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Feature: Staghorns on music, Mental health & creativity


Staghorns a part of  the metropolitan  sound of  music  subculture in Tel aviv talking about Mental health , creative outlets, life and his music ventures.

I’ve been sitting on Staghorns for a couple of months – another great Soundcloud discovery. I connected body, mind and soul with Tel Aviv native-born Staghorns -Shlomi’s track -Outfluence.
The track’s title is the opposite of influence listening to this track conjures colours, soft textures, a breezy summer house tune. It is playful. ‘Outfluence’ and a couple of his other tracks ‘Uneasy Dave’ and another track yet to be released take you on a journey into the very heart of Tel Aviv’s thriving electronic dance music culture.

Staghorns music is inviting the world to enjoy the sounds of Tel Aviv’s music subculture: the message seems to be about Freedom. His sound is infectious without the unwanted side effects of living in a COVID 19 World. Staghorns other tracks are typically optimistic, he experiments with ambient sounds and swings right over the sensual acid synth sounds of electronic dance music.

I love the track Outfluence – it has so much energy and bounces.

Hello Staghorns! Thank you so much for doing this Feature. Firstly I want to say I love the new video for your track ‘Outfluence’. Can you tell me more about how it came about?

 

A page   LoDisco makes videos for hobbies and wanted to make a video and I appreciate it very much.

(LoDisco  promotes upcoming artists in the LoFi disco and LoFi House scene  -Join channel on LoDisco

How did the name Staghorns come about?

Okay, my family name is Zvi (pronounced Tzvi) which is a stand for Stag and a Staghorn is a very interesting plant.

(Okay I’m going to have to look that one up. I am such a geek haha! )

Me too -lol

What if anything inspired your track and your music?

My interest comes from my own trying to make sense of life and living, through the game of parallel sound channels, learning through a playful process.

When/What made you start playing music?

When I was young, I had a Yamaha PSR e413, which is an entry-level keyboard, it had some cool sounds on it and I learned how to record songs into it.

What genres of music do you like to perform in?

House music

What kind of people connect with you and your music?

Most of the people I know feel open with me, and they also feel open with my music, even though some of them are not familiar with electronic music.

What quote/sentence would you say best describes you and your music?

Looping the loops

Going back to ‘OutFluence’ I was drawn to the Alan Watts-esque sample 

Actually in Outfluence I sampled a Psychiatric from YouTube who talks about how to handle with anxiety. but maybe he cited Alan Watt? I don’t know. 

Who are your influences in music? And why?

Tiga, Four Tet, Booka Shade – They came through my mind when I thought “wow I want to make something like this!” while listening to them.

When you think/see the two words Creativity & mental health what 3 words come to mind for each one.

Creativity – Art, Sex, Ideas
Mental Health – Anxiety, Depression, Addiction

How does being creative help you?

Being creative helps me express myself.

What are your experiences or views with on mental health issues and the music & entertainment industry?

Music can be something to lean on, especially if you create it yourself…mmm I’ve been struggling with anxiety all my life, 10 months ago I decided to take care of it seriously.

Have you had negative experiences in your life that drew you to a creative outlet like music? And if so how did exploring your creativity help you?

Sometimes when I have bad dreams it affects the mood of my next creation.

(I think I can relate. When a person’s Mental Health becomes unwell -for myself it feels like I’m under the Influence of my Illnesses. Your track ‘OutFluence’ is the opposite of how I would describe the symptoms of Mental Health -isolation, fear, etc.)

Is there a bigger message you are trying to send out and what is your message?

The bigger message is an oldie but a goodie…
Telling my story as a legitimate one and hoping the effect is contagious…

It is a crazy world we live in. What is life like for people living in Tel-Aviv with COVID?

It’s hard to see the city shut down during lockdown, especially after you experience how vivid Tel Aviv is.

Are you trying to do something or create awareness with your music career or hobby?

it’s a work in progress.
I’m figuring out what is in the core of my creative process.
Basically, I’m trying to make myself feel more “at home” in the world.

What is the weirdest job you have had?

I was an Escape Room operator

(Haha! Funny & cool too. That is ironic in the sense that Anxiety is about escaping form what we are trying to feel as opposed to embrace our fears and conquer our goals.

Your new track ‘ Uneasy Dave’ (Big Momma’s House Records) has a great acid sound to it. It’s an intriguing title.

Uneasy Dave is a pun
It’s like Uneasy Day

but Uneasy Dave stands for a character who feels uneasy and shy. if you hear the first 2 seconds of the track, you’ll hear a “heh…” a sound of discomfort

(The first words that came to my mind when I heard the track is that is creative, innovative, sensual – the title seems to tie in with the anxiety and mental health issues yourself and many other people can find deliberating to live with at times…)  

 

 

Are you trying to do something or create awareness with your music career or hobby?

 

it’s a work in progress.

I’m figuring out what is in the core of my creative process. 

Basically, I’m trying to make myself feel more “at home” in the world.

(I think I can relate.In my opinion when my Mental Health becomes unwell – it feels like I’m under the Influence of my Illnesses. Your track ‘Outfluence’ is the opposite of how I would describe the symptoms of Mental Health-isolation, fear & other symptoms people can find debilitating to live with at times)

(It has been fun and pleasure collaborating with you and finding out something about Israel’s electronic house scene and I appreciate you opening up about your own Mental health issues and how creativity has helped you embrace and improve your Mental Wellbeing).

