|Art Feynman||Blast Off Through The Wicker|
Art Feynman — Blast Off Through The Wicker (July 14th, 2017) ↑↓♠•♠↑↓ ★ Feynmanovo insulární, analogové mistrovské dílo je nazýváno Blast Off Through the Wicker a má to význam hledat život bez života a zpochybňovat to, co znamená žít. Je to princip ustáleného, disciplinovaného uvažování. Art Feynman hledá život bez života a zpochybňuje, co znamená žít. Žánrové asociace jako slinky krautrock, staccato funk a pentatonický nigerijský highlife nevystihují ani polovinu alba. Vykreslují ho jako pár vašich oblíbených pastelek uložených roztomile vedle sebe ve stejně opotřebované pastelkové krabici. Plátno je dočasné, barvy nanáší s nespornou lehkostí, tahy štětcem nikdy nepadnou na špatné místo.
★ Ještě obdivuhodnější je, že jeho plátnem je čtyřkanálový magnetofon a že Blast Off neobsahuje žádné smyčky ani bicí nástroje navzdory jeho esteticky věrným motorickým a afrobeatovým podkladům. Od úvodní “Eternity in Pictures” vše pulsuje s křupavým beatem a obratné arpeggiální basové linky jsou vedeny zákonem pregnantnosti: tendencí nedokonalé a neukončené objekty vnímat jako ukončené a dokonalé. Bylo by těžké přesvědčit nepoučené ucho za předpokladu, že celá věc je opatrně naprogramovaná. Ale není a pokud ano, jen velmi nepatrně. Písně plynou přirozeně, lehce, vyprávěčsky. Na tomto albu je také patrný zákon blízkosti: jako tvar vnímáme jednotlivé věci, které se nacházejí blízko sebe. V tomto případě písňové prvky a písně poskládané do souvisejícího celku.
★ “Party Line” a následující závěrečná “Small House Blues” poslouží jako příklad. Zde jsou ty nejjemnější stránky Blast Off, evokující vesmírnou něhu Arthura Russella vynalézavě a uctivě, aniž by přijaly svou paletu múzy velkoobchodně. V tomto ohledu Blast Off je skvělá sbírka písní, kterou ucho zachycuje s vřelou a přesto jasnou kazetovou estetikou a skrze hudební formu, která připouští vícekamerový úhel pohledu. To vše lákavě poukazuje na hluboké a rozmanité Feynmanovy vlivy. Nedělejte si iluze — toto album je skutečně živé. Popis zákonů podobnosti, uzavřenosti a návaznosti jsem zde vynechal. Benjamin Tais Amundssen ★ Feynman’s insular, analog masterpiece is entitled Blast Off Through the Wicker, and, per it’s title, it finds him “looking for life in the lifeless, questioning what it means to be living” with the kind of steady, disciplined deliberation that takes such potentially desperate associations as slinky krautrock, staccato funk, and pentatonic Nigerian Highlife and renders them as just a couple of your favorite crayons nestled~up cute next to one another in the same well~worn crayon box.
Genres: Rock, Music, Pop, Pop/Rock, Prog–Rock/Art Rock
Album release: July 14th, 2017
Record Label: Western Vinyl
01. Eternity in Pictures 4:38
02. Slow Down 3:08
03. Can’t Stand It 5:41
04. Feeling Good About Feeling Good 7:40
05. Two Minor 3:27
06. Win Win 2:16
07. Hot Night Jeremiah 7:25
08. I Rain You Thunder 3:36
09. Party Line 3:08
10. Small House Blues 2:38
℗ 2017 Western Vinyl
• Jared Bell Design
• Art Feynman Composer, Mixing
• Heba Kadry Mastering
≡★≡ Blast Off Through the Wicker documents Art Feynman looking for life in the lifeless, questioning what it means to be living. There is a calm, disciplined pocket to be felt in everything Feynman does; krautrock slink, staccato bounce, and pentatonic bursts of Nigerian Highlife fuzz pour on the temporal canvas with unquestionable ease, never falling in the wrong place. Even more admirable is, that his “canvas” is a four~track tape recorder, and that Blast Off features no loops or drum machines despite its aesthetically faithful motorik and afrobeat underpinnings. Nowhere is this fact more surprising than on album standout “Slow Down” which pulses along infectiously with a crunchy backbeat, and deftly arpeggiating bass lines that are so locked~in that it would be hard to fault an unknowing ear for assuming the whole thing is tediously programmed.
