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Matt Valentine creates, has created, and will continue to create from inside of a continuum that unspools from a source that is also so distant as to be invisible. Mysterious Translucence is not just the name of his shoe. Space Chanteys is really the first honest solo album that Matt Valentine has created. There have been others that are somewhat like it, or are related to it, in shape, or in style, but they are not it. This alone is it. It is Space Chanteys. Recorded live, back in October ’00, the ensemble here has run through all of Matt’s pockets on many occasions. Some were/are part of the Tower Recordings collective. Others are associated with the MVEE Medicine Show. Each of them has fingered keys and touched lint that has deep and private resonance in the Valentinian flow. They take a deep collective breath here and release it slowly, like a sigh trapped in the highest tower of Greaser’s Palace. And it’s a gasser. Those enlightened people who are aware of his recordings, have a tendency to think of Matt’s music as part of the American volk tradition. And, indeed, a portion of it does reside there. But as with so many of the interesting inventions inside out-culture currency, the soul of this volk music emerged from synchretic collisions between psychedelic rock and avant garde jazz and country blues and trance-drone-minimalism as well as a primitive form of volk-proper. The material on Space Chanteys is beautiful in its fracture. Its fissures phosphoresce in the darkness with an unearthly radiance: glow-in-the-dark teeth set into the gums of eternity.