29 September 2021
LORE CITY is one of Turn Up The Volume‘s most intriguing finds of 2021.
An art rock duo – Laura Mariposa Williams and Eric Angelo Bessel – formed
in 2011 and currently based in Portland, Oregon. So far they made 4 albums,
including their most recent one, the puzzling PARTICIPATION MYSTIQUE LP.
In my mind, it’s a spiritual soundtrack for a science-fiction movie like Spielberg’s
1977 classic Close Encounters of the Third Kind. The past, the present and the future,
all in one. This is mesmerizing music that triggers your imagination in different directions. Laura Mariposa Williams‘ bewitching voice is the heroine of this record. Her psychedelic, gothic, far-out and at times wailing timbre magnetizes and hypnotizes while wandering in an orchestral space. About time to keep silent now and let Laura Mariposa Williams do the talking.
But as usual, before starting a Q & A, a piece of music as an introduction to the artist(s)…
Thank you for your time,
Is LORE CITY a real or fictional city?
Why this choice as your artist name?
“Lore City is a real place in Ohio, but this is a coincidence. We’re not related.
Mostly we hope the townspeople aren’t mad at us. Our music feels like someplace
that we travel to, so our name resembles the idea of somewhere… a place of lore.”
Which song would you pick to introduce yourselves
to those who never heard of your music?
“I would pick “I Am the One” because it’s a song that was a long
time coming. Exhumed from the ethers – that’s a good place to start.”
Is your creative process a joint venture or a fusion of individual ideas?
“It’s a mixture of both. We tend to go solo in the development stage,
and then work side by side on finishing a song.”
The new album’s title is PARTICIPATION MYSTIQUE (written the French
way, isn’t it?). What does it mean related to the record?
“I discovered the phrase ‘participation mystique‘ while studying astrology.
It encapsulates the human experience so well: the mysteries of life, projection, attachment, delusion… concepts woven into the album. And yes, this is a French
phrase; the English phrase is ‘mystical participation.”
I’ve read in the press info that the 2020 event of ‘Saturn directly aligned
with Pluto within the constellation of Capricorn’ influenced the album’s
writing process. Honestly, I have no idea what that all means…
“These planetary movements reflected what was set into motion during 2020,
including the life-altering Coronavirus pandemic and the transformative Black Lives
Matter movement. I’ve pointed out the symbolism between the stars and the earth because I believe in astrology, and I hope to get others into it, too.”
What did you want to visualize with the album’s artwork?
‘I KNOW YOU KNOW’ is one of my favorite tracks. What’s the song about?
“The song acknowledges that others can see through things to the heart of
the matter like I do. It’s a rallying cry for kindred spirits.”
What movie would you pick to show on a big screen while the album’s playing?
“What’s Eating Gilbert Grape. Except you’d have to play three of our albums to cover
the whole thing. So chronologically it would go: Kill Your Dreams, Alchemical Task,
and Participation Mystique. I think it would work, actually.”
What impact did that awful pandemic had on your musical activities?
“Since we were always at home together, we focused on writing, recording,
and launching the Lore City Music label. Making art was our tonic.”
Many artists covered other artists during the lockdown period.
Did you do that too? If not, which song would you pick to cover?
“We tend to stay away from covers, but if I ever did sneak one in,
it would be “Where I End and You Begin” by Radiohead.”
Do you play live? If so, what can we expect from a LORE CITY show?
“Yes, we play live. You can expect to look at the stage and think – this duo
has more gear than a four-piece band. Then enjoy Eric’s ambient drones
between songs as a special, live treat. Also, I don’t sing with my eyes closed.”
What‘s the best and worst track you heard so far in 2021?
“Well, overall the best thing I’ve heard in 2021 is Thom Yorke’s new project, The Smile.
The worst thing I could hear in any song is a wordless “whoa-oh-oh” chorus. Except that one Arcade Fire song.”
Any chance yet now that Joe Biden is the POTUS?
“What kind of a chance?”
What’s the next step for LORE CITY?
“Writing and recording and releasing and
repeating. Building a record library.”
Thank you Laura for this Q & A.
May the road rise with Lore City.
‘Participation Mystique’ here…
LORE CITY: Bandcamp