His first solo record in over ten years, Ophelia Slowly, is out now on Everloving Records.
Time Travel Trance Trip Mixtape
We begin our journey with a smile breaking through static. In order to become temporally tangible, it is important to be a good listener. When Marika opens her voice to sing, everything else ceases to exist. Sometimes she mourns, but here at the start of our trip, she invites us to explode into ecstatic dance.
Not sure if we are in the throes of an analog alignment or a digital déjà vu; the juxtapositions are becoming more abstract. In light of the ceremony we have witnessed, it makes sense to keep an open mind and tune in to the radio emanating from the sky in the floor.
With the wonder of a child beholding giant elves in space, the lullabies are arriving in reverse. It’s as if many years have passed since we first imagined this future, and here it is in all its vivid brightness, unfolding on a lonely computer screen in the heat of summer.
Bent into unimaginable positions for the sake of dance, a human sculpture with many heads and an equal number of beautiful faces has materialized to sing to us from an island beyond time. The ambassadors of every blissful place we’ve never been, the voices sing to us in a language we don’t yet understand, but what they are saying comes in gentle and clear through the graceful fog.
Slightly more whimsical than the last time we saw him, our “friend” has returned from the future with a bouquet of strange flowers mounted on a flaming calf. Like some kind of free-associating wizard riding a wave of white noise, he lets a bird out of his shoulder satchel who sings a forcefully plaintive reverie.
Lost lacquer, somehow rediscovered, held this mysterious broadcast. Found in a searching hypnosis in the ether of internet excursions, sometime just before dawn, these gypsies imported themselves from the east. Masked and anonymous, we continue down the winding path after blindly drinking their tea and appreciating their laughing fire.
In the rubble of many burned out cities at once, a silently gazing angel with storytelling eyes transmits this mournful dirge to us. Another gypsy wanderer, her whereabouts are unknown even as she sings through her deep oceanic eyes. A smile after the pain of losing everything, and a reminder of the long distance through time that these tunes have traveled to be here in this post-everything place.
Blindness gives the capacity for great vision. Our deep reverence for this magical musical shaman is matched by the mysterious madmen of the NASA space program, who chose to put this song on a record that plays endlessly in a satellite orbiting distant corners of the galaxy. The darkest hour before the dawn always contains that mystical spark, the hope for something better, the illusion-shattering jump into a fuller spectrum of awareness, like a child on the warpath, fully present and savoring the last moments of childhood.
The hissing static and crackle sounds like steam, and the mad scientist is striking all of his bottles of elixirs and test tubes full of nuclear poison with a pocketknife, creating rambling snake-like melodies that circle back upon themselves like the coils of DNA discovered in a similar type of chemical trance. The snake-charmer no longer has a snake; he’s charming the atoms and the invisible cells inside his echoing bottles and bells full of soma and ambrosia now.
Walking on water, walking through walls, and breathing deeply in the steam of still-smoldering dream storms, the sunset of lavender and deep blue casts an eerie light on the pixellated panorama of the falling evening. Nearing the end or a new beginning, we are called by the sirens on the water to continue our passage through parallel perception.
Returning home, returning to the feeling of home, anyway — to the place of peace where pain is a memory. The spark in the dark hour before dawn is bright enough now to cast shadows that dance like the flickering falsehoods still dance in Plato’s cave. Clearing away the static once more, tuning in to the broadcast straight from the heart of timeless salvation, Laura Rivers holds a mirror and then drops it into the void.
Illuminated memories of Christmas future, a huge hand in the sky raining dirt as a gift upon the prayerful pilgrim; the edges are torn and the walls are gone. The night, silent and still, is full of hidden songs. Unattached to myths about babies born without fathers, able to imagine that it’s a lullaby for us, sprinkling out of mother’s hand like fairy dust. Not a cure for all ills, but a moment of peace in a world full of digital warfare which we’ve managed to evade, but will ultimately have to face once more.
Slipping in and out of consciousness for this whole bus-ride, we are finally awakened by the rattling of cathedral bells cutting through the grey static of the town square. A masked and solemn figure in the tower is playing them by hand, and a strange solitary man in the square is hand-cranking his ancient recording device to capture the thunderous beauty onto a harsh black acetate disc. He’s coming to terms with the future, and he’s realized someday someone might listen back this moment and relive it in a kind of imagination he can’t yet imagine.