Following the announcement of his new album ‘Awake’, which is set for release on March 17th via Ghostly International, Tycho has revealed new track ‘Montana’ from the forthcoming release.
Tycho is also set to play a series of European tour dates this Spring with a show in London on March 26th at Oval Space.
For nearly a decade, Tycho has been known as the musical alias of Scott Hansen, but with the release of 'Awake' – his second LP for Ghostly International – the solo project has evolved into a three-piece band. Reaching an entirely new realm of sonic possibilities recording with a live band, 'Awake' is situated in the present, reaching Hansen’s vision of Tycho like never before. “This is, in many ways, the first true Tycho record”. New track ‘Montana’ offers a glimpse of this with its multi-layered cascading tones.
Following 2011’s Dive LP, the San Francisco, California based designer toured extensively, accompanied by a full band on stage, his sound coalesced into a percussive, organic whole. Zac Brown (guitars, bass) continued to join Scott on the road, but it was the particular addition of Rory O’Connor’s (Com Truise, Nitemoves) live drumming that ultimately sent Hansen back to the studio with a more precise vision for the future Tycho. “After the tour, I decided that I wanted to capture the more energetic, driven sound of the live show on the next album,” Hansen recalls. Bringing musicians into Tycho’s creative process was a step towards expanding his own songwriting and advancing the project beyond its current incarnation.
Also known for his design work as ISO50, Hansen’s visual and sonic efforts have dovetailed throughout the course of his career. “This is the first time in my life I've dropped everything to focus on one artistic pursuit,” notes Hansen. Previous Tycho releases came to fruition from Hansen’s delicate solo approach to constructing a song, tweaking each peak and valley, but ‘Awake’ is three like-minded people coming together where music becomes the sole purpose and true expression becomes the result.
In a cabin near Lake Tahoe last winter, Hansen and Brown began fleshing out the structure of the new record, but it wasn’t until they set up shop in the hills of Santa Cruz with O’Connor that it all fell into place.
“It crystallized the vision of how the drums would come to the forefront on this record,” says Hansen. The sound was much more stripped-down and concise with live instruments coming to the forefront. Perhaps it was leading up to this all along, songs like ‘Montana’ and ‘Awake’ perfectly exemplify Tycho’s new, amped up sound - unique to the group effort poured into the songs on the new record - while ‘See’ and ‘Dye’ echo ideas from previous works but with a clear view to the future. Working with Count Eldridge, who also engineered ‘Dive’, the team could fixate on the pulses that Tycho might have previously layered under synthesizers and exhume them with distinct bass and guitar patterns.
Together they bridge an ethereal middle ground between old memories and new experiences, “While I grew up in California, I spent a lot of time as a kid in places like Colorado, Wyoming, New Mexico and Montana,”says Hansen, “I got back in touch with those areas over the past few years and they inspired me a great deal.” Hansen went on to build those images into the foundation behind the artwork for ‘Awake’, “I created the cover art to be a symbol, or a flag, to represent this fictional region comprised of idealized elements of all these western states.
See Tycho live:
March 26th – Oval Space, London UK
March 27th – Trabendo, Paris FR
March 28th – M4 Music Festival, Zurich CH
March 29th – The Tunne, Milan IT
March 30th – Bi Nuu, Berlin, DE
Tycho Artist Page via Ghostly