Darrell Fitton

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Darrell Fitton
Birth nameDarrell Fitton
Also known asBola
OriginManchester, England
GenresElectronic music
Years active1994–present
Associated actsD-Breeze

Darrell Fitton is an electronic musician from Rochdale, England.[citation needed] Most of his work is recorded under the monikers Bola and Jello, released primarily on Skam Records. Fitton has also contributed to electronic acts D-Breeze, Brahma and Ooblo, and Autechre's Gescom project. Fitton was rumoured to have left the music industry in November 2007,[1] but in 2017 he released the album "D.E.G" .[2]


Fitton loaned equipment to Autechre in their early days[3] and his first noteworthy involvement with electronic music was as assistant on their debut album Incunabula.[4] His own first electronic music release came in 1994, on Warp's Artificial Intelligence II compilation. In 1995 he returned with the now more familiar Bola moniker, releasing the Bola 1 12" on Skam Records. The debut album as Bola, Soup, came in 1998 and was described as "an impressive synthesis of the machine-beat ambiance (sic) of post-techno with warm, wistful analog soul".[5] A rare set of 3 EPs called Shapes was released in 2000, pressed at only 300 copies; in September 2006, it was remastered and reissued in greater numbers by Skam, adding three bonus tracks.[6]

The latest Bola album, D.E.G., was issued in 2017. There have been occasional live performances, the most recent of which was in December 2012 at Adapter's Vertigo IV in Eindhoven.[7]

On 2 January 2013, Fitton addressed the rumours of his retirement, stating "I figure 5 years of relative inactivity is an adequate musical absence. New music will be produced and released this year."[8]

Albums released as Bola are generally titled in a way that forms a play on words with Bola, e.g. Soup (Bowl of Soup), Fyuti (Footballer), Gnayse (Bolognaise), Kroungrine (Crown Green Bowler), D.E.G. (Boiled Egg).


Fitton's blend of electronica, jazz-influenced keyboard parts and ambient soundscapes has been described as "equally informed by the expansive emotions of electronica together with sensible melodies and cinematic atmospheres."[9] "Bola travels in decidedly cinematic realms, crafting music that begs for emotional, tactile responses, ranging from sadness to fear to suspense," opined Tim DiGravina in a review of Fyuti for AllMusic. "All of this emotional manipulation is done through extended synth notes, pristine keyboards, and shimmering, otherworldly electronic elements."[10]

While frequently described as "cinematic",[11][12] Fitton's music has been noted as employing harsher, less accessible elements such as "austere synth textures and almost industrial-grade distortion".[13] "Bola's work needs time to work its magic," states the Electronic Music Guide. "A patient listener will be hugely rewarded".[14]



  • Bola – Soup, 1998 (Skam). 12" (SKALP002), CD (SKALD002), 2LP (SKALD002LP). Remastered and reissued with new artwork in 2003.
  • Bola – Fyuti, 2001 (Skam). 12" (SKALP007), CD (SKALD007), Picture Disc (SKALPD007).
  • Jello – Voile, 2002 (Peacefrog). 12" (PFG016LP), CD (PFG016CD).
  • Bola – Gnayse, 2004 (Skam). 12" (SKALP015), CD (SKALD015), 2LP (SKALD015LP).
  • Bola – Shapes, 2006 (Skam). CD (SKALD020). Remastered and re-issued version of the Shapes EP, plus 3 bonus tracks.
  • Bola – Kroungrine 2007 (Skam). CD (SKALD022), 2LP (SKALP022).
  • Bola – D.E.G. 2017 (Skam). CD (SKALD034), 2LP (SKALP034).

Singles and EPs[edit]

  • Bola – 1, 1995 (Skam). 12" (SKA005).
  • Bola – KS, 1998 (Skam). 7" (KMAS002).
  • Bola – Mauver, 2000 (Skam). 12" (SKA015).
  • Bola – Shapes, 2000 (Skam). 12". 300 copies only.
  • Bola – Pae Paoe, 2001 (Skam). 7" (KMAS007).
  • Jello – Chamchimzee, 2002 (Peacefrog). 12" (PFG022).
  • Jello – Lungbone, 2003 (Peacefrog). 12" (PFG028), CD (PFG028CD).


  • Lamb – Softly (Bola remix), 1999 (Fontana). CD (562 372-2)
  • Aqualung – Strange and Beautiful (I Put a Spell on You) (Cassan Vae), 2002 (B-Unique Records). CD (bun032cdx)
  • Bass Communion – Macrovelux Deluxremux, 2003 (Headphone Dust). CD (BCCD5)
  • Martin L. Gore – Loverman (Bola remix), 2003 (Mute). 12" (12 MUTE 322), DVD-V (12 MUTE 322), CD (CDMUTE322)
  • Ektoise – Lmenitemix (Bola), 2010 (777 Operations). CD (7770011), 7" (7770012)


  1. ^ [1] Archived 5 April 2008 at the Wayback Machine.
  2. ^ "BOLA".
  3. ^ Hollo, Peter. "Sean Booth interview taken by Peter Hollo - March 2005". Retrieved 19 July 2012.
  4. ^ "Autechre - Incunabula". Retrieved 19 July 2012.
  5. ^ Bogdanov, Vladimir, ed. (2001). All Music Guide to Electronica: The Definitive Guide to Electronic Music (4th ed.). Backbeat Books. p. 61. ISBN 978-0-87930-628-1.
  6. ^ "Shapes by Bola". Retrieved 19 July 2012.
  7. ^ "Adapter - News". Retrieved 3 Jan 2013.
  8. ^ "BOLA". Retrieved 3 Jan 2013.
  9. ^ "Alpha-ville 2010". Archived from the original on 3 December 2010. Retrieved 19 July 2012.
  10. ^ "Fyuti - Bola". Retrieved 19 July 2012.
  11. ^ "Alpha-ville Festival 2010 - The London Word". Retrieved 19 July 2012.
  12. ^ "Bola - Gnayse (Skam)". Retrieved 19 July 2012.
  13. ^ Bogdanov, Vladimir (2001). All Music Guide to Electronica: The Definitive Guide to Electronic Music (4th ed.). Backbeat Books. p. 61. ISBN 978-0-87930-628-1.
  14. ^ "Bola". Archived from the original on 16 November 2012. Retrieved 19 July 2012.

External links[edit]