In Print: Exploring the Hazy Landscapes of Tycho's Vivid Electronica
From SF Weekly's latest print music section:
Tycho: Scott Hansen may not actually have synesthesia -- the condition where one's sensory perceptions are connected, so that they see music or hear colors -- but you'd be forgiven for assuming he does. Making music as Tycho, and designing visually as ISO50, Hansen possesses an uncanny ability to evoke sensations outside of his work's medium.
His music is immensely visual: Dive, Tycho's latest release (and Hansen's first since his 2004 debut, Sunrise Projector, was repackaged and re-released as Past Is Prologue in 2006), features 10 songs that construct an immersive environment -- a warm bath of swirling melodies, digital delay, and propulsive, almost motorik rhythms. The album draws you into its own landscape, starting with the first track, "A Walk": Slow and ponderous tones float idly over a beat-less surface, creating a hazy atmosphere reminiscent of a coastal rain forest. These notes are gradually met by a laid-back rhythm that expands to include an ambling bassline and ethereal slivers of feminine voice. Halfway through, the song breaks, and we're transported at 80 miles per hour along a coastline at ground level. Moving rapidly, the musical images fade into a blur, as though Hansen is driving a Greyhound bus through a tone poem. And actually, that's what all of Dive feels like -- one continuous visual journey viewed out of a passenger window. Tracks like "Adrift" and "Dive" create entire highway networks from washed-out synthesizer pads, reverb-soaked guitars, and wandering monophonic motifs... [Continue reading]
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