Superpitcher Gets Spiritual about Rivers on This Kompakt Selection

The Paris-based producer’s use of a Mississippi blues sample on his ambient techno track sparks a stream of consciousness.

Photographer Marco Dos Santos
August 13, 2014

About a minute into Superpitcher's "Delta"—the Paris-based producer's contribution to esteemed techno label Kompakt's TOTAL 14 compilation—a voice calls up but gets caught in a time-glitch. It stretches a single syllable into a two-minute tone that rides the track's ambient techno waves until they crash into the present moment: Innnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnn the Mississippi River. It's that blues note that anchors the track, lending it meaning beyond the pleasures of getting lost in the loop. I'd dropped Kompakt a line to find out a bit more about Superpitcher's choice of sample and instead of the expected sentence or two, received this rather lovely reflection on the everlasting influence of rivers on the human consciousness.

Superpitcher: "It is hard to clarify exactly what inspired me to write this song or to pinpoint why I chose the sample I used as the theme for the track. Rivers have always been important to me, like I guess, for every human being. To me the best analogy would be to say that rivers represent the chronology of all the unwritten songs, poems, words, hopes and dreams that we don’t know the origin of, or direction that it is destined for. Along their way they become richer and richer with all the sand and stones they gather and transport and transform, sometimes quietly, other times in a rough and violent turbulence. There is something about the movement and dynamism of water that I have a life-long fascination for—it inspires me to keep on creating. All these things that one imagine, can flow by, and on one unforeseen day, they are just there, right here, for us to grab or grasp. I always think of how I used to stand next to the river close to our house, and choose one floating leaf to follow with my eyes and be touched by its journey. Where did it come from? Where is it going? Is it afraid? Such a moment for me was being moved by the idea of the Mississippi delta, and that is why I liked the sample I used. Seeing that a delta is a place where rivers split before they flow to the ocean, they have always represented crossroads, but also a piece of land that is surrounded by smaller rivers to me. Deltas are such isolating and lonely places in a way. For one I could also not really remember the rest of the Greek alphabet after Delta. Alpha, Beta, Gamma... boom, Delta. Anyhow, I grew up in a very remote part of Southern Germany and it felt like I was living in a delta of some sorts. [With the] slavery history of America, I always related to and sympathized with the melancholy of these people who were surrounded by rivers that flow, and flow, but for them there was nowhere to go. How many centuries did these peoples’ eyes not follow the movement of the water? How painful it must have been for them to send their dreams and hopes with the streams, not really sure if anyone will hear them or stand still, for that moment to catch their emotions passing by? I am not entirely sure why or how exactly this song came to me, all I can say is that it is somewhat, like a river.

Total 14 is out August 18th, but you can preorder it here.

Superpitcher Gets Spiritual about Rivers on This Kompakt Selection