“The Exploded View”
Oh man, you guys. There just aren’t enough people doing synth music like Raglani right now. With Emeralds dead and Daniel Lopatin having more fun with his laptop than his Juno-60, someone has to claim the throne of analog synth mastery, and my money is 100% on Raglani. His most recent album, Real Colors of the Physical World, pairs two towering 20-plus-minute epics with two concise and extremely happy kosmische pop songs (and the epic tracks are pretty blissful too). One of those shorter tracks is the excellent “The Exploded View,” which pairs the sounds of vintage Kraftwerk with beautifully robotic vocals that recall Tender Buttons-era Broadcast. Lyrically, the song seems to blur the line between human and machine love with lines like “The circuits light up her eyes” and “This engine cradles/ Attentions divide,” calling to mind a retro-futurist relationship in the vein of Fry and the Lucy Liu-bot on Futurama. Raglani’s masterful use of vocoding serves to further blur the lines between the human and the machine in a delightful manner.
Real Colors of the Physical World is out now on Editions Mego, and you can watch the video for “The Exploded View” above.
Launch Pad #3 (MBV)
Happy My Bloody Valentine’s Day! The Talibam! boys (Matt Mottel, Kevin Shea) are back with the third installment of their Launch Pad series, in which they “explore new sound relationships in the digital world” and “paint and mold the music into a new species, blurring the lines between inconspicuous and conspicuous consumption/appropriation” by using recently released albums as a launching pad. First was Dirty Projectors’ Swing Lo Magellan, and then came Launch Pad #2, which saw Talibam! taking on Frank Ocean’s channel ORANGE.
When news of Launch Pad #3 came out just minutes ago, I thought for a moment about how long it took for Talibam! to make this music, and then how much longer it took them to make peace with it, to accept whatever imperfections they still heard. I considered how many days I had listened to Launch Pad #2, cherishing the vague notion of what Talibam! might be working on at that moment, wondering if I would ever hear it. How sad and wonderful, I thought, for a dream this dear and long-deferred to be realized. I savored my last moment alone with Launch Pad #2. Then I clicked play.
Watching the Prescribed Burn
In moments alone, reading at the kitchen table or laying on the couch, my mind wanders and I tune into the little domestic drones around me: the hum of the fridge, the downstairs heater’s muffled whirr, the murmuring ceiling fan in the bathroom. It would be a stretch to call them an “orchestra of appliances.” None of them are in tune with one another. They share the space, executing their task as quietly as they can, their little voices encroaching over thresholds or through floors into other rooms. For as often as I put his cassettes into the tape deck in the living room, I count the work of Hakobune among this set of domestic drones. With the volume cranked, his music manages to fill the room to its corners without disrupting its quietude. With the volume low, the tape deck whispers at the same level as the vent behind the shelving unit.
Since 2007, Takahiro Yorifuji has blessed us with 15 and a half hours of slow-churning guitar dronescapes as Hakobune, spanning 30 physical releases for over 20 labels including Constellation Tatsu, Fabrica, and Cassauna. With the recent release of Watching the Prescribed Burn on CD and Bandcamp via Italian micro-label Pure Wave Recordings, we’re only seven-and-a-half hours of material away from the possibility of a Whole Day of Hakobune. Imagine with me: at midnight, your Walkman clicks on and Yorifuji’s delay-smeared chords collude as you fall asleep; breakfast takes on a hushed reverence as the juicer burbles; at laundry time, each machine rumbles alongside Hakobune in a different register; back at midnight, the day’s sounds sustain in your mind as clearly as the space heater’s persisting drone after the last tape ends.
Mark So / Patrick Farmer
“sitting and listening” / “let’s grasp it, naked as it is… under a storm of stones”
I once saw Mark So give a surreal lecture about his music over a carefully placed tapestry of sounds provided by tape recorders spread throughout the room. Each tape recorder contained intermittent snippets of field recordings that were preceded and followed by silences, but given the lo-fi mid-80s answering-machine quality of the recorders that So was using, true silence was never really achieved. Instead, an interesting dichotomy occurred between the white noise of the tape hiss and the organic white noise of the environments that So recorded. So’s “sitting and listening” on his collaborative split with Patrick Farmer is seemingly a recorded version of this piece that subtly juxtaposes the noise of So’s equipment with the ambiance of various locations. The result is something that calls to mind the recent studies between found sound and silence seen in Graham Lambkin and Jason Lescalleet’s collaborations as well as Michael Pisaro’s recent work with Toshiya Tsunoda. Farmer’s side of the split (titled “let’s grasp it, naked as it is…”) is full of delightfully gurgling electronic-sounding underwater recordings that come across like a dirtied up Chris Watson. Farmer pairs these sounds with quiet ambient recordings that create a similar effect to the white noise of So’s side, yielding an interesting implicit dialogue about the different sonorities of various spaces/noise.
You can listen to excerpts of the album from Experimedia’s SoundCloud below. A limited number of tapes from Wind Measures’ website can be found here..
• Wind Measures: http://windsmeasurerecordings.net
I’m an impressionist, you’re dumb: a compilation of bass tracks
friendships entered the room. [1:22 AM]
tmtcrew entered the room.
squirrell_nuts entered the room.
*Type /help for a list of commands.
M I S H A: I’m an impressionist [1:23 AM]
Friend_ships: You’re dumb [1:23 AM]
JP∆rk: Ur a Drag [1:23 AM]
JP∆rk: Drop that B A A S S S S [1:23 AM]
Skinimin: word [1:23 AM]
M R P: 1am (slow release) is tiiiiiight [1:23 AM]
CliffOrd //M//: mmdammmmmnnn [1:24 AM]
RaRakin: represent [1:24 PM]
Friend_ships: who the hell is squirrel_nuts!? [1:24 AM]
• friendships: https://soundcloud.com/friendships
“Hamburger Touchdown” [NSFW]
Now this is an interesting piece of work/ass, Boron. Only in flashes can I actually watch this video at work, because it’s totally tits out. Totally, literally, digitally: tits out. But also, like, this is borderline unwatchable because of all that decay and digital smear. Again, literally unwatchable; this doesn’t involve taste. Yet it so cleverly matches the track “Hamburger Touchdown” through vaginal and sexual insinuation, and warped sounds of maybe musical intention stacked on musical intention stacked on a mess of electronic core vibrations.
It’s unsettling, but wonderfully so, and with the Google Stalker app running across the globe, it’s like I’m right there, in real life, watching this broad pixelate into a Picasso. Oh-oh, and our Choco papi Keith Kawaii slipped me this dic— VIDEO; he slipped me this VIDEO, yes, and I’m totally not hard at work because of it. Well, mostly I’m pitching a tent because of these noises, though a blocky nip slips into my vision occasionally and so I think it confuses my parts. Again-again, “Hamburger Touchdown” and it’s video encompasses some happily acceptable parts, making parts part in parties for… CHECK OUT: Boron’s new jam The Beige Album on Field Hymns immediately, or people will think your parts are slipping.