Premiere: LiteLvl's New Music Video Is an Ambisonic Audio & 360-Degree Visual Experience

LiteLvL released their debut single “Boost Your Immunity While You Sleep/Inspire Photosynthesis In Plants” last week. The duo, comprised of Katey Sleeveless (Eros & the Eschaton) and Jay Marz (King Eddie), are self-described as “installation soundscore.” Today, we’re proud to premiere their debut music video for the track:

“Boost Your Immunity While You Sleep/Inspire Photosynthesis In Plants” was mixed with ambisonic audio, which means just like the video itself, the sound is also three-dimensional. Filmed at Moon Magnet Studios, the video features LiteLvl members Katey Sleeveless and Jay Marz, Andy Ai & Kevin Netz on visuals/projections, and dancers Kailani Dobso & Holly Seidcheck. Videographer Ben Tyson of DenVR is behind the entrancing, psychedelic video experience.

LiteLvl. Photo Credit:   Julianna Photography

LiteLvl. Photo Credit: Julianna Photography

“As you move, you'll hear different things. When you look at one guitar amp, you'll hear more of it. When you turn around, it'll feel like that amp is now behind you, and you hear the second amp in front of you louder.” frontman Jay Marz said of the trippy, mylar-fueled experience.

The band play FoCoMX - Fort Collins Music eXperiment this Saturday, April 27th at 4PM at Art Lab Fort Collins.

Keep up with LiteLvL here.

2018 Belongs to JJUUJJUU

By: Brody Coronelli

A Q&A with frontman Phil Pirrone on the band’s debut album, their upcoming shows, and how it feels to be on the cusp of their big break.

Phil Pirrone of JJUUJJUU.

Phil Pirrone of JJUUJJUU.

The Los Angeles psych-rock band JJUUJJUU has a sound that’s entirely their own. Harnessing the collision of psych and desert rock with the ambience of low-fi and a fiery undercurrent of metal that never overpowers the music, they’re one of rock’s most interesting and hard to pin down groups. They’re also on the cusp of a breakthrough.

The band- fronted by Phil Pirrone, the founder of the Desert Daze festival- released their debut album 'Zionic Mud.' The album is an atmospheric exploration of a number of different influences, each coming together to capture an atmospheric, psychedelic daze. A good deal of collaboration followed the release. The band released alternate versions of each single re-imagined by friends and supporters, which include Warpaint’s bassist Jennylee’s synth-driven and danceable take on the title track “Zionic Mud” and Liarsloud, scuzzed-out version of “Camo.” They also released a music video for their own version of “Camo” directed by Flaming Lips animator Michan Burzan.

This summer, the band is set to play a number of shows opening for the heavy metal band Mastadon and experimental rock band Primus; two hugely high profile acts with the potential to send JJUUJJUU into the stratosphere. In between those shows, the band is headlining Lost Lake in Denver on June 19th with support from DeCollage and King Eddie. I had the opportunity to chat with Pirrone recently about the band’s new album and their upcoming tour dates.

You guys just released your new album 'Zionic Mud' last month. How has the rolling out and reception of that record been, and in what ways is it different from your past material?

This record was five years in the making. So it's good to have it out. We had only released an EP before this, in 2013, so in a lot of ways, this is the beginning.

Your songs are definitely more blissed out and bright than your counterparts; they aren't always aggressive, and instead, favor some ambience. How do you go about creating this sound live and in the studio?

Not sure how we get there- I guess it's just our collective influences and experiences informing how we approach a song or jam or what have you. Short answer: happy accidents.

What sound were you trying to capture on 'Zionic Mud', and is it going to send the band in a new direction, or expand on a sound you've already established?

I just wanted it to sound like something I loved, no matter what that ended up being. I don't know what direction we're going in or what we've established. Just putting down what comes out and going from there.

What inspired you to have friends and collaborators release their own alternate takes of the singles? What do these new versions have to offer that the originals don't? The JENNYLEE version of "Zionic Mud" particularly stands out to me; it brings out a danceable element in the song's framework that I didn't catch in the album version.

It was my friend Jason's idea who works at the label. And a great idea at that. These versions are some weird form of collaboration between myself and the remixer, without being in the same room or even talking about it. So, it's very exciting to hear what each of them come back with. Jennylee went the extra mile and reimagined the track through her lens and it's lovely.

What made you choose METZ and Liars to rework the songs? Are there any other collaborations in the works?

Part of the aim of this experiment was to find very different filters to mix these songs through and see what we end[ed] up with. Both seemed like total long shots, but they both said yes (surprisingly). Very happy with how both came out.

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Your music strikes a really interesting balance between psychedelia, stoner-rock, desert-rock, and a cool, low-fi aesthetic. How did you come across this collection of sounds, and how do you go about synthesizing them into your live set?

We really don't talk or think about what we're going to do, we just go for it. Whether I'm on my own or with the group, we just jump into it and follow what comes out, or we don't if it's shit. Performing the songs live with a group is an evolution. It's difficult to replicate what happened on record because so much of it was improvised or literally a happy accident. So the live incarnation sort of evolves and the songs grow and change. I think that's totally a normal behavior for a group like JJUUJJUU.

How does it feel to be opening for Mastodon and Primus, two colossal names in the scene? How'd this opportunity come about, and do you have anything special planned for these shows?

