Saturday, May 30, 2009

Cagey House

Cagey House

Cagey House is Baltimore's Dave Keifer. Producing primarily instrumental music, since 1999, he also experiments with sound collage, and I've recently received his five-part composition, LBJ Radio Theater. His work has been described as "synth-post-pop-punk-psyche-hypno-exotica."

He's released two albums on the netlabel Nishi, a subsidiary of Canadian MP3 label, No Type, and one on umor-rex, called Elephant Orange. Check out his myspace page for more information, or click HERE for his page at Nishi.

Inspired by visual collage artists (more than sample-based musicians), I found myself really identifying with Keifer's working technique. Read on to learn more. Without further ado, here's the SAR Q&A with Cagey House...

*Name: Cagey House

*Are there any additional names used to describe this project: Usually I release music as Cagey House--a name which doesn't really mean anything. But the LBJ Radio tracks may well become a project unto themselves.

*Members: Dave Keifer

*Tape manipulations, digital deconstructions or turntable creations: I think of the LBJ Radio tracks as pure collage—with the emphasis on collage as a technique rather than as a medium. Hanna Höch's idea of collecting and assembling elements more or less at random until a pattern emerges, and then collecting and assembling expressly to enhance that pattern has been the biggest influence on the way the tracks came together. The downside--in a musical context, anyway--is that you lose a lot in the way of narrative drive. The upside is that things can get unexpectedly moving. Or funny. Or at least interesting.

*Location: I live just outside Baltimore.

*Original Location:

*What is your creative/artistic background: I was born in 1960 and raised pretty much in the sticks. Which was great, for a lot of reasons. One of those reasons was that there wasn’t a lot of media, and so all of it had impact. The evening news was heavy stuff. And Saturday morning cartoons were positively Dionysian. Eventually I became a teenager and started playing music. Mostly electric folky stuff with lots of distortion. That went on far longer than it should have for an otherwise healthy adult. Then for a while I didn’t do anything. Around the turn of the century, I found out you could make music with a PC, and that was that. Along the way I also became entranced with lots of different kinds of music--particularly music from Indonesia and Burma, and Western Avante Garde stuff.


*Motivations: At this point, it’s mainly the joy of communing with music. The joy of creative activity. I understand people who do model trains or work crossword puzzles. It’s nice to have something you’re monkish about.

*Philosophy: Aristotle said something like, “Art loves Chance and Chance loves Art.” I’m willing to let it go at that.

*How would you like to be remembered: I don’t think there’s much danger of that. I release stuff through netlabels, and that scene is hyper-transient. Very much here today and gone tomorrow—with as many things disappearing as appearing. And I like that. It’s like rolling out a carpet at one end while rolling it up at the other. There’s something hermetic about it, and there’s comfort in that.

*Web address: I'm sort of web-homeless right now. A web vagrant. I do have a myspace page though, and that has links to various Cagey House projects:

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