Orchid Mantis – Kulla Sunset

I have recently found myself looking for some newer Lo-fi Chill/Vaporwave, the likes of which were all the rage in the summer of 2009, when a few weeks ago I had somehow thought that Washed Out had new material out (they don’t) and then found that for some reason, it just seems that this music trend has perhaps past. Sure, bands like Toro Y Moi, Airiel Pink, Memory Tapes, and Small Black are still around; but they have shifted some in style and sound and aren’t really on the radar anymore in the indie and college radio circles.
Just when I was beginning to think I would be stuck revisiting some of the older songs such as Millionyoung’s “Perfect Eyes”; I happened to ask if there was anything available that needed to be reviewed for the site and was provided with the answer to the question that I had been searching for a few weeks prior.

Orchid Mantis’ “Kulla Sunset” is exactly what I have been searching for. This release offers blissed out, mellow, and dreamy melodies with wistful, longing lyrics. It has that slightly muffled lo-fi sound that just adds to the overall esthetic of the album as a whole.
I want to loop this album and take a nap in direct sunlight for several hours, and I feel like doing so would lend me to lowered blood pressure and a better understanding of some of the more buried mental blockages that consume my inner psyche.

I have often referred to other notable chillwave/vaporwave acts, especially Tycho as being musical Xanax, and this album really does fit that description. Upon finding that the heating unit in my flat was no longer working, and stumbling across some suspected dating woes in my personal life, I looped this album. The calming effect was absolutely palpable.

The band itself uses the tag line “found sounds, tape collages, and pop songs about forgetting.” which is a great description of the content.
While explore more of the content available on Band Camp, with another older release, “Holograph Tapes Vol.1” this insight was provided to the band’s style and sound: “The results of these efforts draw from surrounding places among other things: backyard woods, ruins, abandoned schools, eerie empty towns. Near-death experiences and levitation. Sleep paralysis and folklore. As is in our memories, some of these songs are dreams, some are reality – always rooted in the otherworldly as found in either.

So if you need to be calm AF; give this album a shot. It might not get you all the way to a 100% fully zen state but it should at least take you into a slightly better frame of mind.

orchid mantis – tired in the morning from Joseph Skillas on Vimeo.

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