fitted the Cookshop model perfectly with 2008’s Interviews and Interludes EP, electronica prompting portmanteaus of oddtronica and eccentronica that in the vein of the ‘Shop’s Jonathan Krisp as well as the trinity of Funki Porcini, Fila Brazillia, Luke Vibert and Mr Scruff, was happy go lucky with a daft left-handed reach for dust-gathering instruments. Without overstating the Zoon’s lunacy, never found far from a secret drawer full of knick-knacks, thimbles, needle and thread etc, his chillout sometimes bears a crowbar’s touch, awakening a serious musician embracing the cloak of solitude.
The Bristolian’s opus is a mostly uplifting composition, added to/alienated by the electro stings of Cuckoo, almost Lorn/Mux Mool etc like in its hip-hop as RPG click and reload, that may throw followers off the scent early doors. Certainly long term it’s conspicuous by its unrelated linkage to the rest of the LP, though it’s less of a surprise when Pearl St Mess suddenly develops a drum &bass habit.
At his most playful, ZvS, who been supporting Daedelus, Gold Panda and Fujiya & Miyagi, does music box funk on Lomograph, the rotating centrepiece being a bass-playing hepcat instead of a ballerina, with shake rattle and roll percussion made out of thingumyjigs and dooburywotsits. School band folk charmers Plainsong and The Cross I’d Bear uphold the rustic fancies as Snook crowns himself king of quaint countryside fantasies out of layers of bric a brac, and acoustic pixie dust sprinkler Sculptress auditions for the part of Chigley’s troubadour laureate, developing into a rousing march, conducting an orchestra instructed to bring their own tools out back into the woodshed.
The piano dirge Two Knives shows that when the wonder wears off, van Snook is a hard character to approach when in such a despondent mood, though you do question why such differing curveballs take their place. To be fair this has much more in common with the rest of the album than the aforementioned maze runner Cuckoo, and his move into starker reality from rose-tinted views does twist the plot away from his competition. Either ZvS has an unedifying secret, or is trying to say life’s pleasures should be enjoyed while they can, as cruelty and damnation is always playing a waiting game of trip-up from outside of the dominant jolliness.
It isn’t long before Snook has re-fixed his mask and re-mounted the steed of optimism with the healing space spiral Half Term, beats puncturing the ambience like nails being rapidly hammered coffin-wards. The same style of piston punch-ins provide clockwork to the intriguing Ee’m Yorn, the line between chillout and suspicion disappearing altogether with tantalising synth curvatures blowing through otherworldly texturing. The sugar chimes of Le Fin have the same wide-eyed innocence as Nowhere Man’s classic Slumbering Seahorse Serenade, ZvS sneaking in a jazz hands brass band to conclude with for his RDA of good humour from the left.
Amongst the Mad Dogs and Englishman feel, with the psychosis made very real amongst the jolly hockey-sticking, ZvS never forces the issue, fluently seeing where track’s natural instincts take them, collecting fares for magical mystery tours but letting passengers plot their own destinations as either a bit of fluff and fun, a dedicated chillout record or a vividly imagined storyteller, falling from the nutty tree and daintily nailing the landing via a shifty somersault.

Matt Oliver-Data Transmission
- Data Transmission

"Zoon van snooK's '(Falling from) The Nutty Tree'"

The opening track on Zoon van Snook‘s (Falling From) The Nutty Tree started off with a bit of ‘ukulele playing before the sound of the instrument is chopped. I’m expecting the rest of this album to be this eclectic, as it’s on Mush and Mush aren’t known for their acoustic qualities. Then “Cuckoo” begins with hard beats, synths and keyboard layers over a high pitched melody that sounds video game-ish, and this is nothing like the acoustic sounds that start the album. I’m smiling mentally.

Gentle obesity, light gluttony, I can come up with a lot of ying-yang terms to describe his music and most of them would be right/wrong (see how I did/didn’t do that?). His bio states the album is “a warm, humorous and hook-laden sonic collage of Kitchen-sink eccentronica”, but it’s a lot more organized than just random sounds thrown in for the hell of it. Then again, another perspective of “kitchen-sink eccentronica” is to say that it doesn’t sound like a lot of electronica, but the best electronica always strives to be its own sound,not what’s hip, what’s now. The fact that these songs would sound good at camp as much as it would sound good at a Motel 6 group sex session speaks volumes, because it could tickle your fancy in a number of ways. The earthiness of the instruments used, mixed in with various synths (including a number of analog sounding ones), makes this a satisfying listen. It’s an album where you’ll discover new things with each listen, and that to me is the benefit of an album. Even when you think you know it inside out, there’s going to be something that makes you want to know it outside in. - This Is Book's Music

"Zoon Landing"

Now signed to LA indie label Mush, oddball Bristol electronicist Zoon van snooK is about to make his live debut and release his first album. Jay Chakravorty checks his sanity at the door.

“I wrote a letter to Boards of Canada once, addressed to Mr Board and Mr Canada, suggesting a collaboration in return for the price of a custard slice in second-class stamps. I told them that if they didn't agree I’d leave a dead bear full of wasps on their driveway. I heard nothing back.” Welcome to the weird and wonderful world of Alec Snook, better known to fans of wonky electronic music as Zoon van snooK.

Having a conversation with Alec is like chatting to a sleepwalking Peter Ustinov. He’s a master of strange anecdotes and surreal asides. Nobody else could end a story about having a microwaveable dinner for one thrown at them from a moving car with the immortal line “I was wearing a dressing gown on the street and shining a big light in my own face though, so I guess I deserved it.”

