Home Read Now Hear This: Alex Maas | Luca

Now Hear This: Alex Maas | Luca

The Black Angel gets up-close and personal in his introspectively trippy solo set.

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THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “The music of Alex Maas has always mesmerized. Now, on his soul-baring solo debut Luca, the Texan and Black Angels member’s journey is taking an equally hypnotic detour along the wild trails of his indigenous homestead. Driven by the force of nature, each phase of life is celebrated through songs of love, hope, human connection whilst navigating perils of modern society and tentatively facing the darkness. “We’re all navigating weird waters right now,” Maas says. “I’m trying to just go wherever the flow of the water is going.”

Named for Maas’ firstborn, whose name means “bringer of light,” Luca was a long time coming, with some of its songs dating back almost a decade, put together piece-by-piece over the course of a couple years. A powerful work of gentle psychedelia, and a notable sonic departure from the heavy, pulse-raising sound that Maas has become renowned for, Luca was co-produced by Maas and Jack White’s front of house, Brett Orrison. The album showcases “a whole different part of my brain,” according to Maas. “I wanted to go someplace musically that I’ve never gone before.” What resulted is an album colored by a swirl of meditative thoughts about its creator’s son and the often-scary world he was born into.

It’s a record fuelled by memories of an upbringing in the strange, unique paradise of his father’s plant nursery in Seabrook, Texas by the waterfront of the Gulf of Mexico, and the Native American sounds that would drift through the garden’s hidden speakers, ricocheting off multi-coloured pottery mazes of curiosities from across the world. Casting shades of deeply personal wide-eyed innocence and the darker realms of paranoia, Luca has its sights set on the near and distant future. Subtle psychedelic flourishes and instrumentation come from a cast of expert players in Austin but this is a deeply personal endeavour.”