Do, 03.02.2022
LALA LALA
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Präsentiert von MusikBlog, gaesteliste.de und ByteFM

“I want total freedom, total possibility, total acceptance. I want to fall in love with the
rock.”
That’s how Lillie West describes the theme of “DIVER,” the song she calls the thesis of
Lala Lala’s third record,
I Want The Door To Open
. The rock in question is a reference
to Sisyphus, the mythical figure doomed by the gods to forever push a boulder up
from
the depths of hell. To West, it is the perfect metaphor for “the labor of living, of figuring
out who you are, what's wrong with you, what's right with you,” she says. “I think it’s
easy to feel like we keep making the same mistakes over and over agai
n, that we never
learn, that we’re Sisyphus; but time is actually a spiral that we move up. The key is
falling in love with the labor of walking up the mountain.”
Coming off of 2018’s acclaimed
The Lamb
, an introspective indie rock album recorded
live wi
th a three
-
piece band, West knew she was ready to make something sonically
bigger and thematically more outward
-
looking than anything she’d done before; a record
that would be less a straightforward documentation of her own personal struggles and
more like
a poem or a puzzle box, with sonic and lyrical clues
that would allow the
listener to
, as the title says, open the door to the greater meaning of those struggles.
The result is I Want The Door To Open, a bold exploration of persona and presence
from an
artist questioning how to be herself fully in a world where the self is in constant
negotiation. From the moment West declares “I want to look right into the camera” over
a cascade of dreamy vocal loops on opening track “Lava,” I Want The Door To Open
dist
inguishes itself from anything she’s done before in scope and intensity. The ultra
-
magnified iteration of Lala Lala is fully encapsulated in the monumental “DIVER.”
Inspired by a character from a Jennifer Egan novel, it’s a pop song of Kate Bush
-
esque
prop
ortions replete with layered synths and booming, wide open drumming contributed
by fellow Chicago musician Nnamdi Ogbonnaya, and West pushing her vocals to the
ragged edge.
West co
-
produced I Want The Door To Open
with Yoni Wolf of Why? and reached out
t
o various music friends to help her achieve a galactic level of atmospherics that
would’ve been impossible on her own. In addition to Ogbonnaya, I Want The Door To
Open
features contributions from poet Kara Jackson, OHMME, Adam Schatz of
Landlady, Sen Mori
moto, Christian Lee Hutson, and Kaina Castillo. Former tourmate
Ben Gibbard can be heard on the gentle “Plates,” a song about accepting the past


regardless of whatever negative feelings accompany those memories; a necessary act
for unlocking the door to th
e present moment West is actively seeking on the record.
Throughout
I Want The Door To Open
, West is fascinated with the idea of avatars: how
we present ourselves to the world versus how other people see us versus who we really
are when we’re alone, and
how those images can change over time. “How can anyone
else know who you are? How can you know who anyone else is when all these different
avatars or personalities or performances are happening simultaneously, in different
places,” asks West. It’s a questi
on she poses on the cinematic “Color of the Pool,” a
song about wanting to embody the characteristics of something pure and uncatchable
that features stacks of wigged
-
out saxophone from Schatz. West revisits the topic on
“Photo Photo,” on which OHMME provi
de a haunting medieval vocal round as West
attempts to parse the various aspects of presentation and representation.
“Utopia Planet,” the final track on I Want The Door To Open
,
features a very special
guest: West’s own Grandma Beth, who charmingly relay
s her thoughts on a painting
West made of herself

another avatar of the artist as seen through the eyes of
someone who loves her. It is the fitting end to the inner labyrinth that West maps on I
Want The Door To Open, a musical quest undertaken with the kn
owledge that the titular
door may never open; but it is through falling in love with the quest itself that one may
find the closest thing to total freedom, total possibility, and total acceptance available to
us on this plane of existence
Alle Termine

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