Let’s get things straight, for reasons which will become apparent – 22Tape is not, we repeat not an artist. He’s a producer, a musician, a sample reductor- but not an artist. Specificity is appreciated, a notion reflected in much of his work. It may sound like random conjoined glitches, but a step back reveals intricacy of selection. Each for a reason, all have a place. Marrying the organic with the synthetic, 22Tape conjures scenes snatched from an unmade film, images frozen, rewound, replayed and splayed in widescreen to focus on the minutiae.
‘Dischordance’, released in June 2013 abides by 22Tapes own rules of specificity – listening is challenged through seven tracks of glitched, split, re-assembled and looped slices of tone, a patchwork of sound that captures the touchingly human in the empty tundra of flickering electronica. As if channeling the last, stricken communications from a civilisation we might have embraced, hope dissipated from that which has already ceased to exist – most ably enacted by the remote ‘Hide & Peek’.
The fleeting structures of ‘Dischordance’ gave way to more recognisable forms in his August contribution to Filthy Broke Recordings‘ ‘Best Buds Vol 2’, – ‘Tried to Tell You’, a morphing sub bass rumbling through futurescape ghettos, hip hop played out experimentally, looming large on the sides of broken buildings. The creativity continues to flow – the new release of ‘Shelf Life’ in September keeps the intricacy high, but smooths off the jagged edges of Discordance.
The sounds 22Tape creates somehow manages to combine the faded polaroid memories of yesteryear with the floating city sheen of tomorrows dreams, though he’d probably seek to distance himself from anything that ties him into some ‘deeper meaning’. For as much as he is serious about his craft, he’s not that serious about life – how else could you name a track ‘Urethra Franklin’? Despite the joke, Urethra and her stable mates pack the same melodic insights, the same attention to detail, the same 22Tape hallmark of quality. From the fantastic plastinated bassline and glinting chimes of ‘Like The Green’ to the old school arcade of ‘Liquidity’, we could have put the whole EP on here.
We tracked him down to a room full of shuttering, stuttered images, and asked him if he’d join us in our Artists Write Anything feature. Recognising our mistake, we asked him if he’d join us for our Musicians Write Anything Feature. He said yes. We kept our goddamn mouths shut and waited.
If pretentiousness is a prerequisite for “success” as an artist, I can’t wait to continue this ascent up the mountain of failure. Firstly, I don’t use the word “swaray”, nor do I spell it “soiree”; only pretentious people spell it correctly.
If your dinner party is serving cavyare and expensive shampain, I’ll do my best to impregnate those sexy fish eggs right in front of you, and start a game of beer-pong with that over-priced bubbly shit that you’re sippin’. By the way, a flute is a musical instrument (that you probably have someone playing live at your swaray) not something you use to drink. And quit smelling your drink. It’s a called a drink. Drink it.
I never stroke my chin when considering a piece of art/writing/music, unless it’s to purposely smell the nicotine on my fingers to distract me from the odoriferous stench of flower infused cat-piss that everyone has dabbed on their neck and wrists. Nor do I indulge in conversation of art critique. You either like it, or you don’t. No need to spew endless “knowledge” of this and that technique. I appreciate the passion, but, more often than not, the sincerity is lost in the elitist masterbatorial tone.
I don’t care how much success you’ve had as an artist, never name your child after your favorite artist, city or another last name, i.e. York, Paris or Sloan. If you’re going for a wholly original name, I much prefer something along the lines of the ghettofied yet strangely Spanish sounding DeShawn or LaRay. Or, the completely tactless Dillinger. But to name your kid after your favorite herb- Sage? I just puked on your flautist. And don’t tell me that Sage is the Greek meaning of a man who has attained wisdom. That’s not the first thing that comes to people’s mind when they hear sage. If you think otherwise, then you’ve proved my point.
I hope to never look “smashing” or “dignified”. I prefer snot-dripping belly-laughs as opposed to shallow guffaws. I’d rather break-dance your fox-trot. If you like my art, I prefer you down a handle of whisky and pass out screaming, instead of lipping a mimosa and giving an opera clap that you can’t even hear because you’re wearing shoulder-length gloves in the middle of summer. Comfort over fashion, daaaaaling. If someone asks what you do, be specific—like a painter, sculpter, musician or writer. Never refer to yourself as an artist. It makes me queezy.
Lastly, there is nothing more pretentious than a bitter artist who hasn’t found “success”, and has nothing better to do than to write about and disgrace those who have. Fuckers.
Get ‘Shelf Life’ here.
Find 22Tape here.