Tagged with " Caves"
Los Angeles, California’s 6BIT collective, aka, Dreams, Wondr, Guy Fridge, Eliot, Future Dollars, Caves, Brotherhood Crusade, Earthly Delight, Oskar Russakis, and Phoebe Bridgers give us the inside scoop on their favorite musicians (and songs) of all time. Their favorites include: Elliott Smith, Sly & The Family Stone, Bibio, and a Norwegian death metal band called Burzum.
After a lot of thought, I decided to go with my favorite producer in the game, Rustie. This is not only because of the BBC Radio 1 mix I was recently featured in, but for a much larger reason that I’ve always admired Rustie for. When i first heard Rustie back in 2009, I was immediately captivated by his distinct sound, a very unique take on electronic music that was refreshing and eye opening to say the least. It was a break from all the abrasive dubstep and house that was popular at the time, yet still a maximalist form of electronic music. He’s come such a long way since then, and is finally getting the recognition he deserves as an artist. However, the main reason I love all of his productions is the underlying theory behind all of them: pop.
He’s found the perfect balance between experimentation and pop music that is a stepping stone to the world becoming more accepting of electronic music as a whole. It’s great because you don’t turn on a Rustie tune and think,”this is pop.” But if you listen to a song that’s making someone millions, or some big house tune that you subconsciously know the melody of, and then listen to a few Rustie tracks, you’ll realize where he takes a lot of his influence from. He’s figured out how to exploit pop in the best way and it’s awesome to hear an artist who can give you the best of both worlds and keep that originality that he’s always had.
I picked an older Rustie track, “Hyperthrust” off his Sunburst EP. This track hooked me back in 2010 when it was released, and even then I overlooked how good the guy was. A year later he made Glass Swords an album which, in any case you don’t have yet, i suggest buying. It’s an electronic masterpiece and one of my favorite electronic albums to date.
Wondr: Nina Kraviz
I was browsing the related videos section in youtube when I came across this jazzy, slow tempo’d house beat. The keys in the beginning full of reverb and the sample of dishes being cleaned up gave me the impression of someone playing to a cafe that had once been full of people but had now cleared out leaving only the few that decided to stay until the end. The drums grew louder and louder and eventually dropped subtly with a deep, round bass that compelled me to close my eyes and focus on nothing else. Only then did I realize the gem that I had found. That’s what I seem to like about Nina Kraviz’s music. Her recent full length LP simply self titled Nina Kraviz, is that empty cafe full of ambient, experimental beats. Only if you take the time to stay and hang out do you find the perfectly smooth house beats she has hidden, scattered among the rest of her tracks on the album. It’s almost as if she is showing everyone that she can make the tracks that people want to hear but sticks to making weird abstract experimental pieces just to keep things true to herself. I started off my music career making experimental music, and realized quick that it wasn’t the best music to play at parties. Since then I’ve been gearing towards producing more bassy upbeat tracks while still holding on to a lot of my early experimental influences. Nina Kraviz kinda showed me a path that I had not really thought was possible. Singing, writing, producing, and mastering her own material, Nina Kraviz is definitely on her way to becoming an influence on many producers and listeners alike.
Guy Fridge: Mosca
Within the inherently ephemeral and transient world of underground club, the work of Tom Reid, aka Mosca, is perhaps the most difficult to pin down. With each successive release, Mosca consistently evades being pigeon-holed, always straddling an array of styles that seem to be ever changing. For example, few would have expected him, let alone any producer, to follow up his UK garage inspired release “Done Me Wrong / Bax” with the dark, 4×4 techno influenced “The Wavey Digi EP.” The diversity of style within Mosca’s work to date relates to yet another compelling aspect of his music, his consciousness of the historicity inherent within UK-based underground club. Mosca always seems to be tastefully acknowledging his forefathers in underground club by either borrowing recognizable sample material or recycling characteristic sounds of previously influential music movements such as the infamous speed garage organ stab. When placed within the greater context and history of underground club, Mosca’s music takes on an added meaning beyond its immediate aural appeal.
