My Brightest Diamond
Shark Remixes Vol 4 – DM Stith
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The music of My Brightest Diamond lends itself well to remixes. Shara Worden’s exquisite voice provides the perfect lead (or backing track) for any sort of deconstructing or restructuring of her original music. My Brightest Diamond’s debut Bring Me the Workhorse (2006) was given the remix treatment in the form of a remix compilation entitled Tear It Down (2007). This collection is evidence to the strength of her compositions and voice, as remixed by such artists as Murcof, Alias, Lusine, Golden Chains among others. While Asthmatic Kitty and My Brightest Diamond had no regrets about the Tear It Down project, when the time came to talk remixes for A Thousand Shark’s Teeth, they both realized a need for a more cohesive and conceptual project. They brought on four remixers (Alfred Brown, DM Stith, Son Lux and Roberto Carlos Lange (Epstein, Savath and Savalas, ROM) and commissioned them to each create a separate EP of remixed material. The fourth of these EPs is by DM Stith.
David Stith has always been pushing his creative limits. Having been raised in a musical family in Buffalo, New York, he grew up with sounds all around him, often slouched in the kitchen interpreting his family’s melodies into line drawings and poetry. Though a gifted musician from an early age, he remained silent for a long time, instead choosing to express himself through poetry and the visual arts—excelling in many modes of artistic expression. He’s wandered from Buffalo to Rochester to Brooklyn, where he became friends with Shara Worden of My Brightest Diamond. In small technical ways (by providing a computer with ProTools, a space to record demos, and gallons of coffee to accompany wandering conversations about her songs), David began helping her record her album Bring Me The Workhorse (2006). Shara was astounded to learn that he also possessed an innate talent for working in the studio. Since then David has collaborated with Sufjan Stevens, Son Lux, and Castanets. His first album, Heavy Ghost, a collection of songs rich with strings, polyrhythmic percussion, lofty choirs, epic electronic gestures and Stith‘s clear-as-a-bell voice, was released in early 2009 to universal critical acclaim.
Stith takes the original tracks from Shark’s Teeth and creates a haunting and dizzying reworking. With new orchestral and choral arrangements the material is opened into a maritime wooziness, while continuing a personal and creative dialogue that has existed between David and Shara since their first meeting. Stith contributed both musically and visually to A Thousand Shark’s Teeth, which he further explores on this EP through his arrangements and typographic naming of the remixes. These songs become like a collection of postcards between dear friends recovered from years of being submerged in the ocean depths. The siren like qualities of Shara’s voice is repeated and beckons listeners into dangerous waters. The result is equal parts ghostly sea shanties and petitioning mantras.