The digital frontier has peeled away layers of human ingenuity and individuality. The data points define what becomes served to our consuming pleasure, drawing us towards singularity and conformity. We even have AI technologies that can create entire songs served to us via the algorithm. We are coming closer and closer to a world predicted by The Matrix and The Terminator, and the contemplations found in the musical works of such acts as Radiohead and Arcade Fire. But there is still light unbounded by data, those who won’t acquiesce to the machine. Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs is here to remind us that inventive creation is still alive on his release of the highly imaginative EP, “I Can Hear The Birds”.
TEED first broke through with the release of “Garden” on Hot Chip’s Joe Goddard’s label, Greco Roman. The success of “Garden” brought a flurry of incendiary works that included his remixes for Disclosure’s “F For You” and Foals’ “My Number”, and compositions for BANKS’ “Warm Water” and “Bedroom Wall”. He also released his Trouble LP on Universal’s Polydor to critical success. His quick accession was a testament to his prodigious talent and unwavering sonic inventiveness. After only three and change years, TEED went on a hiatus of sorts, conjuring memories of LCD Soundsystem and Talking Heads who also left at the pinnacle of their careers.
It wasn’t until 2018 where we received word that he was still constructing some of the most enticing electronic music around with his remix of Low Island and the subsequent singles that followed. Again, the brilliant producer went away, but returned quicker where he reappeared on “Radical”, the collaboration with Amtrac, which is one of my favorite tracks of the year. It’s a brilliant record that contains poignant energy that stirs the senses like a kiss from the sun after a frigid and snowy winter. Shortly after, TEED dropped two of the coolest remixes of the year for Australian and electronic-darlings Lastlings. A reminder that anything he touches turns to electronic gold.
That brings us to today and the release of the four-track EP, “I Can Hear The Birds”. The idea for the EP was born out of sheer imagination. Early in the lockdown from COVID-19, TEED received a recording of birds from a friend on the Canary Islands, which stirred the gears of his mind. Without hesitation, he used the recording and created a sonic greeting card that he sent to friends to help ease the anxiety and stress that burdened them during the pandemic. This led him down a rabbit hole of sorts that across the globe many of us are hearing louder songs radiate from our local birds. It was the notion of louder birdsongs, that led to the collection of multiple field recordings from across the globe that he then spun and sent back to the collector. However, if it weren’t for a bit of luck and the pure cleverness of a 7-year-old, we may not have received the project. To best understand what unfolded TEED said this:
Whether it was a sign from God or a coincidence, TEED finished and released four tracks unbounded by data or contained in a genre sphere. The EP unveils beautiful pieces of music built on bird sounds from around the globe interwoven with breathtaking piano keys, ethereal synths, and inventful sound design. The tracks are titled from where the bird recordings came from with each sound design having a precise and fitting style to those locations. Take for example “Los Angeles”, it has a synthy-er waviness that feels like the perfect soundtrack to traverse the Downtown skyscrapers and the winding hills of Laurel Canyon or Hollywood.
Behind the sonic sculptures, TEED brings forward profound ideation of human connection and the planet’s regeneration. At a time of great turbulence, these explorations serve as a reminder that music helps to create a world of escapism or explore the connection to something beyond the self for the listener. Something that the machines can’t express.
To experience “I Can Hear The Birds”, follow the link here or click play below.