From the famously sensational, fast-paced city core of Boston, MA, Lucid Lynx came from an unlikely meeting of four college students with an appreciation for languid, atmospheric jams. This psychedelic foursome is made up of band members: Billy Paulsen, Demitri Katsanevas, Charlie Cassells, and Noah Dail. The group's commonality in appreciation of the 60s and 70s progressive rock, including Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin, and Pink Floyd, has fueled the band's sound full of modern psych-pop hooks, vibrant guitar riffs, unleashing drums, signature groovy bass lines, and catchy melodies.
Their love of taking to the road and showcasing their prominent sound has continuously impressed audiences across the US, even sharing the stage with the likes of The Brian Jonestown Massacre, Dead Meadow, and Psychedelic Porn Crumpets. Working with good friend and producer Dennis MacKay (Bowie, Phil Collins, Jeff Beck), has enabled Lucid Lynx to experiment on various production elements including synthesizers, percussion instruments, and even an electric sitar. Lucid Lynx's continual experimentation with instrumentation makes them one of the 2020s most transcending artists to follow this year.
Listen to “Open Earth” here.
Welcome to BuzzMusic Lucid Lynx! Can you tell us more about the lyrics of “Open Earth”? "Open Earth" is a tribute to Mother Earth and also kind of a look at how we as people have a connection with Nature. It all stems from an urge to find some kind of meaning and fulfillment in our lives and for a lot of people they find that meaning through Nature and the circle of life. It's kind of like if you took the message and themes from the Lion King and made it into a song haha. You told us that you have been inspired by classic artists including Led Zeppelin, Jimi Hendrix, and Pink Floyd. How have these bands influenced your music style? Something that we all instantly related to when we first started as a band was our love for the '60s & '70s psychedelic and progressive rock. We all grew up listening to Zeppelin, Floyd, Hendrix, and The Doors, and that still has an influence on what we listen to now, although there's also a lot of other really cool stuff coming out today as well. But a lot of our favorite music tends to be 10+ minute psych-tinged epics and that comes up a lot when we write our songs. We actually almost always find ourselves accidentally writing songs that are at least 5 minutes long and at times have to challenge ourselves to make something shorter like our last single "Nothing to Find." Overall though it's just the kind of music we grew up with so I think that it naturally comes out in the songs we write, like the trippy & atmospheric sounds that come from Floyd and the Doors mixed with the heavier stuff from Zeppelin and Hendrix. You told us that you enjoy the experimental process of producing your music. Can you tell us about the creative process of “Open Earth”? That song was an especially fun process, the main riff was written on a Rogue electric sitar which right away felt like it was something that came from a '60s flower power band only with our own messed up proggy twist of an alternating 6/4 to 5/4 time signature. We recorded the majority of it at Mad Oak Studios in Allston, MA and the resources and gear available there were just fantastic. The song is all about Nature so obviously we wanted to make it very organic sounding. We added 12-string acoustic guitar to give it a little bit of a folksy Byrds tone and then Benny, head engineer at Mad Oak, let us use a Fulltone tape echo to just noodle around on the sitar and let it oscillate making all the trippy noises you hear at the end. A real exciting part for us was getting to use a vintage Mellotron from the '60s that was at the studio to get the flute sounds that are in the verses. As soon as we got that in there it was impossible to imagine the song without it, it felt like we were producing Stairway to Heaven or Strawberry Fields or something. Our producer, Dennis MacKay, initially had the idea of adding tablas to give it more of the raga feel but we, unfortunately, couldn't get a hold of any. Instead, we opted for some bongos that we picked up last minute down the street at a store called "Mr. Music."
Can you tell us how you communicate and collaborate as a band in order to make the most of each of your talents individually?
It usually starts with a vibe that I'm (Billy-Guitars/Vox) trying to capture with a chord progression, riff, melody, etc. and that gets brought in to the band and evolves from there. Charlie (Drums) has also started a few ideas with some grooves, but generally, we all get a sense of a certain mood that we wanna evoke and try to put in our own individual flares from there. Charlie's parts can either be spacious and have a lot of room for tasteful fills or can be totally tight and complex, but they almost always sound huge and bombastic. Dimitri (Bass/Vox) usually locks into whatever Charlie's doing and comes up with basslines with tons of effects on them that can loop forever and remain totally hypnotic. Then Geddy (Guitars/Vox) and I kind of vibe off each other on guitar with one of our parts being complementary to the other, along with the occasional lead harmony. It's all kinda just different bits of our personalities that get stirred in together to make the sound that we have now. It never really feels like any of us individually are trying to show off, but rather all of us are trying to challenge and push ourselves collectively as a unit. What can we expect to see from you throughout 2020?
We've got more new music that's coming very soon and a new album that'll be coming later in the year. We were in the midst of finishing up the final touches for recording the album before mixing but then the COVID pandemic completely pushed those plans back. So now we're just working on a new schedule with all of us getting relocated to our respective hometowns across the country and having to do the last bits of recording ourselves. But we've got a few songs that are finishing up the mixing process including another new single that we'll be announcing probably within the next month. We were also hoping to plan another tour in support of the album but we'll have to wait and see how it all pans out with the pandemic. As for confirmed shows, we have two that were postponed, one at a festival called SoCal Psycheout that's supposed to happen in September now, and one in December with the bands Elder and Bask. So hopefully by then, the world is a little bit more at ease and we can go back to doing what we love.