Golden Living Room






What Cometh After Thy Internet? 

What a pressing question to start the review with, and what a coincidence that I can give the obvious answer in the shape of a limited run of tapes released on Benjamin Krarup’s Denmark-based electronic delicatessen label Phinery Tapes: one possible delineation is provided by Golden Living Room whose 17-track peritoneum POST-INTERNET screams its inclinations and implications out into the world by means of capitalized letters. Available to purchase and stream at Phinery’s Bandcamp page, the title reminds me suspiciously of DIYPYЯΛMID’s Post Photoshop (self-released, 2013), and what an encore of a coincidence, since the man behind that moniker, Michael Green, provided the artwork for Golden Living Room’s release. The artist leaves the comfortable abode of Welcome Home (Dream Catalogue, 2014) behind in order to take a journey into the virtual tropes of anthemic segregation, centrifugal separation and chromogenic reunification. Nature and technology form a bond by remaining apart, and hands up if you haven’t heard of that concept before. Golden Living Room makes these contrapuntal devices work through his eminently warmhearted approach though! The listening subject is beloved in every track, never ostracized. Dystopia isn’t superimposed, it only ever creeps in cautiously, if at all. In a way, Post-Internet is the continuation of Welcome Home’s cozy snugness, but by all means, don’t perceive this sentence as the famous last words, for they obviously aren’t. Three stylistic and conceptional markers of Post-Internet are carved out in this holistic review in order to approximate the aesthetic truth as close as possible.


Verglas Flora exuded  ·  Virtual Fauna exposed

Life after internet involves nature, the first world brought to man. There is a comparatively large amount of pulsatile nomological tunes on both sides of the tape: field recordings of glades, birdcalls, groves; nature oozes through every digital crack. What a seemingly strange coincidence that the opener – called Tech after all – greets the listening subject with the reverberated biocentrism of our feathered friends while pitch-shifted OS X boot up sounds float over a midtempo Hip-Hop micrometry. Akin to the bosky Windows-centric sporophytes of STΛQQ ƟVERFLƟ’s SΛCRED GRƟVE ƟNLINE (Ailanthus Recordings, 2015), Golden Living Room has the erudite tech/nature wanderer covered. The adjacent First Contact, a collaboration with OSCOB, picks up the plummeted pieces of both Tech and OVERGROWTH (Dream Catalogue, 2015) by placing demotic rotoscoping Angkor Wat halides in front of a bird-infested proscenium. Interestingly enough, both artists bring up a painful subject for the utterly focused clientele of Vaporwave: it’s an Ambient track! The finale Android Online shall be mentioned in this paragraph as well. Produced by 회사AUTO, the electronic eremite ventures into marimba-underlined paraphyletic planetesimals fueled by birds of paradise, synth sporophytes and whitewashed paraquat cymbals. The first half mirrors 회사AUTO’s punctilio pericarps of ANDROID (Dream Catalogue yet again, 2015), the second half prefers a retinue of plateaued glissando globs. 


Crystalline Cristae, Coruscating Centrioles

Post-Internet is a glistening world, if you wanna call it a world, for it is more of an attitude towards life than a mere wherewithal for the purpose of sounding scholarly. Golden Living Room’s aural phytotelemata are stupefyingly translucent and diaphanous though, and once the joy about the amniotic ornithology settles, one notices the adaxial aureoles, milquetoast muons and tantamount timbres of the bells and whistles. The separated double feature Midi Jungle and its reprise Midi Wind are prime examples of this observation: nature is re(pro?)duced here in favor of a cathexis on pectiniform crystal layers, softly sweeping saprotrophs and pitch-shifted surfactants. Despite the track titles, Golden Living Room erects caves of immediacy, with the only organic matter being the omnipresent magnetotails of rose quartz, cerulean topaz and chromium-rich emeralds. Relatedly, The Seeker Of Water augments its recondite nullspace with orographic glockenspiel protrusions, enigmatic orchestra bells and cloak-and-dagger will o’ the wisps whose tawny afterglows create a scintillating path. That path magnanimously opens up in the second half which then features much more synth layers and an increasingly euphonious serration of its salubrious constituents. Then there’s Lodollite Dreams (For The Princess), an aeriform air cell large enough to outgrow a palace: a bokeh of telomeres, baroclinic wind gusts and chirping finches provide the angular viewpoint onto a rhenium-alloyed sensorial sanctuary. The synths even remain in the background, everything seems fuzzy, remote and cautiously volatile. But the prolonged coruscation shimmers through ad infinitum.


