LA Musician & Visual Artist
New Album | Out August 26
On Company Records
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Premiere at Noisey
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LA-based musician and visual artist, Lionel “Vinyl” Williams debuts a new track today at Noisey called, “L’Quasar,” from his third full-length album, Brunei out August 26 on Company Records, the label of Toro Y Moi/Les Sins mastermind Chaz Bundick, who’s featured on the new album. Williams explains the backstory behind his new single:
“In 1963 as the first Quasar was detected by Maarten Schmidt, the observed radius of our universe grew to a perceivably 10x of what we had previously thought. With it’s distance being several-billion light years, for an object to appear as bright as a Quasar it must be brighter than a million galaxies…These objects (or gravity clusters) can be museums of mystery that engage our senses toward the most distant depths of the universe. As we understand nothing of the causal realm, this song impressionistically approaches the noumenal center of Quasars by defining the cause as Love – the essential gravitational force that binds all things together.”
Williams is an internationally exhibited visual artist and musician who’s been releasing music under his Vinyl Williams alias since 2010. As a result of experiencing religious and cultural dissonance growing up in the state of Utah, Williams reacts by creating dream worlds of religious and cultural harmony. It’s through his art, he projects himself beyond metaphysical dream worlds with ancient mystical symbols, utopian architecture and exotic locales enveloped in a rippling haze of psychedelia.
On his third release for Company Records, Brunei expresses an otherworldly vision of the land of the same name. As a child, Williams was fascinated by the appearance of the Brunei dollar, which years later on the new album, inspired development of a mysterious civilization centered around pure harmony. The translucent, rainbow, and prismatic piece of currency looks the way Williams’s music is intended to sound.
Lyrically, the album is written mainly from the perspective of an incorporeal being from Xol, the gravity cluster orbiting the star Alnilam (the center of the Orion constellation), which represents purely harmonious patterns. Brunei opens as if at the birth of a new galaxy with the cosmically tranquil “Ion,” which seamlessly transitions to the insistent krautrock of “Riddles Of The Sphinx.” That track’s refrain, “try to understand,” marks a universal struggle. Across the album, the songs use a process of Arabic quarter-tone vocal techniques, layered on top of stretched-out jazz chords and quick-driving beats.
Bundick recorded “Evol” at his Berkeley studio with Williams and guitarist Ian Gibbs. “Voidless,” a Hawkwind-like improvisational track, was elevated with the help of Medicine’s, Brad Laner. The shoegaze icon added four-part vocal harmonies and a fuzzy synth part to complete the song.
The album represents an impression of Brunei as an immaculate state of being. Despite its quality of life being ranked highly among Islamic nations, horrific laws exist to severely punish non-heteronormative behavior. For a place that masquerades as ‘heaven on Earth,’ Williams believes we must expose such ugly hegemony, through latent reflection of their most ultimate civilized potential. Brunei uses lush, Islam-influenced pop music to spread harmonious qualities with the world, to ultimately benefit the human psyche and physiology.
7/18 — Barboza, Seattle *
10/14-16 – Desert Daze, Joshua Tree – http://bit.ly/22DCqbx #
10/21 – Turf Club, St Paul – http://bit.ly/1r69F9o #
10/22 – Empty Bottle, Chicago – http://tktwb.tw/24nywTf #
10/23 – A&R Music Bar, Columbus – http://bit.ly/1U0pqcD #
10/24 – Lee’s Palace, Toronto – http://ticketf.ly/1WzGXMa #
10/26 – Bowery Ballroom, NYC – http://ticketf.ly/1ssaKdc #
10/27 – Rock & Roll Hotel, DC – http://ticketf.ly/20Yaxt5 #
10/28 – Johnny Brenda’s, Philadelphia – http://ticketf.ly/1ZkW4XK #
10/29 – Brighton Music Hall, Allston – http://bit.ly/1PaRc1v #
* w/ HOTT MT
# w/ Temples
2. Riddles Of The Sphinx
3. Feedback Delicates
5. Celestial Gold
8. Mercurial Vestiges
9. The Presence Of Absence
10. Emerald Isle