28 Mar 2014 — Noah Klein
“Can you see it’s bloom?” It’s a mindful foundation for Orchid Tapes’ Boring Ecstasy compilation to begin with a question, one oh so relevant to both the Springtime currently taking root and the nature of its internalized conversation. Over the last four years, beyond nurturing a family of musicians to bring the world a stream of life affirming sounds, label organizers Warren Hildebrand and Brian Vu have developed a universe in which the personalities of their contributors and appreciators can exist within. Less business more friendship, Orchid Tapes has created a social economy of genuine interaction and a love for alternative forms of communication. To ask of the label is to ask of ourselves, and that’s a startlingly beautiful relationship absent in much of today’s music landscape.
My feelings, my gratitude, and the only way that I can begin to articulate the world that is Orchid Tapes is to close my eyes and replay a scene from the film Adaptation. Chris Cooper, taking a knee and staring into the eye of an orchid, delivers this gem:
What’s so wonderful is that every one of these flowers has a specific relationship with the insect that pollinates it. There’s a certain orchid that looks exactly like a certain insect, so the insect is drawn to this flower, its double, its soulmate.
To consider this as a reflection of the symbiotic relationship between performer and listener is to illustrate the image of beauty that unites each and every Orchid tape. Beginning with Warren’s own Swung From the Branches [OCT001] and present throughout the entire Orchid catalogue, there is a total sincerity that extends itself as a loving embrace. For every R.L. Kelly, Ricky Eat Acid or Happy Trendy release there is a diasporic community of bodies and feelings waiting to share a life. For every Home Alone or Arrange track to surface online there are a handful of hobbyist songwriters inspired to share their own homespun recordings. Alone, any of these tape deck treasures could have slipped into the uniform depths of Bandcamp but through the loving vehicle that Orchid Tapes has always been and ever grows into we Orchidians bear our tapes, teas, and handwritten thank you notes as badges in support of an honest and independent music distribution process. There is no mystification in a transparent partnership, and in 2014 that’s exactly what we need.
From start to finish Boring Ecstasy is a time capsule, a collection of thoughts and constructive ruminations on moments of being from a group of friends scattered throughout the globe. Their gorgeous contributions coupled with Orchid Tapes’ endearing organization makes for a stunning album, and now it’s up to us to give this the meaning that it deserves. Pre-order the 12” of Boring Ecstasy: The Bedroom Pop of Orchid Tapes here or download the collection for the low, low price of a suggested donation. For New Yorkers, tomorrow, March 29, Orchid Tapes will host their fourth showcase with a handful of the musicians that appear on the record. Your presence is recommended.
Read more →