|September 4, 2012|
"Porton's Elegencia" by Carmen Operetta.
In a 6-round bout, yours truly sampled the essence of Peruvian cuisine and libations courtesy of Pisco Porton, at NYC's Raymi. The drinks, which complimented the courses were special concoctions made by some of NYC's top bartenders - Jorge G. Valesco, Carmen Operetta, Estaben Ordonez, Pamela Wiznitzer, and Saul Ranella. Each mix possessed a unique blend of savory and sweet, with key ingredients ranging from sweet potato to basil puree. Ms. Wiznitzer's drink "Tangled Vines" (cherry infused Porton, Cointreau, Zucca Amaro, and Dolin Rouge vermouth) was paired with the "Lomo Saltado", a steak ensemble. Other highlights, included Esteban Ordonez's "Ponche del Porton" (Porton, pineapple saffron syrup, fresh lemon juice, and armargo de chuncho) served next to the most exquisite paella, "Arroz con Mariscos." The grand finale of the evening was a 2 part dessert installment, 1st a sorbet in a light syrup with adornments of mini cantaloupe cubes and the 2nd being the Lucuma "Ice Cream Sundae" comprised of chocolate terrine, banana, almonds and crème fraiche.
You're still asking what is Pisco Porton? Named after the Peruvian port of Pisco, the colorless spirit dates back to the 1600s and is derived from the distillation of grapes. Depending on the grape of the distillation process it falls under 1 of 3 categories - puro, acholado and mosto verde. For recipes and such see links below:
~ Mister Lee
|OWN magazine  9/19/2012 16:39 EDT|
|August 31, 2012|
Beekman Beer Garden
Bidding farewell to our dear summer, YACHT, GIGAMESH, SNEAKY SOUND SYSTEM, and TESLA BOY host the dream dance party FULL MOON.
|OWN magazine  9/6/2012 7:01 EDT|
|In The Mind’s Eye|
The multi-angled Scott Hansen who is musically known as Tycho, but artistically known as Iso50, raps to us about aspects of his musical approach:
How did you get the name Tycho?
It's some Danish family lineage. At the time I was choosing a name, I was studying a lot of astrophysics and cosmology. Tycho's name would come up routinely. Also, I wanted a name that not too many people were familiar with, but was short and easy to recognize.
You seem to have a lot of hints of space and the universe in your work, what do you feel your role was in your past life?
[Laughing] I don't believe in that but if I had to, I would like to think I was a farmer in the 1800's or something. That would've been a good life.
When inspiration speaks, do you hear different voices from Iso50, Tycho, and Scott?
There's a more pragmatic aspect to the way I approach my design process because there are things it has to accomplish; with the music it's kind of a blue sky, where I'm creating something pretty or work I'm fond of. The type, images projected in the show, and other visuals have a deliberate intention and message to convey.
Do you turn to other music or nature for ideas?
I would say there's definitely an element of nature and the environment that I'm in which finds it's way into the music, but that's not really intentional. Most of it is pretty internal. I sit down and have to let this internal stuff out through instrumentation. That nucleus or piece of motion becomes the groundwork for compositions and then the rest is wrapping up it in a nice package.
What are some other artists you find yourself looking out for?
When people ask what kind of music I check out, they expect it to be electronic,
but I mostly listen to just rock and electronically influenced rock, guess you could call it post rock. I really dig what Bear in Heaven is doing and I'm really excited about Tame Impala's new album. Little Dragon's album was album of the year for me last year.
We do those playlists on the blog and Jakub Alexander, the A & R for Ghostly, curates most of that music. I listen to that stuff so much that it's just like hundreds of artists at a time and it has become scatter shot for me. Appreciating the album format is something I feel the need to get back to.
Are there other producers, which you take cues from?
How I got into electronic music was through drum and bass, but prior I was all about rock and metal. At one point I was really hardcore into Ronnie Size, LTJ Bukem and all those guys, but DJ Shadow kind of changed it for me by helping me realize there's this link between hip hop and electronic music. Finally when I heard Boards of Canada, I was like this is something else and around that time was the intensity of Ulrich Schnauss.
Currently, I've been listening to a lot of Clams Casino's stuff. I find his sound to be more exciting, especially as far as new producers go. I love the stuff he's done with A$AP Rocky. We played with them at SXSW.
Do you ever see yourself working more vocal tracks in the mix?
Working with Yukimi Nagano's voice was the 1st time I'd worked with vocals in a literal sense, where there were actual words. That experience added another dimension and has made me reconsider adding vocals in a literal sense. I mean I'm not going to go out and make a vocal record, but it does add another aspect to the music. Blond Redhead's Kazu Makino has a voice I would like to work with, as well. I like to keep vocals vague but on my upcoming album there may be more literal vocals.
Years ago, I worked with this one vocalists, which I recorded her singing a bunch of different keys, cut out all the syllables and turned it into an instrument. Basically, those are all the voices and breaths you hear on the albums. That Clams Casino track "I'm God" is exactly what I've always been going for by just hitting the syllables and using it as this texture, as oppose to this literal thing. When I 1st heard that, I was like this guy gets it, he's amazing.
Since you're albums don't posses much vocals, would it be safe to assume you're not a karaoke guy?
[Laughing] There's no singing coming from me.
Does sampling play a role in your music?
