“My landlord gave me a stack of records that a tenant had left in a vacated apartment,” writes Joshua Wentz by way of introduction. “Most of them are really scratched, but a few are not too scratched.” The following track, “Piano Slum,” is one of the pieces that resulted when Wentz dug into the vinyl and came up with a variety of instrumental hip-hop excursions. This particular example is built on a small loop of a familiar Paul Simon song. Even as he cuts it and moves parts around, even as he creates a new melody from old, culturally entrenched note formations, he retains the original organ’s loose, analog wavering. As he describes his modus operandi, “I figured these albums would be a good way to scratch a musical itch: create some instrumental hip hop tracks with these albums as the foundation.”
Track originally posted for free download at soundcloud.com/joshuawentz. More on Wentz, who’s based in Chicago, Illinois, at joshuawentz.com. Another Wentz track, in which he played along with a passing train, was featured here last month.