Monday, September 13, 2010

PsyLoFi – Making imprints.

Nothing is new under the sun.

There are only seven different stories to be told in this world and no artist knows more than how to make the same piece of work over and over again, as well as no author can write but the same novel, time after time.

At least two out of three of these statements are lies: As different species meet and mate, they create a hybrid, which exposed to its environments then mutate and go beyond the controllable. It has become a new creation.

PsyLoFi is a contemporary experimental experience managed by one man whom we can refer to as Moris. He recalls the first psychedelic field recordings being made in 2004 although the first album and live performances would not surface until 2007.

The sound is ethereal with elements of folk music; it’s electronic, experimental and psychedelic and we can fit yet a number of genres into these early recordings, which at first may make it seem harder to understand what it’s all about. A concrete example stands out where it comes to record labels that generally liked the sound but didn’t know what to make of it, as there was no obvious box for this kind of music.

To add further to the amount of confusion that may have occurred by now, it should be mentioned that the roots of PsyLoFi originates in the metal genre. Bands like At the Gates, Tiamat, Moonspell, Sepultura, My Dying Bride and even Norwegian black metal group Burzum played important parts of inspiration, but not until it’s revealed that the more experimental albums of for example Tiamat, My Dying Bride and later, Katatonia, also was of great importance for PsyLoFi, things begin to clear up and it becomes possible to see how the metallic influences aren’t such an odd part of the picture after all.

Later, more would add to the sources of inspiration, such as ethnic music, trance and dub, but there are also a number of influences that go beyond the music as Moris engages in the subjects of psychology, philosophy, anthropology, sociology and design, just to mention a few. “I am interested a lot in mystical and transcendental experiences but rather from scientific point of view - I am not an occultist of any kind and don't feel I have any fixed beliefs in this regard.” he explains and adds that he listens quite a lot to his own music: “That's probably because each track is connected with some event or person and helps me to recall the moment. I many ways it's like browsing through old photos.”

In order to fully grasp what constitutes PsyLoFi, you can’t do without the audial experience, because this project is too multi faceted and can be viewed from so many angles that just words, of an article like this, simply can’t suffice. PsyLoFi is rather a concept than a band in the traditional sense of the term even though the members and contributors as well as the collaborations have been many. To this date, as many as nine different musicians have been involved in the project and there’s also a more solid core of a four-five man strong line up for live performances.

PsyLoFi wasn’t always a live group and how that changed was almost unintentional when the song “Deliberate Ocean” was awarded as the “electronic track of the month” at a Ukrainian music portal. “Surprisingly enough”, says Moris and explains that this track was a complete improvisation “It has no electronic sounds except the background which is just a heavily processed mix.” PsyLoFi were invited to perform at one of the prominent venues in Kiev, which is how the nominees of this award were rewarded. They rehearsed and prepared for a month and the performance went through successfully before a large audience. Moris still thinks of it as a some kind of misunderstanding, as he had never thought of doing live shows before, but thanks to this incident, PsyLoFi is nowadays also a live group.

But these events are all of the past and we move forward to the present day to see where PsyLoFi’s at today.

The songs of their new EP Caleidoscope, was recently finished and only the mastering remains. Also a music video to one of the songs featured is in progress.

Caleidoscope can be described as just what the title hints, as it consists of five tracks that are quite different from each other but still creates a symmetry connecting back to a specific object. Listening through Caleidoscope also makes you wonder whether there actually is a deliberate symmetry behind it all, as the first, middle and last tracks connects to each other with ethnic and folk rock influenced tunes, whilst the second and fourth tracks rather tie together by a more cold and strict electronic sound. Almost literally, however, the third track, Velikiy Verkh, stands out. Not only is it the track where most numbers of influences are mixed, but also it reconnects to the metal roots and slightly diverts your thoughts to the remix of the song Mandrivnyk, by the Ukrainian experimental heavy metal group ‘Pins’, that PsyLoFi also made.

Summing up the Caleidoscope EP, it can also be said that it neatly organizes and refines the essence constituting the contemporary PsyLoFi.

With all this said, one question remains: How do we get to this? How does this music reach the world?

“I think labels are living their last days” says Moris “I'd happily give someone the right to publish and sell my CDs basically for free, but without giving up exclusive rights.” But again, most labels are focused on niches and PsyLoFi thus looks past those. Spreading their music online has worked out this far, so that’s most likely the way it’s going to be in the future as well, although publicity isn’t always easy to come by. Only by spreading the word and the music the future audience can become aware of that PsyLoFi are out there. Unique concepts like this don’t come to birth every day and unfortunately they easily tend to slide away to a background, but now that we know about PsyLoFi, there’s no reason to keep quiet about it.

Go download the music, listen and learn @