Aside from his music’s contextual significance, Mosca’s mastery over production and composition are second to none. Mosca’s composition is almost scientific in nature. No note is wasted or in excess. All compositional elements are meticulously organized such that even if one tiny element were removed, the entire piece would be noticeably different. Though Mosca’s music is certainly aimed at the dance floor, there is a lot of underrated subtlety that goes on in his music. Nothing is overstated. Though you will find yourself compelled to dance to his music, you will never get the same overbearing feeling that you might while listening to someone like Skrillex.
Stephen James Wilkinson, who releases music under the name Bibio, has shaped the way I produce in so many different ways. After hearing the raw and ambient textures he produced on his albums ‘Vignetting the Compost’ and ‘Ambivalence Avenue’ I knew that I had to look into his ways of production.
The reason I’m constantly gathering so much influence from Wilkinson is because of his unique view of the relationship between sound and vision. In his most recent album ‘Mind Bokeh’ his goal was to include the term Bokeh (the out of focus region in a photograph; the blur or the haze) into the sounds he created for the album. He thought the best way to describe the effect was “like glimmers of sunlight coming through a tree’s canopy.” His idea—including vision, emotion, etc.—is what’s really been the basis of my production ever since I first started, and it’s great to see another artist incorporate this interpretation so powerfully into his works. He can harness emotion from a vision and transform it so methodically into such lush and beautiful pieces of work.
Bibio’s ways of actively venturing away from his classically-influenced repertoire and acquiring characteristics from various neurologically processed visual stimuli is what has had me constantly hooked on his music. Wilkinson has not only inspired me to work off the grid musically, but has motivated me to explore my own internal synesthesia—how what captures my visual attention can be heard as a soundscape—and how that is translated that into the various elements present in my music.
If you haven’t had the chance to check out the works of Bibio, I implore you to do so. Go on a hike, bring your headphones, and listen to “The Ephemeral Bluebell” off of Bibio’s album ‘Vignetting the Compost’. Look up through the trees and enjoy.
I chose to talk about one of my favorite artists to date surprisingly enough he is no electronic or hip hop producer—however a Norwegian death metal artist by the name of Burzum. You might be thinking… what the fuck… death metal? But trust me, I have my reasons. First of all the subculture within music genres holds a super interesting importance to any movement or process of evolution within music, and in my opinion Norway circa the early to mid 90’s was the place to be if you were a long-haired white dude with an urge to fuck shit up. I’m gonna try really hard to not mess this story up… okay so basically Burzum was in this band called Mayhem and there was a constant argument within the band between “Dead” the lead singer and Varg (Burzum) on who was more evil. After time went by the only logical thing in Varg’s mind to do was kill “Dead” and prove he was the eviler band mate. Varg ended up executing this plan and spent about 20 years in jail recording demos on Casio’s and tape decks. Varg was also charged on multiple accounts of arson—because this dude burned down a shit load of churches too… and u tweens think these odd future cats are gnarly. But besides the super crazy story that commonly intrigues most listeners, the music has a few very oddly important aspects to me. When I first heard about Burzum, Mayhem, Dark Throne…etc I was in my school orchestra probably around 10th grade. The drummer in my orchestra was a dope metal drummer and was always putting me and my homie onto underground shit we could listen to even though at the time we were listening to hip hop and dance music like usual. This was around the time I was starting to take music production a little more seriously but big studios, multiple engineers, musicians, and the need to purchase instruments to pull of the level of music I wanted to make constantly daunted me. When my homie (the metal drummer) gave me a CD of Burzum’s Filosofem, I didn’t wanna play it in my mom’s car on the way home from school cause I knew she would assume I was smoking weed, killing cats, and carving pentagrams on my girlfriends backs. So I held onto it till I got home. I remember listening to it and thinking “fuck yes.” This is some real ass shit, not some fucking Hot Topic-major-label-bullshit metal act that uses flame throwers and glitter at their shows.” The rawness of the album is what got me. Even though it was lo-fi and dirty it had a very minimalist and ambient cadence to it that I had never acquired. I later read up on the process in which Varg recorded Filosofem—its said he used no guitar amplifiers but instead hooked up his guitar to his brothers old stereo and plugged his guitar into some generic fuzz petal. He even used headphones as a mic to record the vocals on the album. You may be putting the sound of this album together in your head right now and it sounds something like a screamy distorted mess—but that’s the thing, it’s the opposite. Varg’s use of ambience and minimalism within the album creates an eerie feeling that still doesn’t quite make sense to me today—there’s a 25 minute ambient electronic song on Filosofem…. yeah. It was after hearing this album where I felt confident enough to make an album of my own in my bedroom with a laptop and some shitty speakers, and now I’m writing an article for Portals. All I’m really trying to say is find the importance of everything in life even if you hate it. I believe you can always take something beautiful out of anything.
