“At times I almost dream
I too have spent a life the sages’ way,
And tread once more familiar paths. Perchance
I perished in an arrogant self-reliance
Ages ago; and in that act a prayer
For one more chance went up so earnest, so
Instinct with better light let in by death,
That life was blotted out — not so completely
But scattered wrecks enough of it remain,
Dim memories, as now, when once more seems
The goal in sight again.”
Paracelsus – Robert Browning.
This mix is pretty casual and laid back. Some of the drones are spectral in sound, because ever since I was a kid I’ve been obsessed with the supernatural. The Ghostbusters dogs freaked me out when I was little – I blame them! So any kind of drone or ambient music in this mix is supposed to evoke some kind of spiritual element. Drones really fascinate me. It feels like they’re able to cut deep. I’m a musician living in London and I’ve been writing for A Closer Listen since June 2012. I also write for Fluid Radio, and previously wrote for The Silent Ballet (though for a pretty short time). I studied music at a music university (duh, I hear you say), at The Institute of Contemporary Music Performance in London. An amazing time was had. I play a lot of guitar and this definitely features in the mix.
Sundown cools everything. There are quite a few guitars, but they’re really melancholy. This mix is a struggle between lighter, major tones and the minor, but I find the melancholic guitar melodies really resonate emotionally with me. I think this mix flirts between the melancholic and the sedately surreal. You can delve really deep the more melancholic the record. It also feels pretty cool on the skin, just like a sunset. It’s the death of a season, but it’s not a particularly seasonal listen. It’s the dying flame of a campfire, wasted teenagers and lost dreams. Fun. But there’s also a couple of tracks that hold personal significance for me – Suicide’s ‘Cheree’ and the early trance anthems, minus the 4/4 beat, played a major role in shaping my favourite kind of music. In my teens, I was obsessed with techno. If it didn’t have a beat, I probably wasn’t interested in it. I was really into rhythm, the beat was king, but the beat has been dethroned here! This is probably down to my love for the guitar. Melody has replaced rhythm. I love melodies so much, I even named my first guitar ‘Melody’. The reverb heavy sound on ‘Devil Town’ by Spiritualized is probably my favourite guitar tone. (I have a Holy Grail reverb pedal and it comes out nice and deep, a really cool sound). I’ve recently become involved in music ministry, playing guitar at my local church on Sundays. As with every mix, I guess there are a couple of tracks that I really wanted to put in but couldn’t fit. It doesn’t always coalesce – but does anything?
The last track, ‘Wrong Place To Start’ is a track by a band featuring my first guitar teacher, Justin Sandercoe, who runs the guitar tuition site, www.justinguitar.com. Kind of like a thank you, and a beautiful track.
I hope you discover something new. Thanks for listening.
Kyle Richards – Spookhouse Headquarters 0.00 – 1.35
Lost Trail – Childhood Fears – Broken Headstones EP (You Are Already Dead Records) 1.35 – 4.20
Spiritualized – Devil Town 4.20 – 6.11
Fog Lake – Okay (Elvis Depressedly Cover) 6.11 – 8.29
Boards of Canada – Heard From Telegraph Lines – Trans Canada Highway (Warp Records) 8.29 – 9.31
Clams Casino – All I Need 9.31 – 12.56
Suicide – Cheree – Cheree (Demon Records) 12.56 – 16.34
Boards of Canada – Nothing Is Real – Tomorrow’s Harvest (Warp Records) 16.34 – 19.50
bvdub – To Live 19.50 – 26.22
Belong – Perfect Life – Common Era (Kranky) 26.22 – 29.50
Chuck Person – ‘A3’ – Chuck Person’s Eccojams 29.50 – 32.00
Skip Raiders Feat. Jada – Another Day 32.00 – 34.00
Night Shift – Wolfpack Crosses The Border (Time Released Sound) 34.00 – 36.41
Elvis Depressedly – Weird Honey – Holo Pleasures 36.41 – 39.17
Tiny Vipers – Cm – Life on Earth (Sub Pop) 39.17 – 42.20
Air – Venus – Talkie Walkie (Virgin) 42.20 – 46.17
James & Bobby Purify – I’m Your Puppet (Stateside) 46.17 – 49.05
Mogadishu – Shades & Rays 49.05 – 53.00
David Lynch & Peter Ivers – In Heaven (Lady In The Radiator) – Eraserhead Soundtrack 53.00 – 54.25
Lost Trail – The Closing Chorus – Holy Ring of Chalk 54.25 – 56.07
We Came As Strangers – Wrong Place To Start – Recipe For Adventure 56.07 – 59.30