This is more than a message. To quote Aleister’s mongoose,

“I do not exist. We come from smokeclouds, the black rain of the cloudburst. I know you wanna fly, but you’re no Poppins. She’s 100% above average, a God with an upper case ‘G’. You’re a god with a lower case ‘g’ at best: the ghost of a phone, a commoner in Rashomon, a loyal locust in the ranks of the resistance.

Consider the price we have to pay in order to breathe the rarified air of social mediafflluence. We do our best to navigate these daze days, hindered as we are by invisible ties, and there is a sense in which everything is fine. Ultimately though, it may not be possible to reconcile our desire to broadcast our private pleasures with the drudgery we are due: an appointment for a root canal, drinks with Johanna from the office, yada yada yada.

Think it over. Overthinking has a bad name, but it may be the only way to rest in peace. You can plumb the rabbit hole of art imitating life imitating art imitating life to your heart’s content. I don’t know what you’ll find. I used to make predictions like that - right now, i mostly just don’t. Let’s meet in another lifetime and figure out whose formula won.”

-Vikram Devasthali, February 18th, 2019

The name of this album is Dōjin Ongaku, which translates to something along the lines of “fan-fiction music”. The artist name is Waiatto Koisuku, which is how my Japanophone friend Justin suggested my name might be rendered in Japanese. I chose these album/artist names as a way to address the...odd...nature of sampling, and to attempt to cast myself as someone paying tribute to influences rather than shamelessly raiding the tombs of a forgotten musical past.

I assembled the primary instrumental tracks on my laptop, while sitting on the couch at my dad's house in Germany. After a few months of rumination, I sent those tracks to my friends, MCVD, Crim & Justin Fab, who each wrote their respective lyrics / vocal parts with no outside input or awareness of what the others were up to. The Right Honourable Dr. Richard Persimmons was contracted to engineer the recording of MCVD's and Justin Fab's vocals, along with the instrumental contributions of Brian Griffith (electric bass), James Lake (analog synth), Ethan Braun (piano), Kayla Moffett (violin), Adam Ratner (electric guitar) and Vikram Devasthali (trombone) - Dr. Persimmons also added his own patented Geetar Magick™ to a few choice cuts. Crim recorded and engineered his own vocals, much to my relief, as mixing the rest of the album had given me enough to do already. After everyone else's parts were recorded, and the files were loaded back onto my laptop, I played some electric bass on a few tracks, and wrote my first lyrics since 2006 for the album's closer, Aleister's Mongoose. I recorded the vocal for that track on the floor of my spare room, hunched under a blanket with a sock over the mic on my phone, despite the fact that I have a degree in "Music Technology" from a "respected art school", and really should know better.

The interludes come from that testament to mankind's pride we call "The Internet". If the listener is inclined towards Qabalistic thought, then these interstitial tidbits are absolutely, 100% connected to the musical / lyrical content and can be seen as providing commentary / reinforcement / expansion on the lyrical themes. If, on the other hand, the listener prefers to stay inside the boundaries of vanilla consciousness, then it's probably best to treat these elements as little bits of silliness, since we wouldn’t want to open our minds too wide, now would we. However, it would be irresponsible not to point out that, etymologically, "silly" comes from the German word "selig", meaning "blessed". The More You Know.

The 32 distinct cover images were meticulously composed by the venerable David Paha, and animated into GIF format for display here (though Bandcamp doesn’t support animated album covers - philistines). All glory unto Dave.

The complete lyrics and transcribed interludes, in PDF form, can be found here.