Laconic have produced a video and track to download (see below). The video is based on a text by Aristophenes, the ancient Greek playwright. This could all have ended up really pretentious twaddle. But the video is very melancholic and ‘lost’ and the soundtrack is a fabulous piece of ambient with a hefty bassline. Classy classical.

Because this intrigued me, I have done a quick interview with Laconic to find out a bit more.

1. Tell me a bit about yourself. What are your influences, both musical and otherwise?
We (Laconic) are a production duo from Albuquerque, New Mexico composed of myself, Chad Harris and Brandon Atcheson.  I am a graduate architecture student at the University of New Mexico awaiting completion in December of this year and Brandon is working and studying architecture in Lubbock.  Him and I both come from very different backgrounds when it comes to our musical influences.  My background as a child was in classical music, playing the violin for many years, as well as classic rock.  Influence on my music production stems from a wide variety from groups like Joy Division, The Smiths, and Led Zeppelin to more current ones such as Sunset Rubdown, Battles, Moderat, Benga, Mimosa, and Boys Noize, and even reaching back to composers like Schonberg or Chopin.  Speaking for Brandon, he has been a drummer for a long time and his roots were in the more Metal scene bringing influences like NIN or Tool.  Outside of music I find a lot of influence from literature especially, writers like Huxley, Kunderas, Emmerson, or Hemmingway. As well as influence from art and architecture, in where I find inspiration in artists or designers who are doing something original and breaking beyond the norms or the trends.

2. Aristophanes is best known as a comic playwright, so why pick a speech of his on love as a base?

Aristophanes is known for his playwrights, but I was very struck by his concept on love in this speech.  In the speech he describes his idea of how Zeus created humans as hermaphrodites, more of conjoined twins, where everyone was attached as man/man, man/woman, or woman/man.  At one point this hermaphrodite race decided to rebel against the gods, and so Zeus punished them by splitting them all and half and separating them.  Through this each person was fated to wonder the earth in search of his or her other half.
3. The video feels like a muse on loss, isolation and searchig for a place of being, rather than love. In what way do you feel it is about love?

It makes me very happy to see you describe the film/song as such, because those are exact feelings I was working towards achieving through this work.  I find the notion of this search for ones other half a rather depressing one and when going into the film it would not have been right for me to approach it as a lovey dovey feel good one.  I had broken the film down in my mind to what I call different sequences, which really helped in achieving the right sounds for the song. The first is the search in which the protagonist is looking for this half, the second I dubbed the calling out in which he is building a sort of shrine as well as using words to communicate to this abstract half, also making the reference to the hermaphrodite race at one point when he writes I Am He, then changes to I am Her, then finally communicates I am Here, at the same time expressing an unsaid question of where are you.  The next sequence I call the wait, almost a loss for what else to do and almost frustration at the same time.  The next sequence the epiphany/conjuring in which he has an inkling of an idea in which to find this half, almost conjuring up this half through the rock.  And finally the realization and stillness in which the missing half is manifested and their is solace, comfort and stillness in being complete, here using the water as a kind of symbol for healing and wholeness.  Which I think all these emotions are spurred in the process of love in which we do go through periods of uncertainty, worry, waiting, and so forth to hopefully reaching the stillness and completion through that.
4. Laconic means using few words, expressing much in few words. Does this represent who you are?

That is the definition for Laconic, it more so represents a philosophy which I tend to apply to many aspects of life.  Laconic was originally my pseudonym for doing stencil work, which I thought worked perfectly to describe what is happening when you do a spray up, and then it transferred into our name for our production.  Being a philosophy much along the lines of minimalism, it might not sound like it when you listen to our work, but the underlying thought process of minimalism is ever present in my work.

~ by acidted on February 28, 2011.

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