Oregon based duo Lore City's Participation Mystique has been on my list of albums to write about for quite some time. Ever since I discovered the album it has been playing in the background of my meditation-driven nights and days where I start my day by reading ancient occult texts. My two favorite subjects being the unknown and music, this album strikes a cord and interests me in all the right places. Through their new album, Lore City delivers meaning to undeliverable planes of consciousness.
It's deeply spiritual and revolves around atmospheric soundscapes to create a body of work so immersive that you feel as though you're in a trance. Esotery, rituals, occult symbolisms and alchemy construct the base of their multi-dimensional album. It tells so much with so little. There are no "big" lyrics but humming and repeating which adds beautifully to the narration of the album. Participation Mystique is a mode of engagement or type of mental activity in which the boundaries between the natural and the spiritual, and between oneself and one’s environment, are either overcome or not established in the first place. Songs like Buttons, and I Know You Know encapsulates that essence perfectly. There are heavy uses of shamanic ritual elements and banging and looping sounds to create an environment of mysticism.
During the past decade, with the rise of new age spiritualism, a lot albums have aimed to be "mysterious and mystical" yet had failed to do so as they couldn't fully decide on what story they were going to tell, it felt inauthentic. Lore City knows what they are doing. Their references are solid and filled with wisdom, the sound structures are simple yet effective. There are some times where the mixing scratches the ear and the production stays underwhelming but overall, the project comes together cohesively. The duo knows perfectly what they are trying to tell you but you have to decipher the meaning and look deep within yourself to understand. This album is to be used as a portal to transform your perspective to a higher point of consciousness. Use wisely.
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