Posted On 11 Oct 2018
On September 7th, Austin’s GHOSTLAND OBSERVATORY released their newest album called “SEE YOU LATER SIMULATOR” (Megaforce Records/Trashy Moped Recordings). This is their first album in over eight years. They have previously put out “delete.delete.i.eat.meat” (2005), “Paparazzi Lightning” (2006), “Robotique Majestique (2008) and “Codename: Rondo” (2010).
Formed in 2003, front-man Aaron Behrens provides the vocals in addition to occasionally playing the guitar while Thomas Ross Turner plays the drums and synthesizer.
Known not only for their psychedelic electro-rock music but for their stunning laser shows as well, their live performances which The Denver Post quips, ” the real surprise was just how good it can sound when real instruments played by actual musicians are used to create the kinds of sounds we’re accustomed to getting from laptops and mixers… This may be dance music, but Ghostland Observatory brings the raw human element of rock, both past and present, to their irresistible sound.”
“See You Later Simulator” merges somewhat disparate styles of music into a rather electrifying blend. Aaron’s unique and striking vocals are anchored by Thomas’ percussive beats and funky MOOG-generated melodies and hooks in a rather earthy and rootsy environment.
The resulting album ranks with Ghostland Observatory’s most ambitious and accessible work, with such tracks as “Paradise Lost,” “Permanent Vacation” and “Miss Abyss” delivering both uplifting electro-dance-rock and a loose but absorbing storyline that isn’t likely to interfere with the sweaty intensity of Ghostland Observatory’s upcoming live shows.
Connect with Ghostland Observatory Here:
All Access got to check out their colorful live show last week (Friday, October 5th) at downtown LA’s Regent Theater. Filled to the brim, the energy inside the packed venue was intense and rightly so. As soon as Ghostland Observatory hit the stage, the crowd immediately pushed forward to the stage and the dance party began.
Half way through the first song, the colorful lasers appeared out of contraptions at the back of the stage. They made long lines that spread out over the crowd and hit the back wall. At times they were neon green and smooth and other times they were hot pink and jagged.
There were also 3 large triangles on the stage that lit up brightly to match the laser colors. Behrens performed in the middle of the front one and the cape-wearing Turner and his equipment were set up in the back one. This was definitely a show where phones were up filming and taking pictures a lot! It was a visually stimulating show!
The duo performed songs off their newest album “”See You Later Simulator” and other hits from past collections. While it’s clear after listening to a Ghostland Obervatory album, it’s even more obvious during one of their concerts, just how versatile their sound truly is. Their fascinating amalgam of rock, country, psychedelia and avant-garde electronica with a heavy dose of disco thump is incredible.
Their fall tour wraps up on November 10th in Brooklyn. For all dates, check out- http://trashymoped.com/
Learn more about Ghostland Observatory in the following All Access interview:
Thanks for your time! What is on tap for the rest of your day?
We just arrived in Denver. It’s 1am here so the plan is to get some rest, jam out and continue on to the west coast!
How has 2018 been treating you all? What is one musical goal that you have had for this year?
This year has been great! We decided to make a record after our New Years show and we are so excited about the outcome!
Can you recall the moment when you thought you could be in this group together? Has anything surprised you about this ride so far?
I think we really had a connection when we met each other so it always felt natural playing together. We’ve seen parts of the world I never imagined.
How do you think your hometown has influenced the sound and how you all carry yourselves in this group? Do you still today find inspiration from Austin?
Austin is a great place filled with beautiful people. You can always find inspiration in the people you meet day to day. There is a rich musical history there so in talking to your neighbors or people you meet you hear great stories of clubs or parties from the past.
You just released your newest album, “See You Later Simulator.” Can you talk about what it was like making this collection?
It was very natural and a lot of fun. It felt like this is what we should be doing. It felt right.
Since it’s your first collection in over eight years, I am curious how that time away changed the way you create music? Did you spend a lot of that time writing songs that would be on this new album?
When we write we get in a zone together and just create. Then we look back and see which songs we feel work best as an album and then we record them with our engineer Mark DuFour. We try not to overthink the process.
Have you given much thought at what your die-hard fans will think of this forthcoming collection? How do you think it compares to your previous releases?
I think this is a very strong record. Each of the recordings we’ve done are very different. We know our fans will appreciate that we don’t try to remake the same thing.
Where do you think you are all happiest- in the studio recording new music, on stage performing or elsewhere?
Both are great. When we record and write it’s like our little secret then we get to show it to the world with lights and lasers and a very loud sound system. We enjoy both aspects. Both are rewarding in different ways.
How excited are you guys to be heading out on the road this fall to promote this album? What can people expect from your live shows this time around? How do you prepare for this kind of a back to back tour schedule?
We have a newly designed lighting rig we spent a lot of time and effort creating. We are extremely excited to share the live show with audiences. We take it one show at a time and try to give each performance our very best!
How do you think being musicians and in this band still gives you the most joy in life today? What would you say is the most challenging part about it?
It’s like nothing else – the energy from a crowd that’s into your show! It’s very uplifting. No complaints about it. We feel blessed to be able to do this!
We are currently living through a very trying and politically charged time right now so I am curious to know how your own music is reflecting this time period? Or do you think it doesn’t? Would you say that other musicians are making music that has been influenced by this climate?
I think everyone has their feelings about what’s going on now just as they have in past times. Music is a healing force that breaks through negativity and brings people together. As long as we can bring people joy, we are doing our jobs and we feel great about that.
Are there any musicians that you will still love to work with in the future? What artists have really been inspiring this group and your music since day 1?
There are so many talented musicians out there. It’s hard to name them all. We really liked James Brown and Prince, at the drive in we liked a lot since day one. The Doors and Pink Floyd as well.
If you guys were all going to be stranded on a deserted island, what musical item would you want to take with you and why?
Synth, drum machine, guitar, and a recording device. We’d get it done with that. I’m sure we would get way out there on a deserted island. Trippy things would get recorded.
What do you hope is the message of your music? What do you hope people continue to take away from your songs?
Always positive vibes! Positivity always.