As Ariel Pink and Kurt Vile have shown, self-releasing music through CD-Rs provides fans with a fuller picture of the artist in development and a more personalised experience
In America, CD-Rs are causing a resurgence in creativity. They enable musicians to take charge of their creative process and establish their own cottage industries. Not only are CD-Rs economical, but they allow for immediate release and increased accessibility. They also have the cool factor right now.
CD-R culture is fascinating and within this new environment one name stands out – Ariel Pink. Inspired by R Stevie Moore‘s own DIY-release plan, Pink started recording songs in 2002 and had already amassed a vast discography (literally hundreds of songs) by the time Animal Collective cherry-picked his albums Doldrums, Worn Copy and House Arrest as official “releases” for their Paw Tracks label.
Pink has now indoctrinated himself fully with his band Haunted Graffiti. Their self-titled seven-inch released on Mexican Summer displays his incredible pop moves. Recorded in the “traditional” way, it shows an artist unafraid to move from the 70s FM pop sounds of I Can’t Hear My Eyes through to the post-punk Family Fodder grooves of Evolution’s a Lie.
Haunted Graffiti are currently on tour and selling another seven-inch entitled Flashback, which I’ve had on repeat ever since I got hold of it. A four-song set, it completes Ariel Pink‘s pop fantasies with a full band behind him. Flashback is a heavy-metal number, Rama Ya is old-school punk rock and Reminiscences is electro boogie, while Phantasthma is pure Prefab Sprout. All these genres covered in the space of a seven-inch!
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