November 2, 2012

Personality Matrix vs. Goldendust

Yesterday I had a cold so I lay in bed all day and watched documentaries about the Reconstruction, the CIA and the misery of the porn industry. Today I felt better but depressed. Despite all the sunshine in Georgia I still suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder. I have for my whole life. I even suffered it when I didn't know it existed, when I was a kid and I lived in Indiana and the clouds came in late September and didn't clear until June. 

Tonight I put on Featureless Ghost's record Personality Matrix just as it was getting dark. When I was in junior high I would play records on my little record player in my bedroom. They were mostly new wave. As the sky grew dark and cold I felt warm inside and a little better than the rest of the world. Synthesizers, yes! Fuck guitars. Fuck feathered hair. I'm awesome because I'm weird. Tonight I felt those feelings again. And more: I remembered how I would remember that the holidays are around the corner and that there'd be a dance at school and my friend and I would put on our peg-leg jeans and black loafers with white socks and we might even get the DJ to play Lene Lovich, and we'd have the floor to ourselves. And I'd know that I could make it through winter with music like this.

This record is quite a bit freakier than that memory. There are moments when the speakers turn inside out and burst with sparks, and others where Matt Weiner sings like a baritone demon. I'd only heard them on cassette, and one time live in concert in a stranger's house, but on vinyl the vibrations have more ripples, and they're finer, so you can hear through the electric micro-patterns of the synthesizers to the fingertips and miles of nerves that control them. 

Night People are having a sale and if you buy Personality Matrix with the new Goldendust record you get five bucks off. 

My bummed-out 13-year-old self would've liked Goldendust, too, though he wouldn't have fully understood because acid was four years off in his future. But it wouldn't have mattered. It would've taken me far away from Elkhart and Firebirds and Foghat and Peaches and Herb, and all those clouds. It says somewhere that Goldendust are a duo from Iowa City, and I've been there in winter, so I know that they know what I go through every year when the sun dips to the south. But I would've known anyway, because these vocals are low, and though you could dance, it'd clear the dance floor.

I didn't take as good of care of my records back then as I do now, and I didn't have an Ortofon Super OM. The waves from this synth spread into every grey-sky cranny of my brain and shake all the serotonin free. 

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