That skewed approach to life is clearly evident in his music too. His soon-to-be-released debut album ‘(Falling From) The Nutty Tree’ doesn’t sound so much composed as beautifully constructed. With one song he’ll conjure up a seascape in which scrapes and scratches form tidal rhythms and accordians sit alongside samples of the shipping forecast, then with the next he’ll switch into techno synths, atonal chord shifts and hip-hop beats, just because he can. And for some reason, it all works. “I’ve been doing music since the mid-90s in various, mainly indie, guises. I'd done the constant rehearsing and gigging thing for umpteen years. I just wanted to write music for me. This whole thing is about me having the time to sit in my studio and write. I've just been lucky enough that people have heard it and believe in it enough to put it out.”

By “people”, he means legendary LA-based indie label Mush, home to electronic pioneers like Bibio, Boom Bip and Daedelus. Having heard a sampler from Zoon, Mush signed him up for two albums, as well as a remix album due in the New Year. It’s this remix album that precipitated the writing of the aforementioned letter to Messrs Board and Canada. Rather than letting his label do all the work for him, Alec has been approaching musicians he admires and requesting their input personally. In fact, most of the musicians that have agreed to a remix did so before he was even signed, which is no mean feat, considering the big names involved. Tunng, James Yuill and Super Furry Animals’ Cian Ciaran have all agreed to rework his tracks.

However, Alec’s not one for resting on his laurels – no matter how well-earned they may be – and has recently thrown himself into the task of transforming his studio-based project into a feasible live act in time for his album launch and debut live performance on 11 Dec at Colston Hall. “Coming from a live band background, it’s been doing my head in as to how to do it. I want to play drums, but I also want to play keyboards. Above all, I just want to let go and enjoy the experience of being there.” He’s currently settled on a three-piece band incorporating live instruments, laptops and samplers, but all that could change depending on the availability of bandmates at future gigs. “Hopefully, I’ll have a few different sets soon. One for me on my own, one for a band and, who knows, maybe one with six or seven different people and no samples, where everything gets played live.”

With an offer of a place at next year’s SXSW festival and a tour in Europe already booked, it’s clear that the Zoon van snooK crazy-train is gathering speed. You might just want to head down to that first ever live show to get on board. - Venue Magazine


Zoon van snooK 'Interviews & Interludes' EP (12"/Digital)-September 2008 (Cookshop)

Ernest Gonzales 'Run Jump Seek' (ZvS Remix)-Exponential (US)-Oct '08

Fujiya & Miyagi 'Dishwasher' (Zoon van snooK remix)-Full Time Hobby-May '09

Ernest Gonzales 'Psychedelic Bellhop' (ZvS Remix)-Friends of Friends (US)-Feb 2010

Zoon van snooK 'Dirty Needles'-'2nd Transmission' Compilation-Inner City Grit Records-Aug 2010.

Lost Idol 'Litewerk' (ZvS Rewerk)-Cookshop -October 2010

Day of the Woman 'Cassette Tape' (ZvS Remix)-Exponential-September 2010.

Zoon van snooK '(Falling from) The Nutty Tree' Album-Mush Records-Dec. 2010

Benni Hemm Hemm 'FF ekki CC'-7"/download single. 'Vilhjalmur af Poitou' (Zoon van snooK Remix). MORR/Kimi Records-February 2011

Zoon van snooK 'Cuckoo' single-Mush Records-April 2011

Alka 'Immolated' (Zoon van snooK Remix). Released as part of the remix album 'Compounded' on Electronic Eel Records 17th May 2011.
(All proceeds go to PETA)

The Doomed Birds of Providence 'Fedicine Exine' (Zoon van snooK Remix)-Front & Follow-13th June 2011

Justice & Metro '839' (Zoon van snooK Remix) - MJAZZ Records - 9th January 2012

Zoon van snooK '(Remixes from) The Nutty Tree' Album-Mush Records-May 2012



Zoon van snooK is the alias of Bristol Weirdsmith Alec Snook.

Following keyboard/sample duty for numerous experimental Indie bands in the South West of England, which included national touring, festivals and support for acts such as Skunk Anansie, I Am Kloot and BBC Radio 1’s Zane Lowe, the debut Zoon van snooK 12” EP was released on acclaimed Brighton label Cookshop at the end of 2008.
This garnered radio support from BBC’s Rob Da Bank, Tom Robinson, Stephen Merchant and lead to his debut hour mix for Ninja Tune’s inimitable Solid Steel.

Since then, remix duty has included: Fujiya & Miyagi; Ernest Gonzales, Darwin Deez, James Yorkston, Benni Hemm Hemm, Diagrams; and has paved the way for collaborations with Tunng, Daedelus, James Yuill, Minotaur Shock, Grasscut, Cian Ciaran (Super Furry Animals) and many more.

The debut album was released on the legendary LA label Mush Records in December 2010, to much acclaim.

The same week saw the birth of the live show, which incorporates a carnival of acoustic instruments; bells; whistles; chimes; combined with the electrickery of various pads and laptops.

Since then, support slots have included Daedelus, Gold Panda, Fujiya & Miyagi, Nosaj Thing; and slots at NXNE in Toronto. April 2011 saw the inaugural European tour, which included live shows, DJ sets and live radio sessions.

The debut exclusive live radio session for Tom Robinson was aired on his BBC6 Music show in May 2011.

Never afraid of a beguiling melody and always blurring the lines between experimental and accessible, Zoon van snooK produces evocative audio mosaics and sonic montages that offer something new with each listen.