psychedelic

Background Noise, Episode 66: Ryan McGinness by Matt Valerio

THE BACKGROUND NOISE PODCAST SERIES FOCUSES ON THE MUSIC THAT ARTISTS LISTEN TO WHEN THEY WORK, WHAT MUSIC INSPIRES THEM, OR JUST MUSIC THEY LIKE. THIS WEEK, IN EPISODE 66, THE FOCUS IS ON ARTIST RYAN MCGINNESS

THE BACKGROUND NOISE PODCAST SERIES FOCUSES ON THE MUSIC THAT ARTISTS LISTEN TO WHEN THEY WORK, WHAT MUSIC INSPIRES THEM, OR JUST MUSIC THEY LIKE. THIS WEEK, IN EPISODE 66, THE FOCUS IS ON ARTIST RYAN MCGINNESS

Ryan McGinness’s work is often chaotic. His beautifully complex, brightly-colored and nearly kaleidoscopic imagery is layered and layered, each icon melding with the next. It’s hard to make sense of it all, but judging by Ryan’s quiet, but seemingly quite intelligent demeanor, there’s most likely at least SOME sort of method to the madness.

Ryan spent his early years growing up in Virginia Beach, VA. Inspired early on by the surf and skate culture of the area, he absorbed the work of early skateboard designs, with designer Rob Roskopp’s decks particularly standing out. This is most likely what inspired him to start studying art. He studied at Carnegie Mellon in Pittsburgh, where he was able to fine tune his love of symbols, patterns and public signage.

He has since developed a visual language that is all his own. In addition to these intricate screenprints and paintings, he sometimes takes a more minimalistic route. Stripping away the chaos, he sometimes lets his odd designs breathe a bit, leaving them by themselves, open for interpretation. Designs that don’t look complex from afar, but when you really get close, they seem to tell entire stories.

 Not long ago, he was commissioned by the New York City Department of Transportation to erect 50 signs around New York City. These signs featured the previously mentioned stripped down designs, looking more like regular street signs, created with waterjet cut aluminum with a few layers of vinyl. Unfortunately, due to their popularity, nearly all of them were stolen off the street before they really got the exposure they deserved.

He’s surely made a name for himself, and has come a long way since that first piece of original art he sold for $40 in sixth grade.

First Album You Bought?
Reach the Beach by The Fixx

Last Album You Bought?
Washarama by The Judy’s

First Concert?
The Jesus & Mary Chain and P.I.L.

Last Concert?
Beck & Flaming Lips

Is There One Album That Made A Significant Impression On You?
They Might Be Giants (First Album)

Who Is Your Musical Hero?
Lou Reed

How Important Is Music To Your Creative Process?
We listen to music all day in the studio.

Lou Reed - Perfect Day
The Cure - Boys Don’t Cry
Beach Boys - God Only Knows
Pulp - Common People
Stone Roses - I Wanna Be Adored
Devo - Mongoloid
Jesus and Mary Chain - Taste of Cindy
Joy Division - Love Will Tear Us Apart
Flaming Lips - Do You Realize?
Zombies - Time of the Season
The Chills - Pink Frost
Stone Poneys - Different Drum
Simon & Garfunkel - Sound of Silence

Check out Ryan's mix below, download it directly here, or subscribe to the Background Noise podcast on iTunes. Be sure to like Background Noise on Facebook for updates on future episodes. You can browse ALL the Background Noise episodes here.  Check out Ryan McGinness's website here.

Background Noise, Episode 58: Killer Acid by Matt Valerio

THE BACKGROUND NOISE PODCAST SERIES FOCUSES ON THE MUSIC THAT ARTISTS LISTEN TO WHEN THEY WORK, WHAT MUSIC INSPIRES THEM, OR JUST MUSIC THEY LIKE. THIS WEEK, IN EPISODE 58, THE FOCUS IS ON KILLER ACID

THE BACKGROUND NOISE PODCAST SERIES FOCUSES ON THE MUSIC THAT ARTISTS LISTEN TO WHEN THEY WORK, WHAT MUSIC INSPIRES THEM, OR JUST MUSIC THEY LIKE. THIS WEEK, IN EPISODE 58, THE FOCUS IS ON KILLER ACID

Rob Corradetti (the man behind Killer Acid) has built up quite a body of work over the years. He's amassed an impressive musical discography, featuring work with many different bands... Mixel Pixel, Snack Machine, Eastern Stars, Fab Fur, Pink Void.....it goes on and on. And it's through music that I first met him, so it was only fitting that he participate in this Background Noise project.

