A very crucial aspect of Sam Ray’s music as Ricky Eat Acid is assessing the degree to which taking basic comfort for granted warps our perception of the places/people that make us feel most at ease (Ray touches on this point briefly in his comments below). Many of his warmly droning, piano-laced songs summon acute yet non-distinct pangs of nostalgia, as though the interpolated field recordings and sampled conversations could very well be your own muffled memory of an important discussion you may have had. This eerie dichotomy of awareness and uncertainty is disquieting, but is exactly the makeup of familiarity. You feel secure in your home because you don’t have to question it or analyze it, yet you are spiritually in tune with its every nuance.
For his Car Tunes and Cartoons mix, Ray hovers just outside the realm he has constructed for himself over the past few years (he recently rocketed far away from that world with his fantastic new footwork-inflected EP) and occasionally strays along an unpredictable tangent. I have said this before about Ricky Eat Acid’s music, but the most poignant concept within his music is establishing with certainty what makes you comfortable and then testing those limits to see how and who you are beyond those designated areas. This mix is a fun, engrossing exploration of that idea, and I am so so excited that Sam was able to put this together for us.
For the entire tracklist, head over to our SoundCloud page to check it out.
Ricky Eat Acid on his mix and illustration:
“I’ve been really into this supernatural feeling that seems to accompany summer-days. Every year it kind of creeps it’s way into my life in different ways, altering and influencing anything I’m working on at the time. Winter is such a predictably dead season, but it’s full of planned activity – creative or otherwise. Summer just kind of drags itself forward, languid and with a real disregard for anything in my life. When I’m not working or traveling a lot, days kind of fold together; there’s a prime period between 2-6 pm when the sun isn’t anywhere near setting, and sitting alone in an off-white patterned room can take on the same feeling as walking alone under dead trees in the fall, or late night subway rides in winter when the only faces you see are almost completely covered anyway. It’s almost supernatural, but it second guesses itself. This period of time can lead to totally manic stretches where I finish whole albums (and don’t remember really working on them, ala ‘seeing little ghosts‘ or ‘you get sick; you regret things‘). It can also stop me in my tracks for months. It’s unpredictable, and I like that even if I hate the weather sometimes. I’m subject to it but it’s not always a bad thing.
I guess this mix mirrors that unpredictability, but not in a discordant way. The drawing too, as i just kind of sketched out a lot of places I spend long stretches of time on solitary hot days, staring at the same part of the wall, or towards the same window. Manic energy gives way to droning, near-euphoric noise, everything undercut by that paranoid, summer-y feeling that something familiar isn’t as familiar as it looks at first glance.”
Let us know what you think about our latest edition of Car Tunes and Cartoons in the comments below, and hit us up on twitter @NerdistMusic. Keep your eyes peeled for our fourth installment soon! DJs please, pick up your phones, we’re on the request line!