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Art Feynman switches up the tempo on ‘Slow Down’

Get the first spin of the Californian’s laid-back, lo-fi gem as today’s Neu Pick.

Every weekday, DIY’s new music know-it-all Neu brings you one essential new release to get obsessed with. Today’s Neu Pick comes from Art Feynman.

What does it mean to be alive? That’s the question that California-based artist and musician Art Feynman – now unmasked as Luke Temple from Here We Go Magic - is asking with his upcoming debut album, ‘Blast Off Through The Wicker’, due out on 14th July via Western Vinyl. It’s an age-old dilemma, but one that nonetheless doesn’t stop Art from exploring the meaning of life with a sense of outward-looking joy and vigour; his first single ‘Feeling Good About Feeling Good’ combined uplifting Afrobeat melodies, psychedelic synths and fuzzy guitar riffs after all.

Sometimes to contemplate existential concepts though, you have to switch up the tempo, reduce the pace. That’s exactly what Art does on his aptly-titled new track ‘Slow Down’. On the one hand, he retains a jangly, reverberating guitar melody, some twinkling, vintage electronica, and minimalistic but meditative lyrics (the simple repetition of “crush yourself to make a diamond” alone evokes the image of being trampled on by the pace of modern life, and adage that what doesn’t kill you can only make you stronger). At the same time though, he also trades freneticism for contemplative, languid vibes.

‘Slow Down’ also gives a deeper glimpse into Art’s determination to avoid drum machines and loops. Its tightly woven, constantly driving backbeats and pulsating basslines might lull the listener into thinking that everything has been neatly sequenced, but instead each element is played without technological assistance. Well, except for the help of a four-track tape recorder, just to give it that extra warmth and charm.

The track’s accompanying video also reflects the fuzzy, psychedelic edge of Art’s music in its twisting, warped lighting and imagery. Director Terri Loewenthal said of the video: “The song plays with the notion of timing both in the lyrical content – rushing, multitasking, being hurried – and in the recording process – the speeding-up of vocals and various other elements in the song. The video is a visual counterpoint to this idea, as abstract and playful as the song. Art F’s art direction for the video was simple, just the single phrase ‘dark and colorful’. The process was an open collaboration fueled by freedom and trust, the best possible formula for flow”.

Warm, lilting, and with little sonic details to marvel at, ‘Slow Down’ is another captivating glimpse into Art Feynman’s quest. Even if he doesn’t discover that all-elusive meaning of life, he’s still creating lo-fi diamonds.

Get the first spin of ‘Slow Down’ below.

Tags: Art Feynman, News, Listen, , Neu Pick, , Premiere

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