Black Forest by Wu Wei is the newest volume released on Merkaba Music, inspired from the archetypal mystery and associated power of woodlands, often home to rituals and practices seeking shelter from the eyes of societal convention. Coalescing elements from around the globe, from ambient vocals to middle eastern instrumentations, Wu Wei has woven a spirited anthology with an underlying narrative. ‘Refugee’, influenced by the struggle of losing one’s home and being cut from your roots, creates a melodic aura assembled by indigenous Syrian instruments that meditates on the fight to maintain identity in the face of crisis. The title ‘Eyes of an Owl’ finds muse in Norse folk music and modern ambient metal of Norway, creating a more abstracted environment with an airy melody stamped with Wei’s signature bass. Continuing the world hop tour, ‘Our Ghosts’ haunts airwaves with sober strings and ardent atmospheric sculpting, taking listeners to a contemplative realm deep in the forests of thought, where the sultry downtempo stirrings surface the timeless questions of the human condition. Varnished with remixes from Soulular and Devin Kroes, this six track release is an immense addition to the Merkaba treasury and a statement of global awareness through music. Catch Wu Wei this July at Konnexion Festival and Enchanted Forest and keep your ears perked for future compilations.
Spundose will be releasing his second full-length album on Street Ritual – ‘Relatives’, on January 19th, Exclusive Addictech! 10 tracks. It’s a deep, organic, and genre-bending experience felt through ancient remembrance of downtempo, progressive, breakbeat, glitch, and psychedelic soundscapes. Crescendoing effects, intricately layered textures, atmospheres of different dimension, percussive leads, classic rhythms, and next level composition makes for a lucid and evolving journey. Take a deep breath, exhale, and let these frequencies fill your soul as they will transcend beyond time and space.
Spundose is a musician/music producer whose ancient-future sound fuses many elements to stimulate imagination and collective consciousness expansion. Supporting & catalyzing a curious, caring, and loving mindfulness within society, he provides intensely pleasurable sonic vibrations for the earminds of a progressive and sustainable culture! Chris Johannesen is continually pushing and breaking ‘the norm’ in contemporary electronic music as he’s continuously digging deeper into himself and evolving sounds way ahead of time. Artwork by Jonah K .
LISTEN TO FULL ALBUM RELEASE
5AM releases ‘Deep See’ EP on Aquatic Collective today, December, 18th, 2015. It’s a four-track amalgamation through the depths of visions into the ocean, through breakbeat, glitch hop, live instrumentation, downtempo feels, and jazz vibes – it’s a true masterpiece. Currently residing in New York, NY, Sam Andrus’ creativity is a breathtaking experience that syncs up magic into the now, a gateway of endless expressions has entered his soul. It’s full of depth, intricate patterns, grimey & squishy glitches, rhythmic melodies, and awe-inspiring composition.
Each track provides a story of its own, an evolving phase through higher levels of consciousness. Experience a collaborative creation with friends: production/live guitar (Sam Andrus), live trumpet (Moses Cicero), acoustic guitar (Eviali). This sonic journey will open up your chakras and reveal to you visions through the mind’s eye of the Universe and into the Akashic Records, a Deep See. 5AM is a producer to keep your eyes pealed for…he’s definitely one of my favorite producers, he’s had a few releases within the year that are pure clarity, always keepin’ it fresh. Dope art work by 5AM himself!
Somatoast is the creation of Mark Rubin, a young producer from Austin, TX with a futuristic and innovative mindset. A member of the Majestic Entertainment & Temporal Talent families – his original dub frequencies and real-life connections of creative energy are being aligned, ultimately leading him on his path, his life purpose. With having his first EP release, Withinity, just last year on April 30th, 2013 with one of the most creative underground outlets, Gravitas Recordings, and having recent compilation features [such as Jerry’s Dream (more in-depth description bevlow the interview)] on other forth-moving and conscious labels such as Merkaba Music and Shanti Planti, Somatoast is destined to a bright and uplifting future. His downtempo, psydub and glitch frequencies illuminates space and rhythmically syncs up with deep intricate beat pattern and squishy melodies – he with twirl your imagination into a new state. I met Mark in 2012 while immersing myself in the Austin underground music scene mid- 2012, back when he was formally known as Crazy Fingers. Somatoast has opened up for talented artists such as Bluetech, Infected Mushroom, Kalya Scintilla, Whitebear, Soulacybin, Mumukshu, and Defunk, to name a few. He has also played alongside Bird of Prey, Thriftworks, Tipper, The Polish Ambassador, and Desert Dwellers at multiple festivals including one of my favorite festivals, Art Outside, soon approaching, the 10th annual Art Outside 2014 (October 24th – 27th 2014 in Apache Pass, TX -45 minutes outside Austin, TX). Mark has been in California all Summer, so I decided to catch up with him! We talked about his musical background, timelessness, the mediums he uses for music production, his inspirations, life and his upcoming release on Shanti Planti in November.
• When did you start getting into music production, was there a specific moment that triggered an inspiration towards wanting to create/produce music?
