Drew McDowall’s backstory reads like a primer of psychedelic fiction woven into statements of the unbelievable, superhuman, and outright insane. Somewhere in the midst of the chaotic madness, McDowall shaped his own unique sound, establishing total control and absolute calm within his songs and artistic method. Crafting mostly instrumental tracks interwoven with a few vocal samples, McDowall creates brooding and apocalyptic electronic compositions.
Growing up in the gangs of 1970’s Scotland, McDowall traded in the daily violence for the aggressive self-expressionism of punk, forming his own band in 1978 called The Poems with his then-wife Rose McDowall. This project led to friendships with Genesis P-Orridge, David Tibet, and countless others, and soon after, McDowall found himself in the ranks of P-Orridge’s Psychic TV. Later on McDowall established himself as a full-time member of the arcane and esoteric outfit known as Coil. His impact on Coil’s sound became apparent as the releases transformed from their pervious avant pop signature to a more complex and methodic electronic imprint, accompanied by even more abstruse subject matter than previous years.
More recently, Drew McDowall found himself living in New York City where he began contributing to the local music scene. In 2011, alongside his friend and collaborator Tres Warren (Psychic Ills), McDowall began exploring his passion of meditative drone and abstract sound patterns in their project Compound Eye. McDowall’s production work has also provided the music world with some of the most outstanding remixes for bands such as Nine Inch Nails, Azar Swan, and Long Distance Poison, as well as a few well-received scores composed alongside artist Tamaryn for the works of Bret Easton Ellis.
Outside his collaborative duties, McDowall formed an audience as a solo artist, playing countless performances and showcases around New York’s electronic music haunts. Dais Records approached Drew to solidify his standing as a leading electronic musician with the recording of new material neatly wrapped up in his debut album entitled Collapse, put out in 2015. The tracks making up Collapse are modular synthesizer compositions augmented by obtuse sampling cut-ups, and contributions from Nicky Mao (Hiro Kone/ Effi Briest) round out the lumbering sequential knot-work that has become synonymous with Drew McDowall.