Connan Mockasin has returned to the radars and spotlights, slipping deep into a 70s analogue haze and whirl with, “I'm The Man, That Will Find You”. Following up Forever Dolphin Love from 2011, the New Zealander advances his vintage stewed saga that continues in the upcoming album Caramel slated for November 5 from Mexican Summer. This is all the adult jazz stuff the prog and disco geeks thrived on, borrowing and sampling from a jazz scene that had turned into factory outlets pumping out smooth come-down soundtracks to soften creative binges of excess. These are the latest forward developments from the compressed collections of wax that bring about nostalgic response triggers between the tinny muffler exhausts from old dashboard car radios lost in the stacked rust of pick and pulls and discarded auto lots.
The squeaky croon is blanked by polyester savoir fare, uncontrolled desire and a smoked soundscore ripped from B-movie gold. A track you can get lost in, mistaking it at first another lo-fi revisionist throwback to rewrite your classic dollar bin LP purchases. But as soon as Mr. Mockasin's caramel slickness buries expectation into the time melting channels, he pulls off a masterful false end to make one helluva slick comeback in one song's time while keeping the strange charm in full effect. Catch him at Brooklyn's Pioneer Works for Mexican Summer's 5 year Anniversary, and stick around for our brief conversation following the track.
Passing cables and notes across the channels of water, we were able to catch up with Connan Mockasin to get the inside track on Caramel.
So from what we have heard about the narrative behind Caramel, the dolphin from the previous album Forever Dolphin Love leaves the boss man behind, and sadness abounds. Is the man in search for the dolphin, as presented in the track “I'm the Man, That Will Find You”?
No, I think the dolphin is long gone by then. He's in search of human this time.
What attracts you to the subject of dolphins? Is it like a save the dolphins thing or is there perhaps a deeper kind of kin-like connection to them?
Ehh, I don't really know. it was just a lyric that was in my head at the time. Of course I do love dolphins and people shouldn't kill them and the same goes for all mammals.
This outing on Caramel finds you doing that psyched 70s singer songwriter croon thing. What 70s LPs have you found to be essential listening for you lately?
Nothing of late. My parent's had some records from the 70s that they used to play when i was young. I made the album around the title Caramel because I liked the name. And I made it how I thought a record called Caramel would sound like.
What is the story behind the titling of the new album Caramel? A fixation on a kind of viscous candy crave as vehicle for a full-length title type of thing?
No, it was just simply that I liked the sound of the name as a record and wanted to make caramel sounding music.
How do you go about constructing both your album and song narratives?
It's just ideas that come to my head sometimes. It's not just songs in an order but more like a whole song that is 40 minutes long.
Plans for Fall/Winter and the coming of 2014?
Playing the two albums live to as many people who want to hear.
Caramel will be available November 5 from Mexican Summer.