Brotherhood Crusade: Slava
Ever since I heard DJ Nate in my friend’s car driving through the Vermont countryside, I’ve been really into the minimal, syncopated, and early Warp-reminiscent rhythms of juke music (as I guess the entire electronic music community has been as of late, or as of like a year or two ago; I’m usually late on these things.) I am not a New Yorker; no, I am from LA; however, my friend Stephen has gone to a lot of shows at a venue/club called 285 Kent and turned me on a brah he’s seen there a few times who goes by Slava. He pretty much does everything I would want to do if I were to make straight juke music but way better. Not only are his rhythms off the hook but his minimal use of simultaneously melancholy and ethereal vocal samples and synth sounds create sonic atmospheres I want to smoke a blunt in, live in, eat a continental breakfast in, drink tea in, dance in(/on top of, like dancing on cumulus clouds), take a nap in, etc. “What I Feel Like Doing” is one of my favorites and one of the best minimal/ambient/juke tracks (and maybe one of the only ones) out right now. Do yourself a favor and check this fresh dude out.
Earthly Delight: Machinedrum
I’ve always been fascinated by the intersection of rhythm, melody, and timbre in a track. When it comes to contemporary electronic music, there seems to be a rule where an artist can pick two elements to focus on, but never all three. The artists who serve as my biggest inspirations are those who are cognizant of all three elements and how they interact within their production. Take beat turned-juke turned-bass artist Machinedrum, born Travis Stewart. Although Stewart’s off-kilter rhythms may seem jarring at times and the sub-sonic frequencies in his tracks will vibrate your skull with the right pair of headphones, he never neglects the power of an un-fuck-with-able hook. To me, the ability to strike that careful balance is true artistry.
Oskar Russakis: Sly & The Family Stone
Sly and the Family compliment’s almost anything; I can’t imagine a sly song making anyone feel alienated. This music is prevalent among people who like to have a good time, and I would argue that there is no such thing as a bad time to play some Sly and the Family Stone. Listening to one of their songs is never too serious , just appealing; the care free undercurrent makes it sound much more desirable. I try to keep this in mind when I’m working on my own music, if anything it makes the whole process 100x more enjoyable . I have yet to meet someone who has experienced any kind of serious discomfort while listening to this music, which is usually a good thing.
Phoebe Bridgers: Elliott Smith
Now, if you haven’t listened to him, I guarantee you that someone you listen to has. His songwriting is direct, and for the most part, painfully sad. Alone with his guitar at the 1998 Academy Awards, he performed “Miss Misery,” a song he did for the Good Will Hunting soundtrack, to his largest crowd. Only to be followed by Celine Dion, her orchestra, and several fog machines. His straight forward performances inspired me to play acoustic shows, and his unique recording style has inspired me to double absolutely everything I record. Elliott Smith will always have a place on every playlist I make, and is my go-to answer to “What kind of music do you like?” Listen. Trust me. This song kills.
Future Dollars: Three 6 Mafia & Ali Farka Toure and Ry Cooder
Three 6 Mafia – Niggaz Ain’t Barin’ Dat (Jake)
It was super challenging to figure out which song I really wanted to write about off of Three 6 Mafia’s Underground Vol. 1: (1991-1994), a collection of their first recorded material. I’ve listened to the whole album through probably over a hundred times and love every track equally. I chose this song because I think it best represents elements of their production, which I’ve tried to channel through my own musical constructions. We use a lot of found sounds for our percussion but I try and sequence and edit the sounds to sound like they were recorded at a low bit rate to match the raw sound that Three 6 Mafia achieves in their early productions. I love how their material ranges from some super thugged out shit to almost atmospheric. This track displays their more atmospheric productions through the dreamy melody and the repetition of the lyrics.
