London Label Polytechnic Youth has announced the forthcoming release of Hologram Teen’s debut album 'Between The Funk and The Fear' and is previewing the lead track 'God(d) Of Thunder Vs. Sukia'.
Hologram Teen is the solo electronic motorik disco project of Morgane Lhote, known to many for her work as long-term keyboard player in the seminal indie kosmische act Stereolab. Morgane recorded and performed with the band during their imperial phase between 1995 and 2001, when they released a series of career defining albums including ‘Emperor Tomato Ketchup’. Later on, she did a stint in The Projects and, from 2005, played in Garden with members of Simian Mobile Disco before starting the Hologram Teen project. Having lived in Paris, NYC she has since settled in LA, where she produces her current project.
This is her first solo album since those days. It includes 11 killer occasionally whacked-out tracks, inspired by a multitude of key figures from varying genres – the soundtracks of Goblin and John Carpenter, 1970s French Disco and psychedelic Brazilian rock, Congolese Soukous, and the string arrangements of François de Roubaix and Jean-Claude Vannier.
'God(d) of Thunder vs. Sukia' entails a collaboration with Sukia, an electronic band based in Camarillo, California. Formed in the early 1990s, Sukia took their name from the Italian vampire comic book of the same name. The Dust Brothers like them so much that they produced their album 'Contacto Espacial con el Tercer Sexo', along with Jerry Finn, and released it on their own label Nickelbag Records in the USA. It was released through Mo Wax Records in the UK. Sasha Fuentes and Craig Borrell of Sukia played guitar, flute, synths, and sang on this new track, producing a slice of cinematic psychedelia where Ennio Morricone meets Jean-Luc Godard at the mouth of the Styx River. Their song 'Feel'n Free' also featured in the Oscar-nominated soundtrack to the film 'The Big Short'.
‘Between The Funk and the Fear’ follows Hologram Teen's widely acclaimed 'Marsangst' EP, released via Happy Robots Records last year. Apart from Sukia, Morgane Lhote is joined on his new album by Swedish musician Orange Crate Art, spicing up the proceedings. Long time collaborator Richard Bennett also mixed and produced all the songs on the LP, and the live instruments were recorded at his studio in Brooklyn, Acme Hall.
Although Hologram Teen embraces electronica and pop, she does so in a way that is more evocative of a prog rock disco horror soundtrack than the soulless EDM that fills the pop charts. Her approach in mixing creepy vintage library effects with bouncy dancehall synths and disco beats has won Pulp's Jarvis Cocker over as one of her many newfound fans.
“With this first LP, I wanted to create the soundtrack to the trippiest horror movie ever, and combine the scary and the absurd, through a very tongue in cheek aesthetic both musically and visually. For this project, I decided to experiment with adding live instruments, such as bass, drums, and strings, instead of or in conjunction with electronic instruments on some tracks. It was especially interesting to merge both musical feels and textures into one cohesive narrative,” says Morgane Lhote.
“I also had a strong sense of what the music should “look like” as shown on the LP’s cover design: Disco Démon was always going to be the main protagonist in a mish-mash of Jean-Claude Forest’s comics meets neon loudness meets the movie poster to ‘The Warriors’ and ‘Le frisson des vampires’”.
The Polytechnic Youth label started in 2014 when a friend of the owner invested his savings in a vinyl-cutting lathe directly from its "inventor" in Germany. The label was hugely inspired by the key period of 1978-82 minimal synth and DIY electronic scene; and the private press nature of several essential releases which were often adorned in photocopied sleeves, stapled, created at home affairs that, more often than not contained incredible, groundbreaking music.
“This is a very filmic, hugely adventurous full length – perhaps a slight departure from previous output on Polytechnic Youth, but all the better for it,” says Dom Martin, label boss at Polytechnic Youth. “And with titles like 'Roller Lover Doppelganger', 'Tracksuit Minotaur' and 'Lesbian Death Drums', what’s not to like?!”
released July 6, 2018
02 Bleeker Street! Chase Me!
03 Tracksuit Minotaur
04 God(d) of Thunder vs. Sukia
05 Roller Lover Doppelgänger
06 Hologram Teen & Brasil 666
07 Bartók in C
08 Brooklyn's Broken! You Caught Me!
09 Lesbian Death Drums
10 Magique Afrique
11 Escape from Paris (Orange Crate Art Remix)