Position Normal

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Position Normal
Also known asBuggersod
OriginLondon, England
Years active1986–present
LabelsMind Horizon Recordings, Rum
Associated actsBugger Sod
MembersChris Bailiff, John Cushway

Position Normal are an English musical duo, formed in London in 1986, consisting of Chris Bailiff and John Cushway.[4] Their music is sample-based, incorporating existing music and found sound from unusual vintage sources (purchased second hand or previously owned by Bailiff's father) into collage-like tracks.[5]


The two members began working together in 1986, using samplers and tape loops to fashion collagistic psychedelic pop.[2] The duo originally worked as Buggersod, supplementing their music with video projections as well as "mashed potato flung into the audience and socks hanging from the ceiling," according to writer David Stubbs.[4] Bailiff and Cushway's first release as Position Normal was the twelve-inch single "Part of the Bugger Sod Empire" (1998).[2] In 1999, they released their debut album Stop Your Nonsense in Britain through Mind Horizon. The record combined samples from children's music with psychedelic guitar work and unusual percussion, and was critically acclaimed, later ranking on several critics' year-end best albums lists.[3]

The band followed with Goodly Time (1999).[2] In a review for Uncut, Stubbs credited the album with "uncover[ing] old cardboard boxes of stuff that, even in this supposed era of kitsch, have remained repressed and untouched."[4] Following a decade-long hiatus, follow-up Position Normal was released in 2009,[2] originally only on cassette,[6] It was ranked as one of the best albums of 2009 by The Wire.[7] The group also played rare live performances in London, including at the Exotic Pylon in 2010.[2]


The group were a primary influence on artists like Moon Wiring Club and The Focus Group.[2][6] In his book Retromania, Simon Reynolds describes Position Normal as a progenitor of the 2000s hauntology genre, which is concerned with "lost futures" and abandoned cultural material.[5] Writer Joseph Stannard, who helped popularise the term "hauntology", included Position Normal on a 2013 compilation album based on his Brighton club night The Outer Church.[8]



  1. ^ Reynolds, Simon (1999). "POSITION NORMAL - Stop Your Nonsense / SAINT ETIENNE - Places to Visit". The Village Voice. Retrieved 5 June 2019.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g "Position Normal to play rare London live show". FACT. Retrieved 5 February 2019.
  3. ^ a b Kellman, Andy. "Artist Biography by Andy Kellman". AllMusic. Retrieved 4 February 2019.
  4. ^ a b c Stubbs, David. "Position Normal: Goodly Time (Rum) (Uncut review, May 2002)". Rocks Back Pages. Retrieved 5 February 2019.
  5. ^ a b Reynolds, Simon (2012). Retromania: Pop Culture's Addiction to its Own Past. London: Faber & Faber. pp. 333–335. ISBN 978-0571232093. Retrieved 4 February 2019.
  6. ^ a b "Cassette playa: in praise of tapes". Fact. 26 July 2010. p. 3. Retrieved 5 February 2019.
  7. ^ "2009 Rewind: Top 50 Releases of the Year". The Wire. January 2010. Retrieved 5 February 2019.
  8. ^ "Excellent Brighton night The Outer Church announce debut compilation; Ekoplekz, Pye Corner Audio and Position Normal to feature". FACT. 19 June 2013. Retrieved 5 February 2019.