Sometimes in life, the best things come from places that you do not anticipate them coming from. Innovative duo Lovestorm found this out firsthand when they decamped to Mexico for some rest and relaxation last winter.
Their winter vacation destination ended up helping to birth the Moncton’s group’s newest effort, Overripe, the release of which is being celebrated this evening at Café Aberdeen, located in the Aberdeen Cultural Centre in downtown Moncton.
Lovestorm’s Nina Khosla says that she has typically used her Mexican winter retreat for songwriting and relaxation purposes over the past few years. This past winter, her Lovestorm partner Tim Isaac ended up joining her for a month, so before leaving Canada, the duo decided that they would try their hand at recording in their tropical destination. Khosla and Isaac ended up bringing along some of the necessary recording and musical equipment in order to aid them in the making of Overripe.
“We were both a little skeptical that we could actually write and record a whole record there but that is what ended up happening,” Khosla says.
Despite the absence of the duo’s trademark instruments of the cello and the harmonimum, Khosla and Isaac ended up using a number of non-conventional instruments such as seedpods, an improvised washtub bass, tin pans and more, which complemented the group’s use of ukulele, flute and keyboards. The result is an acoustic, intimate recording that features infectiously upbeat songs.
“I was in Mexico for nine weeks prior to Tim’s arrival and had written a good batch of songs on ukulele and keyboard before he arrived,” she continues. “It was when he arrived that the real fun began as we started writing songs together with Tim coming up with grooves made from tin pan percussion and other items that he found on the street.”
With momentum picking up by the moment, Khosla and Isaac soon converted one of the two bedrooms in their apartment into a makeshift studio which ended up inadvertently presenting its own set of challenges.
“The apartment was located so closely to the water that we had to close the doors to the room because the sound of the waves was so deafening! But then that made the room unbearably hot; we would actually take turns recording in there because of it.”
Asked whether being out of their “comfort zone” and without their standard instruments negatively impacted the recording sessions, Khosla insists that couldn’t be farther from the truth.
“We worked hard to make the record, yet our lifestyle while in Mexico was actually pretty relaxed. Every day we were there, we would make time for the beach and yoga.
“But it was exciting for us to be away from home with so little in terms of the gear we had to work with,” Khosla says. “It was great to have Tim to roam the markets to find the percussive instruments that we ended up using on the record but it was also exciting to have him play the viola, an instrument that he knew very little about going into the making of the record. It was neat to have no idea of what we would come up with and how the songs would sound until we actually did it. The record ended up revealing itself to us while we were making it.”
Article published in October 21, 2011 edition of the Times & Transcript