I’ve been creating music my whole life. I started playing the drums when I was about 5 after watching the drummer in my dad’s band. I took lessons in drums and percussion throughout my childhood years and I eventually also picked up the guitar early on. By the time I was 13 or 14 I was recording music with a dinky little computer mic, and by the time I was 16 I had a small home studio going. There wasn’t really a specific moment that I can recall, it’s been more like a long process that continues to develop throughout my life. Though, my freshman year in college, I started with Ableton and realized I could make the same stuff I was listening to. I guess it was then I realized music production might be a real career for me. Especially being in Austin– my surroundings made me hopeful that I may be able to actually pull it off. There is so much creativity and inspiration there.
• What is the mission behind Somatoast, what kind of messages are you trying to spread through sound?
I didn’t start Somatoast with any sort of message in mind beyond an alias to make electronic music under. It was new to me then and I’m still discovering and learning more and more. At this point, I really want to succeed in making music that is not only unique, but also timeless. There is so much electronic music out there and so much of it sounds the same. When it comes to even some of my favorite artists that I think are cutting edge, the music can get stale after listening a while. For me, folks like Tipper and Bluetech have created music that is truly good, timeless music. I can go back and listen to their albums over and over again and I will continue to be impressed and hear things I didn’t hear before. I think this partly stems from the more classical elements in their music that don’t die out with the trends. My goal is to make timeless music like this. I’m not sure I’m there yet.
Aside from timelessness, I try and make music that is intellectually stimulating. I like music that provokes thought whether it’s through the music itself or speech that is sampled. Sampling speech can get cliché sometimes, but I try and get creative with it.
• Mac or PC? What production software do you engage in when producing music?
Mac, Ableton Live 9! I’d like to take the time and dive in to Bitwig, but I haven’t had the time since it has come out. Instead I’ve been on my grind in Ableton, which is totally ok!
• You’ve been in California all Summer, tell us about your time there this Summer. What have you been doing out there?
I was a film student at UT Austin and was finishing my degree through a program called UT in LA. It’s a program for anyone with ambitions in the entertainment industry. I was working at a music production studio. I don’t think LA is the place for my type of music industry, but it was interesting to experience for two months. Honestly, I’m glad my time is over there. I spent most of my free time working on my next release, which I’ll say more about in the next couple of questions. But now I’m done with school and I’m traveling up the West Coast camping and visiting cooperative houses. After I’m done traveling, I’d like to take Somatoast to the next level and give it my full attention.
Obviously Tipper, Quanta, Grouch, Auma, and Bogtrotter, just to name a few. I’m always impressed with everyone on Shanti Planti. I have a hard time picking favorites, and lately, I actually haven’t been listening to a lot of electronic music. For my own music, I just want to get away from the trends. For a while I was trying too hard to create stuff like what I was jamming, which just isn’t the right approach because it wasn’t coming naturally. But recently I’ve started getting super weird and just not caring what comes comes out (in a good way). Just simply rolling with it, which brings me to my next release….
• Are you working on any projects? When do you plan on releasing your next EP? Should we expect something similar to your latest release, “Withinity”?
Yes, my next EP is almost finished. I plan to release it in November on Shanti Planti. I’m trying to add the finishing touches but it’s been hard because I haven’t had, and still don’t have, a home base to create. Most of the EP has been made in a shitty LA apartment with little to no gear. Jake (Mumukshu) and I have been hanging out a bit and he let’s me mix some of the tunes in his space which is super cool of him. I’m excited to find a space where I can hammer the finishing touches out.
I’m not sure it’s very much like Withinity. Most of the tracks on Withinity are coming up on two years old now. I’ve learned an exponential amount in all areas of production since that release. Besides the reggae/bouncy touch and squishyness, I’d like to say it will be something totally new! I’d describe the new tracks as twisted, off kilter, and sometimes silly. Bent and broken strings are used repeatedly so it evokes a weird eastern but trashy feel.
Well, like I mentioned before I’m a co-opper. I’ve lived in a cooperative the last three years and have no plans of stopping any time soon. I always love to talk co-op life and sustainable ways to live and/or eat, and I’m always interested in visiting new houses or communities.
Jerry’s Dream is, without a doubt, one of my favorite tunes of this Summer. I have been playing it non-stop ever since its release on Kalya Scintilla’s “Resonant Mind” compilation released on Merkaba Music on May 5th, 2014. This track has a mysteriously elegant vibe to it and it creates a rhythmically squishy and psydub flow – a magical uplift as you hear Jerry Garcia’s featured voice. This creation was induced while collecting samples on YouTube that he could sample, and came across an interview with Jerry discussing the Grateful Dead achieving fame. When he took it out of context, it sounded, to Mark, as if he were talking about something cosmic. Having initially started this track a year before its release, this was the tune that personally opened the doors to more experimental sounds. This track showcases similar themes and styles to be revealed in his upcoming release in November, so get exited, I’m sure he’s cooking up something creative and fresh. Somatoast is on the right path of discovery.
