Last time Dan Goldberg came by the Newtown studio he performed live, running his guitar and synthesizer through a 4-track recorder. Ahead of this set in April—the week his new record came out on Fire Talk—The NY-based songwriter dubbed some of his favorite tracks (from friends, video games, and beyond) to tape. Dan’s vintage Tascam machine adds a certain character to his recordings as The Spookfish, and it lends a similar wobble and warmth to each selection here. As he patiently loaded and ejected cassettes, embracing the kind of cuts and chasms that normally alarm DJs, Dan shared assorted thoughts and stories. He was kind enough to collect some of those for us below:
01. Have a Nice Life – A Quick One before the Eternal Worm Devours Connecticut (00:23)
02. Keiichi Suzuki, Hirokazu Tanaka, Hiroshi Kanazu, & Toshiyuki Ueno – EarthBound Soundtrack (08:17)
Couldn’t find the title but I love this thing and have stared at it / listened for years.
03. The Kevin Costner Suicide Pact – A1 (Tape Phase) (09:59)
04. Mick Turner – El Arbol (15:18)
05. Dirty Three – I Really Should Have Gone Out Last Night (22:43)
I was really lucky to travel to Australia when I was 19. I took a long and crazy road trip from the bottom to the top of the west coast there with 3 other friends. Tons of driving was involved and it was split between two of us. I remember my first drive in the outback involved waking up in my tent at a truck stop, getting into the drivers seat of the car while my friends were still asleep, and stopping for emus to cross the street as the sun rose. I was so incredibly tense the whole time because kangaroos were constantly jumping onto the road but everything ended up ok. I discovered Dirty Three of Melbourne a couple of weeks after the trip and really wish I had known about them / could have listened on that drive.
06. Xasthur – Funeral of Being, Rehearsing (29:38)
Dubbed to tape from Xasthur’s youtube channel. I am sorry that the end got cut off, that was my fault. The pause is also while I flipped the tape.
07. Keiichi Suzuki, Hirokazu Tanaka, Hiroshi Kanazu, & Toshiyuki Ueno – Good Morning (EarthBound Soundtrack) (31:23)
08. Soul Worm – Margarine (33:11)
Mallie aka Soul Worm was my friend for a little bit before I knew she played music at all. I still remember very clearly her showing me her SoundCloud she kept of her songs and being so surprised and happy because I related to her music and felt like she was a kindred spirit. She went by Blue Tick then. I am pretty sure that her first two shows after changing her name to Soul Worm were with me in the basement of the house I live in in Brooklyn.
The second show was a 6-act bill to celebrate Kevin Greenspon coming to town. She had this loop going for about 3 minutes before singing this beautiful, maybe 15 second melody over it just one time and then didn’t sing it again.
Every time she shows me something new she made I am amazed and she has become one of my favorite performers I know of playing around Brooklyn. She has her first tape coming out sometime in the near future and this recording didn’t make the cut, but I was really excited when she said I could share it here. Also honored to say that she played the first set of the release show for my record that just came out last weekend by performing on a lone rock in the middle of a huge puddle at the peak of a mountain.
09. Toby Fox – It’s So Cold (Undertale Soundtrack) (38:56)
10. Liam the Younger – I Will Be Good Pt. 1 (40:41)
11. Anne Laplantine – Jeudi (43:09)
Was telling Dave how I thought this song was more difficult than one would think to hum because the melody is very long.
12. Ballerine Nadiya – 3am nightgown walks (44:43)
Singapore Sling Tapes from Russia sent me the Ballerine Nadiya tape in addition to the copies of a tape they released of my music called Living Room. I would often DJ this at shows in the basement of the house I live in and it has become one of my favorite albums ever.
13. The Spookfish – Hiding from Them (52:46)
14. New Vaders – Mystery (Goblet Grotto Soundtrack) (55:24)
15. Ghost Piss – Just Trying to Get you to Dance Spooky After A Hard Day @ Ur Shitty Job (58:04)
Played a show with River AKA Ghost Piss in Richmond last year on a little tour with my friends. We were excited about her name and played her songs while driving through the woods of Maryland at night on the way down and it was unforgettable. We became instant buds at the show and I have become a huge fan of her music. I am happy she lives in Brooklyn now and has been playing around.
16. Lux Phillips – Tacks (01:02:11)
Lux is a very talented musician who moved into the house I live in sometime in the summer. We quickly bonded over watching horror movies together before we knew much about each other. We eventually got pretty into the scary game series “Five Nights at Freddy’s,” especially watching videos of people playing it online.
Lux is my good friend now and I love catching them playing around under the names Mothernight and Coitus the Clown. They are often experimenting and really exciting to watch.
Lux sent me this song one day that they had done in the past for a soundtrack to an animation because they thought it was up my alley and it was true. Lux is also one of my very favorite people to play guitar with and I hope we can record the things we come up together in our kitchen some day soon.
17. Katrina Stonehart – Excerpt From Rok Lok Singles Club #8 (01:04:08)
I found Drew aka Katrina Stonehart (also of the band Baby Birds Don’t Drink Milk)’s music at a pretty heavy time in my life. I had lyme disease and it caused all of these other things to come to the surface that I was ignoring. Drew’s solo and music in BBDDM was the soundtrack to all of that. I sent Drew a fan email (I think actually two) and asked if he’d like to play a show on a mountain someday. He responded a year later that he would like to and I took a day off of work to do it. It ended up being a really memorable day that ended in a lot of us getting stung by bees during a set by Frank Hurricane and my hand swelling up to twice its size. Drew has since moved to Brooklyn and I am happy to call him a good friend and that I’ve gotten to see him play often. His live sets are some of my favorite I’ve ever seen.
18. Chairlift – Deer Hunt (01:07:35)
I think this is a demo that was once on their myspace page.
19. Ghost Piss – Grounded (01:11:25)
20. The Spookfish – In The Dark (01:14:58)
I have never shared this before. My friend Vika Adutova, a visual artist and animator, invited me to collaborate with her at her place in Brooklyn near the ocean. It was an extremely hot day and the subways were running with all sorts of problems. I ended up having to walk a couple of miles in the 90+ degree weather carrying my guitar, keyboard, amp, and four track. Luckily, her apartment was nice and cool. Her living room was dark and she had projected different shapes onto the walls that would slowly fill with light in different patterns. I felt like I was in outer space. I sat on the floor and drank coffee and water and improvised this. We’ve both been too busy to finish something together but I hope we do some day.
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