Today we introduce Jay Fynn, an artist who has crafted his pure imaginations into complex and sophisticated stories for his listeners. Jay Fynn, artistically known as Exit From The Auditorium, has released his album, "Iconography". The record features a string of alternative/indie elements and offers up quality acoustic soundings tied into some of our favorite folk aspects. A huge aspect of this album is how real and raw it sounds. You can fully hear the manifestation of each melody and sound, allowing you to feel more intimately connected to Exit From The Auditorium and the stories he wants to share.
"The King Is Dead" kickstarts "Iconography", offering up a mellow and lax atmosphere for listeners. It's the perfect kind of study song or one of those tracks you add to your mindful playlists. "The King Is Dead" is incredibly harmonious, housing methodical lyricism that allows listeners to go on a mental journey with Exit From The Auditorium. The next track the album showcases are, "Oh, Sylvia". This track brings about an even stronger sense of relaxation and serenity. Here, we get to follow along the storyline Exit From The Auditorium creates, relating back to the infamous Sylvia Plath. We really appreciate the fantasies presented within "Oh, Sylvia", especially with how vivid and expressive the storyline remains throughout the entire duration of the song. Exit From The Auditorium allows for an entertaining, yet peaceful listening experience with "Oh, Sylvia Plath".
Soon after, we come across "Tom Waits For No Man". This track opens up with a steady, harmonious guitar melody, characterizing the most audible soundings for the rest of the track. Again, we're offered one of Exit From The Auditorium's articulate storytelling, but with an intriguing twist. We really suggest that you listen intently to "Tom Waits For No Man" and hone into the lyricism presented here. You'll realize a comical side of Exit From The Auditorium, but more importantly, how he's able to synthesize fictional stories with such creativity. That's hands down the most observable and recognizable aspect of Exit From The Auditorium's music.
Those harmonious a prominent guitar rhythms maintain themselves onto the next track "Iconography" sees, titled "Miss Monroe". We receive a lighter storyline with "Miss Monroe", as it features more comedy-infused lyricism compared to the other tracks the album has seen. Again, we get those soft and smooth vocals from Exit From The Auditorium, which allows the song to propel into a more mystical and introspective environment, regardless of lyrical meaning. We feel the same way about "Hemingway or The Highway", where the lyrical significance appears varied from what the integral message seems to be. That's definitely one aspect to Exit From The Auditorium's music--he leaves so much room to interpret the tracks in any way you feel accustomed to. You can make the narrative fit almost any situation with some tracks featured on "Iconography".
"Lay Lady Day" shows a deeper aspect to the vocalism Exit From The Auditorium has displayed so far throughout the album. We enjoy the variation in vocal outflow that he offers with this track and the variation in lyrical significance. We see another variation in sounding from Exit From The Auditorium in the following track, "You & Camus", but more so regarding the production of the track. Those characterizable guitar melodies remain consistent, as they do throughout each track on the album, but they have more range. This range is what opens up the tones of this song to more of an eclectic atmosphere, which heavily complements the lyrical intentions of "You & Camus". "You & Camus" covers a more surreal and melancholic story of the main character in the song, which really allows you to feel emotionally connected to the track.
"The Music He Makes" courses through the connection between listener and artist, and how a real bond can be formed through the power of music. The track further delves into the feelings and emotions that the listener is able to extract from the content of an artist's song, specifically outlining the relationship that can be established and the importance an artist can have in a listener's life. For obvious reasons, we found "The Music He Makes" to be an extremely relatable song that holds a strong emotional significance.
The next track off of "Iconography" houses this same emotional significance, but regarding a lover rather than an artist. Here, we go through the inner and intimate thoughts one can intensely feel about someone they admire. It's a heartwarming song but features lyricism that can potentially have you feeling extremely reflective on past experiences. The same goes for "On The Townes Tonight", which is the last track that the album features. Here, we get to dive into the life of a character and the wistful thoughts that character holds. "On The Townes Tonight" happens to be our favorite track off of Exit From The Auditorium's album, strictly for the intricate message that's told throughout. We know that everyone can interpret lyrics in varying ways, but "On The Townes Tonight" gives way to a feeling that disregards many interpretations. The track is one to listen to methodically in order to extract as much as a listener possibly can.
Looking back, "Iconography" holds a beautiful and deliberate story, offered by Exit From The Auditorium. We must stress how much of a journey the album is, and the various checkpoints it'll bring you to mentally. "Iconography" is hands down an album you can listen to from start to finish, without any distractions on your mind. That's why we appreciate this album so much, and how we know BuzzMusic readers probably will too.
You can discover Exit From The Auditorium's "Iconography" here.
