Episode eighty is dedicated to the late Eric Littmann. A dear friend and a dreamer, Eric’s unbound enthusiasm and prolific nature impacted the music community in ways we’re still processing; reading all the tributes is proof his gifts were vast and understated, wrapped in modesty and a truly singular sense of humor. Ten years ago I met Eric through a mixtape and from there we’d put together backyard and basement shows (he performed and often doubled as a very kind sound person). In 2016, following one of his night walks around Manhattan, he signed off our thread with “it’s ok to be underground, forever even.” That’s the message Eric kept at the heart of Phantom Posse and his various aliases (heard in E80 as Steve Sobs and Eric Reuss). His work as a collaborator, co-producer, and engineer (including albums with Emily Yacina, Foxes in Fiction, GABI, Julie Byrne, Nadine’s Nadia Hulett, Tasha, Vagabon, and Yohuna) speaks to the trust others had for his instincts — his ability to encourage, lift up, and surface the best out of us — and also casts an immense what-if for what was still to come. In recent weeks, friends have collected Eric’s far-reaching output at this Tumblr, playlist, and Bandcamp.
This set also spans the temporal impressions of LA-based electro-acoustic composer Celia Hollander, the ‘heaven metal’ of Denver’s Madeline Johnston aka Midwife (who once took over E58), a ‘small outer space’ envisioned by Japanese ambient folk artist Satomimagae, Nighttime’s ode to longer, sunnier days in upstate New York, and much more.
(Bowie and a bunch of the rocks)
Eric Reuss – meeting in a dream in the mall food court
Joseph Shabason – Gymnopedie No. 1
Elori Saxl – The Blue Of Distance
Weekend – Nostalgia
Celia Hollander – 5:59 PM
Steve Sobs – Empty Streets
Perila – Fallin Into Space
Green-House – Soft Coral
Lucy Gooch – It Brings Me Back To You
Cheval Sombre – It’s Not Time
Midwife – Enemy
Nailah Hunter – Bassin Bleu
Yu Su – Dusty
Dougie Stu – Free Their Ghosts
Lucinda Chua – Until I Fall
Rachika Nayar – No Future
L’Rain – Take Two
Satomimagae – Kouji
Phantom Posse – [RISE4 outta here]
Nighttime – Toward the Light
In lieu of lyrics, “Some Nights Last A Lifetime” illustrates with tone. A guitar ruminates—psychedelic, somnolent, restless—riffing between the ease and unease of sleep deprivation. Sure, the name helps, but even if this thing were untitled it would still have us dazed and drifting in a dimly lit room somewhere, for what feels like an eternity.
Tomorrow marks the release of Heavy Heart, the latest batch of introspective pop from Steve Sobs, aka our good friend Eric Littmann. The limited-run cassette can be pre-ordered now via Waaga.