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Travel the Cosmos With Lamposts’ Comprehensive New Album, ‘Sinthesis’

Taking listeners through an otherworldly listening experience is Irvine-based musician, recording artist, and producer Lamposts, born James Peter Pham Caroll, with his 23-track album titled 'Sinthesis.'

Having started piano lessons at 7, songwriting at 10, guitar at 14, and playing in bands well into his 20s, Caroll has built a distinct sound that's uniquely his own. Now a solo act, occasionally releasing music under Lamposts, the self-taught musician has released projects like "100% Tuff," "Adolt Cartoon," and "Don't Follow." And now, he's keeping things fresh with one of the most unique albums we've heard this year, the 23-track 'Sinthesis.'

With artwork that resembles some post-apocalyptic, otherworldly being, that's precisely what James Peter Pham Caroll brings to the ears. While the opening tracks "Hello," "Inhale/Exhale," and "Lifeforce" take us into an electronic-heavy listening experience, it doesn't take long to realize the story beneath it, or at least our interpretation.

What feels like some dystopian post-apocalyptic world, Lamposts paints various sonic pictures through songs like "Rabbits," the unsettling and dizzying "Inscrutable," and later the hectic "Pod" that perhaps transports us to the next dimension. Carroll's ability to weave a narrative through his intense electronic production and synth arrangements is wildly impressive, and he only dives deeper from here.

In the bright and trippy "Kitty Kitty Cat," creepy-crawly "Arachnid," and the dynamic "him/her," Lamposts depicts otherworldly experiences as if our protagonist is traveling through the never-ending cosmos. In the ten-minute "Digression Is Unacceptable," Caroll eerily yet softly serenades us while creating ample anticipation for tracks like "Always and Forever," the distant "Hello Hello," and the obstacle-facing "Uh Oh."

Already, it feels as if our protagonist has traveled to a distant planet, found his feasts, encountered various beings, and continues his attempts to keep the connection with any life forms possible. Another eerie track meets the ears on "Shingle," leading into the heavy "panther/parasite," later sucking us into the empty and swirling "Vacuum" of outer space.

With the playful hint of "Cats," the profound meaning of "friends forever," and the absolute fire DnB take on "stupid," Lamposts leads us into the final tracks of the album. The low-groaning and monstrous "lo'" brings listeners back into another ice age, led by "Melnar (God of Ice)," freezing everything and everyone in sight.

Through the isolating and distant sensations of "Solitaire," gradually leading us to the tranquil and beautiful outro track, "Iron Man," James Peter Pham Caroll closes the album on a note of transformation, adventure, and finding yourself in the face of adversity.

If you're looking for a dynamic story-like listening experience that travels deep into the electronic realm, feast your eyes on James Peter Pham Caroll's newest album, 'Sinthesis,' now available on Bandcamp and all digital streaming platforms.

Welcome to BuzzMusic, James! We're truly impressed by the sonic storytelling your latest album, Sinthesis, provides. Did anything in particular inspire you to create this comprehensive project?

I was going through a number of life changes: I had my first child, began an arts education, and started taking mental health medication. In music, I wanted to experiment sonically, so I bought a bunch of pedals and synths, including a TC-Helicon Voicelive, a Korg Kaoss Pad 3, a Boss SYB-5, and a Line 6 echo park.

How would you describe the sound and style of Sinthesis? Did any artists or projects influence you during the creative process?

Its creating space with echoes and delays, the processed vocals are like otherworldly characters. Sometimes, it alternates with human space travelers in a hyper-speed vehicle. Since I was young, I loved indulging weirdness and warped sounds. Having a setup that could simulate that really blew my mind.

Did you want to convey a particular story or concept to listeners with Sinthesis? What's the deeper story behind this album?

Conceptually, I wanted to capture the moment of discovery, like when you try something for the first time. So I had the pedals and recorder set up, and I'd get nuts whenever I felt like it. I never intended on making an album; I just wanted to capture moments of discovery. As for whether there's a deeper story, it's probably my wife's. Not long after I recorded Sinthesis, she left me.

Do you have a personal favorite song from Sinthesis? What makes that song so special to you?

"Him/Her;" I like it because it's hardcore solely with electronics. I think it's difficult to make serious electronic music. If you're not totally embodying that sonic space, there's the sense that you're just indulging in fidelity.

How does Sinthesis differ from your previous projects regarding sound, style, and concept? What's new this time around?

It's unique for the moment to capture the idea. There's no way to fix anything because I was recording on a single track. For replay value, I needed to be sharp about my levels and execution speed. Also, I had never been on medication before, and Adderall plus Wellbutrin totally fucked me up. The pills made my heart race and my mind completely focused;  I'd never experienced that.


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