by Dandiford Y. Lion
9.23.2014 - BARCELONA, SPAIN - From the rolling hills north of this Catalan metropolis comes a new collection of Mediterranean poetic pop. The preceding years have shown this one man recording act to be a versatile, surprising and highly personal project by the enigmatic Demian. This November brings both a new Ô Paradis album entitled Nacimiento and a tribute CD featuring interpretations of Ô Paradis songs by his friends and contemporaries around the world. This tribute, Nada Que Perder: Una Celebración de Ô Paradis, includes covers by notable artists such as David E. Williams, Naevus, Mushroom's Patience and twelve others. This reporter has been provided with an advance promo of both this and Nacimiento, and I must say... good golly. What an action-packed joyride.
Upon landing at Barcelona's Demian Nada Intergalactic Spaceport, I quickly ran through customs despite the protests of security mercenaries. "No time to talk, kids. I've got an important interview to conduct," I clarified. I jumped into a rental hovercraft, threw its owners to the curb and jettisoned off to a nude beach to catch a bit of sun. Several hours later, I recalled the purpose of my trip and redirected myself to Demian's mountainside compound.
The artist's residence at first struck me with a sense of awe at its understated elegance and electrified razorwire fencing. "Nasty business that would be," I noted inwardly. "I'll take the old-fashioned route and gain ingress via finger-centric doorbell activation methods." I rang.
"¿Como?" asked the help through the intercom.
"Dandy Lion here from the States. I'm looking to pick Demian's brainian."
"Au contraire, servant. I'm gonna be meeting the lord of the house whether you like it or not. Now, we can do this the easy way, or I can resort to violence. Being a peaceful man, I say let's go with option A. Otherwise, I'll be taking out my puños americanos. Capisce?" The gates opened.
Casa Demian was revealed before me with topiary animals and frescoes depicting ancient Japanese erotica. "Que elegante," I didn't say, though I could have.
"I like my peace and quiet," Demian began. "Please infer no ill will from the butler's initial attitude. It is his job to keep out the riff-raff."
"Fair enough. I'm on business here."
Demian reclined in his throne and mused. "I have poured my soul into this album. Spilled my blood. Things of that nature. Put something like that in your article. It sounds dramatic." I suggested that we tour his home studio to get a first hand view of the recording process, but he rebuffed my request by claiming that he had burned it down immediately following the recording of Nacimiento. This curious (and expensive) habit was difficult to take seriously. I played along and suggested that we sit a while by one of his pools and dig deeper into the album's back story.
"Nacimiento involves Rorsach tests converted to audio formats... a spilled gallon of electric blue paint." He said many things along this line. A small cyclops holding a tray of empty martini glasses approached him and I cut him off. "Enough of these pleasantries, Demian. What of the tribute album?"
"I know nothing of this."
It was with this final obstruction that I left Demian completely and high-tailed it across town to the abandoned building that Raul Lopez of Comando Suzie was using for shelter. He was burning books and clothing in an oil barrel and warming his hands. The independent music industry had been good to him. Summoning him with stale bread crusts, I questioned him about his approach to the version of "Conversaciones Con Un Mismo" he supplied to Nada Que Perder. Lopez noted that his involvement in the tribute was mainly based on promises of royalties from Lapin. These promises were not real, he later clarified, and instead should have been interpreted with the intended sarcasm.
"The Lapin executives said much about the inevitable riches to come my way after the release of this album. I took them at their word. And now, well, you see where I am." Lopez made hand gestures at his new, for lack of a better word, home. I slinked away and boarded a plane for London, the city well known for its most notable resident: Lloyd James of Naevus.
Surely he would be able to give me some useful information about one of the two songs he worked on for this tribute. James met with me in a parking lot he cheekily referred to as a "car park". Leaning against his Jaguar, Mr. James began to quote Proust. I interrupted and asked for some tea and crumpets for the full-on English experience. He clarified that, racially, he was Welsh. I nearly admitted to knowing nothing about the country of Welshia.
However Lloyd quickly got me to wager 50 pounds that I could name a stereotype about his people. I failed to do so, but I refused to pay my debt all the same. And with that, I left the England and their muffins behind me.
Though I have scoured the Earth trying to independently verify the details of these upcoming albums, I have sadly been unable to do so. Instead, I must rely on the soulless press release from Lapin operatives. As they dryly put it, "Nacimiento and Nada Que Perder will be released simultaneously in November on compact disque and available through eskimofilms.com."
Time will tell if this is a lie.