— “I think in the process of creativity, you are often your own worst enemy,” says Andre Mistier, the mastermind behind the electronic band THE ADVERSARY about the meaning behind his band name. “To make something worthwhile involves getting past your own fears and insecurities. So I’m trying to be the adversary of the parts of me that get in the way of myself.” His debut Chapter One: The Ruins is a four-song EP that serves as the entry point to a world that exists within Andre’s mind. Set for release on June 4, 2013, Chapter One: The Ruins is the audio component to a much larger experience – one that encompasses both audio and the visual in a symbiotic fusion of music, video and performance.
“We live in a world of human voices, bird chirps, pianos, cellphones, elevators and construction noises,” he explains. “I feel like to make music today you have to at least acknowledge the full range of sounds that exist in our world. So, I mix organic sounds, electronic sounds, and hybrid sounds (sounds that I make by taking organic sounds and running them through lots of electronic filters).” What Mistier has created is a thoroughly organic form of electronic music, borne from his appreciation of music composition as it is from his experience at the experimental and senses-bending festival Burning Man. “I was exploring a lot of things. I went to Burning Man last August and it affected my understanding of music, and the relationship between electronic stuff and live stuff and then—I got here.”
The “here” that he describes is his trippy and rhythmic EP that places equal emphasis on beats and story, almost like a melding of Depeche Mode’s synthpop and Pink Floyd’s acid-washed storytelling. In a world where music becomes more and more capsulized and “singles”-driven, The Adversary’s modus operandi hearkens back to good, old-fashioned storytelling, though told through a very modern musical filter. As its title suggests, Chapter One: The Ruins is just the intro to a larger story, one with a mythology all its own. Part of a painstakingly-constructed four part opus (the following EPs will be released in succession over the next year), this EP introduces the listener to a post-apocalyptic world which tightens its focus around two people in love who trying to find their salvation in a world of ruins. The epic first single, “Maybelline” swirls in a dance-y, synthpop fervor that would feel at home at the infamous Goth club Limelight. “This is one of the most important songs for me of this entire collection,” he describes. “Both the story – of two lovers running through the ruins of a city in the future – and the sound have helped define the rest of the music and story of the whole piece.” The textural and atmospheric “Crazy Dream” exposes the heart within The Adversary. While an acoustic guitar meanders through violins and electronic bloops and bleeps, Andre’s vocals leads you through a psychedelic haze. “This has been one of the truest songs for me, at no matter what time in my life it’s been,” he comments. “The story isn’t true (it’s based on a dream), but the feeling is true, the song rings true.”
Debuting its vision through Huffington Post this past Spring, The Adversary unveiled its first video “De La Luna.” Filmed in reverse in NYC, the video’s disorienting narrative follows a woman moving forward in a backwards world. “I love this video because it reflects an experience that everyone has felt,” Andre tells writer Mike Ragogna. “Who hasn’t had the feeling that they are not moving in sync with the world?” Watch the video here: http://tinyurl.com/a5q3pwq. In addition, The Adversary will host its Record Review Party on Tuesday, June 4th at New York City’s The Box (189 Chrystie Street, New York, NY; $10) in the Lower East Side. Tickets are available here: https://web.ovationtix.com/trs/pe/9796344
Andre’s journey through music has been an unconventional one. The New York-based musician, who has a foundation in theater, has explored the connection between electronic sounds and instrument-based rock since the inception of his first band [ism] in 2004. In 2008, as his tenure with [ism] was drawing to a close, Mistier began working on film soundtracks and theater scores, his first musical efforts done solo. The work was deeply compelling to the artist and he found himself moving into the sonic territory that became his new project, The Adversary.
“I wanted to make it clear that the EPs are connected both musically and narratively,” he says. “I created a full album worth of work around characters living in the collapse of a future society, and liked the idea of releasing the whole collection in pieces rather than in one whole. The idea of calling them chapters made immediate sense as a way to make it clear that they are not separate, unrelated EPs, but one comprehensive whole, that we are simply choosing to offer up piecemeal. This first is called Chapter One: The Ruins because I love the idea that this story starts at the fall, the ruins, of an empire, rather than the beginning.”
The Adversary is Andre Mistier and its debut EP will be released on June 4, 2013 via Uncanny Valley Records.