Thursday 24 Jul

Planting the seed

“We think about it as a team,” she said. “Watching so many bands for so long and standing in the audience, I was like, ‘I want to try that.’ After playing by yourself for so many years and seeing what level you can reach with so many musicians coming in, you pretty much have to.
07/22/2014 | Comments 0

Commercial rock

Center of the Universe Festival featuring Capital Cities, Young The Giant, AWOLNATION & more
Downtown Tulsa 

07/22/2014 | Comments 0

Mack truckin’

9 p.m. Friday 
Kamp’s Lounge 
1310 NW 25th St. 

07/23/2014 | Comments 0

Chevy cruisin’

Chevy Woods with Kevin Gates & more
9 p.m. Sunday 
Vibe Night Club 
227 SW 25th St. 

07/16/2014 | Comments 0

Rock steady

7 p.m. Saturday
Frontier City
11501 N. Interstate 35 Service Road
Free with park admission 

07/16/2014 | Comments 0
Home · Articles · Reviews · Indie · Son Lux — We Are Rising

Son Lux — We Are Rising

An ornate, ecstatic set of indie compositions

Stephen Carradini June 24th, 2011

It is difficult to categorize the music of Son Lux.


Ryan Lott, who is Son Lux, is most often referred to as an electronic musician, but “We Are Rising” is more orchestral than almost any Sufjan Stevens’ work (especially “The Age of Adz”). There are electronic elements here, but to lump this in the same general category with techno is not only selling it to the wrong people, it’s cheapening the quality of composition.

The songs, after all, adopt classical conventions in instrumentation and convention, except for the fact that Lott sings in a very calm, controlled tenor). These are not pieces to be slapped on a playlist next to “Murder in the City” by the Avett Brothers, and the ornate arrangements of tunes like “Let Go” and “Rising” make it very clear that a Son Lux gig would be better suited to a concert hall than a club. The songs do not fit modern pop structures or presentation.

The whole album comes off as friendly instead of complex or prickly (the creepy “Claws” is an exception). There’s a deeply human element to these pieces; the intimate, incredibly crisp recording style leaves no barrier between the intentions of Lott and the listener. The use of strings, flutes and choirs throughout enhances the humanity of the pieces. Although underlying beats click in “Leave the Riches” and “Chase,” it’s never the sort of abrasive electronics that sever the connection. Just try to determine which elements of percussion are real or “electronic” in “Chase.”

It is not surprising that DM Stith, a frequent Stevens collaborator, was enlisted to help Lott write and record “We Are Rising” (which was completed, as part of a NPR challenge to him, in 28 days). Ecstatic experimentation that never leaves the realm of the recognizable and relatable has few champions, so it makes sense that Son Lux would pull from the pool that his main RIYL often utilizes for the disc. —Stephen Carradini
  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
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