02. Forever And A Day
03. Big City Fish
04. Apex The Curve
06. Northwest Of Paradise
07. The Passenger
“The unexamined life is not worth living” – Socrates.
Life is simultaneously the fastest and slowest thing you will ever experience in your existence. Paradoxically, it can stand still and move at warp speed. Time, a human construct, is numerical. Feeling, however, is not. In the contemporary age, the pace can almost feel frantic, picking up a velocity with such gusto that we can often shirk and fall beneath the cracks. Trapped, we never check on ourselves. Am I breathing, is my heart pumping; am I alive? The myriad of distractions often takes us away from what matters, me.
“I think therefore I am” (“Cogito, ergo sum”) – René Descartes.
That’s not to say that those around you don’t matter, of course, they do. The zeitgeist is innate within us, and through the internet age, it can sometimes feel as if doomsday is lurking its ugly head over our shoulder. That comes in all shapes and sizes. Will technology render me obsolete, will global warming destroy our planet, will a nuclear bomb eradicate us all? From time to time, it’s critical to stop and rejoice your health, friends, family, yourself. Take stock of what is happening rather than what could happen.
“Without Music, Life Would Be A Mistake” – Friedrich Nietzsche
This New Year, Jeff Mills is inviting us to look inward in the form of his Every Dog Has Its Day series. It is due for a double vinyl set (12”x 2) and digital release on January 31st on his own Axis Records. The last time we had an instalment came 17 years ago, just enough time for a periodical cicada to emerge from the ground, finished with its former life as a nymph. The series itself has acted as a barometer of the times, and Mills feels after a long lay off it’s time to rehash his Millsart persona and gauge the here and now, and where we fit in. The record itself will be the fifth chapter. It’s donned in a specific colour, taking heed from its predecessors. The first four were gold, silver, pearl, and sky blue. Now it’s time for red: the first of the series to be a primary colour, it was chosen for its connotation. Red, being very emotive, stirs different feelings in us all; lust, love, rage, power, energy, desire, passion. This music is a tool for us to see the world as is, and be able to reflect inwards to see what we are. It’s not your stereotypical electronic dance track or DJ tool. Each of the eight cuts has a story behind it and invites the listener to get lost in it and curate their opinions about it or themselves. Stripped and left in a way for true music listeners, those with unconditional love and appreciation for a master at their craft.
Mills himself has said, “You never figure out life, you just get used to it.” Reflected in this record is that sentiment, that life doesn’t present to you the answers because there are none. What is right and just for you, may not be for me, so how can I share with you any secrets. Electronic music can act as a guide, a catalyst of your headspace; it is not the map. The sixth edition of this series is soon to follow in spring dressed in brown, continuing to deliver a spiritual and emotional raft for you to see that Every Dog Has Its Day.
“Life is Really Simple, But We Insist On Making It Complicated” – Confucius.
In saying all of this, does it equate to some secret to happiness or success? As with most, yes and no: Confucius once said, “The man who says he can, and the man who says he can’t are both right.” What one can really benefit from this is peace of mind, with a clear head, you can truly appreciate what is around you. Being mindful can help to actually taste a meal, hear birds sing, smell freshly cut grass, see a setting evening sky, and feel the embrace of a loved one. You’ll never beat life, but you can make sure that it doesn’t defeat you: there isn’t a dress rehearsal after all.
Millsart’s Every Dog Has Its Day is out on Axis Records January 31st.
Distribution: NEWS / Rough Trade.
Axis Website: https://www.axisrecords.com/