my most played album of 2021 is Resonant Bodies by Octo Octa and it's not even close. there were months where i could listen to nothing else. my favorite song is "Can You See Me?", eight minutes that leave you lost in the breaks, spinning in ecstatic dance with a brand new friend who feels just like an old friend you've been waiting to meet all your life.
this is a pretty sizeable shift in genre / overall vibe for me, i have always respected the historical value of house music but found it too repetitive and subdued for my more upbeat + grating preferences. i've followed Octo Octa's partner Eris Drew on various sites for years because they are so f'n cute together and they run the T4T LUV NRG label. Eris speaks often of the mythos of the "Mother Beat," the rave goddess that comes alive when people (or even a person) become one under the unifying spell of The Beat (just like in Drumline). this framing resonated w me even before i began to understand either of their creations. i guess after the first raveless year, i slowed down and became patient enough to move in time with the mother beat.
CW: brief + non-graphic mentions of grooming, death
during the pandemic where live music shuttered + i began making music daily and dreamed endlessly of the club, my two greatest influences + favorite artists died six months apart and i felt parts of myself die with them
one still walks the earth but he became dead to me last year, the moment his foul misdeeds were exposed to the public. against my better judgment i spent *many* years of my life traveling far to see him, deeply believing in his intoxicating approach to bass music, maximalist sensory approach to live music that transports thousands to somewhere unknown, a legible canon of derivatives of derivatives of derivative works, the ability to create a City wherever he goes - but it was all a huge lie, a vehicle for finding fresh new teens to text and young talent to steal from, it all sounds so stupid on the other side of his 'death' but it was real to us
the second actually died in a terrible, sudden accident at the start of the year. i still can't talk about it. i've never grieved someone i don't know personally as much as her. she changed *everything* she touched, she left with many secrets, there will never be another - a true original. after years of being a rare trans person+/f*g at the dubstep show and having some ruff experiences w/ little frame of reference for where i “belong” in this sanitized facsimile of The Rave (which is explicitly Transgender, on an ontological lvl), this nameless faceless (at the time) Entity just materialized out of the ether with the most wretched tearout comb filtered rubberized monstrosity beats layered with laser sharp wit and addictive pop sensibilities that only a transgender freak w a weird machine could make.
i’m grateful to have discovered her music before she truly came into herself, over the years i got to witness her Becoming and ascent. i listened to her every damn day before she passed and i listen to her every single day still, studying + dreaming + crying + remembering + hoping to carry a little bit of her with me.
IN SUMMARY, the Mother Beat is fucking real folks.
falling deep, deep in love with Octo Octa (and by association Eris Drew, some of their most incredible works are collaborations with one another) snapped me out of the white hot “wow i wasted so many years, dollars, brain cells etc” shame i felt after Dead-To-Me’s awful betrayal. i healed by drinking in their palpable love for: one another, the music they make, the music they listen to, DANCING, and “the rave” as a physical place + aspirational state + moment in time + attitude + immortal sentient being. it’s everything *BUT* the sum of its parts (The Artist, individual people, social scenes, promoters, venues, money and capital interests). therefore, the “death” of a shitty old love cannot negate the positive, life affirming experiences that i had on his dancefloor -- DJs aren’t auteurs, he didn’t invent shit, he was just a single minute component of every dizzying groundswell of energy + chaos i felt at his events. he might be “dead” but the mass of discrete bodies who showed up to dance to (for all intents and purposes) The Mother Beat and become a singular being will never, ever die
the lesson isn’t so clear cut w dearly departed Freak-With-Machine, but that is OK. i could barely tolerate listening to music for months after she left, not until i impulsively put on Resonant Bodies during a late night drawing sesh. that exact moment is when i began rebuilding a new musical palate from the ground up because i couldn’t stomach any more sadness. OO/EE’s music is really perfect for that, dance music that is drenched in Feeling that is often melancholy but always rooted in ecstasy, survival, hopefulness, desire -- i had many of these precious moments of realization alongside my lover, the source + object of my own T4T LUV NRG. who knows if i’ll ever encounter “A Rave” again, but T4T LUV NRG taught me infinite ways to embody it in my own work + life and harness difficult, raw emotions like anger + grief for my future contributions to the Mother Beat.
T4T LUV NRG CURES WHAT AILS U
Share and discuss art and media made out there in the world (music, books, movies, games, etc) by people who aren't you
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T4T LUV NRG CURES WHAT AILS U
1 post • Page 1 of 1