Ali Farka Toure and Ry Cooder – Talking Timbuktu (Sam)
The collaborative album between Ali Farka Toure and Ry Cooder, Talking Timbuktu, is the representative for a larger appreciation for a whole style of West African guitar music, something we both try to synthesize when we’re in the studio. For me, there’s a sort of golden ratio with this album that doesn’t exist in the same way in some of the other, more rare groove West African albums I’ve heard. The concept of musical compromise exists very audibly in this record, where you can hear the stylistic differences between the two artists and how their different musical approaches meld together. The rhythms and melodies become a hybrid sound very relateable to us when we’re making music together. More so than other electronic music styles, it’s genres like West African guitar music that informs our work more often.
To the west coast we go for the next PORTALS Traveling Showcase, this one in partnership with the LA collective/label 6BIT. The outdoor party featuring 10 PORTALS adored artists will go down on Saturday, June 2nd in a courtyard at the epicenter of Hollywood.
With a debut live set from Mister Lies, a TV Girl performance just after the release of their full-length record, Slow Magic‘s first ever LA gig, and performances by 7 others who have made So Cal music noteworthy, the day in California sun isn’t to be missed. In true LA fashion, there will be a taco cookout, liquid comfort, and a showering of PORTALS merch and giveaways. We’ve shown you why we love Denver, Austin, and Orlando, but now it’s time we show you why we love LA. And to share with you the artists of the festivities, our June monthly mixture will feature fresh sounds from a number of the artists performing.
Come make PORTALS LA your own.
PORTALS LA :: June 2nd 2012 :: 2-10 PM :: Space 15 Twenty, 1520 N. Cahuenga Blvd Los Angeles, CA 90028
⇒ RSVP HERE ⇐
⇒ Purchase Tickets by clicking the showcase images on the side-bar &/or footer of this very post ⇐
Have a question about the show? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
And lastly, check out this sampler we’ve created as a preview to our line-up:
19-year-old Nick Zanca of Chicago’s Mister Lies details the personal significance of each and every track on his new 15-track mixtape, Absolutamento. Read through as he chats about the origins of his stage name, where he looks to take his listeners, and his admiration for California’s 6bit Collective, among many many other things. Enjoy!
Tracklist w/ time marks (mixtape embedded below):
1.) Introduction (:00-:20)
As someone who actually prefers reading plays to novels, the Pulitzer-Prize winning Angels In America is probably the front-runner for one of my favorite works of writing of all time. It takes place in NYC during the Reagan-era 80′s and deals with themes like racism, homophobia, religion and drug abuse – all that keen juicy shit. The name Mister Lies actually originates from a character of the same name from the play who acts as an imaginary friend to a Valium addicted Mormon housewife. In the character breakdown of the text, he is described by the author, Tony Kushner, as “a travel agent, who in style of dress and speech suggests a jazz musician; he always wears a large lapel badge emblazoned “IOTA” (The International Order of Travel Agents)”. I suppose it spoke to me when I was simultaneously starting this new project and reading this play for a course because I’ve stuck with it ever since. The soundbite that opens Absolutamento is from the screen adaptation that HBO produced. Long story short, I used it because it was my name. The female voice she wants to go “anywhere far away” which is what I was hoping to aide the listeners in doing.
2.) The Streets — “Turn The Page” (:21-3:17)
I’ve worshiped Mike Skinner, the poet laureate of UK garage, since I was about thirteen and a friend of mine who was about five years older showed me Original Pirate Material. This was the first song I ever heard of his. I was hooked ever since; I’d like to think that the album got me through middle school hell. What strikes me about Skinner’s delivery is that he refuses to let the beat carry him: like a spoken word artist, he spits within the realms his own cadence and yet the beat never distracts the listener from his raw and honest lyricism. I think it can be agreed that this track could only work as an opener and absolutely nothing else. It just has that sort of vivacity to it.
