Going by the monikers That Guy and DJ Fathouse, local space pop act EyE-C create a hip-hop act that's not afraid to release albums with close to 20 songs, about half of which include no vocals. Though they label themselves as "space pop," the layperson would probably categorize them as lo-fi hip-hop.
EyE-C's latest release, Long Distance Calls, is more on this hip-hop side - sounding as if former Indianapolis heavy hitter Sirius Blvck had aerated his rhymes with plenty of Korgs.
The duo has been making music and expanding upon what each of the members can bring to the table since 2016. Vocalist That Guy also plays guitar, although the instrument makes an appearance in only a couple songs. Composer/producer DJ Fathouse is also a keyboardist, and is more prominent in the band's electronic sound. Synthesizers are present in almost every song and usually take center stage when That Guy isn't using his restrained drawl for a more specific, vibe-heavy effect.
"Whereas in the past we would just get together and jam, the depth of sound has expanded now, allowing us to create a more immersive experience for listeners. This is coupled with more meaningful and thought-provoking lyrics that connect to the overall theme of the sound," said That Guy via email. "We think the sound has been established and reached its destination, which is space pop, although we are still creating new elements to expand upon that sound."
Last year EyE-C released a 19-song, robotic-sounding epic entitled simply E. Part soundscape, part hip-hop-infused journey, the album follows the modern trend of simplified lyrics, low in enthusiasm but with a fairly easygoing vibe. Vibe is one of the things that EyE-C do best; they create a feeling with each song that captures the listener and brings them into their dreamy, slower-paced, atmospheric world.
Always understated, EyE-C keep their low-profile sound flowing, but they show what they're capable of when they open up, speed up the tempo and use their synthesized sound to give life to their EDM fantasies. The best example of this comes about halfway through E. on a song called "labEl, gEnrE, somEthing" which features guitar by Lux Drive's Nathaniel Davis (going by the name Blue Drift for this song). The song starts out with thick, modulated guitar and transition into what is probably the most upbeat, in-your-face house music being created in Fort Wayne at the moment.
The band isn't really busting out house music, and you shouldn't expect that from them, but within their lo-fi hip-hop they're able to burst into pretty much any genre they're capable of, techno included.
You'd be hard-pressed to find a central theme to all the songs EyE-C have released to date, but what they lack in a cohesive lyrical theme they make up for with a consistency of sound that somehow changes and grows, yet remains persistently within their realm, a feat not easily achieved by a band that's only a couple years old.
"We believe our over-arching theme is sound itself. Our music consists of our thoughts and experiences presented on an auditory canvas, painting a picture of understanding and transparency," said That Guy. "We have themes for specific projects which reflect certain thoughts, feelings and ideas at the time of their inception. It is our conscious decision to apply these themes to our projects," said the band."
With such varied themes, you can expect the band to have varied influences, but only some of their cited influences are hip-hop or rap-based. It's sometimes difficult for a listener to describe where the precise sounds come from. An artist might take for granted an influence that is a natural comparison for a listener and focus on more precise influences and impacts.
"Our musical influences are drawn from many different artists of all genres, like Outkast, Mndsgn and Mac Demarco," That Guy said. "We take influences from Jimi Hendrix, A Tribe Called Quest and Pink Floyd. Our inspiration is drawn from every experience and interaction we have encountered in life as well, and our interpretation of the world directly influences the sounds we project," said the band.
With a new album entitled spacEpop, in the works, the band hopes to achieve an identifiable sound and ultimately progress as musicians.
"Our message is to promote uniqueness in a world full of sameness, to expand the minds of many and silence the lies of the few," That Guy wrote.
You can find physical copies of EyE-C's music in a number of area as well as some Indianapolis music stores. Their music is also available on just about every digital platform on the web.
The scope of their available coverage is staggering, and one can expect them to keep growing and making their spacey hip-hop music available both locally and, thanks to the internet, worldwide.
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