Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Song of the Day #141 - LAKE R▲DIO - ▼▼▼@†H is Fundamental

One, two...


I woke up a few days ago with a song stuck in my head... all I could think of was "soft voices" saying "one, two, two little colours" and then girls' voices responding with "one, two!"... I was at my dad's house, and had no good way of investigating this, so I kinda wanted to just let it go immediately. I felt confidence on some level that I "knew" what the song was, but I didn't really want to investigate this confidence, because, on another level, I was really worried that I wouldn't know what the song was and it would become a "thing" for me. But then of course I couldn't stop thinking about it and it became a whole "thing". This is something that happens pretty often to me, lol. All I could think was "like Boards of Canada" but "not Boards of Canada", but each BoC-esque band that I could think of was also obviously not it. The process by which I can immediately determine this is super mysterious to me and really fascinating.

Anyways, what I finally realized was that I had been listening to a lot of music from 2010 lately (part of a whole other thing, dw dw) and I figured that... although I hadn't heard the song I was looking for, maybe it was another song that I was listening to a lot at the same time I was listening to the other music I'd recently been listening to. And it worked! Holy cow! So... because I was listening to This is Happening and the first Das Racist mixtapes a lot again, I subconciously remembered another song I really liked at that time? Uhhhhh OK.

Do you guys remember this sort of music? It was called "witch house" or "rapegaze"... It was either that the former term was invented to make the genre more discussable on mainstream music sites, or the latter term was invented to drive mainstream music sites away from the genre. I don't remember. Basically this was nice ambient lowtempo music with sometimes sPoOkY samples that hit a sweet spot between genuine engagement in "hauntology" and aware engagement with parody etc. And they used a lot of unicode in their names. And they made me want to make a lot of puns about "which house" or something.

I'd call it Microgenre Of The Year 2010 and it was pretty awesome and launched the careers of some bands that are still pretty relevant today (Purity Ring, I think?). LAKE R▲DIO was one of my favorites, they had a great track-to-track variety that fully explored and pushed the boundaries of the genre. This song ended their wonderful EP The Weather and has a wonderful sense of expansion and finality to it. A nice blossoming sort of aesthetic, where the sound slowly evolves, and although each new element is unexpected, there's a sense that it all fits in nicely with what you've so far heard. The sample is right at that sweet spot between nostalgic and creepy, and there's a sense of restraint around it that reminds me a lot of BoC at their best - the transition between it being a novel introduction and a fundamental part of the song is smooth, with it skipping all the stages where you lose even a bit of interest in it.

Anyways, good stuff, I feel that nice half-decade nostalgia. Back then, when I was first writing about LAKE R▲DIO, the guy himself contacted me, and thanked me for the kind words or w/e. I responded with something like "well, thanks for making great music!", basically the lamest/most uninteresting/conversation deadening thing I could have sent, and my friends mocked me about it for a long time.

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