By Kyle Schick
VANCOUVER — The powerhouse spectacle of the Psychic Alliance is a force that needs witness to understand. The monumentally talented Vancouver band cut their teeth with any genre they can get their hands on, which quickly becomes apparent upon listening to their latest release, as they hop seamlessly between reflecting, interpreting and satire of multiple styles. The brash, eccentric humanoids of this band are not only incredibly well rounded on their instruments, but also well versed in the art of showmanship.
Psychic Alliance front man Shaun Lee describes the band’s upcoming EP Top Gun in Best Town/Dinosaurs, That is Oblivion! concisely. “It’s a conceptual soundtrack to a kid’s TV show for debauched and jaded urban hipsters desperate to cling to the last vestiges of their all-too-brief childhoods.”
The band recorded Top Gun in Best Town live off of the floor at Felix Fung’s Little Red Sounds. Lee speaks volumes about working with Fung, praising his use of minimal overdubbing and lack of digital tracking. “Felix confined the lions’ share of the production to guiding the band towards capturing concise and elegant arrangements,” Lee comments. “[We recorded] the material in the space of about 12 hours.”
“We wanted to achieve a sound coterminous with both Bad Brains and the Ronettes,” Lee explains of their record. “Something densely diaphanous and daintily vulgar.” The result of these ardent sessions is described by Lee as “a fragmented funhouse mirror, a musical equivalent of a dissociative fugue state, with several of the songs clocking in at 30 seconds or less.”
At the same time Lee finds the Psychic Alliance currently interested in exploring common tropes in popular music. “We are attempting to playfully skewer some of the more typical forms,” he clarifies.
Lee is eager to describe their release show, expecting close friends and lots of material to work through. “We’ll be playing our first album [Flux Capacitor], this EP, and our upcoming LP in succession,” Lee reveals. Joining the Psychic Alliance on this bill are close friends, noise-pop outfit Malk. Lee is quick to admonish their companions in art, “we picked them for the bill because it looks like they can probably drink a lot and stay up late!” And if it’s a matter of competition, they’ll need to find fans brave enough to stay up and judge it. Good luck!
The Psychic Alliance perform at Kensalot on September 13th.BC, British Columbia, Kensalot, The Psychic Alliance