Before I get started: Take a look to your left. There are now links to subscribe to the ILC podcast. \o/
Today’s track is one of my favorites from 2009.
Bud Melvin [Rio Rancho, New Mexico] met Coova [Tokyo, Japan] back in 2006 after they both played the very first Blip Festival in New York City. As the story goes, plans to team up and write material together began to take form almost immediately.
The thought of two of Chipmusic’s most unique voices collaborating on a project together probably would have made my head explode had I known about it at the time so I’m really glad they kept the concept a secret for the next few years.
Beyond the surprise factor, I’m especially thankful for the time it gave them to mature their individual sounds. Comparing those two videos to what you’re hearing now is like the difference between a balsamic vinegar that’s been aged 12 years and one that’s been aged for 20 — really good to begin with but completely transcendent once you allow the flavors to concentrate for just a little bit longer.
Since I have no insight into their writing process, I can only comment on the chronology of the four tracks as they appear on the release. For me, the two styles sort of dance around each other for the first three tracks with varying degrees of satisfaction. Sometimes I feel like I’m listening to Coova track with Bud Melvin accents, other times it’s vice-versa. These aren’t bad things, mind you, I love them both — it’s just not there yet. The album description on 8bitpeoples describes it beautifully:
This is the EP you might have once heard, far-off in the static between two AM radio stations.
With that analogy in mind, the radio dial finally settles on the exact center point between the two when “Sjutton” begins to quietly, gracefully bubble to the surface. Any static there may have been is completely replaced by a perfect synthesis of what I like best about each artist’s style. The bar for epic Chipmusic collaborations is pretty much out of reach at this point, thanks to these two.*
*Although the Condom (Covox + Random) performance at Blip 09 is a serious contender. That story, however, will have to wait for another day.
Pro Tip: “Sjutton” is the Swedish word for “seventeen.”