UK synthwave sensation PROPTER HOC releases new album pre-order together with the new single “Immortelle”!

After his first single “Velvet Season”, the beat-driven Dark Wave artist PROPTER HOC present a new dancefloor hit with the second single “Immortelle” plus lyrics video.

The single is part of PROPTER HOCS’ s upcoming album “Zodiac Carousel” to be released in digital & physical format on March 14th, 2024. Together with the new single release the pre-order phase for the album also started.

Propter Hoc says about the single:
“Immortelle takes its title from the film L’Immortelle by Alain Robbe-Grillet, its opening scene from Mina Loy’s poem ‘Café du Néant,’ but is also inspired by the autofiction of authors like Constance de Jong, Renata Adler, Elizabeth Hardwick.”


PROPTER HOC is a project by artist/writer J. A. Harrington combining post-punk influenced electronic music with referential lyrics, drawing upon poetry, literature, philosophy and other sources in the hope of connecting through a sense of expanded diegesis.

The name Propter Hoc comes from an essay by artist Martha Rosler, where the phrase is used in the context of photography as fine art, that it might only be considered ‘art’ if that was the intention before creating it.

With this music the aspiration is that perhaps a song is more likely to be meaningful if finding meaning was the motive behind making it in the first place.

Interview – Propter Hoc

KKM: Hello. We appreciate your time with Kainklangmusik today. We are based in Germany. Obviously Germany is well known for its different music scene and fans. Is that where your greatest response has been from perhaps?

Hi, thanks for the questions. The audience for my music seems to be scattered around the world, but yes Germany is somewhere I do get a higher number of listeners and encouraging comments, plus there’s a community around Cold Transmission that I’m now lucky enough to be a part of. It’s not surprising that there would be a cultural kinship, as Germany has long been associated with electronic music, and the lineage that I draw on is sometimes identified as beginning with Kraftwerk in Dusseldorf and Giorgio Moroder in Munich. At the same time, the gothic aesthetic owes a lot to German culture, from Goethe and Hegel through Kurt Weill or Expressionist cinema etc, so maybe there’s a subtle influence that comes across as familiar.

KKM: What’s the meaning behind your band name?

I tried a few names, I would search each one in Bandcamp and Spotify to see if anyone else was already using it, and Propter Hoc was the first one that wasn’t already there. I got the name from an essay by Martha Rosler, where she’s talking about the relationship between art and audience, between finance and culture, and what makes something ‘high art.’ She mentions that when Alfred Stieglitz was first being recognised as an Artist, rather than just a photographer, it was believed that “art had to be a propter hoc motive, not a belated discovery” for a photograph to be considered a work of art. I don’t know how much I agree with the sentiment, but it’s interesting to think about, with Duchamp coming along a few years later, and then the ‘death of the author’ and all that stuff I learned about in art school. I like the name as a reminder to myself to think about what I’m doing, that intentionality helps to create meaning. Music is about connection, and since I’m making mine in isolation I try to connect through a sense of a broader shared culture, even if that only exists in my head.

KKM: Where are you located and what are the vibes like musically there? Have the different places you’ve lived inspired you differently or brought unique challenges to you as an artist?

To be honest, I’m kind of in limbo, I don’t really feel like I’m located anywhere. I moved to Glasgow from London so I could have some time and space to work on a research project but then the pandemic happened and I kind of got stuck here, Edinburgh is the place that most feels like home but I can’t afford to live there, so I’m still trying to figure out where I should move to next. Where I live is quite far from the city centre, so I’m not really connected to any local music scene. I think most creative people have a similar issue where the places that have lots of possibilities and opportunities take a lot of work just to keep afloat in, but it’s hard to find or build a community in the places where you might actually have the time and resources to be creative. I worked for a long time in arts institutions where everyone I worked with was an artist, a writer, a musician, etc, and I always found inspiration in the conversations we would all have. There’s something special about going from having a chat with someone about a vague idea they’re thinking about, to seeing them develop it to the point where your next conversation is at a fancy event with free drinks and they’re presenting the finished result to a big audience. I think I enjoy seeing other people’s achievements more than I enjoy feeling like I’ve achieved something myself.

KKM: How did the creative process differ for this latest release than older ones? Can you talk about the current album and the next one?

The creative process doesn’t really change much, every song starts with a riff or a chord progression on a guitar and maybe a vague vocal melody, then I translate that into a synthesizer sequence and build a beat around it, gradually it will take shape from there. I always write the lyrics after everything else is finished so I’ll also be plotting out the melody in case I forget it. I have things set up at home so I can just try something if I get an idea, which is usually when I’m avoiding doing something else, I tend to feel most inspired to make music when it’s like, time to clean the bathroom or something.