Listen to Preview of Jerry’s Dream, Click Link on SC for full version
Electric Dandelion releases Metamorphosis on Muti Music [San Francisco] earlier this Summer, and it’s a deep sacred dub experience, an examination of the higher self, a psychedelic experience, an entrance to the portal of your spirit’s origin. Alan Joseph, both a producer and designer, resides and holds a residency in L.A., California, called BurnLA. I discovered Electric Dandelion at this year’s Sonic Bloom while wandering by the booths, when I spotted a booth full of recognizable beautiful and warm hoods of rich designs. It was then when I had a flash back to the previous summer  here in Austin, TX when someone had passed along his info on his hoods at a (Pre Burning Man Gathering, called Frabjous, for the unveiling of the Cathedral of Celestial Mathgic). Soon after, we chatted as I held my newly purchased and comforting hood that was to keep me warm the rest of the weekend in South Park, CO. He mentioned that he was performing at the Dome that Saturday. It is then when I discovered his exquisite dub and bass soundscapes, a first time live experience, a discovery of new sounds. With more than 10 years experience behind him with music production, Electric Dandelion can be seen as a versatile producer of many styles. From bass-filled journeys, to psychedelic melodic feels, all in a dub and downtempo atmosphere, he will hypnotize, elevate, inspire, and twist you into a luminous dimension.
Metamorphosis consists of 9 dub wonders full of dubs within dubs: Slither, Enchanted Memories, Ignite, Eclipse, Al, Whole Lotta Dopeness, Nathayan, Sacradelic, & Adea. Slither has a mysterious downtempo vibe to it, an electric slither of dubstep feels, attached with bass growls, and deep hitting bass lines will open up blockages. A crescendo soon follows and reveals a mixture of dub accelerations and fast forwarding glitch. “Could You know…” is sporadically heard throughout the track.. Enchanted Memories is a heavenly synth of initial snare strikes. A dub feel with trippy vocalizations can be heard. Hard-hitting bass lines create a rhythmic floor and will captivate the mind. It’s as if the memories are spoken of through sound, a story of realizations made possible through laser beams and otherworldly sound effects and composition. Ignite is an enchanting cast of melodic bass growls and 808 dubs. He really does a good job of twirling your imagination and wrapping it against a never ending glitch escape. Beats so fresh, beats so fresh.
Alan Joseph Designs: www.alanjosephdesigns.com
Eclipse is a luscious synth exploration as it initially reveals a groovy flow and break down beat. The beat and vocals are ethereal throughout the entire song, as the second half is consistent with deep bass howls – an enchantment. Al has deep feels with the combination of dubstep and chilltrap on a midtempo beat. Crescendos are highlighted in this track, a very fresh outlook. Whole Lotta Dopeness is indeed a whole lotta dopeness. A dubstep flow is present with Hip-Hop vocalizations saying “There’s a whole lotta dopeness“, which is tied with sleek bass lines and sexy drops of glitch candy swirls. Midway through the track, there’s a glitch uplift, rather than a “drop”, brilliant. Nathayan is glitch downtempo with repetitive beat that is invigorating. A release of energy is felt through high semioccasional vocals. Sacradelic is a minimal trip hop illumination of synth hums and drones blended within. As the track progresses, ascending bass fixtures add their own eerie vibe as it perfectly syncs up with other elements. Adea is a downtempo fuse of intricate obscure elements, a bewitching sounding chant is fused in between giving it more of a spiral twist. Glitch bass lines create a slow motion dance as ascensions will take you back to phase 1.
Electric Dandelion is a deep spiritual guide filled with visible and audible expertise, a unique story of emergence made possible through his trip-hop and psychedelic love. This multi-instrumentalist has a unique vibe to him, both style and sound, he will continue to weave and create from the soulful entity within him. Metamorphosis is a cerebral journey felt through the heart of the composer and listener, it’s a deep meditation that will open up channels of new energy healing. It is a transformation of light and energy, it reveals possibility beyond Earth, it illuminates the importance of change and direction. In order to grow, we expose ourself to change, by either stepping out of our comfort zone, or eliminating a blockage in order to enter a new phase, Electric Dandelion has done that through dub sound. From having played at several festivals such as Sonic Bloom, Lucidity, Enchanted Forest, Lightning in a Bottle, and Burning Man, he will continue to push his creativity so be on the look out for him. If you’re a fan of Desert Dwellers, David Starfire, and Living Light, you will dig Alan’s sound world which is rooted in psychedelic dub influences that will immerse you into a deeper understanding of meaning.
LISTEN TO Metamorphosis:
HÄANA released BRYM on June 03, 2014, an orchestral downtempo atmospheric soundscape felt with immeasurable depth, emotion, and talent. Hannah Thiem is the mastermind behind this production as she weaves her ambient production tempos and Nordic melodic roots with her dexterous and rhythmic violin playing skills that will create a clear and powerful cleansing energy within. BRYM marks her first solo album, and she withholds a diverse and expansive collections of previous works and collaborations. From having played countless festivals such as Lightning in a Bottle, Burning Man, and Shambhala Music Festival and having past collaborations with Beats Antique, Random Rab, Irma Thomas, and The Human Experience, she will continue to immerse herself in the music world by making profound connections. The ambience and elegance of her stylings also creates heavenly echoes of lyrical bliss felt through her core, her soul. I met HÄANA exactly 5 months ago [March 16th] here in Austin, TX during a secret SXSW show featuring other artists such as Govinda at Black Swan Yoga, and felt profound elation for my new discovery of her uplifting and mesmerizing music – a dynamic performer with passion and intention. BRYM EP graphic was also designed by HÄANA, making her a multi-talented artist. Each track contains within it a heart-felt story, landscapes of hidden emotion and knowledge are revealed through each string note, within each beat, within each vocal chord – a divine spiritual truth.
