Ivory Fields discuss inspirations, musical approach & their excellent debut LP

Post Author: Myles Hunt

The synthy alt pop duo’s self-titled album is out now via Simballrec Music

How does one keep it together? Well, music seems to be very high on that list of life-preserving aids. As the winter season approaches, and with its holiday takeovers, some music is still inching its way forward. Ivory Fields, made up of musicians Alejandro Cohen and Mahadev, gift a universe into the listener’s inviting ears at the perfect time. Powered by synth driven glory, it is pure unusual musical candy. One feels comfortably out of place with their sound, but relishes the change of pace. With the release of their debut self-titled album, these musicians are ready to grab a hold of the wave. 

Ivory Fields is full of energy once listeners hit play. Electronic glitches and whirrings greet the ears but remain in a  catchy realm. Synth rock comes to fruition throughout with an eager pull. Fans will grasp onto the ride here and not want to let go. Ivory Fields take the album around a diverse scene of changes. Not only is it a fascinating study of music building, but it keeps the listener enthralled with curiosity. What is going to happen next? Music as an adventure is a real treat, compelling to explore further down the path less traveled. 

Your sound is eclectic in so many ways, what do each of you bring to the table when creating? Is there mad-scientist energy going on with your musical creations? Are there no wrong paths to take?

Ale: In the case of this particular release, we started from instrumental tracks I created in my studio, from there, we went back and forth with Mahadev adding vocals, and arrangements.  The back and forth process also changed the structure of some of these tracks. In my case, there is more of a Bob Ross energy where I feel the freedom to create my own universe and define things in my own terms. There’s a degree of self-indulgence in Ivory Fields where ideas flow in all directions and we let them define themselves afterwards. You could say there are no wrong paths to take. “There’s no mistakes, only happy accidents.” 🙂

Mahadev: Ale sent beautiful long form sounds and this particular album had a lot of cut and paste passed through analogue circuits. Most of it was recorded over a decade ago. On pathways to take, it all balances eventually…There are many paths to the same place, which will all be consumed by fire in the end.

As If” is a great track, how does it fit into your sound, if any, and what areas did you explore when creating? What led to this?

Ale: I suppose this is our “goth” track, or the closest to that. This is one of those songs that starts with the drum beat and the rest is defined by the rhythm.

Mahadev: We were listening to the group Dome a lot at the time, which influenced this particular track as a strong color…Although it doesn’t bear much resemblance to those sounds in the end. Ale and I are always listening to a lot of different music in multifarious genres, which makes everything a bit of a pastiche.

What medium assists you all in coming up with new ideas and why? Is it film, art, writing or all of the above? Explain.

Ale: I tend to focus mostly on music with little interest in other art forms or disciplines. There are times that film, art and literature would play a bigger role in my creative practice, however, for the past few years I seem to only find inspiration in sound exclusively.

Mahadev: The movement and pacing of film sometimes comes with an echo of structures to music, both being temporal mediums. I’m influenced by visual art too. Each line as an extension of content…books and experimental poetry very much influence the sounds I make…all the mediums – nature imitating itself with all different plays of energy.

When listening to new musicians live, what usually ticks the box for you that makes you say, “Oh, I wanna hear more”?

Ale: In my case, there has to be a genuine and well-developed performance aspect to it, almost a demonstration of physical ability. Not that every musician that performs live has to be a virtuoso, but there has to be a degree of showmanship in there that goes beyond getting on stage and going through the motions of a live representation of your studio tracks. Recently I saw Evicshen live at 2220 Arts + Archives. After dragging herself through the floor while creating an intense noise piece, she had a whip that was swinging that then she cracked in perfect timing with the ending of the music. That was to me a very interesting performance that showed practice, thoughtfulness, dedication and a degree of risk that you need to take when you are on stage.

Mahadev: Answering very practically, especially if from a new sound group whose recordings I’m not familiar with, shorter sets can be nice sometimes and make me want to hear more.

What advice can you share for green musicians that may be overlooked from the industry?

Ale: I think first you need to ask yourself why you want to be looked at by “the industry.” Is it fame, money, notoriety that you seek, or are you simply looking to develop your art and craft? If the latter is your answer then just go for it and do what you want to do, the rest will come or not, but it won’t matter. If what you are looking for is fame and fortune, or recognition, then you gotta create a product you can market and sell. It all starts with what you want out of it.

Mahadev: As S.M. Baba Mangalanand Puri Ji (Goa Gil) taught me: try your best at your work, but never be attached to the results of it. Be One and connect to your inner bliss, always.