I first encountered Rob when I shared an apartment in Oakland with Mixel Pixel's then-label head Aaron McEvoy of Mental Monkey Records. It was through Aaron that my old band, Restiform Bodies, started doing shows with Mixel Pixel, which later led to Rob not only drawing the absolutely insane artwork for our TV Loves You Back LP for Anticon, but also the corresponding (and 5 years late) TV Loves You Back Remixes artwork.

Over the years though, Rob has become a hot commodity when it comes to designing album covers, t-shirts, posters, what-have-you. His trippy, colorful creations (which are very fitting with the Killer Acid name),  have led to him designing tour posters for Wiz Khalifa, a t-shirt for Macaulay Culkin's Pizza Underground band, and album artwork for Mac Demarco, Ty Segall, Thee Oh Sees, Black Lips and MANY others. Oh, and he even designed a Camel cigarette pack years back that was sold in stores for a limited time.  Nothing is off limits. Go see for yourself over at his website.

What was your first concert?
Lollapalooza 1994 was the first one I can really remember - with P Funk, Beastie Boys, The Breeders, L7, etc.

Last concert/show?
It was GayC /DC with Mac Sabbath

First album, tape or cd you bought?
Tape was George Michael, and after my nuts dropped I got Jane's Addiction on CD

Last album you bought?
Karen Dalton

Was there any album that made a significant impression on you?
The Chocolate Watchband was a High School favorite - and also Beck, One Foot in the Grave

Who is your musical hero?
Jimi Hendrix

How important do you think music is to your creative process?
It's pretty important. I prefer to listen to instrumental, mostly zoned out stuff when I'm drawing (the basis for this mix). I also like psych rock, and weird hazy rock.

Check out Rob's mix below, download it directly here, or subscribe to the Background Noise podcast on iTunes. Be sure to like Background Noise on Facebook for updates on future episodes. You can browse ALL the Background Noise episodes here.

1. Ananda Shankar - Romantic Rhino
2. Nguashi N’Timbo - Shauri Yako
3. Los Indios Tabajaras - Adios, Mariquita Linda
4. Lloyd Charmers / The Hippy Boys - Psychedelic Reggae
5. The Tornados - Earthy
6. The Noblemen - Dragon Walk
7. Jan Davis - Watusi Zombie
8. Link Wray - I’m Branded
9. The Chocolate Watch Band - Expo 2000
10. Sinoia Caves - Naro Way
11. Strawberry Alarm Clock - Rainy Day Mushroom Pillow
12. Thee Oh Sees - If I Stay Too Long
13. Happy Birthday - Subliminal Message
14. Glass Candy - Rolling Down The Hills (Spring Demo)

Background Noise, Episode 21: Stinkfish by Matt Valerio

The "Background Noise" podcast series focuses on the music that artists listen to when they work, what music inspires them, or just music they like. This week, in Episode 21, the focus is on Colombian street artist  Stinkfish .

The "Background Noise" podcast series focuses on the music that artists listen to when they work, what music inspires them, or just music they like. This week, in Episode 21, the focus is on Colombian street artist Stinkfish.

