The tune in the attached is a cover (by Vessels) for a remix (by James Holden) of the rambling ambient techno classic, `The Sky Was Pink` by Nathan Fake. My first introduction to any of its many incarnations was via a Tiefschwarz DJ set at the 2007 WMC; I was there specifically to hear (and dance to) their remix of Phonique’s `The Red Dress` and the ‘Holden Tool’ followed it.
I was instantly smitten.
To some, dub techno‘s hallmark layering of super-straight-forward-and-stripped-down 1-to-2-bar loops can be relentlessly irritating and abrasive but, to me, that kind of ultra-repetition is just right. When I’m locked into the pocket of an agreeable groove the present moment enlogates, freeing me to appreciate it. I’m not a ‘live in the moment’ kind of person but I want to be and, as a result, tend to get attached to whatever helps me get over my instinctual aversion to now.
Hearing the same thing over-and-over again, especially if it’s imperceptibly evolving either by a shift in composition or the slight tweak of a filter knob, gives me the space to unpack and understand exactly what about it is motivating my body to move.
The visuals on display above, by Morgan Beringer, inspire that same inquisitive spirit. The colorful psychedelic sloshes keep hinting at images but we never get to know exactly what they are. Was that a bee? A white pine branch? A set of fluffly clouds? Right as your mind catches on some known object it’s already been washed away and replaced by another.
Over a year ago I posted a similar video Morgan made for Matthew Dear (go watch it!) and it’s great to see he’s still exploring this layered datamoshed style.
I first watched this last night on my laptop and was instantly smitten. My initial assessment was that it was akin to looking through the windshield during a drive-thru car wash within What Dreams May Come. It’s an orgy of sloshing, intermingled color that’s constantly changing costume from a myriad wardrobe of morphing textures. Anyways, after watching it on the laptop I was curious to see what it would be like on the big screen, so I hooked it up to my HDTV and took a seat on a comfy chair about fifteen feet away.
I highly recommend you do the same and, if you don’t have a large screen available, just take a few giant steps back from whatever device your watching this on; it’s not so much about the size of the screen but your distance from it that’s important. When you do a whole host of imagery will present itself: people, landscapes, things; all fleeting but instantly recognizable. It functions similarly to Chuck Close‘s post-seizure paintings: up close they appear as a grid of imprecise, crudely rendered orbs and splotches while, at a distance, a psychedelic proportional face starts coming into view.
The attached was created by Morgan Beringer as part of a two-video set (the other one is equally hypnotizing and abstract so don’t hesitate to give it a watch) for Matthew Dear‘s recent release on Ghostly International, a label I whole-heartedly recommend you keep an eye on. Their track-record of top-quality releases (with videos to match) is a clear indicator that what they’re doing over there is special. Have you seen Brokendate? Also from Ghostly, also rad.
If you’re diggin’ this then be sure to check out Amalgamation, too.