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Ilithios





Ilithios shows the "Way of the Future"

There's some songs that get you right there and I mean there. And while everybody has a different emotional G-spot it's recommend you check out the Deli music video premiere below [editor's note: first premiered on our IG account] because if the song alone doesn’t get you there then the visuals plus the music might. The video is comprised of equal-parts sweet and melancholic home movies of and by our featured artist spanning from his childhood to the near-present, a montage of grainy footage from Greece, Korea, and NYC that forms a fascinating family tree even if you aren't directly related to Ilithios and I'm guessing most of you aren't even though you're reading this.

The lyrics and visuals of “Way of the Future” play off the strange liminal state we've all been trapped in for the past year-plus and still not knowing what’s coming next (or not coming next) and thus the opening lyrical query: “When all this passes / will you still be around?” And if it sounds a little heavy well yeah but the music that carries these ruminations to your ears floats by gently and generously even when it's being acknowledged that “I know you haven’t seen me in a while / I know I’m not your favorite one no more." But the sentiment is delivered in such a way that it doesn’t sting and everything seems pretty chill except that by the end of the bridge Ilithios is imploring us to “take apart this fortress with one touch" in a not-so-chill fashion which again captures a certain hazy blend of longing, contentment, and perhaps an overdue reckoning.

The press notes for "Way of the Future" compare its sound to Perfume Genius, Twin Shadow, Father John Misty, Beach House, and Arthur Russell (Arthur Russell!) among others which is true enough but I’m also getting a certain late ‘90s/early 00’s REM vibe—not a super heralded period for the band but if you go and listen to New Adventures in Hi-Fi, Up and Reveal you'll find that these are some seriously vibey albums and that they've aged well. And speaking of vibes don’t stop there because Ilithios has recently hosted some cool locally-sourced shows--including an outdoor showcase around a month ago with Slalomville, Sean Spada, Space Sluts, The Planes, Ana Becker, Shadow Moster, and Kissed By An Animal (viewable in its entirety above) that's chock full of vibes of the good kind and who couldn't use some of those. (Jason Lee)





Ilithios debuts with Florist LP

Florist fades in on a swell of shimmering voices, followed by a warm, resonant layer of bass and drums, on its opening track “Think B4 U Spk.” Those wraithlike voices are soon swept into a sonic funnel cloud (neat production trick) while over chiming tones a gentle, lullaby-like voice entreats the listener: “We’re going nowhere / it’s cruel weather for days.” The narrative then unfolds something like a 3am phone call with an estranged lover or maybe just with yourself. Hazy voices from the song’s intro weave in and out of the conversation, building up to a brief squall of submerged guitar-freak-out until everything drops away.

Ilithios is the latest project of Manny Nomikos (Catty, Gracie Manson, Coyote Eyes) who in this guise comes off something like a Greco-Korean-American indie-rock Dennis Wilson. Besides the flowing locks you’ll find plenty of raw vocal expression set against blissed-out background vox, pristine musical arrangements, soaring melodies and ambient revieries. The songs are often lush but with a hint of Charles Manson under the surface. “Rattle Your Saber” brings stomping drums and buzzing low-end synthetics to the fore, while tracks like “Florist” and “Is This Our Dance?” recall early-to-mid-aughts NYC with Interpol and James Murphy comparisons not totally unfounded. 

 

From what I wrote in the first paragraph you can tell this album makes me think of the weather: shifting atmospheric systems, banks of fog, shimmering sunlight, jagged squalls and occasional thunderous rhythms. It's is an all-purpose and overused metaphor but here I’d highlight that while weather is most often placid on the surface, you know it can fuck you up. Tranquility and turmoil. Tension and release. Etc. Florist’s opening track advocates self-control in its title but by the penultimate track ("Buttons") you’re being admonished that “I’m no florist / I’m no painter / nobody says what they think anymore” just before a fiercely jagged little guitar break--played by co-producer (on some tracks at least) Jeff Berner--that definitely doesn’t think before it speaks. The weather is a fickle mistress indeed. (Jason Lee)

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