Lydia Ainsworth

Lydia Ainsworth

Lydia Ainsworth’s pop experiments sound like they’re made for big screens. Close your eyes while listening to her recent debut, Right From Real, and the considerable power of her orchestral strings, horns, and dense, wordless harmonies transports you to a dark cinema, where surreal images tumble like falling skies, and it’s not quite clear what comes next.

Aria Rostami

Aria Rostami debuted in 2011 with two releases on Audiobulb records. Rostami’s first record, “Form” was about the illusion of control. The album starts off kicking and screaming and slowly unwinds into the last song which is infinitely loop-able; an old memory as it plays forever. The soundscape of “Form” was unstable and fragile. The low ends held power over everything. It was a battle between what an individual pursues and the overwhelming power of nature. It eventually was included on Headphone Commute’s End of Year list alongside artists such as Alva Noto (The Revenant OST), Autechre & Halfer Trio, Fennesz + Sakamoto. Conceptually, this was a good seed for Rostami’s later work. “Uniform” came out later that year with remixes of songs form “Form” by Ollie Bown (1/2 of Icarus), Saine, and Shawn Dickerson as well as originals created by randomly recording material and then configuring the recordings together. “Uniform” was a counterpart of “Form” by approaching control as something you do in response to given occurrences rather than something you do to manipulate future results. In 2013, Rostami released two EPs “Decades” and “Peter” on tape label, Crash Symbols. “Peter” was a dedication to the late Shawn Dickerson, who not only contributed a remix to “Uniform” but was also a past collaborator of Rostami’s. “Form” and “Uniform” were created to help Rostami sort through a life transitioning out of drug addiction, but the death of Dickerson reinvigorated Rostami’s reasons to focus on these concepts and to continue creating. “Peter” was heavily influenced by soundtracks of video games Rostami played as a kid to emulate the childhood-like experience of a best friend. “Decades”, the counterpart of “Peter”, focused directly on trying out new sonic soundscapes and was void of concept to balance out the weight of this release. 2014 and 2015 saw sister-releases as well. The 2014 EP “Czarat” (Spring Theory) and the 2015 album “Sibbe” (Audiobulb) both examined a new landscape for music in the information age… Where new music and reissues from all around the globe have become readily available and how this input creates a new American culture. Rostami also incorporated secret recordings sent to him from Taipei, Tehran and Kerman into these songs to create a melting pot of information and misunderstandings… A critical look into how we learn, understand, communicate and discover information and the possibilities of both truths and falsehoods held within. The next release, “Agnys” (Spring Theory) came out in 2016 and was a look back at reviving some ideas the Shawn Dickerson had had back when the two were still collaborating. The B side of the record are direct ideas that Dickerson had that were never used and the A side took influence from the B side to recycle and take the ideas in a new direction. The songs all sampled material from Dickerson’s piano which Rostami now owns. “Agnys” was about the continuation of influence after death and the ripple effect created by existing in this world. Rostami’s debut collaboration with Daniel Blomquist, Wandering Eye (Glacial Movements) was also released in 2016. It was recorded over the span of 2 years and dives far deeper into Rostami’s brooding sonic soundscapes rather than the primarily beat oriented work of his solo career. 2017 will see at least two more releases by Blomquist and Rostami on Jacktone Records and another Glacial Movements record and Rostami will have a solo release out on Zoom Lens.

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