For Headspace #1 is a mammoth fifty-track compilation featuring current and upcoming artists on Jakarta’s Tandem Tapes. All proceeds from the compilation will be donated to Headspace, an Australian Mental Health Foundation for 12 to 25-year-olds, in memory of a gentle and much-loved young man who sadly took his own life earlier in the year.
In sobering times, our senses are more attuned to the precious nature of life. Seconds take on greater significance, becoming sharper. Things are put into perspective: sweet thoughts, bitter thoughts, and bittersweet thoughts. Music can help to raise awareness, and the sales of the compilation can provide some much needed financial support to the charity in question.
As you’d expect from fifty different tracks, For Headspace #1 takes in an astonishing number of sounds and styles – ambient, deep techno, drum ‘n’ bass, violent noise (this one really stands out, its rattlesnake-hissing of static artillery ripping apart the very fabric of reality), experimental music in the shape of bedroom programming, hip hop, acoustic folk…and that’s just grazing the surface. If you were to sweep the music up into a single genre you’d have to tag it as experimental, but a detailed review of the music would kind of miss the point.
That being said, this generous selection covers a lot of ground, and it doesn’t shy away from conducting its own crazy experiments. A musical rainbow of sounds and styles come together from different parts of the globe in a display of love and unity, and these differing artists bring about a highly eclectic selection which, in spite of the noisy science and the cacophony of spilled chemicals, still has the capability to produce quiet interludes and serene intersections. These tracks provide relief for the spent music before it can build up its energy once again. MaXine‘s “Serious Panic Attack” sounds like something from Mars Attacks!, with a glowing green synth shooting out, a driving electric guitar reminiscent of a rock solo, and an indecipherable, slow-moving vocal which is lost in translation, with disastrous consequences.
Seahoarse‘s exhilarating post-rock track “Bruises” has the bubblegum flavor of pop, thanks to the vocals (which are an endangered species in post-rock, it being predominantly instrumental). The dripping storm drains and sewer pipes of “Outside Insides” give off a calming sound, but menacing drones lurk beneath the surface, making it appear less like an underground network of drainage and more like the nexus of Pennywise’s lair. “The Zone”, by The National Park Service, conjures up the atmosphere of ancient woods. One track appears as completely broken radio silence, but it’s still a portal.
Music can heal anyone. Music is therapy and is therapeutic. She can console. She is a friend. Music can help in times of need – constantly saving and recuperating – and she can wrap a loving arm around your shoulder.
Please consider purchasing the album or giving what you can. It will be greatly appreciated. (James Catchpole)