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Ingredient – S/T
TER106
110 lei
 
The harmony of poetry, sound, and texture cuts through your brain fog like a wet diamond.

Ingredient’s self-titled record was assembled by Kuplowsky and Kehoe over the course of six months in a home studio they frequented daily. Amidst synthesizers and drum machines they composed, re-composed, and workshopped a wide array of music, ultimately focusing on a set of eight songs that lived in a shared musical and philosophical world. Recording days often ended in basketball games at a local court or a rooftop commune over a pot of tulsi tea and a crossword puzzle. Kuplowsky brought in the Blue Cliff Record – the classic anthology of Chan Buddhism – whose inscrutable and sublime insights remained constant throughout the recording process as an activator of reorientation and reflection. While Kehoe was frequently rendered physically immobile by bouts of anxiety, a patience and mutual caring governed the pace of their creation; rest, stretching and meditation became equally important as the act of arrangement. Invited into their intimate circle of composition was Thom Gill, whose heavenly voice uplifts “Variation” and “Raindrop,” and Karen Ng, whose alto sax simmers and dances around the funky strut of “Raindrop.” The lyrics on Ingredient reflect the persistence of change, the infinite variability of nature where randomness and divergence are no accidents. In Daoism, duality, in the form of Yin and Yang, is not contradictory as it is in Western idealist philosophy, but rather composes the eternal and lived paradox of our changeless-changing universe: changeless because all is change, and changing because the dynamism of the Dao makes each moment transformational. Kuplowsky and Kehoe refract this way of seeing the world, as in Variation: “Variation in the natural world / there it is.” Ingredient is an experience of the manifold ways of saying there it is of the transformational world, and there it is, unfolding. Elsewhere, change and ephemerality is addressed through the record’s preoccupation with non-human perspectives, reorienting the listener to the wolf, the mouse, the emerald frog, the centipede, the bird, the fly in the lamp. The album cover visualizes this fascination with the striking image of a reddish-orange frog atop a defamiliarized landscape of dark green leaves. Mirroring the exploratory process of the record’s collaboration, the frog also signals the amphibian’s natural inclination to leap into boundless potential. Kuplowsky and Kehoe’s lyrics manifest philosopher and ecologist Timothy Morton’s concept of “the mesh,” drawing attention to the “vast, entangled web” of interconnectedness that connects all life forms and interweaving the songwriters’ shared wonder into the Animal’s unknowability. As Luka narrates in the breakdown of the dance-floor ready “Photo,” “the closer we observe things, the further they retreat into abstraction.” In Ingredient’s ecosystem, perception is a reversible fractal where the world’s minutest details mirror the shape of the cosmos. According to the Dao, the path to healing starts by reorienting perception away from the self and toward the self’s subsumption in Totality. For Kehoe, collaborating with Kuplowsky became the reorientation necessary for the self-preservation he was seeking, opening up a shared creative practice to navigate and soften the complexity of his psychological shattering. The album begins with Kuplowsky intoning “colossal faith” which bounces around the stereo field in a cloud of echo, and it is the enormity of “faith” that centers both Kuplowsky and Kehoe’s collaboration and their inquisitiveness in the vast mysteries of our very being. Truth in Ingredient is not an essential nugget, but a bending of the light – it is the equivocal entanglement of how we are in nature as nature, but with a plea or prayer under our breath that marks our felt distance from what we are a part of: “carry me towards the mountains of my birth / returning to the nest / the silence of the earth.”
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BAR TON is a place where both musical afficionados and rookies are welcome.
Other people are also allowed in.
BAR TON is a place where both musical afficionados and rookies are welcome.
Other people are also allowed in.