Bucolic Rurality versus Bated Reality 

Golden Living Room has a knack for 16-bit RPG gemstones, and traits have been sewn into his works quite often, if not directly taken from the games, then via the mere sentiment of their lilting memorabilia. At the same time, the artist tries to connect these – typically Japanese – vesicles with a more rustic, countrified bonfire momentum, a stylistic approach that is dangerously de trop in synth-focused, willfully artificial works. But no worries, Post-Internet has you covered, and more so than just once. The particular (or peculiar) song that has to appear in this here section is of course Interdimensional Chocobo, and you, sir or madam, need a heart of stone if you cannot embrace the syringa/square lead dualism of this pastoral trough dedicated to the best known bird of all. Throw the youth into the forest, they don’t know shit, but park them in front of a video game console and they can tell you the stats of each chocobo, a useful skill during races and gambling. But seriously: Interdimensional Chocobo is as close to a homage as the artist ever got, with the famous theme presented ”as is,” realized by means of soothing thermal immersions and a sunset-colored acoustic guitar. It is these acoustics that appear few and far between on the tape, and they contradict as well as bate the perception of reality further, even though these instruments are decidedly bound to earth and classical boy scout devices: while Branches Of Leaves situates a celestial lute in a cave drenched with cytoplasm, fluid-processed clicks and multinucleate macronutrients, Malon Goes To Heaven installs a bucolic superstructure by means of the aforementioned chimescape vitalism. Now without a stringed instrument, it is the task of the ligneous xylophones, aureate bells, frilly flutes and synth strings to create a sub cellular ode to the tropopause. Even when Golden Living Room lifts off, he remains on the ground.


The World Is Your Living Room

Generation X was lucky: ”the world’s your oyster” their parents said, movies like Stand By Me encapsulated the sense of adventure, friendship and danger and neglected the coming of age script that is so closely attached otherwise. Nowadays, the famous picture of the development of the human race from a filthy ape over an australopithecine interim physiognomy to a screen-loving sit-all-the-timer has been literally quoted to death. Post that picture on Reddit and you’re banned for life, even pink cupcakes are much more beloved. You see where this is going: the world is your living room now, and it is both emitted by the artist’s name and the album title. Post-Internet tries to build up a homeostasis, a well-balanced titration between interdependent and certainly incompatible elements, three of which I have listed in the paragraphs above: what I have tentatively called the verglas fauna is a first step away from nature, and it is here where dystopian media put their greatest emphasis on. Golden Living Room embraces this echopraxia, however, and takes the sonic bird-laden paths of The Orb and engrains nature by these mains; only the screaming rooster is amiss. In a second step, Post-Internet boosts the metallicity, the rare earths it needs to keep itself both sustained and entertained, and while they are most certainly of organic nature, they don’t talk and breathe… but they allow humans to connect and live. Finally, as an adjuvant or act of consolation, analog equipment and classic instruments such as guitars try to caulk the tech-heavy vibe. Pessimistic observers might note that these artificial worlds will silence mankind while the noise level around it is greater than ever. Optimists will absorb the delight of Golden Living Room’s vision, the possibilities that outgrow mesozoic peregrination by a wide margin. The world is your living room. Welcome home indeed.


Further listening and reading:


Ambient Review 457: Golden Living Room – Post-Internet (2015). Originally published on Oct. 28, 2015 at