Photo via Stinkfish

Photo via Stinkfish

I'm still completely amazed that I was able to get Stinkfish for this project. I had initially thought it would remain a pipe dream after Miuccia Prada, heiress to the hugely successful Prada company chose a Stinkfish image to be prominently displayed on walls, models and handbags in their stores. Prada has an eye for art, and counts Cindy Sherman as a personal friend, on top of owning some very expensive Damien Hirst pieces. Now that she had Mexican-born, Colombia-raised artist Stinkfish in her grips, I figured he was untouchable. Until it occurred to me that there was a particular artist who had already done a Background Noise mix who might have a connection to him. Sure enough, he did and by the next morning, I had an email from Stinkfish waiting for me in my inbox, expressing his excitement in compiling some songs for me.

Stinkfish in Paris, 2012 (photo by Matt Bomarr)

Stinkfish in Paris, 2012 (photo by Matt Bomarr)

Stinkfish has been on the street art scene for years, and is best known for creating beautiful, psychedelic stencil art based off of photos he finds on his travels or photos he himself takes of random pedestrians, often choosing large public walls to display his work, and often using very bright and eye catching colors.

Now that I think of it, aside from the rare Stinkfish hand-painted stickers that popped up on my street this week (pictured left), I haven't seen any of his work here in NYC. I was thrilled to find a few great pieces of his on my honeymoon in Paris in 2012 though (the main image at the top here being one of them). I'm not sure if these were commissioned pieces or not. If they weren't, and he had to create these highly detailed pieces under cover of night in at high speed so as not to get caught, I commend him. Either way, it takes talent to put these beautiful works of art together.


What was your first concert?

Around 1996 here at my city Bogota (Colombia), a concert of local bands of ska and punk

Last concert/show?

The 5.6.7.8's

First album, tape or cd you bought?

King of Bongo / Mano Negra

Last album you bought?
Long time ago I do not buy music, may be the last one was Kill the cuentero / Odio a Botero

Was there any album that made a significant impression on you?

Many, just to name a few:
King of Bongo, Puta´s Fever and Casa Babylon / Mano NegraΚΕΦΑΛΗΞΘ / Ministry
Acorralar la Bestia / Actitud Maria Marta
El Circo / La Maldita Vecindad
Smash / Offspring
Armas pal Pueblo / Def Con Dos
El Día de la Bestia soundtrack / Compilation
Puro Eskañol vol.1 / Compilation

Who is your musical hero?
Unable to respond

photo via Stinkfish

photo via Stinkfish

How important do you think music is to your creative process?
Really important, the lyrics, the noise, the company. Walk around the city listening loud music its a perfect way to learn about the streets.

Check out the Stinkfish website here, and check out his amazing Flickr stream here

Stream his Background Noise mix below, download it here, or subscribe to the Background Noise podcast on iTunes.

And as always, like Background Noise on Facebook for updates on future episodes.

Background Noise, Episode 10: Tony Depew by Matt Bomarr

My new "Background Noise" podcast series focuses on the music that artists listen to when they work, what music inspires them, or just music they like. This week, in Episode 10, the focus is on  Tony Depew

My new "Background Noise" podcast series focuses on the music that artists listen to when they work, what music inspires them, or just music they like. This week, in Episode 10, the focus is on Tony Depew

Tony Depew's art always stands out. Even on the already-colorful streets of NY, you can always catch one of his pieces from afar due to his use of bright colors, and their trippy, psychedelic nature.

photo via Mighty Tanaka

Tony's interpretations of other artists such as Chuck Close, Kenny Scharf and Ron English are not to be missed. They can be found in the form of wheatpastes in doorways and on walls throughout Brooklyn and Manhattan.

In addition to participating in Hanksy's awesome one-night-only guerrilla art show in an abandoned NYC building, he's done some great collaborations lately with Roycer and CB23.

A few words with Mr. Depew....

 

What was your first concert?

Ha ha, this is a good one... the first concert I attended was New Kids on the Block in November 1989, at the now extinct Richfield Coliseum in Ohio. My sister and I, as well of a group of us youngins, were invited for a friend's birthday celebration.
 

via Tony Depew

Last concert/show?

The last show I attended was out in Colorado this past August, seeing Phish. My friends and I made it to the second night, of a 3 night run, which ended their Summer Tour. Dancing your ass off at an outdoor venue is soooo much fun! I highly recommend it.  (http://www.jambase.com/Articles/119284/Phish-Denver-Dick's-Setlist-And-The-Skinny-Night-Two)

First album, tape or cd you bought?

