WARMER MIXTAPES #314 | by Elliott Fiedler [p e a c e FIRE]
1. Cocteau Twins | Ivo
Near the end of my university days in Colorado, I was completely addicted to this song, wearing out the black MiniDisc I had copied the album to. I love the guitars and vocals, so trebly in shades of blue and white, punctuated by synthetic drums, cracking and crumbling in triplets. Sex all over. Hypnotic, yet no frills. The main groove of the song feels like a kind of Native American spiritual dance rhythm.
2. Yes | Close To The Edge
Mellotron strings and wet, overflowing light, thrashing within darkness. I get up, I get down. From high school on, this piece made a big impression upon me, in that it was the first really long song that I could get into. During the same period, I was also discovering Schoenberg, Webern and Varèse for the first time, but at that time I couldn't quite appreciate the breadth of their expression yet. Close To The Edge for me is shades of orange, burning red, light-blue flickering in constellations on my bedroom ceiling.
3. Metallica | Ride The Lightning
Doom and gloom coupled with a strange intensity and enthusiasm. Love the sparse imagery of the album artwork that really encapsulates the aesthetic of the music.
4. Michael Jackson | Smooth Criminal
I recall that when I was still in, and when I listened to this song in my bedroom, I'd do these little choreographed MJ-style moves, though I was too shy to let anyone watch. The breakdown, with all the police sirens and talking over mega-phone right before, is still awesome.
5. Salamander 2 | Silvery Wings Again
This is one of those few songs that strongly declares itself in a major key and still creates exciting points of tension and release. Melodies that spark innocence and cosmic beauty.
6. B'z | Alone
I came across this song on a Japanese maxi-single CD that my high-school Japanese teacher had brought back to the States. I don't know why I didn't think just to ask her if I could borrow it, but (I'm not proud of this) I ended up stealing the CD along with another one of the group, Checkers. (That one I do regret taking.)
7. Stephen Scott | Vikings Of The Sunrise
One organic soul of the ancients, burning in the night. Alight through secret darkness. Bows saw stars, suns and planets are plunked from the Void.
8. Carcass | Heartwork
My sixth grade choir teacher once asked us to bring in an album or song to introduce to the class, basically as a show-and-tell. I ended up bringing this Carcass album and played the second track, Carnal Forge. I distinctly recall the teacher looking horrified as she heard what probably upon first listen sounded like a searing blaze of howling bass and furious static. Overall this album, and in particular the track, Heartwork, is such a unique amalgam of emotional chaos with sensibility and philosophic reasoning. Heartwork uses its apparent contradictions to great emotional effect, and to me, expresses the Universal.
9. Dracula X | Cross A Fear
I don't care if it's video game music... This song has an incredible melody and chorus that's incredibly beautiful and instills wonder. Reminiscent of Kiss From A Rose by Seal.
10. Olivier Messiaen | Méditations Sur Le Mystère De La Sainte Trinité, Méditation II : Dieu Est Saint
Emotional. Empty, growling periods of stasis, moments of meandering in forests of darkness, silence punctured by the clamor of birds. Contemplation in solitude within an empty cathedral... Its ceiling clustered with stained glass, fixed with blinding hues of orange, green, and yellow. Framed in purple and black light. Walking counter-clockwise and gazing up above at this mystic, kaleidoscopic shifting of harmony within my being.