Letter #81


How’s things? Have you had a good week? I hope so.

Bangkok was great – super hot, good food, and loads of stuff to do with my little famcrew. From one extreme (38c) to another, I’m now in Finland (-16c) for the Initiative annual global conference (well, I will be by the time you’re reading this). Last year’s conference was incredible, and after the year we’ve had, I think this years will be even better. At the very least it’s given me permission to buy a full winter wardrobe that’s fully goth. I’m rambling, aren’t I? I’ll stop.

We were in Bangkok for Māgha Pūjā, and having a huge admiration for Buddhist principles and view of the world, we went to Wat Saket to see people paying their respects to the monks and giving alms. The temple is beautiful, and the whole experience was spine-tingling, and gave me the same intense spiritual feeling I’ve had with music before. It was emotional. Witnessing it has put me in quite a contemplative mood, and this is reflected in this week’s letter. It’s much more thoughtful, and it’s stark. There isn’t a lot of ‘soul’ music, but there’s plenty of music with a lot of soul. It’s more subtle, is what I’m getting at I suppose.

I’ve gone in a totally different direction to usual, but stick with it, there’s some beautiful music in it. It’s deep. It’s different. You might not like it. But I hope you do.

🌪 TL;DR Section 🌪
  1. Alzhemer’s and dementia can be utterly devastating, stealing memories, relationships, and lives – but new research suggests that they cannot steal memories of music
  2. Remember the song from the blood club scene in Blade? That tune with the killer acid line? It was ripped off more times than Happy Birthday. Read the background in this great piece on RBMA
  3. Luis Manuel Garcia has written an excellent (and important) history of sexuality in club culture for RA
  4. I’m so hyped for Joe Muggs upcoming book on the history of sound system culture – tQ has got a short write up here – and keep checking here for the pre-order
  5. I really enjoyed this post on the enduring legacy of Jimi Hendrix’ version of the American national anthem – it put the whole act in a new light for me too
  6. In sad news, the Ibiza institution (and founder of the hotel where Club Tropicana was shot) Tony Pike passed away this week – Bill Brewster has written a fitting obituary in Mixmag
  7. Shane Parrish (the man behind the Farnam Street newsletter) is in GQ, talking about how to properly digest books – rather than skim them and retain nothing. It’s worth a read, and his newsletter is good too (although sometimes a bit dense for me)
  8. Tom Ravenscroft stood in for Gilles P on 6Music last Saturday, and had Pete Buckenham on as a guest. Pete is the founder of my favourite record label, On The Corner, and the show is brilliant (with loads of exclusives too)
  9. Bandcamp has a great (and super accessible) guide to Afrofuturism, and some great tracks that point to the future too. Worth a read
  10. Finally, Mark Hollis very sadly passed away this week, and while there are many glowing obituaries and features, I found this collection of thoughts from different people who Hollis influenced by Laura Snapes most fitting
📃 The tracklist 📃
  1. Oso Leone – Gallery Love
  2. Saloli – Barcarolle
  3. Andrew Wasylyk – Adrift Below a Constellation
  4. El Kessler – Enter The Bristle Strum
  5. HNNY – Hemma
  6. The Tumbledryer Babies – I Think We Might Be Weirdos
  7. Massive Attack – Backward Sucking (Heat Miser)
  8. Crispy Ambulance – We Move Through the Plateau Phase
  9. Liquid Liquid – Optimo
  10. DNA – Blonde Redhead
  11. Joy Division – Dead Souls
  12. Efdemin – Oh, Lovely Appearance of Death
  13. Cro-Magnon – Wishuwerehere
  14. Bonobo – Ibrik
  15. Jesse Futerman – Vista
  16. Mark de Clive-Lowe – What It Is
  17. Pye Corner Audio – Hollow Earth
  18. Actress – Maze
  19. Slow Dive – In Mind (Reload remix)
  20. Taso – Aceite
  21. Grain – Untitled B2
  22. Akiko Kiyama – Sirsana
  23. Two Lone Swordsmen – Mr Paris’s Monsters
  24. Fever Ray – Wanna Sip (Olof Dreijer remix)
  25. Mouse on Mars – Sui Shop
  26. Daniel Avery – Under The Tallest Arch
  27. I Jahbar – Spy
  28. Dos Monos – Clean Ya Nerves (Cleopatra)
  29. KARYYN – -TILT
  30. Efdemin – At The Stranger’s House
💥 If you enjoy this letter, then please take a second to forward this email, or share this link with a recommendation on Facebook or Twitter 💥
See you on the dance floor.
Love Will Save the Day

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