Mile 97 was birthed in 1987 by Xopher.tm (AKA Christopher tm), a member of Orange County, CA experimental noise bands Here Comes Everybody and Ethnic Bee Cultures, as an outlet for exercising his own ideas in tape manipulation and audio dada. He soon moved on to experiment in the areas of musique concrète, electroacoustic sculpture, and power electronics among others.
Encouraged by the other members of his existing groups, as well as those he met through the mail-art/tape-trading movement, tm recorded the base tracks for Mile 97's first release, Crucifixture, which he sent to PBK who added washes of electronic noise and mixed the tracks down to their finalized state. Crucifixture was released on C60 cassette tape in 1989. While it received encouraging reviews among the noise community, Christopher also sent as many copies to mainstream press and radio stations – Rolling Stone, Spin, KROQ FM, et al. – as he did genre-specific organizations because, as he stated at the time, “This is pop music to me. I don't see any difference between what I do and, say, The Beach Boys.” Perhaps unsurprisingly, Mile 97 was ignored not only by the mainstream, but by the greater population of what was then being hailed as the “Post-Modern” (later, “Alternative”) scene as well.
Uncaring, tm set to work releasing additional cassettes, recording dozens of hours of material and submitting tracks to numerous compilations many of which were never heard from again.
By 1994, Christopher tm was homeless, having lost most of his gear and all of his master tapes, instantly making all Mile 97 recordings prior to this date valuable collector's items. Cruising from sofa to sofa, tm divided his time between consuming huge quantities of alcohol and playing the “TM Machine” – an interconnected mass of cables, effects pedals, microphones, and cassette players – with burgeoning noise-mongers, Instagon, recording with them a number of live performances and the full-length CD “Thee Most Creative Thing I have Ever Seen In A Slight English Accent”.
After a few years, tm relocated temporarily to San Diego, California, where he became roadie for noise-metal power-trio, Adrenochrome before being drafted as their lead singer for the newly re-christened four-piece, Coition. This set-up lasted about a year before tm disappeared again to resurface in 1999 in the cold, gray crown of Appalachia, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania where tm found the region both suitable for and accepting of disjointed dark noise. He reclaimed the Mile 97 name and returned to electroacoustic works of a more organic bent.
Since then, Mile 97 has released a number of limited-edition CD-Rs and internet-only works including the exclusive “Black, Too… The Last.fm Sessions”.
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