Tasseomancy — Do Easy (18th November, 2016) ⦿ Inspired by the wild flamingos of all the night karaoke soirees and the domestic manifesto of William S Burroughs’s The Discipline of DE, “Do Easy” is a iconoclast pop hit written from Romy Lightman’s sub–conscious in a basement apartment. Burroughs’s doctrine on finding “the easy way” struck me as something rare and I hung onto it like a piece of protection. Later on, I discovered that Genesis P–Orridge believed this text to be one of the greatest magic techniques for retraining the mind. Endorsed by Occultists, stoners, freaks, the ultra zen and the highly sensitive, Do Easy attempts to infuse the mundane with a gentle joy and a sense of simple delight.
⦿ Bella Union are delighted to announce the signing of TASSEOMANCY, aka Canadian twin sisters Sari and Romy Lightman, whose new album Do Easy will be released 18th November via the label. For the seasoned loners, stoners, and lackadaisically laid, Do Easy was written as a dead–beat anthem for a generation who was told that anything is possible after the possibility slows. Written in Toronto and Montreal, Do Easy was created as a lamp shade of hope; of soft survivalism. Serene, strange and magnetically sung, it honours its free–thinking forebears without being weighed down by them, creating immersive worlds of loving allusion.
Location: Montreal and Toronto
Album release: 18th November, 2016
Record Label: Bella Union / Hand Drawn Dracula/Outside
01 Dead Can Dance & Neil Young 5:21
02 Claudine 4:10
03 Jimi Infiniti 3:42
04 Missoula 3:34
05 Wiolyn 5:47
06 29 Palms 2:25
07 Do Easy 5:34
08 Do Easy Reprise 1:50
09 Gentle Man 2:32
10 Emergency 2:36
11 Eli 6:05
⦿ Romy Lightman
⦿ Sari Lightman
⦿ Eleven Cartwright
⦿ Johnny Spence
⦿ Evan Cartwright Drums, Group Member, Steel Pan, Vocals (Background)
⦿ Alex Cowan Engineer, Mixing
⦿ Ryan Driver Flute
⦿ Alex Gamble Mixing
⦿ Sam Gleason Guitar
⦿ Charles James Bass
⦿ Julio Kennedy Text
⦿ Romy Lightman Art Direction, Group Member, Vocals
⦿ Sari Lightman Art Direction, Group Member, Guitar, Vocals
⦿ Harris Newman Mastering
⦿ Steven Periln Cover Photo
⦿ Simone Schmidt Featured Artist
⦿ Johnny Spence Editing, Engineer, Piano, Synthesizer, Vocals (Background)
⦿ Phil Spencer Engineer
⦿ Leon Taheny Mixing
⦿ Brodie West Sax (Alto)
AllMusic Review by Marcy Donelson; Score: ⦿⦿⦿
⦿ Tasseomancy continue to move away from the offbeat acoustic folk of their prior incarnation, Ghost Bees, into lusher, offbeat dream pop on their third full-length and Bella Union debut, Do Easy. The original duo of twin sisters Romy and Sari Lightman expanded into a four–piece with 2015’s Palm Wine Revisited, and dial up the reverb and electronics at least a touch here. Manipulated drum tones and trippy vocal effects join a cloudy atmosphere of synths and guitars on “Claudine.” Still delicate and ornamented with pastel timbres like flute, it’s layered but light, a description that applies to the album on the whole. “Missoula” takes a (per a press release) Hebraic melody that’s partly spoken and mixes it with a repeated drum pattern, clinking tones, and humming synths, along with saxophone and the occasional single strum of an electric guitar. The effect is part Kate Bush and part Twin Peaks. Speaking of the ‘80s and ‘90s, the spacy lead track, “Dead Can Dance & Neil Young,” is dominated by a vocal line sung in unison by the sisters, who bring a folky effect all on their own. It’s backed by piano, sustained keyboard chords, and simple drums. On the quirkier end is “29 Palms,” with a lurching vocal melody alongside saxophone and eerie synths. Later, ‘60s girl group–styled harmonies and the sound of crashing waves distinguish the title track’s reprise. In general, the album focuses more on texture and fluidity than memorable tunes, so listeners aren’t likely to find an earworm here, but they may find themselves humming along just the same. ⦿ http://www.allmusic.com/
SUBMITTED BY CHANTILLY POST ON JUNE 15, 2015 @ 10:32AM.
⦿ “I think our initial experience playing music was very solidary, just playing music in your bedroom. Oversized guitar and singing about being alone. “
⦿ Tasseomancy. The name derives from someone who is a tealeaf reader, a form a fortune telling. For twin sisters Sari and Romy it’s the name of their band and first album that is homage to their great-great aunt who did the unique practice.
⦿ “We are third generation tealeaf readers. When we first made that record we wanted to name it after her because she was a survivor of the programs in Russia. She came over to Canada as an orphan and married a man who was much older than her, a really shitty life. At the time — like eight years ago — we thought this was sort of a project for all these compromised woman who never felt like they had enough space to be creative. That’s how it started initially and overtime the name just kind of stuck.”
⦿ This should give some sort of explanation as to who these girls are, down to earth, calm, warm hearted individuals who make indie folk music that is full of soul.
⦿ I met up with the girls at Romy’s apartment in Toronto. Quaint, comfortable filled with plants and waxed candles, pretty cushions and an arousing smell of incense. A stand up fan created a nice breeze in the small living space that only had two sunlights. It use to be Sari’s spot, but was passed down to Romy when she moved to Montreal.
