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Now Hear This: Lespecial | Ancient Homies

I'm getting caught up on the good albums that have come out lately. Like this one.

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THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Ancient Homies is the third full-length album by Lespecial. The number 3 played a role in its inception and acts as a numerical theme throughout the album. We are a “power trio” by definition, our logo or symbol is what we refer to as the “tri-face”, and the fact that this is our third album carried symbolic weight to us. The album contains three “interlude” tracks, or the “Homie Improvs”, on tracks 3, 6, and 9. These mostly improvised tracks are based around a sort of scale or modality, or a musical language, that is prevalent throughout the album. The scale isn’t a typical Western sounding scale with a clear “major” or “minor” tonality. It is based around an unstable tonic, containing small chromatic groupings of three notes and has a cryptic, ambiguous and almost mystical quality. This musical vocabulary acted as a guideline and backdrop to the journey we wanted to take listeners on.

Conceptually, Ancient Homies deals with themes of travel throughout different planes, both physical and meta-physical. Lyrically it explores concepts of “boundaries” and how one can transport themselves, either physically across the infinite vastness of space, or mentally to a different mental plane, as we believe the best musical pieces to do. The other-worldly quality of music is echoed in samples from ’50s and ’60s sci-fi/horror films such as The Thing From Another World and Quatermass and the Pit. The quotes from these films that deal with unearthing ancient, primordial secrets act as a through line throughout the Homie Improv Interludes.

But all numerology and inter-dimensional mambo jumbo aside, this album feels to us like the most true representation of lespecial. The name itself, Ancient Homies, is a sort of paradox that feels true to our character. The term ancient evokes feelings of mysticism and omnipotence, and yet at the end of the day, we are just three homies, three lifelong friends who have embraced our calling to make music together. While some of the material is dark, the overarching absurdity of life and of our music reminds us to not take it too seriously. This album captures the qualities and sides of our band that we feel best represents ourselves and our music. There are moments of intensity, darkness and heaviness that call to our influences in the prog world such as Tool and King Crimson, exemplified by our mixing engineer Dave Sanchez at Riffs or Die, as well as more sub-heavy, head nodding tunes that nod to some of our favorite electronic artists like Flying Lotus and Nine Inch Nails.

In the end, we want this album to take listeners on a journey. Wherever and whenever the destination is could differ for everyone. Your mode of transportation is your own to decide, whether it be a centuries old naval vessel, a futuristic spaceship, or just putting on a pair of headphones and closing your eyes, we want you to go somewhere else. Escape reality, embrace a sense of other-worldliness and discover a new plane, maybe one that’s always been there, with Ancient Homies as your guide.”