3.) King Felix — “Spring o1″ (3:18-7:47)
I’ll go ahead and be bold by saying that I really haven’t listened to enough of Laurel Halo’s work to call myself a true fan. However, I will say that Spring EP has been on heavy rotation. There is something incredibly enigmatic to the way she produces sounds – the woodwind sample, probably excerpted from Stravinsky’s Rite Of Spring? (just an assumption) or the detuned synths very similar to Boards Of Canada. There is a sort of 3 AM caffeinated vibe to this track that just doesn’t exist in most electronic music these days and I really respect it.
4.) Kitty Pryde — “Okay Cupid” (7:48-10:14)
Another recent discovery. Our boy Tyler from Flashlight Tag sent me this track on Facebook only a few nights ago and oddly enough, my first reaction to this track was “white female rapper talking about drunk texts and ex-boyfriends. Cool. I’ve seen this movie before.” It was only about after five or six listens that I realized there was more to this track – her flow is a lot more verbose than her peers and the Beautiful Lou-produced beat is far more atmospheric and icy than anything Kreayshawn would spit over. Plus, I really love her giggles – she’s on that sexy kawaii shit. I can now say with full confidence that this track is a grade A banger. Kitty, darling: if you’re reading this, let’s collab. We could make some really cute and intimidating shit.
5.) Daedelus — “Curtains Don’t Talk” (10:15-13:52)
My admiration for Alfred Darlington knows no bounds. I’ve always seen him as the Willy Wonka of the laptop music scene (and let’s get this straight, I mean the one performed by Gene Wilder). His whimsical approach to pops and clicks always brings a Cheshire Cat grin to my face, his taste in samples is nostalgic but never out of taste. As someone heavily inspired by the speed of Chicago footwork and the gutsy harmonies of both The Beach Boys and Janet Jackson, I get something new out of this track every time I hear it.
6.) Caves — “Eleven Twenty” (13:53-17:18)
The inclusion of this Mark Ronson-reminiscient track should act as tip of the hat or a shout-out to my comrades in the 6-bit collective in Cali of which Caves is a member. His EP released on Absent Fever was my first real introduction to their crew’s work and I’ve immersed myself in it ever since. I also really respect Luka’s work probably because he sounds so weathered and twice his age when sings and yet it remains chameleonic with the beatscape that he provides us on this track. Massive tune.
7.) Stevie Wonder — “The Secret Life Of Plants” (17:21-21:15)
The title track from the most underrated record of one of my musical demigods. If I’m not mistaken, the album acted as the score to a flopped documentary of the same name and featured tons of time-lapse photography of plants in bloom and whatnot. Regardless, this chord progression is bone-crushing and like most of the music he ends up composing invokes several emotions within my soul. I’m particularly proud of the placement of this song in the track listing and I can’t put my finger on why. No matter: kick back, relax and enjoy this one.
8.) Mono — “Life In Mono (slow)” (21:16-26:52)
One of two tracks that I slowed down specifically for this playlist. I’ll be frank and admit that I know absolutely nothing about this band, so it’d be safe to say that they were probably a one-hit-wonder. The vibe of this track is ominous and mysterious – not quite ready to be labeled trip-hop and at the same time too insulting to call lounge music. This intense track, glued together by the female vocalist’s chilling straight-tone vocals, makes me feel like a British secret agent sitting in a cafe on a rainy day just outside of France, storm clouds just peering overhead.
9.) J Dilla — “Make Em NV” (26:53-28:12)
Jay Dee, man. In a lot of ways, he’s my Elvis. A lot of us in the electronic community owe a lot to him, whether or not you know it. Also, this is probably his most apocalyptic beat to date. The drums are grainy, the chimes evoke a sense of great fear. He was a game-changer in the way that samples were used in hip-hop and nothing was ever the same. I particularly like Ruff Draft EP because of it’s lo-fi aesthetic. I can’t think of many of albums of the genre that work off that vibe.
