Years later, System 7 confirms my love of Can

Today’s roundup:

  • system 7 [777]
  • tortoise [digest compendium of the tortoise’s world]
  • oasis [what’s the story morning glory]
  • styrofoam [a heart without a mind] single

A little story about System 7: back in summer of 1997, when only a handful of people knew what "mp3" meant, I ran across a song file called system 7-dizzy spoon on an old-school Hotline server. Being a Mac guy, I was intrigued by a band named after a defunct operating system. And being in the first year of college, I was susceptible to doing the typical college-age experimentation, so download it I did. I remember enjoying the song almost immediately, but because my musical world revolved mostly around rock at the time, I didn’t seek out any other material by the group and left it as a one-off in mt collection.

Then a funny thing happened three years later in summer of 2000. I discovered the most excellent german band of the 70s: Can. The last song on their 1972 album Ege Bamyasi is entitled Spoon and I think I nearly had an aneurysm of excitement the first time I heard heard it. I immediately recognized it as the same song as the Dizzy Spoon file. Rather, it was almost the same song. Dizzy Spoon turned out to be System 7’s contribution to the 1997 Can remix/tribute album Sacrilege.

Since then, Can has become one of my most respected and admired groups for its innovations and influence and I like to think that I was pre-destined to enjoy their music from the moment I downloaded that mislabeled mp3.

As for System 7, the group’s engaging ambient techno continues to entertain me, though 777 is one of their earlier efforts and is a little disappointing. "faydeaudeau" is the standout track and overall the album is decently mellow space out music, even if the composition is overly simple.

Speaking of early works, that Tortoise album is a bit difficult to handle, which is probably why I hadn’t listened to it for nearly 4 years. Digest Compendium is a collection of early singles and remixes, where the group seems more experimental, having not yet found their sound. As such, it’s uneven, and at times dull. Event though Tortoise is one of my favorite bands, I ended up removing a handful of songs from my library because I couldn’t see myself listening to them again. however, it did serve to remind me that I’ve been neglectful of the band lately. I had better rectify that soon.