Sometime in the 1950s a man by the name of Liberado Bartholomew Mastrarrigo found himself at the microphone of a New York City recording studio. The session was his first, it would be his only, and he left that day having recorded two covers. As a token, he had them pressed to a single 78. In the years that followed, Bart would proudly tell his story of that one time he sang “next door to Frank Sinatra”. This man was Victoria’s grandfather.
A few months ago we found the record at her parent’s house. Unbeknownst to Vic, I’ve attempted to rip and restore the songs. They were in rough shape but the graininess has softened a bit (thanks for the help, M. Sage). As a birthday gift today, I’m giving her these along with the Victrola Suite, a short mix with excerpts of said material. And while something this personal is slightly out of character for the site, we’ve decided to share the suite here. At the very least, it can finally lend a larger audience to the fine voice of Mr. Mastrarrigo.
Bartholomew Mastrarrigo – Blue Velvet (Side A)
Ricky Eat Acid – Outside Your House (original/Dream)
Thunderstorm in Mexico (field recording)
Gary Shearston – Faded Streets, Windy Weather
Recycle Culture – NN.1
Bartholomew Mastrarrigo – Please Mr. Sun (Side B)
Future Islands – Little Dreamer
Haley Fohr doesn’t do things lightly. Overdue, her latest LP under the name Circuit des Yeux, almost demands its own intensely serious listening conditions (an isolated: highway, late night, or at least, headspace). So her response to the open-ended guest mix task is not surprising. Though it is far beyond what we could’ve imagined she’d assemble.
In her words, “these are all tracks that hit me in that special way. A knife to the heart, wearing shades in the dark, upside down on your bed, hair slightly brushing the floor type of jams. These are the top 40 radio hit songs of my indifferent side of life.”
Songs I Wouldn’t Mind Dying To (Singer Songwriter Edition):
Cynthia Dall, Untitled – “Berlin, 1945″
Tucker Zimmerman, S/T – “She’s an Easy Rider”
Ted Lucas, S/T – “Baby Where You Are”
Bob Trimble, Harvest of Dreams – “Premonitions Boy – The Reality”
V-3, Evil Love Deeper – “Your Leader”
David Lee Jr., Evolution – “Love Parable”
Nico, The Marble Index – “Frozen Warnings”
Sandra Bell, Dreams of Falling – “The Country Girls”
Dave Bixby, Ode To Quetzalcoatl – “Drug Song”
Gary Higgins, Red Hash – “It Didn’t Take Too Long”
John Fahey, Requia – “Requiem for Molly (Part 3)”
Tim Buckley, Lorca – “Lorca”
Neil Young, Silver & Gold: “Razor Love”
Last week we made MTV a mix. For good measure, and to further underscore the artists included, it’s been placed here as well.
Sunny Dunes – Patience (Waiting For Summer)
Eola – And I Love Her [The Beatles]
M. Sage – Veridian ii
Monster Rally – Orchids
Bill Fay – Was It You I Saw Today
Candy Claws – A Glimpse of Dreamland
Night Sides – Dream [The Everly Brothers]
M O N E Y – Goodnight London
M. Sage – Veridian i
Timi Yuro – Hurt
WALL – Something On Your Mind [Karen Dalton]
Cuddle Formation – Duckfangs Tickle My Ankles
The Fleetwoods – Tragedy [Thomas Wayne]
M. Sage – Impossible Fenceline
The first and most apparent influence on Dream Believer is the music of our good friend and frequent collaborator, Matthew Sage. His work has a way of warping reference points, often recontextualizing both the beautiful and the mundane. The second is a recent dive back into the Micromix series that Bradford Cox did on his blog years ago (a collection at this point I consider historically significant, and personally one of the most profound experiences with “old music” I’ll ever have). The inclusion of “Tragedy” by The Fleetwoods is an homage to him. With those two on the mind lately, I tried to assemble a listen that made sense of this link, or at least further nonsense of it. I hear it as a compilation of songs—noctambulant & lovesick—from some lost era (at sea, perhaps), like those late night infomercials that run titles over footage of the performers. By mixing the new with the classic, and newer covers of classics, the idea is that we lose orientation with time itself—which is a microcosmic parallel of what we attempt with S&S in general.
The mind of Ghibli is a fascinating place. At the moment, zen house music and the written Mandarin language are making total sense together in here. Access is available above, and a bit of clarity as to what’s going on, from the man himself, is below:
“I’m taking Mandarin classes and Mandarin’s text is purely pictographic. There are something like 30 to 50 thousand characters in Mandarin but to be considered ‘literate’ you only need an understanding of about 3,000 characters. Those 30-50 thousand characters are divided into 189 subsets called Radicals that feature base themes or super simple designs, which is how mandarin dictionaries are organized (by radical). So from within this absolute sea of characters, there are only 5-10% of which one actually needs. Because inside that 5-10%, one character can easily encompass 4 or 10 different synonyms. Not to mention there are 5-10 characters themselves that sort of mean the same thing anyway. So you could say one word that could mean 10 things at once. Or alternately, 10 words that mean 50 things in succession. And I just think this is the coolest.
So I’ve taken a thorough bred selection of slower tracks that have been passively floating around my mind and anchored them into this mix. From the millions of house tracks that exist, I figure that people could get by on these eleven tracks for a while. I’ve chosen this character 缓, which means slow, leisurely, relaxed, etc.”
Thanks, Tom Mike!
Strange how they came upon The Mountains Themselves. First there was Daniel Klag, imagining the mountains themselves in static conversation. Then there was Nathaniel, just back from Alaska having spent much of his time admiring none other than the mountains themselves. Mix and motion, initially cued up by circumstance, now curiously applied to each other. Nathaniel would work Daniel’s 30 minutes of mist into three photos of his own from the trip, forming a piece that’s best left to your own interpretation—which we recommend arriving at with patience and undivided focus. Tracklist below:
00:00 Daniel Klag – Infinite Arc
06:08 Flying Saucer Attack – Since When (FOUR)
08:55 Fennesz – Shift
12:38 Growing – Southern Rites
17:40 Tim Hecker – Whitecaps of White Noise II
23:00 Alan Licht & Aki Onda – Tiptoe