BRYM consists of 5 golden tracks: “Skaldic Roulette”, “Phavet”, “Brym Al Mar”, “The Finding”, and “Sweetest Invitation”. “Skaldic Roulette” is initiated by minimal bass beat and ambient sonic soundscapes followed by violin wonders which sync up and blend rhythmically together. Its composition is brilliant, as she mysteriously reveals more depth through lyrical and poetic Scandinavian bliss: “Lights from across the sea…lost notes, in a bottle…on the shore…”. “Phavet” is a cinematic story of electronic production which really speaks to me, especially when it comes to the derivation and inspiration – from a traditional Finnish Folk Song…half of my nationality. Each bow draw across the each violin strings is luscious and energetic and will trigger and captivate emotion. “Brym Al Mar” is a thematic blend of liquid original dubstep feels and uplifting violin composition. Energetic vibes will freeze time and take you to ancient medieval past-life, made possible by sonic time-travel.
“The Finding” is a long-awaited journey found within each beat pulse of subsonic original creations and intentions. Luminous frequencies and violin instrumentation tied with foreign Icelandic lyrical messages are found in her voice, angelic drones heard through overcoming’s of a shadow, a found self, a discovery. “Sweetest Invitation” is the sweetest invitation of sound seen through the eyes of the universe. A dramatic approach of cinematic electronic production is the theme of this track, as it will pull, twist, and spiral you up and down. Through sound, she reveals a narrative approach and will take you on a journey, an escape into spirituality and depths of the ocean heard through deep bass lines and violin technique.
HÄANA is a creative producer and a truly gifted violinist, and the BRYM EP surely reveals this. Very immersed with the study of Nordic and Middle Eastern traditions, she channels this knowledge and experiences in Eastern Europe through her own creation of sound and composition. Influenced by artists such as Massive Attack, Trentemoller, Phaleh, Bonobo, and Boards of Canada, she will continue to be inspired and therefore will continue to create around her passions and experiences. I really enjoyed Brym and the journey it took me on, it left a powerful impact on me, and was astonished with her craft of creations. I am excited to see HÄANA continue to grow as an artist, as she is a driven artist with visible passion. Ever since this release, she has been on a extended 2014 Summer Tour with many more dates being added as Fall approaches…be sure to catch her at her upcoming performances at Wanderlust Festival and Burning Man.
Watch “Brym Al Mar” Official Video:
Psymbionic releases Part 2 of “Parallels” [Eye], on Gravitas Recordings on July 1st, 2014. This second part of “Parallels” explores a parallel genre to that of a heavier bass influenced feel for Part 1. It revels an atmospheric creation of downtempo/chill feels, an experiment that illustrates Psymbionic’s versatility, a dive into another realm – a pull into the Eye of the Storm. The eye is a region of mostly calm weather at the center of strong tropical cyclones, and through sounds, John Burchman, expresses a deep meditation of fulfilling low tempo frequencies, a whirlwind of cloud hypnotization. Clear and light sounding extraterrestrial communication reveals futuristic visions of new-world change, enlightened transformations, and exploration of versatility. Versatility of production is rare, and when a product of rarity is illuminated, full-depth creativity is expressed giving the creator a sense of forward thinking and acceptance of change as important factor in culture in many fields of life- Psymbionic has done that with Eye.
Eye consists of 5 auditory chill out portals: “One Thing” ft Cristina Soto,”How Am I Not Myself” ft. Govinda, “S ilkscreen” ft. Soulular, “Sonder” ft. The Digital Connection, & “Silkscreen ( ill-esha remix ). One Thing ft. Cristina Soto is downtempo galore, a future chill trap experience ready to sooth your ear pineals. Psymbionic’s rhythmic future bass composition and fluidity blends passionately with Cristina Soto’s mesmerizing vocals as she touches your heart chakra with her deeply thought lyrics, an angelic escapade. How Am I Not Myself ft. Govinda is initiated by Govinda’s sensual frequencies resonating from string instrumentation of the violin. High-pitched synthesizer and a lively melodic tempo on Psymbionic’s behalf symmetrically syncs up in addition, and a spacey future garage atmosphere is present. This tune calmly sooth your present state of mind and will unblock passages of a forgotten memory.
