By Brayden Turenne
VANCOUVER – The human psyche is a cryptic, often illogical thing. Most people go their whole lives keeping secrets from themselves, the unconscious truths of their identity that, from time to time, manifest as fears, desires and simple habits that we pay little heed to. A medium for this realizing of the invisible is, and has always been, art.
Something about exercising the mind in the rigors of writing or making music helps to evoke the unseen self. For the L.A. solo music project, Drab Majesty, this is key to what fuels a suitably dream-like sound. In the world that Drab Majesty creates, airy pop rock landscapes are overcast with a brooding danger, bringing to mind the likes of 80’s new wave artists the like of Depeche Mode and The Cure, yet at the same time something wholly other that retains a sense of enticing mystery.
“This is what comes out… I would say 95% subconscious and 5% conscious,” noted the sole member and founder, Andrew Clinco. “The music has never felt like it has come to me through some sort of intellectual or technical process, for I know very little about music theory and have never been classically trained on my instrument.” The power of what Clinco is able to emote through Drab Majesty’s music is undeniable. The band’s latest full length offering, the Demonstration, has been praised by both fans and critics. Each track is charged with potent mood and feeling, while at the same time being extremely catchy.
Drab Majesty seek to create a multi dimensional experience, both through music and theatrical, thematic elements. This is most evident in the appearance of Clinco as he manifests Deb Demure, an alter ego through which Drab Majesty is conjured. Demure is neither man nor woman, but something “more alien.”
“It brings a mythology to the history of the live performance and supports the music visually.” Clinco explained. “ The whole process feels like a communion with the void or ‘the other’ and it’s important to honor that visually in the live demonstration.” Whether in press photos or on stage in the flesh, Deb Demure and company appear clad in makeup and attire. Something like fever dream harlequins come out of the ether and their live shows are an extension of this vision, utilizing stage props, fog, and neon light.
“It’s important for us to suspend the viewer in a space where we control the parameters. We conduct the ritual. The ritual however is expansive and not strict or rigid. It is meant to be a meditation of sorts. The only thing it requests of the viewer is to just stop thinking.” Sharing much with the artistic philosophy of the surrealists, Drab Majesty looks to be a testament to the potency of the creative unconscious when grasped by the waking intent of a talented artist.
Drab Majesty performs on Sunday October 8 at the Cobaltalien, cryptic, deb demure, drab majesty, fever dream, multi dimensional experience, The Cobalt, the demonstration, theatrical