Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Droid Daughter - Mira

Here it is folks, my blog’s first ever exclusive preview. And geeh, I just realized that I don’t even know where the album name “Mira” comes from! I just started to get these feel-good memories of the time when my Spanish flat mates loved the Finnish name Mira, because it was easy for them to pronounce and means “look” in Spanish. They usually associated it with the word “ass”.

But the name is not the only thing, which makes me feel good. I’ve hailed Warminster- based producer Droid Daughter aka Connor Lepre as a true wonder kid of pure electronic music. And with his third full-length, it’s pretty evident that my words are not just words. Even if I say so myself.
Although I get these positive feelings while listening to Mira, Lepre himself sees a darker side to it.

Mira is an interesting thing because if you asked me what it's about right after I finished it in May, I'd have no real answer for you. Looking back, it's really funny for me. It's an album full of regret about how I was spending my life the 5 months prior to that, but in this weird way where I was trying to cover up my regret. Like when you're sad and don't want anyone to know, you just put up a wall of happy and often times it can be easy to see through. I think people will have no problem seeing through the happier sides of Mira. It's the "too good to be true" happy feeling, but that's just how I interpret it.

Lepre considers the album to be a step out of his comfort zone, which resulted in what I would like to say a huge ass prolific beat making.  Out of the 15 tracks the collaborations are definitely the highlights- they bring Lepre’s sick beats into a whole different level, when different types of talent complement each other.

The song “Purple Beat” features rapper/songwriter Reefa Ali, who seriously has some mad skills. Rarely, you hear such clever rhymes.  “I sent him the beat, he wrote to it, and I recorded it”, Lepre explains the simplicity on his collaboration with Ali.

Another collaboration was with fellow producer Kali Ma aka Cody Miller. On the album you can hear a remix on the song Afrodesia done by Miller, but I guess you can say that the true respect is paid by Lepre taking influences from him.

On songs like Mira and I'm So Amber, I really tried channeling my inner Kali Ma, I hope he doesn't mind. But I felt it would be appropriate for him to remix one of the songs because of the influence on the album. I gave him the stems for Afrodesia and came back to me a few days later with a mind melting, almost Nine Inch Nails-esque remix that I love. When I play Afrodesia live, I play the first 2/3 of his remix, and then into my version. He does a similar thing for a song I remixed for him.

Musically, the most mind-blowing gem of the album is You + Time. The reason for that is the most utterly astonishing voice of Lepre’s friend Kate Kushin. You can’t really understand what Kushin is singing about, but it’s like the case of "Milk and Cereal"- it’s not about the content, it’s about the way it’s done.  “I played with her breathe noises and kept about half the song and repeated it. It filled the song up a bit and I think it added a bit of style.”

Connor, this line is for you:
You + Time is the most stylistic thing you’ve done so far.

In general, one of my favorite moments is when the base drops. And without forgetting a bit of humor, this Droid Daughter track which is included in live sets made me go "Bitch, drop the base!" the first time I heard it.

I’ve said it a dozen times before that the most important thing for an album is to work as an entity. And as a person, who doesn’t concentrate too much on visual stuff, am very proud to say that it’s the first time for an album art work to be the icing on the cake. Honestly, I don’t think I’ve seen anything as amazing as Mira’s cover. The closer I look the more I drool.

Okey, I think we’re better off ending this with Lepre’s own words, before things get out of hand. But damn it feels great to give out recognition in a review for something which basically is mainly not about it. #TrySomethingNewEveryDay.

Artistically, I ended up creating these little worlds in my head that each song was from. Kristina Abuladze did an amazing job capturing how the album felt with the album art she made for me. I have synesthesia, which is a neurological condition where one sense, in this case hearing, will stimulate another sense, and often times for me it's sight. To me, songs have corresponding colors and textures. I don't necessarily "see" colors and textures when I listen to music, but I associate songs and sounds with color and texture. When I listen to the songs on the album, I find a strain of color(s) on Kristina's album art that I associate with that song so it's like the whole album is visualized for me on the album art which is a cool thing.

Mira is available for download on its release date, July 24th 2013 via everywhere, just check his Facebook for more info. Thanks to Connor for granting my blog the rights for this exclusive preview.

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