Silkscreen ft. Soulular is a co-production between the two, a chill-step portal, a swim into infinity, a closer pull into the eye of the storm. Souluar’s organic sound composition and spacey sounding downtempo dubs mesh well with Psymbionic’s signature melodic uplifts and glitch/bass exposure, this is the creation of two soulful producers joining forces. Sonder ft. The Digital Connection is a spacey chill tale into the unknown, an epiphany within an epiphany. This is a future bass mystery waiting to be revealed and is felt within electronica ambience. Psymbionic’s signature sounds can be heard sporadically thoughout the tune, and a deep rhythmic glitch fusion of The Digital Connection follows through creating a liquid groove. Silkscreen remixed by ill-esha is a glitch masterpiece full of limitless synth frequencies and melodies. She produces a re-occurring glitch pattern which gives it a mind of its own, it’s a distinction of rarity illuminating the original production, an aftermath of chills down your spine.
Submerge into the eye of the storm and prepare for a lift-off into explorations of the sounds and tempos of the universe and beyond. Psymbionic reveals a downtempo/chill side to his music production in variation and style. Not only does he create variety in Part 2 of “Parallels”, but also a variety of styles and collaborations of accomplished vocalists, instrumentalists, and producers. John Burcham is a driven force of light that isn’t afraid to explore other dimensions of sound frequencies, a creative and fresh outlook. Like a thread weaving together with other threads, and like sacred geometrical patters coming together, a flowing towards a creation of warmth is revealed as Psymbionic weaves sounds, textures, and rhythms together. This results in the creation of pulsating and radiating sounds meant to trigger brainwaves, and therefore release and cleanse energies, a fresh feel of relief. The fact that this was written, mixed, AND mastered by John himself amazes me. As AfroMonk himself likes to put it, Keep it Fresh.
Join the Gravitas crew this Saturday, July 5th at plug.dj‘s “Just A Chill Room” for Psymbionic’s DIGITAL album release party & Q&A!
Listen/Download “Eye”: Parallels (Part 2: Eye) by Psymbionic
Discover Living Light
Sonic Bloom, the Unified Field, the place of Discovery. “Discovery” has been a key word for me within the past couple years, a place of the found into consciousness and open awareness, especially through music in the transformational festival lifestyle. Living Light was a recent discovery for me through a compilation called “Resonant Mind” released by MerkaBa Music in May. Living Light is the solo project of Psylab keyboardist Eartha Harris and she illuminates world beats with soothing dub electronic beats & melodies meant to lighten your mind, body, & spirit. Prior to the 9th annual Sonic Bloom venture last weekend, I discovered that her soothing presence would be performing and so I sought to discover more upon her upbringing, and the story behind Living Light. After a stellar performance at the Hummingbird Stage on Saturday, we sat down for a chat about inspirations behind her music, past music projects, upcoming album releases, intuitive dreams and experiences guiding her way, and her overall intention in life, all whilst being surrounded by the breathtaking panoramic mountain views of South Park, Colorado – and thus, a very profound and powerful conversation formed. Shout out to Lovemore Creations for a beautiful moment of life that was captured through photography.
•How long have you been producing music and was there a certain event(s) in your life that inspired wanting to become a music producer?
Well, music and I go way back – haha!… Apparently when I was one years old I often would wake up my parents singing! As I grew older, playing music was always my top fascination. I was lucky to have very supportive parents that were always able to provide me with musical outlets. It started out with a little Organ that I played through my toddler years, then a Commodore 64 in elementary school with a music program on it, and then I graduated up to portable Yamaha synthesizers through my elementary and teens years, eventually with built-in sequencers that I wrote my first full pieces on!
But when I was in college is when I first started learning music production on computer. My first electronic project that I was involved in, which I was a part of for about a year, is a group called The Machine of the Garden and it was the first time I was actually involved a real professional electronic act. Then, from 1998-2006, I had a solo project called Project Sphere, all of which was self-produced. The music is somewhat similar to what I produce now under Living Light but with my own added vocals. That said, I wasn’t really a part of a sub culture that was ready for that sound back then, so around 2007 I joined up with a band named Psylab, and I actually stepped away from production and dove into 100% live-keyboard playing. I’d often play 4-5 keyboards live at any given show. It was a wild ride!
•What kind of genre is Psylab?
All electronic, but also all live, and we’d play multiple genres. Some called us “livetronica”, but we were often categorized with jam bands since we did a lot of modal improv stuff even though we were electronic dance music. We played everything from dub to house to psytrance to drum & bass. We honestly felt we could experiment with any genre since we were playing it all live. So that was an amazing experience, but it was definitely like going through a touring boot camp though. It was grueling to be on the road all of the time with all of our massive amount of live gear that we needed in order to perform.
Performing as Psylab Keyboardist
When did Living Light come to Light, what’s the story behind it? ( Continuation )
It was actually born on December 21, 2012. I was fortunate enough to have a friend of mine who is a Biophoton Therapist (which is a very cool healing modality) lead a ceremony that weekend at our house in Boston, and I remember seeing this viral video of a Mayan Elder Speaks on 2012 and he said that between December the 20th and 22nd:
“You’ll have one idea, and that idea is your life’s calling, write it down right away because it could be fleeting, but when you have it, you’ll know it…”
And so while I was in this ceremony I had this vision of our sun cresting on the Earth’s horizon, and our whole galaxy cresting on the edge of a giant wave in space-time, and all matter and space connected through frequency, and all existence coming from star-stuff, from light. I then began talking with my friend about Bio-Photon Therapy, and at that moment she mentioned that it translated to “Living Light”.