10.) Louis Cole — “Motel Sadness” (28:13-32:13)
Now that I have the floor with this guest blog post I might as well take this opportunity to praise Louis Cole, a drummer/songwriter based out of the Bay Area who I believe is one of the most underrated musicians and composers of our generation. He’s dabbled in a lot of different genres and that’s especially evident on his self-titled. At times, there’s as much Richard D. James in his sound as there is Brian Wilson, or as much Ligeti in his work as there is Beck. Lyrically, a majority of his shit revolves around meditations of alienation. Surf music for a dystopian world. This dude is truly the musician’s musician and you’d be silly not to look into the four records he’s put out (two solo records, and two synth-pop efforts with his partner Genevieve Artadi).
11.) Svengali — “Always” (32:14-35:06)
I had to include one of the wolves in my pack somewhere in here. It’s almost borderline ridiculous to be writing this now but as of today I’ve actually never met Peter before, all our communication in regards to each others tracks is done through the collective’s private Facebook group. Habitually, what strikes me about Peter’s work is that he takes a genre of sampling that is more often than not done to death and makes it his. Not only does he tweak it to that extend, but he flips a sample on its side (in this case, the sample is literally flipped) and turns the track into something utterly relaxing and almost terrifying at the same time. For the short time that I’ve been a part of his collective, I’ve watched him improve as a producer and this track is a strong example. Love you, fam.
This one has a little bit of explaining to do. There’s the fantastic, aging movie theatre here in the Wrigleyville neighborhood in Chicago whose name unfortunately escapes me. Around Halloween last semester, there was a midnight showing of the silent film Metropolis set to a 1980′s score by synthpop saint Gorgio Moroder. The film itself is way ahead of its time when you consider it was made in 1920′s Germany, but add arpeggiators and drum machines to the mix and it becomes a life-changing party that everyone was invited to. My friend and I walked out of the theater knocked out. Not to mention, Moroder had an all-star cast of vocalists singing throughout the soundtrack, including Freddie Mercury, Bonnie Tyler, and as included in this mix, Pat Benatar. The production is gloriously warm on this track.
13.) Ghibli — “Ross” (39:49-43:18)
Thomas hit me up on Twitter shortly after I released Hidden Neighbors and from there we bonded over Facebook in regards to European disco music and the films of Hayao Miyazaki. While I’ve never met the guy, it’s already clear that he’s a bright and evocative spirit and it especially shines through on this track. This track in particular is what I imagine playing on the night of the drag competition in one of the classiest gay bars on some distant planet. The bacon-grease static of vinyl and the pulsating filters on this track are immense and I would give my left nut to have his sampling chops.
14.) RP Boo — “Eraser” (43:19-46:33)
One of the most beloved entities of Chicago’s music scene is the juke/footwork scene developed by young producers in the South Side – it takes a lot of its roots from ghetto house, skittering yet danceable rhythms and vocal samples at a tempo often times as fast as 160 beats per minute. DJ Nate and DJ Roc, considered to be the pride of the footwork scene, were soon picked up by Planet Mu Records in Britain and pretty soon the crazy moved to Europe. RP Boo’s Eraser is one of the darker tracks on Planet Mu’s compilation “Bangs And Works”, including a droning synth and a subtly rumbling bass-line. Hovering above it all is the tracks surprisingly never-excessive vocal samples customary to the genre – a sped-up Paul McCartney croons the phrase “live and let die” while an unidentified hype man bellows “that’s what you do when you got the flow”. All elements of the track are eerily volcanic and act as one of many highlights in the adventures of footwork.
15.) Camille — “Pale Septembre” (46:34-50:10)
Much like Bjork in Iceland, France’s Camille has an unorthodox sex appeal that most definitely shines through in her music. Frankly, I’m surprised her career hasn’t gone west and succeeded in America. Her ideas are at first cryptic but once you really dive into them they become cerebral. Her album “Le Fil” has some of the most intense ear candy I’ve ever experienced on a record – and the most phenomenal thing about that is that most of that is executed with massive layers of her voice and very little instrumentation. I find so much in this record I would love to steal. Example: throughout the entire album, right at the back of the mix, there is this one-note drone in the background of every song, which, in a sense, dominates the records. All the tunes on the record are forced to work around that single note. That blew my mind when I first heard that; her logic is outside the box.
