Daily Roulette #74

by Digital Natives

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cover art by Soe So

Review by Boston Hassle:

Gainsville, Florida native Jeffry Astin is adept at summoning ethereal ambient soundscapes under the moniker Xiphiidae and as one half of Tricorn & Queue, building stunning meditative zoned drones with sparkling shrowds of guitar loop delay. However, he recently turned his powers away from aspriations to the astral plane and towards a more grounded, beat-based sound. As DIGITAL NATIVES, Astin pulls out loop after loop from a deep bag of samples culled from the far reaches of funk, soul, jazz, pop and beyond. He then proceeds to treat them with massive doses of warped pitch, delay and distortion in order to strip them of extraneous affects. What come out are endless layers of lysergic-soaked grooves, sounding like a lost soundtrack to a bizarro 70′s exploitation flick. Bass lines limp languidly through clipped percussion and scratchy melodies that seem to whift through tropical jungles of sun-bleach psychedelia. The magic of Digital Native’s endless boogie lies in the process – the ‘songs’ arn’t meant to be heard separately, but as one seamless hour-long headtrip sounding so easy and flowing as to come off as a casually improvised DJ set instead of the intricately composed production it is. Cushioned by copious amounts of vinyl rips and fuzzy noise, Digital Natives leave you with a warm afterglow, as if you’d just heard a forgotten radio transmission extracted from the cosmic pop-culture ether, an homage to our imagined collective innocence, chopped and screwed to fit our warped contemporary consciousness.

Astin has released several tapes at Digital Natives on top quality experimental labels such as Space Slave Editions, Rotifer and Hooker Vision, as well as his own delectably curated Housecraft Records. Most of his tapes are in very short runs, so grab ‘em while they’re fresh. And apparently the dude just has moved to California, so if you dig his vibe why don’t you throw him a few bones so he can keep doing his melted tape loop thing.


Review by Portals Music:

I first encountered Jeffry Astin, the man behind Digital Natives, through his ambient Xiphiidae project and the much lauded label Housecraft he runs. Terms like “ethereal” are used quite loosely these days, but Xiphiidae and the works featured on Housecraft are nothing short of transcendental. In their own words, Housecraft stresses that the label is, “dedicated to providing listeners with the best psychedelic and experimental music from around the globe.”

That being said, Digital Natives is a bit of a sonic detour for Astin. Instead of ever oscillating textural loops or immersive field recordings, Digital Natives‘ aural pallet calls upon warped funk samples, resulting in a third eye headspace that sounds somewhere between a groovier Eric Copeland and your favorite Daft Punk sample slowed down %1000.

Astin is currently using Digital Natives to explore a project he’s calling ‘Daily Roulette’. Every 24 to 48 hours a new track is uploaded to their Bandcamp to replace the beatscape before it. So check back often, and if I can give you one shred of advice, it’s buy Housecraft tapes! They’re made in extremely short runs that are destined to fade into the ether.


released December 4, 2013



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