Is psychedelia the “New Black?”
The genre is everywhere of late in all sorts of guises. Unearthed and re-born into a brand new age of.. Aquarius? From the trippy-hippy 60s and 70s it was brought to renewed prominence in Australia a few years back by Western Australia’s Tame Impala who reinforced their position at the forefront of the game to the enthused, muddified throng last week at SPLENDOUR IN THE GRASS. Was that last week? It’s all a bit of a, sorry, Blur.
The genre probably never really went away, just as trippy-hippies have never really gone away. They just went deeper into the dwindling forests, morphed into new-age-hybrid versions and grew their dreads dirtier n deadlier. Not that psychedelia is all about hippies. It crosses and encompasses many species of human-oids. It has inspired me to revisit the cream of the psych-crop. Disraeli Gears. CREAM.
The Demon Parade are not jumping on the psycho band-wagon. Michael and the gang have been playing and developing their own psych inspired sounds for most of a decade. I was first drawn into their “circle” 2 plus years ago on a lonely Thursday eve. The Beergarden, Surfers Paradise.
A scrawny crowd. It didn’t dissuade my joy at their sound and professionalism. I was later gifted a double pass from them for BIGSOUND and got to hang and get to know and appreciate them (and other stuff) over the next three days and nights. Good times. Good demons.
Their new EP Stone Circles has a spiritualised sound and feel, like its name. Stonehenge-ish. A bit of darkish Pagan mysticism amongst the dreamy colourful spirals. Well, that’s me. Music paints a picture in my brain, creates a scene, colours my mind and takes me on a journey, audibly and visually and emotionally. My new-found word is: “synesthesia”. It’s a neurological condition in which the perceptual pathways are stimulated by hearing music, leading to an automatic involuntary experience in a different perceptual pathway. Such as seeing colours.
I’m not a fruitloop – who cares if I am? – though those fruity pastel colours could apply here – well, in my mind.
It is a scientific fact there is a correlation between music and colours. It has been historically debated for centuries by philosophers and psychologists. Plato, Aristotle, Newton, Pythagoras theorised associations between specific musical intervals and specific colours. Artists Kandinsky and Klee used music in their creative endeavours, linking colours with musical excerpts, tempo, mode and timbre. Whoooo…. I just went on a bit of a side trip there. Far out.
Opening track, She’s Dope, begins the velvety magic carpet ride. Love that sitar-ish sounding guitar. I’m on board for the ride for the haunting My Life In Pieces, the nebulous feel of Utopia. ‘We’ll start a revolution. With no pollution. I believe what you want me to see. We don’t need no dreams’.
Not desperation but.. is it defiant resignation of Die Alone? Snipers Eye has some darker undertones, weaving through the murky maze to the sunny sea shores on a balmy summer’s eve. Waves lapping, rainbow ripples. The golden sun melting into the azure blue sea, shards of reds and yellows lighting up the mystical twilight lurking on the horizon.
Step on board this thoughtfully woven carpet. Float across strawberry fields, through marmalade skies over translucent green forests and hazy blue mountains. Take the trip. Create your own colours and visions, story and tapestry.
Enjoy the ride.
_ _ _ _
The Demon Parade play Southern Cross Arts Festival in Lismore on Thursday 13 August and then on Friday 14 August at The Northern, Byron Bay. Their EP Stone Circles is out Friday 7 August.