VHS Vision

by Cosmic Sound

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about

"Originally self-released midway in 2010, VHS Vision was the one and only release from Texas producer Stephen Farris under his Cosmic Sound moniker, which he used briefly between solo releases. It hung around long enough to raise a few eyebrows, get some good "I never saw this coming" press, and even a nod from Com Truise before Farris began focusing on his work under his own name. At the time, reviewers loved his circuit bent keyboards and the treasure trove of samples from VHS that he scattered throughout the album, but those characteristics have since become clearly typical of his larger output, so perhaps the name stopped making sense or the short tracks felt too tentative for Farris to want to justify the conceptual ground he would cover later. Nevertheless, it is an early and certainly one of the best statements of Farris' experimental audio aesthetic and incomparably clever, always catchy synth-play." -Dwight Pavlovic

"...super ill synth work, melted vibes and like the EP says, it's a VHS Vision." -Com Truise

"For the work of a career circuit-bender, VHS Vision opens surprisingly, ushered in by birds and acoustic guitar, before swan-diving into a nice mix of driving electronics and touching lyricism, with the two sides blended most affectingly on 'Little Flower.' My favorite sound is on 'Bear Auras', though, where bright synths fall like shooting stars and glitter bombs around a wild monologue about Jesus and electricity." -Duncan Cooper, The FADER

"It’s crazy to think that this tape from Stephan Farris‘ Cosmic Vision alias is just about two years old now, but leave it to the aces over at Crash Symbols to unearth a gem of this quality and tenderly repackage it for the world. There’s just something to VHS Vision—it reminds us of what chillwave first was when it hit our ears: sweet, stoney, personal, and delightfully unexpected. Somehow Farris finds a way to be soulful, playful, dreamy, and a bit cheesy all in the same breadth and it makes each track here immensely enjoyable from beginning to end." -Glenn Jackson, Mapzzz

"Crash Symbols have been on an interesting tangent lately: full-on 90s-style beat-making, digital Dreamcast thumping, padded house music, more synth squabbling, a wild mashup of low and high fidelity. Actually, I’m just describing Cosmic Sound’s VHS Vision, the somewhat schizo-project of producer Stephen Ferris (which was actually released in 2010, but is now finding a proper new home). Like I said, the mix of more vintage sounds with a digital sheen creates an interesting effect, kind of like when movies put a quiet sad song over a huge action scene — you know what I’m talking about. Maybe that technique can only be used so much before it becomes a total cliché, but the musical equivalent is still working wonders. As a result, a lot of VHS Vision feels like a sound collage, even though it might not be. I’m into not knowing." -Keith Rankin, Tiny Mix Tapes

"Cosmic Sound burst into the Columbus New Music Examiner's ears like a botched attempt at a watermelon off the high dive, but in a good way." -Columbus Examiner

"This ambient project of ‘lost vhs tapes, forgotten sounds and lucid dreams’ has a beautiful, cascading dream-like quality." -Friends With Both Arms

"'The Most Interesting Man In The World' from those XX commercials could only dream of being as cool as this dude." -Digital Hygiene

"Yet another awesome release from our friends at Crash Symbols." -Turntable Kitchen

"It may seem odd to call music released just two years ago 'ahead of its time', but that really is how Austin producer Stephen Farris' Cosmic Sound project comes across in 2012 . . . Perhaps the best analog for Cosmic Sound is someone like DāM-FunK, whose head-bobbing eclecticism comes from a similar vein, or Com Truise, who uses analog synths with a similar humor and zeal. While it may not have gotten the credit it was due at the time, VHS Vision more than deserves a second shot. Don’t miss out this time around." -Nathan Reese, International Tapes

"The duration of VHS Vision predates the VHS-sampling boom as well. Remember 2010? When we were all starting to shake off our tolerance for bastardized surf rock? A year later we whittled garage rock down to the essentials and made room for every weirdo-sample based project under the sun, but stiffled its progression by giving it a shitty genre name to overcome. Alas, VHS Visions arrived within a transitioning period. With the dust settled, it's time to get reacquainted" -Blake Gillespie, Impose Magazine

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released 22 May 2012

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Crash Symbols Morgantown, West Virginia

Crash Symbols is a West Virginia label focused on exploring the evolving role of music in being human; though we aren't too heavy-handed about that. Our focus is on forward-thinking works of all kinds from all areas. You may see more things than others, but our catalog hopes one day to acquire consciousness and that requires a true diversity of experience. ... more

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