Tim Hecker & Daniel Lopatin Play Around
Instrumental Tourist is the first release in Lopatin's Software Studio Series, which was conceived as a way to get musicians together to collaborate in a studio setting, taking them out of their usual environs and pairing them with an unusual, or unfamiliar, partner. "What I wanted to do was get musicians that haven't collaborated together but might want to," says Lopatin, "for day-long or two-day-long sessions, to improvise and not have things plotted out or come with a demo but more or less jam, try out ideas and engage with the studio on that level, because it's kind of a rare thing these days." The venue in question was Mexican Summer studios in Brooklyn, close to Lopatin's home and heart, being the habitual studio for Software Records.
Despite the seeming seriousness of both artists, it's not unusual for some subtle humour to be buried within their abstract and often academic work, especially with their choice of playful track and album titles. On Instrumental Tourist, the pair take this playfulness even further, using a suite of often cheesy "instruments of the world" midi presets as their starting point to jam with, process and manipulate. "What we were trying to do was to deal with canned sounds that had a contentious value to them," Lopatin explains. "Contentious being that they were distillations of 'world music' instruments, tropes and ideas meant to be deployed for commercial purposes. We wanted to take those sounds, scrub away the cliché and see if they were salvageable."
Despite the playful starting point, Instrumental Tourist isn't kitschy or throwaway in any sense and, in typical form for both musicians, you can barely discern the source material, a few choral flourishes and some new age koto sounds aside. Lopatin is also quick to point out that it's not necessary to get behind the concept to appreciate the album. "The end result is divorced from any idea or concept. I think it just sounds like us musically. You don't necessarily need that to enjoy the record."
NewsApr 21, 2015
Tei Shi Discusses Her New EP and the Language of Music
Valerie Teicher has lived a very nomadic life. The Argentinian-born artist, who goes by the moniker Tei Shi, has moved around a lot, from Va...
NewsApr 10, 2015
Lapalux Talks Visual Narratives and Hypnagogic Concepts on 'Lustmore'
Since being picked up by Flying Lotus' Brainfeeder imprint in 2010, Lapalux (a.k.a. Stuart Howard) has gone from strength to strength. First...
FeaturesMar 31, 2015
TeenangerKeep Things Moving
With their third studio album, Singles Don't $ell, noisy Toronto punk act Teenanger reached their biggest audience yet, gaining fans far bey...
FeaturesMar 26, 2015
Tobias Jesso Jr.Piano Man
For an old-fashioned guy, Tobias Jesso Jr. sure knows how to get people on the internet talking. Since posting his demos online in the summe...