Fresh Cut: Selva Oscura – ‘Refractides’ LP
We’re excited to share an early-bird stream of Selva Oscura’s debut LP, Refractides—out soon on his Bandcamp here. This is his first extended-length release to date, and his first release since 2011′s As/Is/Was EP. Here’s what Ray Levinson-Fort, aka Selva Oscura, had to say about each individual track on the record:
1.) “Higher (Intro)”
This track is the oldest song on the album besides “Sea Crown”. I didn’t exactly know what to do with it for the longest time so I basically just said fuck it this is going to be the intro track, and it seemed to work very well for the aesthetic I was going for. Dragged this one deep out of the Selva box to use.
This track came to be out of mostly accidental sampling and for some odd reason “First Cool Hive” by Moby, played at the end of Scream, just without the scream aesthetic, its a very beautiful track, and I suppose the aesthetic of Moby’s groove passed on with me into this track, just with a more upbeat hip-hop style.
3.) “Taste Water, Glow Blue”
I love Enya, I know big surprise whatever. The short loop of her song “Caribbean Blue” which I took for this song really formed the whole vision for this entire album. After completing this song, I finally understood what this album was supposed to sound like.
4.) “Sea Crown”
This song has been done forever. Definitely shows how my style and sound have both perhaps changed over the past year. I probably wouldn’t be able to make a track like this anymore as my present self, however it is one of my favorite tracks, I like to see the ending as my one and only tropical anthem.
5.) “As a Shadow”
This track took me 8 months, and drove me crazy. After several months of it evolving and devolving, I finally figured out the puzzle. Low-pitched Rihanna really made the song for me though. From now on, I am keeping all of my songs as simple as possible…ultimately this song is very reflective of my daily routine in Chicago on the subway and the music I was listening to while in transit at the time.
6.) “Don’t Just”
This song in my opinion is more pop-influenced just like “Sea Crown,” for they were both made around the same time last year and is evidently simpler with more of a focus on the vocals being sample, which isn’t something I commonly do. That is why I placed this song right after “As a Shadow”. I had A LOT of fun with the samples on this one for sure though.
7.) “Canopy Wake”
This song was one of my absolute favorites to make. I almost gave up on finding the right beat and then voila, it all came out of thin air. I’m so happy with how the vocal samples blended with the beat to make the percussive vibe, however my roommates heard this song WAY too many times and by the end of its production wanted to gut me haha.
This is tied for my favorite track on the album alongside “I Don’t Feel Home”. I found myself listening to a lot of Clams Casino and Teebs as well as others at the time and this basically became the baby of that. I’ve been getting more into making hip-hop influenced beats more in the style that somebody interesting might rap to, at least I hope someday in the coming future that becomes the case.
9.) “I Don’t Feel Home”
This is my other absolute favorite on the album. I think its a sign of what’s to come after ‘Refractides,’ for this was literally made last week as opposed to all the other tracks on the album, and I couldn’t be more satisfied with the direction that it went. Expect to hear more shit like this post-refractdes I suppose. But then again-who knows!
10.) “She Was Reknown”
“She Was Reknown” is yet another track that i pre-released several months before the album release. Absolutely not my normal style when it comes to the rhythm, with swing beat and all, however, this track definitely opened my eyes up a little more to the importance of incorporating more variety in styles. This album is full of many different styles, and I suppose that’s most reflective of the fact that i’m really just super fed up with these stylistic guidelines listeners and producers alike are revolving around for present day music.
Tondo is basically about a dream I had about tripping on some weird petal in the Philippines that a local kid gave me, and going to some kind of tribal rave afterwards?
12.) “Scared Sacred”
This song is really long, and has many different parts, that’s all I have to say. Oh and the song is about death, but don’t worry or anything it’s very down tempo.
Stream Refractides Below: