Guest Edit #50: Raffertie
Hello all, this is the Raffertie Guest Edit. I was extremely flattered to be given the opportunity to talk to you a little bit about things I enjoy and also play you some music that I like to listen to. My music taste is extremely varied and the reason I say that is because for the last few years I have made records which are predominantly electronic and aimed squarely at the underground club music scene. The music in my playlist reflects that in parts, but I also wanted to include other music that I listen to, both new, old, popular and perhaps not quite so well known. Music for me is about dynamic and contrast and hopefully some of that will be apparent from the music I have chosen.
You can catch me playing at a number of places around the UK and Europe in the next few months so keep an eye out for those dates, the next show will be at Koko playing alongside Daedelus, Luke Vibert and Kutmah. My new record Visual Acuity, which has been released through Ninja Tune, is out now!
Artist: Florence + The Machine Track: Rabbit Heart Release: June 2009 Label: Island
Modern classic is a term which I don't think is always necessarily used in a complimentary fashion, but when I say that Rabbit Heart is a modern classic I mean it in the most complimentary way possible. There is so little music being released these days that works its way into the popular psyche and that I find stirring in any way. Without wanting to get into a rant about how bad the pop charts are; suffice it to say Florence Welch's voice brought a little breath of fresh air to an otherwise very fusty institution of 'popular music'.
Lungs is a wonderful album (looking at iTunes now it's one of my most played albums ever), but it is Rabbit Heart that drew me in. It encapsulates everything I love about Florence as an artist, first and foremost the imagination behind her songs. Her lyrics paint such vivid pictures in my head and with such measured, excellent music supporting and balancing perfectly against those words I can get lost listening to Rabbit Heart for hours. As a listener I'm transported through love, loss, violence and wonder all in just under four minutes. I am fascinated by any music that takes me on a journey and Florence does this incredibly well.
This is an very important record to me and to others as well. It revitalises that title of modern classic and has made it mean something good once again.
Artist: Jeff Buckley Album: Live At Sin-é Release: 2003 Label: Columbia
I remember finding this record completely by accident on a trip to Rounder Records in Brighton when I was about 16. Before that all I knew of Buckley's music was Grace - his first and only studio album - which I wasn't all that bothered by. It was nice enough but for me Hallelujah completely eclipsed the other songs on there. This is not to say that any of the other songs were bad, quite the opposite, but none of them left me feeling quite so awestruck as his Leonard Cohen cover did. Buckley's voice was so large and incendiary I was often left hugely disappointed that it was masked behind a sheen of big production. I use to wonder why there weren't more of these stripped down paragons of vocal talent? And so being told by the chap behind the desk that this was an album of nothing but Buckley and his guitar I was intrigued.
What followed was probably a small obsession. Every nuance of this record from the clatter of chairs, to the audience chattering, to what sounds like a coffee machine in the background, to the jokes Buckley tells between songs, all of this was the complete amalgamation of what I wanted - a simple unfettered setting for Buckley's voice to shine. Each song was brought to life for me with a new-found lustre. Where I had been nonchalant before I was now gripped and I connected with Buckley like never before. I would say that generally I am not really one for live albums from any artist, I just don't think it really does anyone justice, but that recording captured something that made me dearly wish that I could have been there to hear it for myself.
Singer-songwriter material of highly emotional content is not to everyone's taste, and I can see why, but I urge you to give this album a chance. It is the apotheosis of everything I love about Jeff Buckley.
Artist: Zatorski & Zatorski Track: The Last 3600 Seconds of Wasp
Unfortunately I can't find a clip of this video online to show you but I chose this as my one video because of the impression it made on me when I first saw it. I can't remember when exactly I first saw this but it was some years ago while I was wondering around an art gallery with my mum. I heard the video's Philip Glass soundtrack before I saw it. Having not seen the title of the work when I walked in I was at first slightly unsure what the video was about or where it was heading but then, with the biggest sinking feeling, I began to realise what I was seeing. The title of the work is self-explanatory, as a viewer you spend the last hour of the wasp's life with it.
So what? Things die every day and what's more it is an insect. But the reality is that the longer I watched this video the more involved I became. I was quietly willing this wasp to right itself and fly away, but as the time rolled on I realised no such thing would happen. As a viewer I felt utterly helpless, I had no control over the situation and that filled me with both anxiety and morbid curiosity. I wasn't comfortable but I couldn't look away. Art like this that confronts and lays bare things in the day to day life that are perhaps uncomfortable, or generally forgotten, or are not thought about but are none the less universal and unavoidable is art which should be looked at and payed attention to.
1. Raffertie - Visual Acuity
2. Ryoji Ikeda - Data.Matrix
3. Amon Tobin - Piece Of Paper
4. Gerard Grisey - Partiels
5. Little Dragon - Ritual Union
6. Samoyed - A Small Good Thing
7. Florence + The Machine - Rabbit Heart (Raise It Up)
8. Sampha - Rainstars
9. Boyz II Men - Can You Stand The Rain
10. Portishead - Roads
11. Alvin Curran - Animal Behaviour
12. Randomer - Obtuse VIP
13. AlunaGeorge - You Know You Like It
14. Luther Vandross - Never Too Much
15. Antony And The Johnsons - Fistful Of Love
16. Tom Jones - With These Hands
17. UB40 - Red Red Wine
18. Frank Ocean - Thinking About You
19. Shai - If I Ever Fall In Love
20. Throwing Snow & Py - Wallow (Raffertie Remix)
Interview #719: Raffertie Read the full interview here