≡★≡ There are gentler sides to Blast Off that conjure the spacey tenderness of Arthur Russell inventively and respectfully, without adopting their muse’s palette wholesale. In this regard Blast Off is an endearing collection of songs that capture the ear with warm~yet~clear cassette aesthetics and spot~on musicianship, both of which form an angle that points lovingly to Feynman’s deep and varied influences. Make no mistake — this one truly is alive.
About Art Feynman
≡★≡ Around the time he switched coasts and settled down in Northern California in 2016, visual artist and indie singer~songwriter Luke Temple adopted the persona of animist musician Art Feynman. Feynman’s first release, a six~minute instrumental track incorporating environmental sounds (“Rice”) appeared on Bandcamp that spring. ≡★≡ Obscuring his face in promotional material, he followed it a year later with the Krautrock-influenced stand~alone single “The Shape You’re In,” which addressed contemporary technology and politics. Recorded with a four~track tape recorder, the full~length Blast Off Through the Wicker arrived in July 2017 via Western Vinyl, which had issued albums by both solo Temple and his band Here We Go Magic. Feynman rounded out the summer with a U.S. tour in support of Stereolab’s Laetitia Sadier. ~ Marcy Donelson
≡★≡ Animism, considered the world’s oldest religion, asserts that all things living and inert are endowed with spiritual qualities; from rocks, to tools, to plants. Enter California musician Art Feynman, who seems for whatever reason to have this philosophy driving at his subconscious. His debut album Blast Off Through the Wicker — itself gifted with unmistakable spirit — documents its creator looking for life in the lifeless, questioning what it means to be living.
≡★≡ The opening track “Eternity in Pictures” was born from Feynman’s observation that a statue appears to be crying when doused in rain. On “Can’t Stand It” he continues to lyrically tug at the thought that every inanimate thing around him might be awake and watching: “do my synthesizers know when I’m asleep? Does the floor creep beneath my feet?”
≡★≡ Blast Off’s magic lies in its ability to conduct these existential, almost anxiety~inducing thought~experiments around playfully excursive sounds that display musicianship and music appreciation in equal measure. It’s full of paranoid humor, earnest reflection, and articulate musical ideas. Moments enter and exit with thoughtful punctuality; some are impressive because of their brevity, some are striking in their repetitive insistence, but all of them dart in and out of influences and references with fully~digested confidence. Whatever Feynman borrows from his forbears are a part of him, not sewn~on badges.
≡★≡ There is a calm, disciplined pocket to be felt in everything Feynman does; krautrock slink, staccato bounce, and pentatonic bursts of Nigerian Highlife fuzz pour on the temporal canvas with unquestionable ease, never falling in the wrong place. Even more admirable is that his “canvas” is a four~track tape recorder, and that Blast Off features no loops or drum machines despite its aesthetically faithful motorik and afrobeat underpinnings.
≡★≡ Nowhere is this fact more surprising than on album standout “Slow Down” which pulses along infectiously with a crunchy backbeat, and deftly arpeggiating bass lines that are so locked~in that it would be hard to fault an unknowing ear for assuming the whole thing was tediously programmed. The same is true of the frenetic banger “Hot Night Jeremiah” with its metallic guitar, neurotic vocal delivery, and rigidly ticking drums that bounce off the imaginary walls. It’s easy to glean the same focused frustration that led Feynman to create the non~album rollout track, “The Shape You’re In”, about how our disconnection from ourselves can lead to the election of a leader who in Feynman’s words “can be a spiteful fool in broad daylight and it doesn't seem to matter.”
