4 Songs, 25 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Expanding on the opening song from Telefon Tel Aviv’s 2009 album Immolate Yourself, Joshua Eustis and Charles Cooper start off the 2012 EP The Birds with a title track that owes more to '80s synth-pop than the IDM style the duo began with. The vocals even sound like a young Dave Gahan from Depeche Mode singing skittering beats. Cocteau Twins’ six-string wizard Robin Guthrie lends his otherworldly guitar sounds to “The Sky Is Black,” which sounds a bit like a post-goth–influenced Sade cooing over subtle techno trimmings. Eustis and Cooper lend their title track to Berlin IDM producer Ellen Allien, who drops her signature soothing bass and downpitched ambient dance accoutrements. Allien’s remix also cleverly manipulates the singing to pulse along with her selected rhythms. Microhouse producer Matthew Dear also lends his King Midas touch to the tune, creating a remix that puts a bass guitar's natural resonance upfront and then loops the riff with all other rhythms working in the periphery.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Expanding on the opening song from Telefon Tel Aviv’s 2009 album Immolate Yourself, Joshua Eustis and Charles Cooper start off the 2012 EP The Birds with a title track that owes more to '80s synth-pop than the IDM style the duo began with. The vocals even sound like a young Dave Gahan from Depeche Mode singing skittering beats. Cocteau Twins’ six-string wizard Robin Guthrie lends his otherworldly guitar sounds to “The Sky Is Black,” which sounds a bit like a post-goth–influenced Sade cooing over subtle techno trimmings. Eustis and Cooper lend their title track to Berlin IDM producer Ellen Allien, who drops her signature soothing bass and downpitched ambient dance accoutrements. Allien’s remix also cleverly manipulates the singing to pulse along with her selected rhythms. Microhouse producer Matthew Dear also lends his King Midas touch to the tune, creating a remix that puts a bass guitar's natural resonance upfront and then loops the riff with all other rhythms working in the periphery.

TITLE TIME
6:38
6:38
6:57
5:27

About Telefon Tel Aviv

New Orleans, Louisiana-based experimental electronic duo Telefon Tel Aviv -- high school friends Joshua Eustis and Charles Cooper -- formed in 1999. After a four-song demo made its way to John Hughes III's Hefty label, the duo issued a set of fractured yet melodic instrumentals, Fahrenheit Fair Enough, in September 2001. This was just less than two weeks after the limited Midwest opening of New Port South, a film written by Hughes' brother James that featured material from the album, in addition to recordings by John Hughes III's TTA-assisted Slicker project, Eustis' side project Benelli, and a TTA remix of Nine Inch Nails' "Even Deeper." Map of What Is Effortless, released in January 2004, brought in productions that were both tougher and more dramatic, as well as inspired modern R&B elements. Several vocal contributions came from Lindsay Anderson and Damon Aaron. After surviving Hurricane Katrina, TTA reappeared in early 2009 with their third album, Immolate Yourself, a precisely layered set of dark, synth-driven pop released on Ellen Allien's BPitch Control label. The album's reception was colored by Cooper's accidental death, which occurred between the German and U.S. release dates. During the next several years, Eustis continued work with other artists, including Puscifer and Nine Inch Nails. He recorded alone as Sons of Magdalene, produced material by Tropic of Cancer, collaborated with Turk Dietrich as Second Woman, and formed the band the Black Queen. Eustis also continued with Telefon Tel Aviv, as heard in a remix of Lusine's "Arterial" and a co-production with Vatican Shadow titled "Rejoice," the latter a contribution to the #savefabric compilation. An expanded 15th anniversary edition of Fahrenheit Fair Enough was released by Ghostly International in 2016. ~ Kenyon Hopkin & Andy Kellman

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