Feel honored and excited and nervous, frankly. Touring with bands this good keeps us on our toes and forces us to bring our best. We've toured with Claypool Lennon Delirium before, so it's great to be invited back out. Les Claypool has some of the best fans in the world. They are there to enjoy loud music and have a good time. So, for that, among other things, we're very grateful. We're going to be playing nice and early, so we'll be having a BBQ nightly from stage. We might perform a few weddings (if needed). First 50,000 people in the gates get a free hot dog and t-shirt (if there's also a wedding).

What's next for the band after you guys finish your expansive touring schedule this year? Do you see the band continuing in the same sonic direction, or is there a new sound on the horizon?

We're playing Desert Daze in Southern California in October. We're working on LP2 right now (early stages). It's going to be different. But the same. But different.

-Brody

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

King Eddie's New Music Video Was Inspired By A Family Member's Life Saving Liver Transplant

Last November, psych rock and multimedia group King Eddie released their second full-length record Holographic Universe. The album is “reminiscent of some of the more lo-fi Britpop concepts of the late 70s mixed with perhaps a touch of Tame Impala’s signature modern version of psychedelic rock.”

Recently, the band unveiled their latest music video at Alamo Drafthouse Cinema in Denver for their track “ENTER THE MAN,” the sixth tune on the record. Teeming with the trippy visuals the band is known for, the video was shot at Denver’s Globeville Riverfront Art Space “on a very cold day in January.” It was directed and edited by Steve Besette & Kendal Hurst and costumed by Jacqueline Cordova, who stars in the video alongside Nick Ellingson. King Eddie’s members also make painted appearances.

The song, which was remixed for the video by Mike Schulze (director of the University of Denver's Recording Arts program), also has a powerful story behind it which heavily influenced the direction of the video creatively.

Velvet Adams of King Eddie. 

Velvet Adams of King Eddie. 

Shares frontman Jay Mars, “‘ENTER THE MAN’ started as a song I wrote in Atlanta shortly after my father's life saving organ transplant. The summer of 2016, he was diagnosed with an aggressive liver disease, and by Thanksgiving, I was headed to Georgia to either witness a miracle or say goodbye. The disease exposed a lot of fault lines within my own family, and power struggles that made my ability to care for him and my own search for answers even more difficult. His boss called me a week before Thanksgiving… I didn't realize how sick he was, and I needed to get there as soon as possible. I felt like the situation was being covered up, and I didn't know why or what for. I was stunned to see what the disease had done to his body in a few months. I didn't even recognize him… ”

Jay Mars.

Jay Mars.

As he waited for his father in the intensive surgical recovery center for over a week after the transplant operation, Mars began writing “ENTER THE MAN.”

Says Mars, “I wrote what become the chorus, and the lyrics, ‘Faith enter the man, through a hole inside his head.’ I see this song as a psychedelic drama about staring down your own mortality. The lyrics ‘in a white room stripped to your own, you'll find out yourself’ were inspired by something he said about heading into the surgery, at the 11:59:59 of his life, knowing there was no going back, and he would either die or have a second chance at life. The surgery room was white, circular, surrounded by doctors, and he was lying naked in the center of the room, surrounded by unfamiliar experts in liver pathology. It's hard to imagine what that must have felt like. My best guess is the hallway scene in the video, racing toward something… and on the other side: he miraculously wakes up. ‘ENTER THE MAN’ is a song that explores mortality, the relationship between mind and body, life and death, condemnation and rebirth. We live often completely wrapped up in stories we've projected onto ourselves, about ourselves, about others, the way life is and ought to be. I wanted to explore that space because I thought that's where dissatisfaction might instinctively arise. ‘ENTER THE MAN,’ and the rest of our album Holographic Universe are furthermore inspired by the writings of Michael Talbot in his book The Holographic Universe, asking: If reality is maya, or illusion, can we create our own hologram?”

Whether or not we can, King Eddie sure try. Watch their psychedelic experience above and keep up with King Eddie here.

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artist featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Psych Rock & Multimedia Project King Eddie To Release New Record 'Holographic Universe'

By: Norman Hittle

King Eddie, a denver-based psychedelic rock and VR multimedia project, is preparing to release their second full-length album, Holographic Universe, this Friday, November 17th.

King Eddie.

King Eddie.

Holographic Universe was recorded at Moon Magnet Studios in Denver and marks the band’s first full length release since 2015’s King Eddie (self-titled) release.

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The band’s charge, led by Jay Mars (guitar and vocals), is further filled out by guitarist Benjamin Buttice, bassist Velvet Adams, and drummer Linton Wright. King Eddie’s sound is reminiscent of some of the more lo-fi Britpop concepts of the late 70’s mixed with perhaps a touch of Tame Impala’s signature modern version of psychedelic rock.

Regarding what Holographic Universe represents, singer and guitarist Jay Mars told BolderBeat: “[The record] is a concept album about reconciling human vulnerability and the depth of your own experience with what quantum science and ancient religions tells us is true- ‘reality’ is an illusion. It's loosely based around virtual reality and the futurism of Philip K Dick and Westworld.”

Jay Mars.

Jay Mars.

The Holographic Universe release party will feature Kyle Emerson, Panther Martin, and DeCollage (DJ set), along with live virtual reality visuals from the DenVR collective. Check out this fully immersive experience at their album release show this Saturday, November 18th at the Hi-Dive in Denver, CO. Event details and tickets here!

-Norman

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.