#ghostly15 Berlin @ Panorama Bar
TBT when Todd Osborn(e) serenaded you - regram @weansmachine
Unannounced Spectral Sound single coming soon + new Audion 12” on the mighty Kompakt
The urgent live set of Xeno and Oaklander hits Europe.
Tycho on tour.
Take two and call us in the AM. New tee by Hassan Rahim at The Ghostly Store.
Hassan Rahim is one of those rare, enviable talents who can work his own style into seemingly any format, and has been doing just that for years. A 27-year-old, self-taught artist/designer from Los Angeles, Rahim’s stark images and objects have appeared on magazine covers, gallery walls, record sleeves, t-shirts, concert stages, hats, street corners, and, of course, all over the Internet. The Shabazz Projects publishing platform shines a light on his deft curatorial skills, releasing books and more from emerging contemporary artists.
Ghostly couldn’t help but get involved with such an unstoppable and distinctive creative force; to start off, we tapped Rahim for a contribution to our line of tees (now available). The artist has also given us a fantastic flier design for the next Ghostly15 event, held at legendary Berlin club Berghain, which follows the work of Andy Gilmore and Robert Beatty for our Detroit and London events, respectively. Suffice it to say that we’re immersing ourselves into the world of Hassan Rahim, so what better way to dig deeper than to ask the man a few questions about his life and art.
Tell us a bit about your background as an artist and designer.
I downloaded Photoshop when I was 16 to make some skateboard shirts, and graphic design just fell into my lap. Didn’t go to school, didn’t really experience the “post-high school career decision” moment. It was either this or photography that I was really interested in at the time, but cameras are expensive. Fast forward to now, and I have obviously evolved from skateboard shirts. But it all started in the same place.
You use a lot of degraded imagery, pop culture references, and stark contrast in your work. Where do these visual and conceptual interests come from?
I’m interested in reproduction, and the degraded imagery is a consequence of that. I do a lot of collage, a process which I like to compare to music production; sampling stems from other songs to make a new song. Mastering aside, the final product will almost certainly have a degraded quality.
How does designing for someone like Jay-Z compare to, say, designing for Delroy Edwards’ L.A. Club Resource label?
Pretty similar in a lot of ways, actually. Both projects happened to have a theme that made sense for me to work on. The Jay project was through Willo Perron, a rather low-key guy who has done great stuff in the music world, so he has the leverage to get very creative with big artists. Delroy is a natural. His ideas are always perfect, and I just jump on board to help whenever it makes sense.
What was the inspiration for your Ghostly t-shirt?
The inspiration was a 24-hour stint at Berghain last year, eight of them being a Par Grindvik set that I’d have to say was the best live DJ set I’ve heard. It’s a magical place.
We are over 75% towards helping The Sight Below rebuild his studio on indiegogo. Check our site for details and get rewards like this 1/100 Michael Cina print.
Following our Michael Cina and SMM playlists, the third iteration of the Ghostly 15 mix series is a look into the deep Spectral Sound catalog, which comes courtesy of DJ/producer Derek Plaslaiko (who recently completed a grueling 12-hour Boiler Room set out of his home in Berlin). The curator was also kind enough to write a bit about the emergence of Spectral Sound and how some of his selections for this playlist were made. Plaslaiko’s letter can be read below, where the Ghostly 15: Spectral Sound mix is available to stream.
I met Sam Valenti IV in the later years of the ’90s, just after he started Ghostly International. I connected almost instantly with Ghostly due to the music, but also because of the aesthetic. Sam and I had more than a couple conversations about labels like Factory and 4AD, and how the art was just as important as the music it accompanied. As Ghostly grew, I think Sam realized that the more dancefloor-oriented music should almost have its own place—enter Spectral Sound.
Spectral Sound often gets confused as Ghostly. For instance, I am considered a Spectral Sound DJ, yet there are plenty of times that promoters end up simply putting Ghostly International next to my name. This doesn’t offend me or anything, but the labels are quite different. And equally as important, in my eyes. Spectral helped pave the way for what would end up being the “minimal” sound embraced first in Berlin, and then the rest of the world. However, I wouldn’t pin Spectral down as a “minimal” label. I think that Spectral (as well as Ghostly) is a great example of a dance-oriented label putting out music they like, regardless of what genre it falls under. House, acid, deep house, tech-house, hard techno, deep techno, minimal techno… You can find all of this and a lot more within Spectral’s vast catalog.
Now I’m picking 15 of my favorite Spectral Sound tracks, and I gotta say, this list is a really hard one to make! How do I choose only 15 cuts from this incredible catalog? And how many of them would be tracks produced by Matthew Dear, Tadd Mullinix, and Todd Osborne? Picking 15 favorites from just those three artists alone would be a difficult challenge, so I limited my selections to one for each of their projects. There are also many of my favorite cuts from the Spectral Sound Vol 2 compilation I mixed in 2008 on this list, but I just couldn’t help myself. I still play those tracks to this day.
Paslaiko’s Ghostly 15: Spectral Sound can also be downloaded in high-quality MP3 and lossless formats via Drip.fm.
Matthew Shlian interprets Ghostly in paper as part of The Ghostly Mark Series celebrating #Ghostly15. See alternate color at @GhostlyStore