|The Expanding Flower Planet (August 28, 2015)|
Deradoorian — The Expanding Flower Planet (August 28, 2015)•» V rámci přípravy na svou první sólovou odysseu Deradoorian údajně poslouchala krautrockové inovátory Can společně s Björk, Kate Bush a Kid A–era Radiohead. Studovala světové kultury: východoindickou, kulturu středního východu, tradiční japonskou a Native (po našem indiánskou) americkou. Z toho vyplývá myšlenkový podklad písní Flower Planet: odvíjí se zdánlivě nelimitovanou kakofonií zvuků: jsou zde nepravidelné synkopované údery (“Violent Minded”), vrstvy atonálního zpěvu (“Komodo”), výrazné dýchání až do morku kostí (“Ouneya”), ‘skittering’ elektronické perkuse a v jistých momentech zrychlené basové linky (“The Eye”).
•» In 1981, Italian artist Luigi Serafini published Codex Seraphinianus, a 360–page illustrated encyclopedia of an imaginary world. Over the course of 30 months, Serafini drew bizarre flowers, impossible anatomies, and metamorphic love alongside the book’s text, composed in an original alphabet that has yet to be deciphered. None of it makes sense. As you begin to leaf through its pages, you’re reminded of how remarkable it feels to observe without comprehension, to process shapes and images without associations, to get lost in a world that presents itself void of assumed meaning. Angel Deradoorian has built a similarly strange planet, but she’s left us enough clues to navigate it without losing the wonder of the unknown.Born: July 18, 1986
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Album release: August 28, 2015
Record Label: Anticon
01 A Beautiful Woman 3:31
02 The Expanding Flower Planet 4:27
03 Violet Minded 5:34
04 Komodo 4:38
05 Your Creator 5:40
06 The Invisible Man 4:55
07 Dark Lord 2:56
08 Ouneya 4:59
09 The Eye 3:37
10 Grow 6:05
Essential Tracks: “Violet Minded”, “Komodo”, “A Beautiful Woman”, “The Eye”, “The Invisible Man”
•» Dave Cooley Mastering
•» Angel Deradoorian Banjo, Bass, Design, Drums, Engineer, Flute, Guitar, Layout, Mixing, Piano, Producer, Synthesizer, Vocals
•» Arlene Deradoorian Vocals
•» Brian DeRan Artwork
•» Sonny Diperri Mixing
•» Kenny Gilmore Engineer, Guitar, Mixing, Producer, Synthesizer
•» Daniel Higgs Cover Art
•» Jeremy Hyman Drums
•» Michael Lockwood Drums
•» Niki Randa Vocals
•» Bryant Rutledge Design, LayoutSUMMARY
•» The Expanding Flower Planet is an album, a song, a cosmic ideal, a form of psychic expansion and expanded capability. It's original and personal. It transmutes ethereal abstractions into crystalline harmonies and sinuous grooves. It's music nurtured with the idea of healing, exciting, inspiring, enlightening. Drones, dissonance, warmth, and love.
•» Even if you're unfamiliar with Angel Deradoorian's name, you're likely familiar with her voice. As the former bassist and vocalist for Dirty Projectors, her lepidopteran flights helped buoy the Brooklyn–based group. She's been a member of Avey Tare's Slasher Flicks and sang on Flying Lotus' "Siren Song." Her fist song collection, 2009's Mind Raft EP elicited praise from Pitchfork for being "passionate and lovingly crafted." The Fader hailedher "zen weed energy" and "moody dervish spirals."
•» But her debut LP, The Expanding Flower Planet reflects a remarkable creative journey. The title came from a tapestry on the wall in front of Deradoorian's workstation–a Chinese embroidered image of a flower mandala. © Photo credit Bennet Perez
•» “It started to represent to me the growing consciousness of the human mind in the world today,” Deradoorian says. "So the first song I wrote, which I felt appropriate for the album, was called Expanding Flower Planet and represents this desire to broaden the mind and it's capabilities beyond what we are told it can do.
•» Others imitate the past and others divine inspiration and transmit it elsewhere. This is the latter instance. If you listen close enough, you can detect faint hints of Alice Coltrane and Can, Terry Riley, and Dorothy Ashby. A new world springs from ancient traditions–with East Indian, Middle Eastern, traditional Japanese musical inspiration aligned with Deradoorian's singular orbit.
•» Recorded in various locales over a period of several years, sessions began from scratch in Baltimore, 2011, before moving to her studio in LA. Some tracking was done in a church. Extra tracks were recorded at The Topaz Chamber, which belongs to Deradoorian's friend, Kenny Gilmore. This is an album so refulgent that it actually sounds like it was made in a Topaz chamber.
•» Roughly 90 percent was written and performed solely by Deradoorian, with assists from drummers Jeremy Hyman and Michael Lockwood, guest vocalist Niki Randa, Arlene Deradoorian and Gilmore, who helped the songs breathe. It's essentially the offspring of a labyrinthine odyssey of self–exploration. In the course of cutting it, Deradoorian realized a more profound communion with music than she'd ever experienced. It's salient in the songs, which glow and warp, burn brightly and float gracefully past sun and assorted stars.
