6.26.19 by Ryan Masteller
Super confusing here, Mousecop, thanks! Btw, is this you?
I’m sure you never get tired of that joke, so I’ll just leave that there.
This is super confusing, because “ftw,” as everyone knows, means “for the win” in urban computer slang, not “fare thee well” as Mousecop would have you believe. Also, I was like, “Did CAVE break up? Bummer!” Turns out the Drag City krautrockers are alive and well, thank god, but no thanks to Mousecop for freaking me out about nothing. I’m still getting over it.
So CAVE actually stands for “Center for Audio/Visual Exploration,” an Akron, Ohio, venue run by Rubber City Noise that shut down in 2014. Mousecop recorded “CAVEFTW” there right before it closed its doors. So … there’s actually kind of an emotional connection to be made over these two long tracks if you let them infiltrate your cold dead heart. (Just because you’re Akron’s answer to the Grinch and you wanted to buy up all the real estate and gentrify the area and kick the kids out for good doesn’t mean you can’t change. It just means it’ll take a long TIME for you to change.)
So Mousecop’s actually a duo (unless the “former Mousecop” up there is somehow a combination of two people, I think I got their identity wrong at first – see, confusing!) made up of RCN alums Joshua Maxon Novak and J. Curtis Brown Jr., and their live performance captured to this very tape is at once haunting and squeamish, a collab cooked too long in a witch’s cauldron. It bubbles over and crusts the sides of the crockery, filling cracks in the stoneware and scoring the bottom of the pot. And that’s what RCN is all about: letting Mousecops be Mousecops, allowing their strange concoctions to fill the ears and the airwaves and the magnetic tapes, to give misfits like Novak and Brown a chance to spread their creative wings and fly as close to the sun as they want, disintegration be damned. And that’s what “CAVEFTW” sort of is – music disintegrated by the sun.
Finally released on tape at the tail end of 2018, “CAVEFTW” is still available from Rubber City Noise (edition of 50).