16.) Aalyiah — “Journey To The Past (slow)” (50:11-55:35)
I ended Absolutamento with a slowed-down version of what I believe is one of the most underrated songs of our generation by one of our most-sampled R&B singers, because for one, it’s nostalgic. Half of the nineties kids remember this as the song from Anastasia, half of us probably hardly remember hearing about her death at the time. I believe that I speak for many when I say that had she not boarded that plane, her success would have exceeded several of her peers, Beyonce included. Even pitched down, both the sensual instrumental and her angelic vocals hit home. Honestly enough, I keep asking myself if guys like Burial or Jimmy Blake would’ve revolutionized the use of R&B vocal samples had Aaliyah not died. Indirectly, her immortalization led the way for several of us kids with laptops.
Stream Absolutamento below, then download it here.
The young and thriving LA-based producer/songwriter CAVES aka Luka Cage (an official member of the rising beatmaker collective, 6bit) first entered into the blogosphere back in December with his debut EP, Adolescent Dystopia . Luka swiftly returns with the soul-stirring four track EP, When You Were Partying I Was Dying.
You can download the entire EP via digital label Absent Fever. Stream two cuts from the release, “Eleven Twenty” & “Final Decision” below:
Punk bands like The Sex Pistols, The Ramones, Television, The Clash, The Buzzcocks, and heaps more pursued the conviction that “if nothing gets challenged, nothing gets changed”. Punk culture of the 80’s was the teenager opposed to the bourgeois – it was the outcasts and the isolated, the vicious and frustrated, the protective of their youth. Each youth generation opposes mediocrity; mediocrity is the explicit opposite of adolescent sentiments. Teenagers like myself are experiencing the affliction of discovering our identities, the pressures of conformity, and the trouble of expectations. A society of mediocrity feels fictitious. If the youth of the 80’s popularized the opposition to the bourgeois, I wonder what the youth of the present is repelling.
Youth will always be defiant of the adulthood they are expected to enter; but there’s a hugely significant difference in the vocalization of that defiance today. The distinction is the identical vocal opportunity of the present. If I’m 16 and my blog has the same readership contingency as anyone’s, then what implication does that have on the 16-year-old musician? The most prevalent bearing of that opportunity is in resources. The 16-year-old musician has the equivalent music production opportunities as his seniors on a fundamental level. This makes debatably the most colossal impact on the beat scene. An immense amount of what’s blogged about on sites akin to PORTALS is sample-based, and in synchronicity with that, teenagers make an apparent portion of the music blogged about. In my mind, that doesn’t seem aberrant in the least bit. To me, it feels conspicuous – but only because I was born into the generation of the accessible.
The idea of youth having the same volume of expression as adults is hastily becoming less and less an exception to the norm. Less and less are we identified as young and held within the connotation that we’re atypical teens. Industries that fetishize youth and use age as a marketing tool are becoming less rampant in the music world – and more so in the blogging community where artists are discovered in the open playing field of the internet. And so if the voice of youth is becoming more and more received, I wonder if the youth of today is repelling mediocrity or if we’re becoming that commonality. This idea of becoming what you’re contrary to is something that bands like Nirvana spoke of. Kurt Cobain said that the mass recognition Nirvana received in the consumerist world was unequivocally what they contested. I wouldn’t say though that the prospect of adolescents and adults being comparable in the music world is carried with such a negative connotation. I’d say that it’s an inevitable fate.
Because of the technology operated sphere my generation was carried into, it would be unfeasible for youth today not to have the inclination to share themselves on the internet. If young artists were not blogged about, it would be obvious that those who steer the music community were deliberately disregarding a group that compensates for a vast portion of music. I think that the larger music sites are just now beginning to honestly ratify young artists. Smaller sites tend to cover younger artists more frequently, likely because they’re less steered by those of the industry. The influx of youth involved in music is immense- no longer solely as the consumer, but furthermore, as the creator. The question now is what qualifies the legitimacy of music? My response would be that nothing qualifies validity; the validity in music is as unrestricted as its distributor, the internet.
Below are 3 tracks by 3 artists who have been born into a generation parented by the internet: