Sophiaaaahjkl;8901 Toilet Abstraction Tapes

[Business Casual; 2017]

Rating: 4/5

Styles: plunderwave, beat-music, “post-vapor”
Others: Macintosh Plus, The Avalanches, Beat Detectives

“Wait… At certain moments my body is illuminated… It is very curious. Suddenly I see into myself… I can make out the depths of the layers of my flesh; and I feel zones of pain… rings, poles, plumes of pain.”
– Paul Valery


What does not fade is a feeling of alienation & discomfort. & the more vague & imprecise, the more poetic. As if in a world after the end of the world.

For example: begin with a sample of nuclear rainfall in a zone of fire. Trigger smells come out in the offing. Karmic residue slips amidst the rubbery gleams. Laser beams from behind big boulders form thin, fleet shadows.

Well, you know the scene. You’re already here & already know that an OPN sample begins this tape. But wait: it’s a sample of a sample. As in: a wi-fi connection, post-wi-fi. A body, post-body. Food, post-food. Philosophy, post-philosophy.

Etc., etc.


But then, after the first track, Toilet Abstraction Tapes kinda smiles & out from the purple corners of its lips comes a little bit of blue blood & green sewage as a gray zombie screams at your pink face trying to gnaw your red nose & you’re just scalping it.

Sensual, intuitive, intellectual. Scuff up each with a single whiff. Then, using your right index finger, pinch your right nostril shut & blow. Call it estilo cyberpunk. Call it estilo future-funk. Call it staying in motion even when Netflix stuns us into braindead silence, akin to our 40-hours-a-week.

In sooth, adopting a principle of embracing uncertainty, incompleteness, & turbulent complexity might be the only alternative to capitalism’s violent tactics.

Case in point: Toilet Abstraction Tapes.

As a musician, and likewise a music listener, we can use our music to sum up how we experience life & how we portray ourselves. But at a cost. Because as we enter the global neocortex with a smile, we exit it with a frown. The bliss of wide-angled attentiveness turns into an overflowing cauldron of vast dissonance. We need a real remedy, beyond the drugs.

Case in point: to radically accept our finitude. To veer toward the vortex. To come to grips of the evidence of your inner space. To experience the not-nearly-pleasurable-enough with pleasure. To grin, gulping. To accept other music outside of your own culture as your own. To add up to a mere semblance — a mere semblance. & that’s all, folks. Our nanosecond of fame, finally up.

You, not-you. We’re exploring this frontier together & it’s weird & sometimes, when I look at you, I see you as I think you want me to see you. I’m all twitchily reactive, as if I’ve taken mushrooms. Maybe I have. Maybe I’m just listening to “B Greg2” & hearing a sample of a voice I know, from somewhere — a high-octane snippet of it — ready to shoot me in the face with a rawness that comes from the infinite recombinatory effects of today’s modern music-making methods. (Harsh clicks on the computer, zoomed-in-on MIDI files, everything swinging.)

& the tape just ended. Never thinking the world will notice, it does.

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