The Light Brigade
“It’s supposed to be pronounced “Superb Children”. I was trying to go for multiplicity but also individuality.” – Miguel Baptista Benedict
Citing Brion Gysin as an inspiration, 25-year-old Miguel Baptista Benedict puts a spin on the Dadaist cut-up technique throughout the audio (and title) of his debut solo album. Far beyond the confines of genre, we simply label this “outsider music.”
To date, Benedict produced 25 albums between the years of 2008 and 2012. Super(b)-Child-Ran came into existence over the course of three years, a compilation of songs that Benedict and Flying Lotus picked across 6 solid albums created between ‘08-‘10. Initially reaching out to Lotus on a whim in ‘08, two of the tracks - "Oil Free Acne Wash" and "Purge" - were amongst the first batch of tracks Benedict sent.
“All of these songs are from six different albums that I’d made previously. When Flying Lotus said he wanted to release an album, he insisted that we release some of the older material. The songs on Super(b)-Child-Ran were all recorded in a cornerstone period of my life, so the mood and style of the collection is relatively consistent. Whenever I record, I finish a large body of work pretty quickly because it’s all one idea that I’m trying to do multiple times with different tracks."
Super(b)-Child-Ran is led by intuition; raw, abstract sound poetry as an expression of chaos and serenity. Entropy flows through distortion, filters, micro-cut effects and discordant melodies. A very minimal and modest studio (consisting of walkie talkies, old keyboards, guitars, loop pedals, even banging on tables) paves for his experimental and gritty sound, a sound he can truly call his own.
"I think "blink 192" might be my favorite piece. You can hear some field recordings and "digital" recordings, but it's hard to tell what's bedding what. That's why I like it. "Anxious/Upset" and "Akew"are from another album called "Magnetic Oxygen”, made in the winter of 2010. Those particular tracks were made almost exclusively with just my voice, one half of a high hat symbol and an acoustic guitar (for the percussion). After listening back to them again, I think there are a few bottles in the recordings too. They were both originally one track, and they were made when I was having a real tough time with my anxiety. "Stam'peed" and "ee-co.frendl-ee" - those two tracks are from an album called "Blud Thinner(s)". Every track title and word associated with that album was stripped down and destroyed, only existing phonetically which is what I was trying to do with the sound as well."
There are moments of peace, such as the album's opener "Phemy", a daydreamy piano-led song that gives little warning of what's to come. "Subordinate CEO" features Benedict's own vocals, with a subtle dissonance tickling the subconscious, which leads nicely into the loose, languid guitars conversing on "Purge", breeding a curious blend of carefree relaxation and high tension. As an overall body of work, Super(b)-Child-Ran is distorted, upsetting and conflicted at times, yet it remains calming and entrancing throughout.