I then jokingly said…
“That would be such a great band name!”
…and that’s when I realized that was the personal vision. And the more I thought about the meaning behind the name, the more it made sense to me – light as in photons, and light as opposed to heaviness. I had an insane desire to travel the world with my music, but I needed to lighten my load in order to do so. I couldn’t get past the East Coast with the full band since we had so much gear – and it was nearly impossible to afford to fly out to festivals. I realized those multiple meanings behind the name in that instant, and that I could live lightly by starting up this side project – putting a whole band on my back! And that’s when I decided to take this break to go back to music production.
And there’s more meanings – like living non-materialistically and environmentally responsibly – living lightly upon the Earth. We are technically all living light – we come from stars, ancient sunlight, and now finally our culture is working in earnest towards using environmentally responsible renewable resources.
There’s also even a mind set of living lightly. I was very bogged down into the western fear mentality behind news and politics for a long time. We have an almost cultural obsession with the negative. Then I went away to southern India, where technically things are also dangerous, but there is also a colorful playfulness that permeates, and there isn’t this nonstop fear propaganda that you see in the western world everywhere. But then I came back home to Boston just a few days after Boston Marathon Bombing tragedy, and I was greeted with intense terrorist propaganda everywhere – from billboards to infomercials on wide screen TVs all asking if I was “ready for a terrorist attack?”. The contrast was striking, and I quickly came to realize there was no greater fear than fear itself.
So all of these are meanings that are open for interpretation for each listener, and all of these are influences behind the sounds of the first album “Ecliptic Visions” – subtle messages I like to hint at through the music, through tones, textures, and samples of people you’ll hear in the tracks.
•Musically speaking, which artist(s) have been an inspiration to you?
One of my main inspirations is this obscure group called the Saafi Brothers. I first heard them in 1999. They have this beautiful dub groove that when you listened to it, no matter what mood you were originally in, you just started to feel so at peace. They incorporate such uplifting frequencies. They are definitely one of my main musical inspirations and have been for the last 15 years or so. It was only recently that I discovered the other light-minded & inspirational frequencies such as OTT, Bluetech, Kalya Scintilla, and Desert Dwellers.
•Your track “Perihelion” was just featured on “Resonant Mind” by Yaygons’ “Merkaba Music”, how does it feel to be featured on such a forth-moving conscious music label?
So blessed. I mean, between Yaygon and Desert Dwellers. Desert Dwellers actually found me at my second Living Light show and they signed me on the spot. They’re my main label, Desert Trax, and they’re such lovely people to work with.
It’s all a wonderful family that I give thanks every day to now be connected with. Everyone knows each other and works together so symbiotically and peacefully.
•What festival did that happen at? When the Desert Dwellers signed you?
PEX Summer Festival 2013, The Philadelphia Experiment in Maryland. I still have my wrist band on because that was a moment that changed my music career. I had an intensely vivid dream the night before where I was talking with two of my favorite musicians about how I really wanted to travel with my music, and well, long story short, they said,
They’ve been a great support team in getting my music and name out and plugging me in with other light-minded individuals within the US festival circuit. In all my years as a musician, this is the fastest any project of mine has taken flight, and I would not be where I am today without these 2 beloved brothers and this whole beautiful sonic soul family.
• Aside your track, what other artists did you dig on that compilation, was there a new discovery?
Yes, all of them are great, but a new pleasant surprise was Mr. Squatch. I just discovered him on this comp and absolutely love his work!
• If you could live anywhere in the states, or world, where would it be?
Well, I’ve been in Massachusetts my whole life and knowing I’ve lived in Boston for 18 years, I decided that this Spring I wasn’t going to do a 19th Winter in Boston [chuckles]. So, I am actually currently checking out areas. I recently stayed for a week in Santa Cruz right before playing at Enchanted Forest. Santa Cruz is pretty lovely, so right now that’s looking like my next destination. But [looks around] Colorado is really beautiful too! and Asheville, NC also has a really great vibe to it. So I am definitely spreading my wings. Relocation is on the horizon!
Living Light is on the right track of discovery as she is building momentum in the conscious and transformational lifestyle, she’s ultimately found her life purpose, a light of inner calling. This certified Yogi has new projects in store, so make sure you keep your eyes pealed for this one as her magical and transcendent vibes will embark a transformation within you! The newest release will be coming out this September, a remix album of her current full length “Ecliptic Visions” called “Ecliptic ReVisions” and will feature remixes of her tracks by predominant and forth-moving psydub, tribal, and sacred bass master minds: Kaminanda, Bluetech, Suduaya, Skytree, Smokesign, Erothyme, Supersillyus, Icaro, Heiss, Pr∆na, Om Frequency, Subcreature, and more. The next Living Light full length album “Tales from the Karman Line” is already in the works with a projected release date of Winter 2015. Step out of your shadow and let the living light clear your being and align your chakras. Take a moment to escape and return to your spirit origin of light and let the universe’s synchronicities flash back and forth through light triggers of imaginable twists and deep-rooted intuitions composed of dub frequencies.
