Co La is a solo project from Ecstatic Sunshine’s Matthew Papich, and sees the Baltimorean engaging in luxuriant sample-based pop with a reggae twist. Papich’s sunshine jams started making waves in early 2011 after his cassette album, ‘Rest In Paradise’, was released on local Maryland label, Watercolour Records. A few more tape albums, and a great set at our unofficial CMJ party last month have implanted Co La’s infectious sound in our hearts. His new album, which you can order directly from the NNA Tapes website, drops tomorrow so start getting in the (good) mood with this spirit-raising mix.
How’s it going?
Great. Burning One for Airbrushed Hair.
Can you please tell us a bit about the mix?
It’s called “You’ve Been Expected”. I’m into the feeling of Deja Vu. It’s about creating the feel of an environment that’s recognizable and alien. Grace Jones and Yoko Ono’s voices already feel that way for me. They are Mothers of Invention. Ultimately, I think it’s the right sound for now, trying to approach the winter from above.
Please tell us a bit about your upcoming album?
The amazing heads at NNA tapes are releasing ‘Daydream Repeater’, in a couple of days actually – I’m extremely excited. This record has a wide screen sound…The sonic boundaries are more expansive. I work by listening to music, then repurposing it. Sometimes, a Co La song is a deconstruction of another song, but it’s not a crate digging thing. Now more than ever i feel like we are moving past a mindset that thinks of sampling as a semiotic thing, where the choice becomes a signifier. There is a fresh way of thinking, and it’s more open and adaptive. I feel like this record takes a few tries for most people, but it’s not difficult in the end. That’s partially what it can be about, the whole process changing what we hear. Beyond that, the tracks go deeper – some of them are full throttle – people dance at the shows. But each one to me is a very surreal artifact – some of the songs are opulent, others are sexy, some are uncanny.
What gave you the idea to pull out Kleenex tissues when you’re playing live? Gesundhouse!
The Co La live performance always involves actions that are not musical actions. It’s a gesture of solidarity with the non musical actions of the audience. I try to find actions that are empathic to the feelings of the song – pulling the Kleenex’s seems sympathetic with the song “Wanna Say Faux”. For me it’s not really about the conception of the idea, I’m more interested in what it can mean.
What’s the scene like in Baltimore right now? Do you see yourself staying there?
Many people are moving to LA. It’s a kind of exodus of the creative, brilliant minds. I think its and anti-marketplace ideology, people want to be as far away from the collapse of the baby boomer vision as possible, and I think the North East Coast is starting to feel very elderly to the young people.
What’s coming up for you over the next few months?
Trying to design a bunch of tracks for release next year – this is a good time for creating, for me. There’s plans for a split 7” with Jason Urick, and a small release with a french label Hands In The Dark. Beyond that, trying to play some shows in California…