⦿ Although they are from Toronto they have also lived in Nova Scotia, which is one of the locations their newest album Palm Wine Revisited was recorded along with Kensington Market and the Toronto Island.
⦿ “When we recorded in Nova Scotia we were recording in a big huge country house overlooking the ocean,” Sari said. “Even just the process of the day, we would wake up and see the ocean and have some tea and hang out and talk about the songs. It’s such a different experience than for example Kensington. We’re in the studio by the clock, ‘okay let’s get these songs out.”
⦿ The two explained how living in Nova Scotia for eight years and now living in the city working with other bands has created a nice balance for their album.
⦿ Tasseomancy also comprises of percussionist Evan Cart Wright and keyboardist Johnny Spence. Doing work with the two for over four years has been a slow evolution of creating their unique sound.
⦿ “I think we’re really committed to the concept of playing in a band. When we first started music it was just the two of us, and lots of musicians sometimes will make a record and hire musicians for a tour or to record in the studio. But I think the fact that we’ve all been doing this quietly, picking away for four years, for us just throwing down the influences and what we want to create beyond the sound, and being able to connect like humans. I feel it’s nice that we’ve had this time to work through it,” Romy explained on the four coming together.
⦿ “We’re all really different and have different dispositions. Sari and I are intuitive musicians, we kind of learnt stuff on the road and Johnny and Evan studied in school. It’s kind of exciting to have these people who have this lexicon, their really fluid and wiggly. They kind of speak abstractly and they get it. That’s kind of the important part of the project.”
⦿ Sari and Romy may typically be known from doing work with Austra and touring with the electronic band also from Toronto. But after leaving the group just over a year ago they have taken the time to grow into their own and find their own sound. “To me it’s felt really good. When you’re playing in someone else’s band you’re there to support them, support their vision but ultimately our vision is different, our music is different, what we want to make is a completely different sound. So were turning back to that and it felt really good, felt fresh,” Sari said as she was preparing coffee for Romy in the kitchen.
⦿ “It was a really fun time. I think fundamentally we are artists first, then we’re musicians and I think when you wanna have a backing band — I guess the backing bands with the most longevity are musicians opposed to artist who make music. Ultimately in the end we needed to just kind of be artist who make our own music.”
⦿ Sari and Romy grew up with a creative family but didn’t have the outlets to practice music and grow their musical talents from a young age.
⦿ “I think we came by performing and creative paths really naturally. We were not really encouraged to play music growing up, I felt as a teenager just the neighbourhood we grew up with — I don’t know just a bit limited with its gender. There weren’t very many girls that were in a band and I felt like it was this adolescence of all these boys smoking weed and jamming in the basement. We never really got invited to do that,” Romy said. ⦿⦿⦿ http://ixdaily.com/
⦿ Tasseomancy is the musical project of twin sisters, Sari and Romy Lightman. Influenced by the likes of Robbie Basho, Broadcast, Mary Margaret O’hara, This Mortal Coil and Alice Coltrane’s Turiya Sings, the sisters have developed a unique sound, combining the lyrical and vocal traditions of folk music with the experimental attitudes of psychedelia, new wave and new age music. In 2011, the sisters released Ulalume, a collaborative record with Timber Timbre, while also joining the electronic queer group, Austra. They’ve since left the band to focus on their own project, and in April 2015, Tasseomancy will be releasing Palm Wine Revisited on Healing Power Records.
⦿ Palm Wine Revisited was recorded between the Toronto Island and the bay of Fundy in Nova Scotia with the addition of band members, Evan Cartwright on percussion and Johnny Spence on keyboards. Inspired by This Mortal Coil’s It’ll end in tears, this collection of songs is an introduction to the band’s diverse style, illustrating a wide variety of sound and influence from the pop sentiments of Braid, Apophenia, and Grass Harp to the more sparse electronic arrangements of Reality and What Life must I lead, accompanied by steel pan instrumentals.
⦿ “The Lightman twins are engaging and sonically captivating live, with Sari’s subdued mandolin and vocals providing a nice counterpart to Romy’s front~and~centre presence, with some great percussion and keyboards to tread the line between eerie and fun.” — Exclaim
⦿ “The Canadian sisters dwell in English folk’s wood~knotted creep, ‘Soft Feet’ punctured by the squall of brandished swords, crashing beneath imperial thrum and drone.” — NME
⦿ “Tasseomancy’s upcoming sophomore album, Ulalume (recorded with and produced by Timber Timbre), is dark, eerie, and a little bit off~kilter, so it becomes more intriguing the more times you press play.” — NYLON
⦿ “You may recognize the voices of Sari and Romy Lightman as the haunting backup singers for Toronto synth~poppers Austra. They are also the forces behind their own, equally dark but folkier group Tasseomancy.” — Brooklyn Vegan
⦿ “Who said psych~folk is dead? Here, we see all it’s tennets in glorious detail ~ gorgeous witchy women, death, lace, ghosts, bad dreams made beautiful… set to a stunning number fit for a seance. I’m in love.” — YVYNYL
Interview, words and photography Lamont Abramczyk
By Emily Zimmerman, Published Nov 16, 2016 / Score: 8
By Ed Nash / 10 NOVEMBER 2016, 09:30 GMT / Score: 8