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wmmberger on 11/07/2011 at 10:53PM

So What IS The True Color of Venus, Anyway? Mister Matthews on My Castle of Quiet, 10.21.2011

Wm. Berger / Tracy Widdess

Mister Matthews is one of those individuals, to be counted on one or two hands, that can truly be called My Castle of Quiet royalty. Having appeared on the show a total of four times, MM first appeared with Telecult Powers, the duo of himself and Witchbeam, the first band to ever play live on The Castle, and a project that helped to shape my notions of what the radio show itself was going to be. Later on, Telecult returned with Lala Ryan of Excepter, performing the Modern Rites of Pei, a performance that will go down in WFMU history, as they successfully conjured pledges during our 2010 marathon. (This performance was also partially filmed for an eventual documentary film on the station.) Later still, he returned with the Hex Breaker Quintet, a combination of Telecult Powers and Grasshopper, two bands that most definitely have shaped Castle history, and finally, this much-in-demand solo performance, which exemplifies the breadth of MM's work, both as High School Confidential and The True Color of Venus Revue, two very different projects from the electronic maestro; the "head" and the "hard," rendered with equivalent expertise.

Though both pieces deal in the bliss of repetition, they are radically different from one another, the High School Confidential track rooted decidedly in the universe of harsh noise, and the TCoV selection recalling the electronic works of Terry Riley, a 70s-soundtrack-meditation for safe travel of the mind and spirit (though perhaps that latter classification could be argued on behalf of either work, solely dependent on the listener's expectations and needs going in.)

Tremendous thanks to Mister Matthews for bringing it, with focus and attention. Perhaps more than many, MM is really a listener; he takes his creations by the hand and guides them where they're meant to go. Huge thanks also to Bob Bellerue, who engineered the session with his customary aplomb, and also guested as co-DJ for a portion of the evening's programming (the full, three-hour archive can be heard here.) As always, Tracy Widdess made great work of my iPhone capture of the artist, perfectly summarizing the visual accompaniment to the music as rendered. All in all, it was a rewarding broadcast—in a welcoming environment, surrounded by friends, Mister Matthews delivered another live performance for the eternal archives.

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