Keep Being Awesome!

On today's Prairie Goth radio hour, we celebrate the new double album from The Very Nice Interesting Singer Man. Catch it live on KDAK 102.5 FM in Bismarck/Mandan at 7 PM or listen through their online streamKeep Being Awesome! is my AOTY so far. Why? I guess because it's such a great example of Matt Farley's (the singer/songwriter behind The Very Nice Interesting Singer Man) approach: His music is everything all at once.

Life sucks. Everything is a bummer, the world is full of horror, I'm worthless and I'm pretty sure I'm possessed by a ghost who's trying to kill me. The thing that's great about The Very Nice Interesting Singer Man (his name is Roy by the way. Let's just call him Roy. [Yes, he's Matt Farley, the President of Motern Media, who has released upwards of 18,000 songs under dozens of different band names {he is the most prolific songwriter on the planet} but although Matt is Roy who is The Very Nice Interesting Singer Man, Matt also isn't Roy in some key characteristics {Roy is a madman. Matt is a friendly, generous and ambitious artist}]) anyway, the thing that's great about Roy is that I can feel all of these awful feelings through his music, because I feel like an insane person and Roy is just totally unhinged and can't feel certain emotions and is kind of incapable of connecting to people and is super optimistic through his nihilism, (he's also maybe a disturbingly weird tone-deaf brand of misogynist,) and, again, anyways: When I feel like a ghost is trying to kill me from the inside out, it's not that surprising that I would relate to Roy in some ways, right? But instead of just being vapidly 'relateable', Matt (yes, Matt, not Roy) provides these layers of satire, embedded in the grandiosity of the hyper-prolificism (aka Moternism) of his Project, his Media, that allows me this series of emotional responses:

  1. What in the world am I listening to? This is super confusing. How does this exist??
  2. Well... yeah, I definitely relate to you on that, Very Nice Interesting Singer Man: life is meaningless, and I totally get why punching people in the face would make you feel better, I hate everything too, yes brother Roy, everything is worthless but, I feel you, I don't wanna die either.
  3. Life is awful, but when you remind me of the amazing things (the friends who are still alive, their generosity, the inspiration of the music in my headphones) I take your reminders to heart. Because you recognize the futility of everything. Just like me.
  4. Gawd my emotions are STUPID! this is all so dumb, why am i so silly
  5. And then, the jump happens: I realize I'm standing between two mirrors, infinite reflections in both directions, the glass on my right a reflection of the serious emotions, the glass on my left a reflection of the frivolous emotions; Matt Farley has built this never-ending mirror, he's letting me stand in its structure. The polar opposites neutralize themselves. Seriousness and silliness don't make any difference. I'm allowed to exist in the confusion. I'm allowed to feel my feelings.

Roy or Matt or the behemoth that is Motern Media allows me "a temporary reprieve from my lot in life" while also letting me know, like, don't take everything so seriously. It's madness but I come out on the other end feeling a little bit healthier.

Matt Farley, on Keep Being Awesome! :

As many of you know, The Very Nice Interesting Singer Man checked into rehab for 'exhaustion' immediately after completing the epic album COMMON PHRASES. It was a 90-day program. But 45 days in, he checked himself out and returned to the studio to create this amazing, sprawling masterpiece that looks inward. It's spectacular!

And then there's this, which is like, here's this totally messed up dude and what does he pray to? What is his god? That's right ... a vision board.

You can hear/buy Keep Being Awesome! online pretty much wherever, or you can download it straight from CDBaby.

Learn more about Motern Media at Check out the Motern Media Infomercial Podcast, World Motern Day (June 3rd), or place an order for a custom song. The best quick run-down of Matt and what he's up to is probably this WNYC radio piece from 2014, by PJ Vogt (now of Gimlet's Reply All): TLDR's "100 Songs a Day".