≡★≡ There are gentler sides to Blast Off Through the Wicker that are made all the more special and refreshing by contrast to their surroundings. Slow punctuators “Win Win” and “Party Line” conjure the spacey tenderness of Arthur Russell inventively and respectfully, without adopting their muse’s palette wholesale. In this regard Blast Off Through the Wicker is an endearing collection of songs that capture the ear with warm~yet~clear cassette aesthetics and spot-~n musicianship, both of which form an angle that points lovingly to Feynman’s deep and varied influences. Make no mistake — this one truly is alive.
By Derek Robertson, July 13th, 2017
≡★≡ There are a lot of ideas buzzing around Californian Art Feynman’s head, musical and otherwise. How else to explain his dizzyingly eclectic debut album Blast Off Through The Wicker? Created organically on a four~track tape machine, with no loops or samples, the songs swing from strange, tender ballads to pulsing beats via Krautrock grooves and a healthy dose of fuzz and guitar overdrive. Lyrically, it’s just as complex; ostenisbly a rumination on spirituality and what it means to be alive, Feynman finds devil in the detail, whether that’s a statue that appears to be crying, synths watching you sleep, or if nature actually is trying to kill us off.
≡★≡ He talked us through the process and ideas behind each song, which you can listen to below in an exclusive stream.
Eternity in Pictures
≡★≡ I fell In love while making this, and it strikes me that a partnership is a process of clarifying yourself to yourself through the other, in order to give to the other in a more complete way; it’s like a feedback loop. You get snapshots of yourself that are clear and they don’t always feel good; actually, usually they don’t. Of course, we are always changing so these are little pictures in time.
≡★≡ I also had an image of a statue with rain on it, which made it look like it was crying, and then thinking about how in a way we are no different, except we put so much more significance on our passing emotions, because we are human, and not stone, but in a way our emotions are just as significant or not significant as rain on a statue within the big picture. The endless transforming moment that is life and death, leaves us with traces of itself in little snapshots as memories.
≡★≡ It’s about the pressure we put on ourselves to evolve, both externally through technology, and internally through spirituality. If used wrong they both become versions of materialism, and actually just add more stress and pressure to our lives. The striving for perfection is an illusion we are all caught in. Perfection as an abstraction is fixed, and life in actuality is always changing, so what is perfection?
Can’t Stand It
≡★≡ It’s about wondering if inanimate objects are in a way conscious, and how it’s overwhelming to think about.
Feeling Good About Feeling Good
≡★≡ We feel bad because feeling bad is part of life, but then we feel bad about feeling bad, which seems to add more distress. On the other hand, who wants to hang out with a person who’s gloating about how happy they are? There seems to be direct experience, and then the judgment comes after. Life is good, bad, and everything in between, that’s not the problem. The real problem is our conceptual relationship to life.
≡★≡ We have honeymoon phases in our lives but eventually, any relationship becomes difficult. The difficulty can be a sign that something about yourself needs to be addressed, but too often we instead find fault in the other, become defensive and let our anger and self~interest get the better of us, which typically leads to a feedback loop of continual fighting.
≡★≡ I like to think about things like modern medicine from a non~human perspective. Nature has natural culling mechanisms to keep populations under control. Of course, no one wants to lose someone close, but I’m sure every animal that has gone extinct as a result of human dominion would have rather stuck around.
≡★≡ Can’t have good without bad. We all have both in us, and to strive towards only one side in denial of the other is problematic. Not to say we should act on our negative impulses, but we should acknowledge them, so we can better empathize with others.
Hot Night Jeremiah
≡★≡ It’s about the fear of having a child, and I suppose growing up. It’s also an exercise in repetition and monotony, it’s one that at first may come off as boring, but if listened to deeply can become pretty expansive.
Small House Blues
≡★≡ I live in a small apartment with my girl, and it’s not always easy. It’s just a little light heartedness to end with.
|Art Feynman||Blast Off Through The Wicker|