Behind the Districts, Performing Live and Node Networks
January 27th, 2024
After working on my album for, collectively, more than 3 years, I was able to muster enough confidence to finally release it. Titled 'Districts', it's my exploration of Tbilisian atmosphere and character through the use of musical ambience and rhythm. Inspired by the likes of Brian Eno, Aphex Twin, Autechre, Ryuichi Sakamoto and a plethora of other artists who laid the groundwork for this type of music, Districts is both a tribute to my contemporaries and a new step into my musical journey.
'Districts' has gone through multiple variations and probably a dozen versions of it exist across my hard drive. At the conception of the album, I intended each track to represent a specific 'raion' or district of Tbilisi, with the tracklist intended to be 10 tracks long. This idea was scrapped in favor of taking inspiration from Tbilisian districts as a whole and crafting each track with this in mind. Originally, it was meant to be released in 2020 under the alias 'Relics of Lysergia', which I used to release music under. For the majority of the albums production process, every piece of branding I ever did was done under that name, but as time progressed and the project got more personal, I decided to release under my own name. Out of the 7 tracks featured on the album, the oldest one dates back to 2019. The least productive year for this albums creation was probably 2021, as I was too busy with other projects at the time. Alas in 2023, I finally got around to arranging the album, doing a final mixdown and releasing it.
The majority of the tracks on Districts utilize various field recordings of Tbilisi ambience that I've been collecting since 2020. Thanks to friends and family for helping me on the various field recording sessions I've done, especially Nuca for accompanying me very early on. These samples were fed through chains of processing effects, mutated and twisted into the final pads, rhythms and percussion you hear on the album.
A huge part of the album presentation was the visuals. In fact, they were a last minute decision. I had compiled a huge archive of LiDAR photoscans and general Tbilisi footage. Utilizing my knowledge of TouchDesigner, a network of nodes was constructed that fed into a live video feed that was then sent to the projector. The network was built with modularity in mind, so that various parameters could be tweaked during the performance using MIDI controllers. Because of the time restrictions, I encountered a few performance related issues throughout, with a few frame drops hindering me. My advice to anyone who wishes to create visuals live in TouchDesigner, always make sure to plan ahead and know exactly what you will be doing, as it can be quite laborious to decide what effects to use and what parameters to change in real time.
Districts would not be possible without your support. Thank you to everyone who helped throughout the albums creation, thank you to friends and family, everyone who even remotely motivated me throughout this period of my life. An exceptional thanks to the folks over at Subsequence for helping me with everything related to the album presentation and being great hosts to everyone that attended.
Districts is available on BandCamp, as well as streaming services. Featuring 7 tracks, 42 minutes of ambient/IDM composition, exploring the artificiality and melancholy present in Tbilisian character and atmosphere.