RATIONAL EXUBERANCE

Dedicated to the pursuit of the outcast, the anti-art and the cautiously optimistic

By David Cotner 08/09/2007

Every so often, just when one thinks one has completely exhausted a search for 5-foot-10-inch bisexual Native Americans in the greater metropolitan Ventura area, connections are made and switches are flipped and suddenly, like the most encouraging of all possible cultural wormholes, one finds oneself someplace entirely Other. Someplace, surprisingly, that also turns out to be vastly more worthwhile than expected. Hence the MySpace of Mostly, the Ventura duo of Nate Cox and Roxy Valentine, deftly making electronica and body-beats that come down slow, moving the heretofore unheralded faithful like a pleasant punch in the stomach. If you have never heard of them either, join the club – and by that I mean the Good Sam Club, the oldest, largest and best travel club for RVers (goodsamclub.com). Some questions for the pleasant pop pachyderm in the room, answered by Ms. Valentine.

RE: Tell me about the genesis of Mostly, where it’s going next and why Ventura now.

Valentine: The concept of Mostly was Nate’s acid baby in art school, if you want to know the truth. It began as a student project in Pittsburgh and solidified when we met in Ventura in 1999 and married similar writing styles and production ideas to conceive 2001’s incredibly low-budget, self-released Transmissions From Afar. Transmissions led to Dancefloor Macabre, and hopefully Dancefloor leads to rock stardom. Why Ventura now? Because we prefer it to its alternative: Los Angeles.

Is there a community of like-minded individuals in which you fit in Ventura County?

Absolutely. There is a consistent underground electronic scene here in Ventura. Throughout the years we’ve grown and evolved right alongside many gifted DJs and producers. Pat Harper, Eric G., Down N’ Going, and Kevin C. are a few of the talented folks we’ve shared the stage with here in Ventura County.

Is IDM [intelligent dance music] dead?

IDM is certainly not dead. Richard D. James, the Orb, Rabbit in the Moon and Orbital are arguably doing better than ever. I’d even go so far to say that popular culture may make its next turn in that direction, having beaten everything else pliable to a dead and bloody pulp. If anything, the artists who represent the scene have carved out unerodable niches for themselves and are still vastly influencing modern pop culture today – Justin Timberlake, Kylie Minogue and Madonna being good examples. Their effect is also prevalent in a plethora of electronic newcomers, Royksopp and Goldfrapp being a few of our favorites.

After extended exposure to your own songs, to what degree do they still move you?

Certainly during the construction and recording process, there are moments when you’ve got to put it down or risk endangering the sentiment. And the production of an album takes quite a bit of time when you’re self-financed, which truly does lead to “extended exposure to your own songs,” even before anyone else has heard them. But they’re still our babies, and I’d be lying if I said that we don’t still rock out to them, and that performing them doesn’t blow our minds every time.

Mostly present “Tinsel: The Silver Party,” a multi-media performance (lighting, visuals, hoop- and Maori poi-dancers, food and full bar) on Dec. 15 in McBride Hall at the Ventura Fairgrounds. 10 Harbor Blvd., Ventura, 648 3376. Tickets are $10 and are available at Wild Planet. For more information, visit www.myspace.com/mostlymusic.

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