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Music  >>  CDs

Lycia

Ionia

Lycia Ionia
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Released in 1991, Ionia is Lycia’s debut on Projekt. With its brilliant blending of intense cascading guitar, droning synths and deep, whispered vocals, the release quickly found a home with fans of independent, underground goth as well as spacey ambient music. On this influential and much-admired album, songwriter, vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Mike VanPortfleet speaks to a melancholy that’s intentionally left open-ended. A raw mournful mood pulses beneath songs of isolation, existence, love and loss.

Ionia is a post-punk musician’s attempt to create an ambient record. VanPortfleet (with musical assistance on a few tracks) created hypnotic soundscapes that turned the mournful into the majestic. Inspired by the primal sounds of bands like Swans, Big Black and Cindytalk, and a desire to take it into realms of deeper experimentation, VanPortfleet reflects, “The mood of the album was influenced by my growing interest in darker-themed books and films, mysticism and existentialism, as well as an increasingly isolated and aloof personal life.”

Ionia appeared as a completely realized concept, putting Lycia on equal footing with influential bands of the time such as Dead Can Dance, Joy Division, The Swans, and Bauhaus. Ionia instantly fit into a fan’s music collection, never seeming like a newcomer’s debut, but rather like a classic one had always owned.

Darkly beautiful, flooded with a sense of loss and mystery, Ionia is devastating yet hopeful. Breathtaking and bewitching, the striking atmospherics and yearning lyrics create an achingly entrancing panorama of bittersweet longing.

Twenty-six years later, Ionia returns in a sonically-revealing remastered edition, overseen by VanPortfleet and Martin Bowes (Attrition). This is the reverb-drenched gothic take on ambient that put Lycia on the map.

CD in 4-panel Digipak.

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