Call for Essays About Any Aspect of Popular Culture, Present or Past

cover art


Music for Lamping

(Audio Dregs; US: 29 Apr 2008; UK: Available as import)

Music for Lamping can’t keep from bringing Flavor Flav to mind: “I’m lampin’, I’m lampin’, I’m cold cold lampin’.” But right or wrong, I imagine that Strategy is using the word more in the sense of hanging out around lamps. I think of quiet, lonely streets lined with lamplights. The album is his attempt to take his music in a more meditative direction. “Meditative” is his choice of word, over “ambient”, and the distinction makes sense. Music for Lamping retains the steely sound of Strategy’s music, even while relaxing , stretching and “zoning out”, if you will. It’s atmospheric music, and the atmosphere is introspective, even calming in a way. But the sounds are still sharp, not as soft or static as “ambient” conjures up, at least in its stereotypical definition. Each track has a recording note like, “Recorded in the vicinity of NW 21st Avenue and Overton Street, Portland, 2005”, so maybe “lamping” describes the process of recording by street light. Maybe the atmosphere we’re hearing is indeed that quiet street, late at night, with the strange hums and crackles streetlights tend to make as they randomly turn themselves on and off.


Dave Heaton has been writing about music on a regular basis since 1993, first for unofficial college-town newspapers and DIY fanzines and now mostly on the Internet. In 2000, the same year he started writing for PopMatters, he founded the online arts magazine, still around but often in flux. He writes music reviews for the print magazine The Big Takeover. He is a music obsessive through and through. He lives in Kansas City, Missouri.

Tagged as: strategy
Related Articles
9 Aug 2007
Strategy's vision of "future rock", it seems, derives its vocals from the vocoders of Kraftwerk, its ambience from the kraut of Can, and its groove from the spaceship Funkadelic.
Now on PopMatters
PM Picks

© 1999-2015 All rights reserved.™ and PopMatters™ are trademarks
of PopMatters Media, Inc.

PopMatters is wholly independently owned and operated.