Caural “Visions In Stereo”
Born worshipping vinyl through his parents’ living room stereo, Caural (born Zachary Mastoon) based temples at his sparkly blue drum set at 3, the Casio PT-80 at 4, and guitar at 6.
He was soon skinning his knees skateboarding with childhood neighbor Stuart Bogie (Arcade Fire, TV on The Radio, Antibalas Afrobeat Orchestra), and capturing youthful interpretations of early 80’s Hip Hop, new wave and pop radio hits together on cassette. Playing an amalgam of jazz influenced punk in their early teens, they went on to co-found Transmission in 1991, a group which later took a more experimental turn with the addition of saxophonist Colin Stetson.
Equally in love with rap and shoegaze, Mastoon clarified his voice with avant-garde giant Anthony Braxton at Wesleyan University and an around-the-world gamelan orchestra aboard Semester At Sea; however, it was during his final year at NYU in 1999 that he began fusing his disparate influences quite literally with a Yamaha SU700. A CD-R of his first four compositions was slipped from his coworker at the turntablism-pioneering Asphodel Records to the head of Toshoklabs, and the first Caural album had found a home.
A critically acclaimed catalog of original material and remixes for Chocolate Industries, Mush, Plug Research, Sound in Color, and other early foundation builders of the “beat scene” followed. It was in early 2006 that he teamed up with LA emcee Busdriver to tour with everyone from Aceyalone through Deerhoof, often bloodying fingers and accidentally tearing knobs off his sampler on stage.
Waving goodbye to psychedelic rock as one half of Boy King Islands (a once-side project that blossomed necessarily when his beloved sampler was stolen from his Chicago apartment), he has now revived the sonic bricolage of everything Caural, channeling the speakers that lulled him in love with music as a child.