Writing lyrics is always the most difficult, but also the most rewarding. I spend a lot of time reading and I’ll often jot down words or phrases that come to me, in the notes app on my phone. Something from there will usually be my starting point, but from that I’ll decide on a topic and research the lyrics like I’m researching an essay, then I’ll end up writing something completely unrelated, because it rhymes or fits the rhythm, and try to convince myself that it Means Something.

KKM: How do you balance time between your profession, your creative work and family?

I don’t really think about it anymore, I don’t usually have a deadline for making music, so I just fit it in around everything else. In London I had a full time job and rarely had time for much else, so I made a conscious decision to quit trying to have a career and to value time more than money. Now I live quite frugally and work as few hours as I can get by on, and that gives me the freedom to be creative without any pressure. I also had a solo exhibition as an artist in 2019 that was kind of a disaster and I realised that the idea of ‘success’ as I had pictured it, was not something I was actually that comfortable with, there’s a cliché that musicians often say: that they make music for themselves and if anyone else likes it it’s a bonus, but I think that’s genuinely something to aspire to.

KKM: How important is literature to you as an artist?

Well, literature is just important to me full stop. I learned to read very young, before I could even talk properly, so I’ve always lived in a world of books. I grew up before the internet took off, in a household with no money, and we didn’t have a television, so the local library was my main source of entertainment. Literature, as well as film, art, music etc, are a big part of how I make sense of being alive in the universe, so that informs how I go about finding inspiration, sometimes directly and consciously, sometimes indirectly and unconsciously.

KKM: Favorite cities to visit or perform in?

Since I’m from a fairly rural place where the weather changes every five minutes, usually for the worse, I’ve always had a romantic idea of the kind of city where you can sit outside a café and watch the world go by. I don’t have a favourite to visit but I prefer the kind of place where you can walk to most of it.

The way I make music is less like a physical expression and more like assembling an intricate puzzle, and I haven’t yet figured out how to translate that to a live performance, so I’ll have to get back to you when I’ve done that to know the best place to perform.

KKM: What scares you?

Indifference. In myself as much as in others. There are so many terrible things happening in the world that it often feels like the only sane thing to do is ignore it and try to just live your life. Yet it’s a tiny minority that are responsible for all of the toxicity out there, and I think if more people paid attention, they would be less likely to get away with it.

KKM: Are there any locations on the globe where you would like to retire to & that you think would be inspiring as long as you live?

I don’t know what makes a place inspiring other than the people who live there, but I do often go down to the Scottish Borders, where I grew up, so I can go for a walk in the woods or cycle along a trail by the river, so I may end up moving back there. However, I never want to feel stuck in one place so I would always want to live somewhere with a railway station nearby.

KKM: Name a song that can make you cry. Have you ever cried after you created a song or during the process? If so, what song?

I don’t know if a song has ever made me cry but when I want to wallow in self-pity I might listen to Billie Holliday, ‘I’m a Fool to Want You’ is pretty devastating. With my own music there have been times when I’ve gone to bed elated, thinking I’ve just made the greatest ever song in the entire history of recorded music, and then I’ve woken up the next day to discover that it was, in fact, absolute garbage. I may have shed a tear then.

KKM: What was the last great record you heard?

I think ‘greatness’ is overrated, it always ends up with some old white dude going on about Bob Dylan or whatever. My favourite listening experiences are usually discovering something new or hearing something familiar in a different or unexpected context. The most recent sequence of music that gave me that warm feeling was the soundtrack to the film ‘Perfect days,’ which I watched a couple of weeks ago.

KKM: Motto?

The first thing that comes to mind is that famous Samuel Beckett quote (from Worstward Ho): “Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.”

KKM: What have you planned in the coming months for the band?

I’m currently recording some new songs, but I don’t know when I’ll be ready to release anything. I’m also thinking I should expand things a bit, so I might start writing a newsletter or something like that, and yeah, I should figure out a way to play live, but the only option I have right now is to sing to a backing track and maybe an audience would feel short-changed by that.

KKM: We thank you for your music, inspiration and your time;-)

Thank you for your interest, sites like yours are very important for independent artists, and I’m very grateful to everyone who listens to my music.

written by C.T.



Insta: Propter Hoc 🍉 (@propter.hoc) • Instagram-Fotos und -Videos

bandcamp: Music | Propter Hoc (

spotify: Propter Hoc | Spotify