The Acid: "We were like ‘Woah, what’s going on here?"

Neu The Acid: “We were like ‘Woah, what’s going on here?”

Beginning in secrecy, now Ry X, Adam Freeland and Steve Nalepa are ready to talk - talk a lot, in fact - about their exciting new project.

Some projects start out anonymously to ‘let the music speak for itself’, but The Acid sure know how to talk.

Maybe it’s down to the twelve months Ry X, Adam Freeland and Steve Nalepa have spent outside of the spotlight, keeping this little secret to themselves. Now the word’s out, they’ve got plenty to say. It’s also because The Acid’s debut album, ‘Liminal’, is one full of accidental intricacies, details that stumble into the spotlight. There’s a lot inside, so there’s a lot to be covered. One question, neatly summed as “When did it all begin?” receives a thousand-word reply, all three musicians bouncing ideas and anecdotes off each other.

It’s a mini-tribute to the album itself, in a way. Potentially a one-off without a follow-up in the works, this is a piece that flows and creeps into empty spaces until there’s nothing left to toy with. Everyone involved has their own day-job, so to speak. Ry (on vocals) hit the blog heavens with ‘Berlin’ last year. Steve is part-time professor, part-time producer, working with the likes of Drake and the Weeknd. Adam Freeland’s one of the UK’s most well-known DJs. Back at a mutual friend’s party in 2013, Adam and Ry crossed paths and the former decided to invite the latter to join him for scheduled time at Steve’s studio. Once those sessions began, tracks began to pour out. ‘Animal’ arrived in the first day. 24 hours later, ‘Basic Instinct’. With ten days having passed, out came an EP. “We were like ‘Woah, what’s going on here?” laughs Steve.

“We always fall back to those magic first few days,” he says. Once the EP reached completion, a cursory Soundcloud upload put it online. The Acid was born, identities hidden, not a single reference to those involved. “It was really a move of humility,” says Ry.

The Acid: "We were like ‘Woah, what’s going on here?"

"We always fall back to those magic first few days."

— Ry X

The responses poured in. Labels all three loved and respected started throwing out the ‘Who are you? Where do you come from?’ routine. That’s when the three decided to work on an album. In part re-creating the heady initial sessions, they also wanted to go one step further. “Going back into the record was a little more tough,” admits Ry. “We wanted to go deeper and that moment was sealed, the EP was done.”

‘Liminal’’s eventual “magic” comes from strange sources. There’s the foggy collection of scrapbook noises on Ry’s phone; field recordings and the like. Nalepa’s studio even got involved in the end. He cites the (unmistakable) sound of a fork scraping through the peel of an avocado as one odd, minute fragment of sound that crops up on the record. To say they threw in the kitchen sink wouldn’t be an understatement - it’s a fact. “Sometimes we were tracking vocals and I was like ‘Don’t throw the fork in the sink...’ And then you can hear in the distance the contact. We decided to leave it in.”

Spontaneity and anonymity are The Acid’s core motifs, then. Next in store is a process of re-imagining these beautiful, delicate electronic works live, as well as seeing whether this project is something for the long run, instead of a snippet of time that’s been documented in forty breathtaking minutes. “If you tell someone that so and so’s behind a project, you paint it with that brush and you listen to it differently,” says Adam. “It was important for us for it to just be heard.” Now the Acid have been heard, they’re not showing any signs of keeping schtum.

The Acid's debut album 'Liminal' is out 7th July on Infectious Music.

Tags: The Acid, Features, Interviews, Neu

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