•» “It seemed endless, but eventually the shift occurred and it was like a revelation,” Deradoorian describes the epiphany. “I was incredibly grateful for when that day came. It was the first time I really had to force myself to be patient and understand that good things will take time. It won't all happen when you want it to. It'll happen when it's supposed to–when you're truly ready.”AllMusic Review by Mark Deming; Score: ****½
•» After proving herself to be a valuable utility player working with Dirty Projectors and Avey Tare's Slasher Flicks, among others, Angel Deradoorian has stepped out as a solo act with her first full–length solo album, and 2015's The Expanding Flower Planet gives a sense of how much she brought to other people's work as an accompanist. Recorded under the collective name Deradoorian, with Angel playing most of the instruments herself and her sister Arlene Deradoorian providing backing vocals, The Expanding Flower Planet delivers music that's at once languid and deeply rhythmic, with the subtle but insistent beats prodding these ethereal melodies downstream as the melodies and Deradoorian's splendid vocals (which sometimes resemble a more polished Judee Sill with a very different set of spiritual obsessions) recall a 21st century version of exotica, suggesting an unspoiled tropical paradise that somehow has banks of vintage synthesizers handy. Deradoorian and David Longstreth, her former boss in Dirty Projectors, clearly share a passion for vintage electronics and tuneful constructs that suggest other cultures while having a sound of their own, and it's not at all difficult to see how these two artists would feel sympatico, with each constructing different music founded on similar notions of how world music influences can be reshaped into contemporary indie pop. However, while Longstreth's fondness for juju guitars and R&B rhythms makes for music that you can dance to even as it explores continents that may only exist in his imagination, Deradoorian's music is intelligent and often quite beautiful, but often relies on a hypnotic minimalism that only remains compelling for so long. The Expanding Flower Planet makes it clear that Angel Deradoorian has the talent and ambition to make an album that's decisively her own; however, she hasn't yet released one that's consistently exciting and satisfying from beginning to end, though there's more than enough here to make this worth a listen and to suggest that Deradoorian could have more interesting things up her sleeve for her next solo effort. Allmusic.com © St Vitus, 25 Jan 2015, Credit: Emily Tan
By Philip Sherburne; August 20, 2015; Score: 8.0
•» Angel Deradoorian's debut album is full of unusual juxtapositions: '60s psych and Georgian polyphony; classical minimalism and laser–show maximalism; dulcimer and church organ. But her voice is the thread that holds it all together, and once the album has finished, tied off with a ribbon of wailing trombone, it's her voice you remember most. Crystalline and unerring in pitch, it dominates the album, both solo and in multi–tracked close harmonies that radiate an eerie glow, like pyrite glinting through fog. It's not hard to imagine that an a capella version of this album would be captivating all on its own.
•» This is Deradoorian's debut solo album, but she has played a key role in a number of arty, ambitious indie rock projects: She played bass and sang in Dave Longstreth's Dirty Projectors in the Bitte Orca years, and she's one third of Avey Tare's Slasher Flicks, the most recent side project of Animal Collective's Dave Portner. As a singer, she's also worked with Vampire Weekend, Charli XCX, Flying Lotus, U2, and Matmos, a list that suggests an unusually robust versatility. She began releasing her own music in 2009, with the Mind Raft EP, but the new album represents a quantum leap in complexity and ambition. The Expanding Flower Planet feels like an album full of trap doors, where a single, unexpected sound can deposit you into new worlds.
•» Playing the bulk of the music herself, with help from two drummers and a handful of backup vocalists, Deradoorian explores krautrock rhythms, microtonal tunings, and various Eastern scales, including those of her Armenian heritage. And she lets those scales dictate a melodic line that takes her far away from the hidebound formula of indie's usual four–bar chord changes. "A Beautiful Woman" begins as a garage–soul rave–up and then explodes into the eerie, cascading harmonies of the Black Sea region; "Your Creator" stacks ghostly chords to the heavens and trips up and down their intervals, a dizzying game of chutes and ladders.•» The album's title comes from a Chinese mandala tapestry that hung in Deradoorian's studio, and, accordingly, she wrestles with big, metaphysical themes: elemental forces, catacombs and mosaics, hearts and eyes, clutching and binding, love and knowledge, and above all, oneness. The theme of self–actualization runs from the first song's daily affirmations ("Beautiful woman/ You're the one I wanna be") to the last song's healing mantra ("Love/ Grow/ Love… Grow grow grow grow grow"). But the focus is rarely narrative; the lyrics tend to operate like koans, spells, small tokens supercharged with symbolic power. The quest for knowledge drives it all. "How do you know?/ Who can tell the truth?" asks "DarkLord". In the title song she sings, "We all know much more than we really think we know," and in "Grow", that idea becomes a question:" How do we learn so we can all teach?"
•» And then there's "Komodo", probably the only song you'll hear this year that seems at least nominally to be about a Komodo dragon attack ("Komodo coming through/ Run for your lives/ Run for the hills/ Don't close your eyes"). It contains some of the album's most vivid lyrics, particularly in a cooing chorus whose dulcet tone contradicts its stark imagery ("Drone/ Between the grass/ The blades are rough/ Your metal skin/ Protects your hunt/ Death is in your clutch"). Despite this reptilian foray, though, the album's wide–angled macro perspective suggests that Deradoorian's true spirit animal is likelier to be a hawk or an eagle.
•» There is an aching sense of space in her music: with her soaring vocals leading the way, her arrangements begin to suggest patchworks of fields and freeways and mountains and beaches as seen from above. “I love the beauty of the state, but there's a whole other aspect of it that I struggle with,” she told Self–Titled magazine of her attempt to come to grips with California's sprawl. As she wends her unpredictable way up and away, through strange intros and outros and across mantra–like choruses and far above bridges to nowhere, she offers a bird's–eye view of a landscape unlike any other, a place at once familiar, as though half–remembered from a dream, and spellbindingly alien. •» http://pitchfork.com/
Press: Judy Miller Silverman,
UK/EU: Belmont Bookings
John Fitzgerald —
BY NINA CORCORAN ON AUGUST 18, 2015, 6:00 AM; SCORE: B–
Rachel Brodsky // August 19, 2015 // Score: 6 of 10
|The Expanding Flower Planet (August 28, 2015)|
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