•Other recent appearances have included tracks on Heiss’s “Awaken(D)” remix album, and an upcoming Desert Dwellers remix EP•
Living Light -Perihelion [MerKaba Music]
Living Light – ‘Ecliptic Visions’ Preview [Desert Trax]
Living Light – First Light [Ecliptic Visions]
Skytree (of Re:Evolution Booking) recently released “Cirrus Sapiens”, an invigorating ancient touch to the heart chakra whilst creating a balance of clear energy aligning within yourself. A magical and enticing story within a story that will ultimately reveal the truth has been created. It will open up hidden passages, reveal forgotten truths, and bring forth luminous cosmic energy through sky crystals and bass forests. Evan Snyder is an extremely driven and creative individual whom I’ve had the pleasure of meeting back in 2012 during a show in Austin, TX… a very genuine soul with outstanding performances. I’ve witnessed his sets twice in Austin, TX and he definitely creates an awesome experience. Skytree is playing at numerous festivals across the nation this summer, but I especially can’t wait for his set at one of my favorite festivals, Sonic Bloom, happening on June 19th – 22nd 2014 in SouthPark, CO for their 9th annual gathering this year. His creativity can be witnessed through the accomplished goal he set visible to the world on May 27, 2013. After his debut release of “Crystal Consciousnesss” on 11.11.11 and “Treemixes V1” on 12.12.12, his new collaborative album, “Cirrus Sapiens” (originally titled “Cloud People”), was set to be released independently later within the year, which was made possible through the help of his dedicated and loving fans whom contributed to his project via Indiegogo project. In return, such individuals would receive an abundance of awards and co-creations once complete. It would be released digitally, on CD, and on custom USB drives (including limited edition wire-wrap crystal pendents). Fast forward to NOW and a brilliant, uplifting soundscape has been fashioned. “Cirrus Sapiens” was created in collaboration with several guest producers and instrumentalists over the past two years, and it incited within me a sacred awakening – it sparked within me the will to create. It inspired me. This fresh album is composed of three separate, 4-track sections, each with their own story and vibe, ending in ambience. “A trilogy of EPs in one album”. Breathtaking artwork was created by Hayley Carloni and the mastering was done by Brendan Connors at Metronome Media Group’s Mastersuite Studio in NH. I hope you guys are ready for a spiritual and technological journey escape into a new universe full of energies composed of organic psydub and ambient sound frequencies which will bring forth an atmospheric environment full of sky crystals, bass forests, and linguistic brilliance – deep messages directed to create change.
“Cirrus Sapiens” is brought to light by the introduction track entitled “God Detector” featuring visionary artist and musician Michael Garfield. Dennis McKenna’s voice is initially heard in D.M.T: The Spirit Molecule’s DMT:RMX project: “Meditators and people on Soulacybin, people in various transcendent states of mind, you see the same parts of the brain are engaged…and, what is the meaning? What? Why is there a part of the brain that seems to be, for a lack of a better word, a “God Detector”, you know, What’s the evolutionary advantage to having some part of the brain that seems to trigger and mediate experiences of the transcendence?” Through this hearing, there is a heavenly and melodic sound resonating along with these philosophical words, a clear introduction being revealed through rhythmic textures of harmonic waves of ambience and future bass. A cloud of psychedelic lushness formation of “Sky Crystals” and “Bass Forests” is the theme of this track and the rest of the album to follow. This track brings me one with nature through the sounds of blue monkeys and moose – it brings me one with the universe (especially through Michael Garfield’s strumming of the guitar and ukulele). “Great Central Sun” smoothly channels next and it’s an amazonian gift composed of organic nature bird calls, flute instrumentation, and Skytree’s vocoder of the Hare Krishna mantra, a theological approach surrounding one’s original consciousness and goal of life to be pure love of “God (Krishna)”. “Jah Tah” features Esseks & Jemineye, and it blends rhythmically with the previously heard flow of mantras and psydub composition. A track composed of tribal sounds and bass beats by Esseks mixed with Navajo-esq maxims by Jemineye’s vocals that are meant to transcend you into a deep suited meditation. “Star Forest” ft. Space Jesus adds to the perfect touch to the ending of the first section of this album with it’s ambient ancient dubstep atmosphere. A very distinct drill of beats that are deep and soothing, and can especially be both heard and felt through the mesmerizing piano playing skills of Yoel B’nai Yehuda.