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Bank of Sound :Toxic positivity

I discovered Toxic Positivity

on Soundcloud.

Toxic Positivity is made up of Sacremento , california nased Billy Sync – music producer, song writer, musician and does the incredible Album artwork. Nate Gessenger does is an auto emigineer who does the mastering.

Nate currently works for DNA MUSIC LABS

There was something about this song that brought me back into the present. It had a tranquillizing effect on me. The waterfall intro, the birds tweeting. follows in harmony in tune with nature & I couldn’t predict where this narrative of sound would lead to. It is a playful, natural & melodic track with a hell of a drop that left me riding out the wave. A Simply beautiful arrangement of sound.

It has that organic unprocessed essence to the track. He has released 3 Albums

Strange Elevator music -(June 2020)

Tulpamancy -(March 2020)

Deluge ( Dec 2019)

He states

However, each track is unique and produced from a live performance of synthesizers, and sequencers, primarily surrounding the Deluge. About half synths, half sample-based. Besides mastering, no software is used.

I’ve asked Toxic Positivity to be a part of the ongoing project THE CREATIVISTS HOUR.

 

Toxic Positivity has been recently been featured on AcidTed & Loodma recordings SoundCloud base featured his track on their station.

Taken from his Soundcloud Bio

I like being transported to another place with music. Sounds the listener defines as pleasing takes them to a profound state of contentment and happiness. But is this as far as we can go?

Feelings of confusion and alienation can also be tools to an altered state. Instead of turning off music that initially repels oneself, embrace it. Realize you are being haunted by ghosts of another world. Do yourself a favor and go listen to My Life in the Bush of Ghosts by Brian Eno and David Byrne right now.

When I asked TP what three words come to mind when he thinks of Mental health & creativity

His reply: —– PROCESS IS PAYOFF

It’s interesting how TP’s musical journey started.

I started making music because I had some minor physical health issues and wanted to be able to spend more time indoors creating. After i started I then went through my first ever mental health issues (anxiety/depression) and soon realized how beneficial music and the creative process, in general, was to my mental health.

In his CREATIVE HOUR FEATURE, Toxic Positivity touches on interesting points about the need for creativity and finding a way to not let his projects affect his mental & physical health.

He is also insightful about the importance of being creative & finding a community to share your ideas with -as scary as it is. It is important not only to create. the part of the creative process should be to connect and communicate with other people. It helps our overall wellbeing & can lead to other creative endeavors. or collaborations.

TP will also elaborate more on

I will address my personal philosophy about fun vs. work when it comes to making music self-doubt was difficult to overcome being an outsider to any established professional music industry.

Check out his latest album on

Son Lux -Alternate worlds

Not your average music review.

My first introduction to American, post-rock, electronica/ experimental trio, Son Lux was this track ‘Easy’.

My brain exploded with a rush of endorphins. Its sexy, funky, 100% Son Lux style & has to be watched live or watch the live version.

I didn’t hear much about them again until 2018 when Son lux dropped this track ‘dream state ( Brighter wounds album, 2018). This was the second time that I heard their music & (once again) I stopped everything I was doing, went back to listen to it over & over.

It has so much emotion on an operatic level| & the soundscape is dramatic, epic &intense. It releases a force of emotion that makes the hairs stand up on the end of my arms.

I was also drawn to the lyrics. I didn’t know what the word impervious meant until I heard this song.

imperviousadjective

US /ɪmˈpɜr·vi·əs

not able to be influenced, hurt, or damaged:

He seems to be impervious to pain.

Granite is almost impervious to acid-rain damage.

I think there are many times in my life when I’ve wanted to be impervious to situations I don’t want to face, people I don’t want to love or care about (only because to love & care means me having to fight another day, not just for them but for myself).

Then there are the times I want to be impervious to Life & peoples bullshit. That is a mantra I’m going to start using,

‘I’m Impervious to life’s bullshit and traditional fairytales’

I digress…

I think when we lose our ability to care or love then hope is narrowed down to that dark abyss. An abyss is a place for researchers of other intelligent life (in my humble opinion).

The increasing pressure to seek that little light can be a place of entanglement. What I love about Son Lux’s music is that it takes me to nebulous places, but ones where I remember where I hid the match or lighter to find my way back (through the music) to a state of exhilaration/ redemption or just a more positive mind frame. I find most of their songs cathartic.

Back to ‘dream state’ (title & lyrics = Match made in Elysium).

The lyrics & how they are performed have that narcotic inducing effect.

I wrote a surreal piece of fiction when I listened to this song. I’m not ready to share it.

I was also grieving the end of my marriage & I couldn’t bring myself to get rid of our wedding pictures.

I often look back at pictures of happy & painful moments.

This line from the lyrics

We took photographs of everything we could feel

reinforced how dwelling on nostalgia can keep a person stuck – not able to move forwards.

I wondered how I could go from being so in love with nearly destroying my marriage. I speak of where I went wrong. I put my photos away & vowed to move forward. I wanted to be impervious to feeling guilt, shame, melancholy, love, rage- the plethora of what we understand as emotions.

It’s impossible for me to remain impervious to people and subjects I’m 100% straight-up passionate about.

Another great song of theirs is the Alternate world

It has that same ethereal, Gotye esque (‘Somebody I used to know’ featuring Kimbra) sound to it. But better.

Son Lux’s melody, harmony& lyrical content is the G.reatest

O.f

A. ll

T.ime