Hello, Exit From The Auditorium! Wow! What an album "Iconography" is. What expressive and vivid stories you have to share with listeners. Out of pure curiosity, how long did it take you to create "Iconography" knowing how intricate and in-depth the storylines are in each track? Thank you for that, I appreciate it! It’s great to hear you enjoyed the songs. They didn’t come along in one batch, that sometimes happens but on this occasion, each song appeared individually, usually revealing itself while I was working on another project. I had a vague idea that I wanted to write a series of songs about iconic figures, so each time inspiration struck I squirrelled the song away with the aim of giving them all a home when I had enough characters to hang out together on one record. So the songs came along over a number of years but I’m pleased it works as a consistent piece, that was my intention. Usually the quicker a song comes together the better, so some of the songs would’ve been written in one sitting, some might have taken a little longer. Hemingway intimidated me a bit, whereas Camus was easy to get along with. Seven of the ten were recorded in a single afternoon so perhaps that helped gel the songs together as a single entity.
Tell us more about how you went about creating "Iconography". How did you personify so many characters throughout the record, and doing so in such a strategic and elaborate way?! My approach varied. Sometimes I had an idea for someone I wanted to write a song about, either because I found them intriguing or thought their life would make compelling subject matter for a song. Other times I might’ve had a title that provided the jumping off point. It helped if I was already a fan, sometimes I had a friend whose passion for an artist inspired me. It was a way of getting away from myself, although the figures in the songs often seemed to intertwine with my life in one way or another, On The Townes Tonight is a good example of that. For someone like Townes Van Zandt I was able to use what I already knew about him as a fan. For Tom Waits I imagined what his life would be like if he was a character in one of his own surreal songs. For others I might’ve been absorbing their work, or reading about them, or watching a biopic or documentary. At times I had to do some research. It was fun putting the work in and it’s really satisfying when connections start to appear between the songs.
If a new listener could listen to one track from "Iconography", which track would you personally suggest? Can you describe the full magnitude this track holds and the intended message you wanted to set? That’s a tough one, it’s like a parent admitting to having a favourite child! I like them all for different reasons, and there are alway things I’d like to improve. Some of my favourites on the record are the songs that are indirectly about someone else, like You & Camus. But I think Oh, Sylvia would be a good place to start. It’s quite jaunty and catchy for a song with such serious subject matter. I’d like to think I did Sylvia Plath justice, her incredible talent and her troubled life. I don’t know if I set out to articulate any kind of message intentionally, but I’m sure my preoccupations can’t help but make themselves known regardless. I guess one of the themes that seems to reoccur across the album is the sense that creativity, although an incredibly powerful and important human urge, often seems to come at a cost, especially to those that give so much of themselves to it. And also how our lives overlap with complete strangers, often in significant ways, because of our relationship with their work. They provide us with points of reference that help us relate to one another just as much as we relate to the artist, something that feels more important now than ever.
As an artist who has always been impassioned to write and create, did "Iconography" establish itself in the way you expected it to? Although you're constantly thinking of new narratives, did you find it was easy to execute these narratives in the way you yourself understands them?
Overall I’m pleased with how the album turned out, although there will always be things that I’d like to do better. There’s a great Hemingway quote: “That terrible mood of depression of whether it’s any good or not is what is known as The Artist’s Reward.” I’m happy that even though the songs were written over a period of time it feels like a consistent piece of work. The songs surprised me in lots of different ways, I never thought I’d write a song from the perspective of Jean- Paul Sartre on his deathbed trying to set things right with Simone de Beauvoir before he died. Or write a kind of tragic love song to Billie Holiday. Or add another song to the Marilyn Monroe canon! But I’m grateful to all of these figures, not only for what they sacrificed and achieved but also for their inspiration. I feel like I’ve written some of my best songs with this collection and that’s because these iconic individuals led me down interesting avenues with unexpected twists and turns. They helped me develop as an artist and provided plenty of surprises. We’re like a little gang now on a strange fantasy dinner party guest list; Elvis pass the salt, oh he’s left the building.
Thank you for all that was put into "Iconography". The album truly overwhelmed us in the most positive way, especially with how detailed each storyline was. You've fully captured our attention, Jay Fynn! We're eager to know when your next set of work will be released, and if we can expect a similar execution seen in “Iconography"?! That’s great, I’m really pleased you enjoyed the album! I wanted to push myself and write in as an original way as possible while still paying attention to the kind of song craft I admire. The artists I love are able to exploit language for maximum effect, writers like Bob Dylan, or my personal hero, Mark Kozelek, so the bar has been set pretty high! I don’t have any technical computer wizardry or a band to embellish my songs so I put a lot of focus and energy into getting the words right, it’s rewarding to hear you found them engaging. There’s a couple of projects I’d like to complete this year. I’ve got some songs for a Jay Fynn release which will have a more traditional folk and singer- songwriter feel. There are some personal songs as well as political material. It could be fairly sombre and maybe not as densely narrative as Iconography. And I’ve written almost an albums worth of material for my next Exit From The Auditorium release, more character and story based songs, so hopefully a positive progression on the ideas explored in Iconography. I’ve wanted to create a collection of fictional characters for a while, something I’ve done occasionally in the past, but these guys are a bunch of oddballs and misfits. Frida Kahlo might make an appearance, and The Beatles, so hopefully they’ll be fun to spend time with, for me and anyone who chooses to listen. I’ll send you a CD!