First cassette purchased was... Dun dun dunnnn- Cyndi Lauper's "She's So Unusual"; I was 5. In December 2010, while seeing Prince at MSG, she came out and performed a song with him. Bravo, Cyndiiiii.....

Collaboration with Roycer. Via Tony Depew

Last album you bought?

Hmmm... this is a tough one, as it has been a long time since I have purchased any albums. BUT- this past fall I received a 'Baths' album, if that counts. Definitely recommend them for a listen!

Was there any album that made a significant impression on you?

Oh man, so many! Nirvana- In Utero and Nevermind, Grateful Dead's American Beauty, as well as many other bands/albums are what got me through high school. Most Phish albums did too, which has led me to see them dozens of times since the late 90's. Nina Simone- Legendary, can't live without it! As far as having just one album that stands out as leaving a significant impression... I have many. I could go on and on with this list!

Who is your musical hero?

My musical hero? Man, another question where there isn't just one answer!

How important do you think music is to your creative process?

Very. I believe music and art go hand in hand with one another. Traveling all over to see live shows was my outlet from the "normal" life; where I would recharge myself and bring that energy into my creativeness. When working on my art, 97% of the time I have tunes playing- whether albums or live shows. My music selection also depends on my mindset whilst working; I could be creating dark depressing colors, or vibrant day-glo ones that will melt your face off! Sometimes I can even be caught dancing while painting, ha ha...

Tony's contribution to Hanky's "Surplus Candy". Photo by Bomarr

Download Tony's podcast here, Subscribe to the Background Noise Podcast on iTunes, or stream it via Mixcloud.

Birthdays - "Biggie Shorty" by Matt Bomarr

Birthdays is a one man show. I saw him perform recently at Chez Andre, a new venue in the basement of the East Village's Standard Hotel. Some of his recorded stuff comes across sounding like unreleased Animal Collective tracks, but he pulls it off well, and the live show is great. 
bandcamp

I Come To Shanghai - "Love Shark" by Matt Bomarr

i come to shanghai - "love shark" (download) [audio http://www.divshare.com/direct/15700007-348.mp3]

I Come To Shanghai is a hard band to describe. They sort of have their own thing going on. Sam Frigard and Robert Ashley moved from Oakland, CA in 2010 to Atlanta, GA where they could focus on their synth-based, somewhat psychedelic music full time. The result is their recently-released Eternal Life, Vol 1 record. These guys are both extremely talented, and deserve a lot more attention than they get. You can buy Eternal Life, Vol. 1 right here. website

Mwahaha - "Rainbow Diamond" by Matt Bomarr

mwahaha - "rainbow diamond" (download) [audio http://www.divshare.com/direct/15496886-91c.mp3]

I guarantee you will be hearing more about Mwahaha in the coming months. This Oakland 4-piece blends crazy psychedelia with analog drum machines and thick synth lines, making for an all-out aural treat that deserves repeated headphone listens. Their self-titled record (out December 6) features indie darling Merrill Garbus of tUnE-YarDs, and was mixed and partially recorded by Eli Crews (Deerhoof, Tune-Yards, WHY?, Restiform Bodies). Anticon's Jel and Odd Nosdam are both currently confirmed for remixes in the near future as well. Keep an eye on these guys.  You can also preview another great track from their record called "Poinsettia" over at their Bandcamp page. twitter facebook

nick nicely - "Hilly Fields" by Matt Bomarr

Released in 1982, nick nicely's "Hilly Fields" is considered one of the first non-hip hop songs to feature minimal record scratching. The song also took close to a year to complete. What really attracts me to this song is that the drum machine drums are hard for their time, the cello adds a lot to the song, and the sheer psychedelia of the song is really impressive. Apparantly, nick is working on a new record. There's a great collection of his songs that came out in 2004-2005 called Psychotropia that you should really check out.