Not in the sense of sampling other artists, but I try to resample my own music. I record constructively through compressors and analog hardware. Then I record that, playing it live without the use of midi or anything. With that, I then chop those pieces up and put more effects on top. It's almost like I've taken the sample and put reverb on that, achieving an otherworldly sound different than simply playing a linear piece. I feel like I have a lot more control over the music using this process.
Can you describe your creative process for making music?
On the earlier albums, Sunrise Projector and The Past is Prologue, I had a collection of songs and was like I might as well put together an album, but it wasn't like this cohesive thing. However, with "Dive" I realized I didn't want to make another album till I had the time, skills and the knowledge to materialize the ideas I had in my head. I spent a lot of time working harder at musicianship and being self-taught, all the earlier stuff is sort of me clunking my way around the keyboard. In the process for this album, I learned the guitar so that affected a lot of the sound and writing style of this album. Usually, the nucleus of the song is the melody and then I try to figure out how it interacts with the bass. The rest is layering in all the pads, synths and stuff.
Instead of doing everything on all the albums, now I'm just getting into the mode of working with other artists. They're writing other parts or I'm giving them a song to sing and asking them, "What do you think is missing?" I feel I'm just starting to wear the producer's hat better in that respect.
When I get really focused on playing every night I don't listen to much music. I like to create and develop my art in as much of a vacuum as possible. I guess I get tired of music when I listen to it too much and when I make it I create it cause I want to hear music.
Your music has a narrative quality, have any filmmakers approached you about doing any soundtracks?
Not for movies, but I have been working with Charles Bergquist on visuals.
Eventually where I want the overall visual to be is a narrative, making the show to be this ark where you follow a character or some sort of concept through these different spaces and it echoes the environment of the space that that sound occupies. There's a fair amount of effects and lighting for the sake of being pretty. Although it's not there yet, I want there to be a narrative woven through all of that.
Neil Krug, one of my favorite photographers, is doing the video for "A Walk" and he did some work on the single for "Dive." He sent some tests for "A Walk" and it's looking pretty amazing.
Your sound is so textured; do you ever see yourself expanding your live show ensemble?
I've toyed with that idea but I'd have to bring the whole studio, I mean giant 50-pound analog keyboards. Really with the sampling process there's almost no way I could get those sounds live. I pick and choose most of the leads and take away parts like the things people might hum or the main elements I play with pads, strings, guitar and 3 keyboards. The rest is bass and drums. Sometimes a symbol is only a 10 second part in a piece, so to fill in all of that would be overwhelming. However, that is the dream, budget and crew permitting. I use mono-poly and I've seen The Chemical Brothers' elaborate set up with their custom keyboard rig and 2 mono-poly angled at them.
What city has been the most memorable on this tour?
Webster Hall in New York blew me away with response and energy. Overall I was enjoying myself and just in a good space performance-wise. Toronto and New York have always been so kind and supportive of what ever I've been doing, even from my beginnings doing laptop sets. After evolving into a band, people latched onto it. The last 2 times were a culmination of a lot of years playing here in New York.
I'm also excited about my upcoming tour with The Album Leaf cause I've always been a big fan of them.
How soon do you see the next album out?
I'm always working on bits and pieces just trying to get a nice set, which flushes out the framework, but I think I have that. Last album really taught me the more time I give things the more it evolves nicely. I do like the idea of spontaneity and capturing moments but as far as a full song I like to literally work on it for months. By the end, it's something totally different than where it began. With that being said, I'd love to have it done by next summer, but you just can't force that process.
Interview: Mister Lee on July 15, 2012 in NYC
Images: Tommy Agriodimas http://www.agriodimas.dphoto.com/
Styling: Mister Lee for OWN Magazine
Styling Assistant: Alexandra Alguire
1: General Idea sweater
2: 3.1 Phillip Lim sweater
3: Costume National pants and shoes
4: Costume National sweater, pants and shoes
Costume National 150 Greene Street New York, NY 10012
|OWN magazine  8/15/2012 15:28 EDT|
|The Spirit of Art|
Images by Richard Schroeder.
As praise to street art and cognac, Hennessy and Futura join efforts to "never stop, never settle." The new limited edition bottle, which is available today displays a multilayered design of primary spherical atomic globes over a deep red and black underpainting. The inspiration is drawn from the spirit's warm colored tones.
Both Hennessy and Futura have given back to the future generation of up and coming artists through work with New York's Pratt Institute. In a competition, 8 students presented their interpretations of Hennessy adage "never stop, never settle." The winner, Michael Cook, was granted seed money to aid in jumpstarting his career and will be flown to Paris with Futura in October.
~ Mister Lee
|OWN magazine  8/15/2012 15:17 EDT|
|August 9, 2012|
Manhattan Center NY
All Images by Jason Lewis.
Each G-Shock anniversary upstages their last, with serious collaborations and a grand performance. For their big 3-0, they announced a new timepiece with none other than Eminem, slated for Fall 2013. Other new collaborations will drop through the remainder of the year from Clot, Burton, Pedro Barros, Stevie Williams, Nigel Sylvester, and Kazu Kokobu. During the event's press conference, the company's founders demonstrated the product's durability with various insane measures, which included blasting the piece from a canon into a steel wall. Not to worry though, no watches we injured in any portion of the presentation.
~ Mister Lee
|OWN magazine  8/13/2012 20:40 EDT|