In charge of the music and sound art programme at kunstencentrum STUK Leuven
Things get lost once in a while: bobby pins, sweaters, thoughts, a thing we once loved. There’s something about getting lost; it has the potential to make us sad, yet it also enables the possibility of something being found. In a world where we’re constantly overloaded with new music, it’s easy to forget the albums from the past that formed us the most. This month we’re asking STUFF./Beraadgeslagen’s drummer Lander Gyselinck to dig into his musical archives and recover an album that touched the heart but almost got forgotten over time.
By Valerie Steenhaut
Which album do you want us to discover?
I actually have two as I couldn’t decide which one to choose. The first one is called Marc Hollis (1998), created by Marc Hollis, lead singer from Talk Talk, a pop band from the eighties. He used textures of sounds to create a fragmentary, almost ambient sounding album. It was the last one he ever made and you can really tell he no longer wanted to make music that answered to the regular standards in pop music.
Another album that pops into my mind is Meant to be mint (1991) by Mint Condition, a band from Minneapolis. They make full on, wired up RnB slash hiphop music that’s kind of “wrong”, but at the same time also very honest and from the heart.
When did you discover these albums?
I used to listen to Marc Hollis almost every morning while having breakfast. I like to wake up with the same vibe on a daily basis, so I have a fixed selection of music to put on. Meant to be mint was the other way around; I saw a video by D’Angelo where Chris Dave, the first drummer of Mint Condition, was playing the drums, so I decided to check out their music, right before going to sleep. I was so ecstatic, I didn’t sleep much that night, I just smiled.
Why did you want to recover these ones?
Every song on the Marc Hollis album sucks you into a dreamy world, like you’re floating in a uterus. It isn’t the kind of sound you would immediately associate with the music I make, as mine is more forceful and whimsical. Marc Hollis is the complete opposite of that; it’s like you’re in a living room and Hollis is playing the clarinet very close to you and whispering/singing into your ear. It’s the perfect music to travel with.
Mint condition, on the other hand, is my all-time favorite band, period. It seems a little not done, but I think their typical, commercial ballads are genius. I guess I always had a soft spot for RnB because I was born in ’87, and the nineties RnB just stuck to me. Also the front man, Stokely, is one of the most talented singers out there.
For fans of?
Defining Marc Hollis’ album is tricky. If you’re a fan of the first ambient albums by Brian Eno, Le Sacre du Printemps by Stravinsky, and you’re a little into rock music and jazz, you’re going to like this one.
Meant to be Mint is like Prince but a bit more jazzy. Like jazz, the architecture of the songs is complex, elaborated and harmonious, even though it’s a completely different genre. The album also represents the cute RnB of 1991, sensitive lyrics and all, and if you compare this debut album to the music they’re currently producing, it’s cool to see how this band adapted its sound to contemporary trends.
What is your favorite song on the album?
That’s really hard to say. I never really listen to separate tracks; I prefer listening to a track in its context. I’m like a keeper of the concept of the album. I really can’t differentiate in between songs; to me they’re like a suite or a trip that forms a whole.
Beraadgeslagen plays STUK, Leuven, tonight. The show is free for members. Become one here.