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Another track from the candidates list - but strangely enough not the track that the artist recommended. Which is rare - ‘cos normally you have a listen and decide whether you dig the track or not and if you don’t you move on never to think about them again - but Riley Goltz - or “Memoir” as he performs under, had a secret weapon!

From his 2017 album Stay, Riley had submitted the first track, Prescription - and while I was all over the opening tones and overall ambience, when the trap beat came in it just threw me off my stride. And yes, I know this is purely subjective and those beats may work for someone else, they just seemed too jarring for a writing soundtrack and hey, it’s my list - so there! :-p

I gave it several listens and loved how the track developed but just couldn’t get past that initial sonic disruption - that’s the thing about writing music - it’s got to be amazing but not too noticeable - it can’t be too boring but it can’t be too narcissistic “look at me” either.

So what to do - for most other track subs I’d have moved on to the tackle the backlog but here’s Riley’s secret weapon from his submission:

First off, I want to say that finding this playlist has already benefited me, even though I haven’t even submitted my track to it. As I’ve looked through the list, I have been reminded of bands I LOVE, like Sigur Ros and The Album Leaf. There is so much music out there these days, and being reminded of the bands that helped me fall in love with post-rock/instrumental music is amazing. I’m listening right now, and am loving tracks like ‘A Spirit’s Freedom’ by To Life, and ‘The Ocean’ by Jackson Love. Amazing piano on that last one!...

...This album means a lot to me, and represents my personal journey with mental health over a period of a few years. I wrote the songs to represent my emotional and mental state, and decided to do so in a way that let the music speak
— Riley Goltz - Memoir

With that level of enthusiasm for the playlist and what comes across as an authentic love for this kind of music - I had to give the rest of the album a listen.

Settling on Medication - which I’m sure some people will say is way more “Dynamic” than Prescription - but again - My List - so there! ;-p - I’ve had this on repeat this week as I’ve been tackling sequential email series - a necessary but tedious process and this track has kept me in the perfect space: quiet and melodic when I need to think - loud and energetic when I’m flagging and need a boost.

So yes - here’s to Memoir and a beautifully put together album of great instrumental rock music - definitely take it out for a spin.

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About the Curator: Andrew McCluskey

Andrew McCluskey - Musicto Curator

The first visual memory I have is that of the white upright piano in Singapore, Hell and the dark forces lived at the bottom, Heaven and the Angels at the top. They would play battles through my fingers and I was hooked.

Although I've always played, I haven't always been a musician.  Most of my twenties were spent working with people, buying and selling and learning how the world works.  It was in my thirties that I came to America and focused on music and began to develop music2work2.