“Towning demonstrates a knack for unconventional looping, sonic accumulation, and a good joke.” – All Music Guide
Following up previous releases for the Illegal Art (Girl Talk) and Seeland Records (Negativland) labels among others, Brooklyn-based electronic music collage artist James Towningreleased his latest album as Realistic on February 29th.
The latest single from the album is its lead-off track “Math Is Hard” now available for streaming and download. Towning describes the song, saying, “The track’s core music box melody is derived from a 1991 Fact TwentyTwo song named ‘Collapse’. Excerpts from Dean Martin’s ‘That’s Amore’ and beats from XTC’s ‘Making Plans For Nigel’ carry the track along.”
Other tracks sampled on “Math Is Hard” include Sonny James’ “Young Love” and “Crimson and Clover” by Tommy James & the Shondells.
Realistic’s Drowned In Meaning (the album title is intentionally sarcastic) features 16 tracks comprised of hundreds of samples -- some obvious, some obviously obscure -- stitched and layered with Towning’s own synthesizers, drum machines, digital effects, and keen sense of humor.
The album’s previous single “Token Gestures” featured the Hall & Oates hit “Kiss On My List”, vintage tape of the Mars rover lift off sequence, and the sound of a fireworks display that Towning recorded in Brooklyn Heights.
The video for the song is now streaming. Towning says that the clip “is an exploration of multi-layered compositing techniques similar to how the music is created. Snippets of video fromDavid Bowie, The Mighty Boosh, and ‘The Big Blue Marble’ are synchronized with the original samples and combined with stock footage of people pretending to feel emotion.”
Drowned In Meaning
(Blackmail Electronics – Out Now)
Request: FULL LP
01. Math Is Hard
02. Cuddle Party Headrush
03. Notes to Self
04. Token Gestures
05. Drama Distortion
06. Dot Pattern
07. Glitter and Glue
08. Moment of Realisation
09. One Hundred Years
10. Woozy Familiarity
11. Pointless Creative Endeavor
12. The Sea of Showers
13. Good Luck With All That
14. Mining for Content
15. Pursuit of Happiness
16. Late Nights and Weekends