mattVISTA has always had a special relationship with music from it playing a huge part in his hometown of the DMV (Dc, Maryland and Virginia) and early life too now with him being 1/2 of Neo soul alternative group April+VISTA. Let’s talk a walk down memory lane with mattVISTA as he discuses the music that shaped his life ultimately leading him to where he is today!
What song reminds you most of your childhood?
Janet Jackson’s “Got til it’s Gone” is the ultimate childhood nostalgia song. I was 5 or 6 years old living in Ohio and this song was everywhere. It’s one of my fav songs of all time because it takes me back to summer time in Cincinnati in the 90s.
What song best represents your hometown?
CCB- Roll Call is one of those go-go classics that became a local anthem when I was in high school. The lead mic is just rattling off neighborhoods to this amped up beat. That was the height of beat your feat culture for me and is the epitome of local pride. Roll call is nearly 20 years old but I can’t think of a song that reps us better.
What was the first physical cd you purchased?
When I was 9 or 10, my grandfather took me to Best Buy with my birthday money, and I walked out with Nirvana’s Nevermind. My dad put me on to them first and I was hooked. My favorite memory is my grandfather opening the jewel case in his old Towne & Country minivan and seeing Kurt Cobain giving him the middle finger. He still let me keep it.
Favorite song in college?
Winter by Paris Jones is the only song that comes to mind. It reminds me of the best parts of freshman year, the discovery, the newfound independence. That song is just imprinted on that memory. I discovered a lot of music in college but that one’s got sentimental value.
What songs reminds you of a specific place you’ve traveled?
I started sketching out our song “The Receiver” during our first tour in the UK. We were in an AirBnB is Islington and I’d been challenging myself to make something in every city. This is the only song that wasn’t terrible so I built it out when we got back stateside. Every time I listen to it, I think about that trip.
What song inspires you to create?
Radiohead’s “In Limbo” is currently my idea starter. Really anything from Kid A puts me in a creative mode. Everything that I’ve made this past year was practically powered by the inspiration from their Kid Amnesiac virtual exhibition. I can go on about my Radiohead obsession but I’ll stop there lol.
First song likely to get played in your car?
Right now, It’s MIKE’s “Weary Love”. The verse is flawless and the sample chops just hit you in the feels. I can listen to that beat alone on repeat for an entire car ride.
What’s a song you wished you could have wrote or made?
Lauryn Hill’s Nothing Even Matters. It’s the perfect song. The writing is so timeless and it captures an organic and uncomplicated chemistry between Lauryn and D’Angelo. You can just feel them in the same room writing and recording that and the energy during that session. It feels like they made it in a flow state. I also love trying to follow the snapping pattern in the background. I make a game out of it whenever I listen. One of the best duets ever made.
Best song to play at a party?
HiTech’s 'WHYYOUFUGGMYOPPS'. I rarely go to parties these days. When I do step out, the music isn’t what I’m usually listening to, but in a perfect world, I’d hear Hitech at every function.
What’s song are we playing at your funeral?
Flying Lotus and Kendrick’s Never Catch Me. It’s just a great tribute to someone who never gave up or gave in. That’s how I’m trying to live.
Song tied to the best memory you’ve had?
One of my greatest memories ever would be playing our song FOMO at Brooklyn Steel in NY during our opening set for Little Dragon. That night, LD watched our set from side stage and met us to give us props after we ended our set. They’re one of my musical heroes so that was a wildly surreal moment. I remember seeing them while I was on stage and stiffening up because I was so nervously like “wtf is this even real?”
The world is taken over by aliens and you’re chosen to represent the human race. You have to play a song that will convince the aliens that we are with saving… what’s song are you playing?
I’ll probably get the human race vaporized but I might have to play We are the World or some shit. It’s not the best song ever made but it gets the point across if your goal is to beg aliens not to disintegrate you. “We are the world. We are the children.” We’re KIDS! You’re really gonna destroy a planet full of children?! That’s craaaaazy.