For those who like their electronic music to be immersive, abstract and quite philosophical, Mister Lies' debut album is for you
Based: Chicago, Illinois
Listen to: ‘The Hidden Neighbours’
For Fans Of: James Blake, Burial
To your average newcomer, Philosophy is a baffling subject. A million questions, zero answers. It’s a whole new means of thinking, and it takes some time to adapt. Fortunately, although he’s a student of the subject, Nick Zanca aka Mister Lies’ music isn’t quite so profound or lacking in answers. The producer does however give life to a few strands of the subject, the more personal aspect of philosophy; the Zen Buddhist school. His music conveys tranquility and effortless calm. You can find promo shots of Zanca meditating, with city skyscrapers towering over his tiny frame. His music, which you’ll be hearing in its fullest form in debut album ‘Mowgli’, is tranquility defined.
Up to now, Zanca’s emergence has been limited to blog praise and zoned-out music listeners who play their songs late into the night, disconnected and hypnotised. But the debut full-length looks set to expand the producer’s reputation into more expansive territory. His sound has developed significantly from the point of his discovery (early 2012) to the present day. The debut ‘The Hidden Neighbours’ EP was dramatic and all-encompassing, laced with haunting samples of string sections and choir bellows. The hypnotic beats and yearning vocals that define a track such as ‘Morgan’ were but a small aspect of a collection of songs that was just searching for its true voice.
But for all its eclecticism, ‘Hidden Neighbors’ is an essential starting point for anyone new to the producer’s work. The aforementioned ‘Morgan’ is deep and immersive, translating the staple underground dubstep sound that was first crafted by the innovative producer Burial. ‘False Astronomy’ is similarly rooted in influences, its overall feel more inclined to mild euphoria than dark melancholy.
The most recent ‘Dionysian 7”’ shows just how far this guy’s come in the space of just under a year. The lead track melds a trance pulse with strangely uplifting, organic instrumentation. It’s a bold, yet calming, influence with a tense upstart, as chopped beats percolate beneath a bass-heavy forefront. The flipside ‘Waveny’ is a skittering rush of synthetics, as percussive tweaks combine to produce something instantly gratifying and oddly ominous. It’s this collision of emotions that so defines Mister Lies’ productions. It’s won him the support of established US independent label Lefse, who released his debut full-length on 26th February worldwide.
For fans of anything that’s emerged post-Burial’s decade-defining ‘Untrue’, this forthcoming release is completely essential. It’ll bring out the inner philosopher in just about anybody, or at the very least, the Zen Buddhist who uses Mister Lies’ music as a companion to prolonged, exploratory meditation. As electronic music goes, this is one for the escapist; the kind of listener who likes their music immersive and abstract, viewable from all kinds of different perspectives.