The second part of this album is illuminated through “Mana Machine” ft. Technicolor Lenses and Erothyme, and reveals a new theme. Future bass beats mixed with cooperative experimental lyrical hip hop flow and texture programming by Erothyme meant to spread a message, a powerful one. These next level flows blend very well with the dexterous guitar playing skills of Esseks. Was a new genre just invented? It’s like I have entered a celestial skyhop dimension filled with sacred energy, that can only be entered through progression within oneself: “Letting go of thought and tune into the waves of the heart space, everything in its right place.” “Cloud People” features the vocals and dazzling electric bass of Skytree’s brother, Alan Snyder. This collaborative effort has created a feels of ambience air, a whirlwind of deep-felt energy radiating from the ground, through textures of the trees in forests, veins of the leaves, and soon after an uplift into the clouds of the sky and beyond. Cello instrumentation by Katherine S An adds to the tranquilizing feels of these tuning frequencies. “Unstoppable Soldiers” ft. Waters has very potent lyrics, it speaks truths about being open about feeling exasperated. These deep lyrical feels create an intention to go beyond the impossible, an unstoppable identity. Skytree’s signature bass also feels deep truths and opens up passages to the unknown. Ending the “second section” of Cirrus Sapiens, is “Distant Song of Earth” featuring AJ Block unifies and wraps it all up. You can initially feel deep ambient and psybass frequencies suited fo deep meditation…it’ll levitate you as it takes you to yet another unimaginable dimension, it’s like I’ve entered a known galactic space satellite venture from a past life.
The third part of Cirrus Sapiens begins a new journey through “Record Keeper” featuring Tectum, a psychedelic producer. The collaboration of Skytree’s ambient yet future bass beats and skydubs mixed with Tectum’s production skills brings a creative product of formation. Some skytrance and treedubs for your mind, body, and soul. Additional drum machines by HEISS and Skytree’s strings add a glowing touch tied with singing bowls, hermit thrush and doves. “Skycell ft. LuneCell produced in collaboration consists of ambient psydub textures and squelches. Bell sounding illumination creates a bubbles of ever-changing tempos and frequencies which in turn give light to new psychedelic escapes. “Hexeract” ft. Supersillyus & D.V.S* is an ancient doozy consisting of breaks and cooperative programming of blips and bass by Supersillyus. D.V.S* adds ambient energy through his masterful guitar skills which build unique sound waves that mesh well with other elements such as trippy vocals. “Magellanic Stream” ft. Laura Karuna is the last song of the third chapter, and the ending of this concept album. It reaches an exosphere knowing, a paradisaical outlook which is made visible by angelic sounding drones accompanied by quotes taken from DMT:RMX – The Spirit Molecule Remix Project.
“Cirrus Sapiens” will take you on a spiritual escape into a sacred geometrical atmospheric landscape full of Sky Crystals and Bass Forests. It will channel numerous escapes into endless dimensions through psydub, skyhop, and treedub frequencies. Each chapter tells a story of its own and creates a connection within your higher self, it almost leaves one hypnotized. An awareness of the importance of clearing of the mind, body, and spirit is the theme of the entire album, a message to be spread. Take 55:55 minutes of your presence to feel a connection to our cosmic truth that exists within ourselves and our universe. A known past that lies within you will be brought to light. We are all connected, we are all one. Skytree is definitely breaking through his music journey as he continues to explore sounds within sounds from within, from his own Shamanic being. Thank you Skytree and everyone involved in this project.
Check Out “Cirrus Sapiens”: Cirrus Sapiens by Skytree
Aversive’s EP, “Inner Visions“, was released on MalLabel Music (based in San Francisco) on April 24th, 2014 . Aversive is an up and coming DJ and Multi-Genre Bass Music Producer currently residing in Canada and she definitely knows how to break boundaries. Ultimately twisting fresh bass lines, her sounds are filled with futuristic and psychedelic frequencies and downtempo amplitudes, giving a vibe of a dreamscape sound experience. So much diverse emotion can be felt and heard through this EP, which will lead you to your own escape, your own inner visions. Influenced by Amon Tobin, Tipper, Opiuo, Fila Brazillia, and Mr. Bill, Aversive portrays a similar feel but adds her own creative touch and approach through her inside-out.
This diverse EP consists of four multi-genre bass-fueled, yet glitch-ed out and futuristic tracks: “Breakspeak”, “Visions of the Heart”, “Ghetto”, and “Dreams”. “Breakspeak” kicks off with a mid tempo and psychedelic world beat feel, it’s like she’s guiding us into a spiritual journey all initiating from the heart. It is then meshed up with low-key vocals and glitched-out wurbbles blended with an upbeat funky melodic beat, giving it a mysterious vibe with rhythmic control. “Visions of the Heart” spoke to my heart, it has such a lively creative dubstep sound meshed with a theme surrounding heavy bass line drops full of midtempo rhythms. “Ghetto” took me on a Neuro-Funk journey that is out of this world, maybe even out of this universe – its composition delivers a unique story full of original drum and bass and neuro funk sounds which blend perfectly with vocal additions. “Dreams” took me on a dreamstep experience – it emanates a flowing downtempo approach full of dubs and soothing vocals, a dreamy outlook.
Aversive’s sound design is quite unique, a very creative producer who explores multiple bass music genres such as glitch hop, neuro-hop, drum & bass, dubstep, and dreamstep. These funky yet psychedelic wobbles and wurbbles will open up gateways to many possibilities in the mind/spirit and will therefore create a flowing dance environment and unique and mysterious spiritual journey. Pause whatever you’re doing right now and let Aversive guide you through a magical experience full of spiritual bass music that will bring light to your inner visions which will elevate you into a new state.