Tycho: Artist You Should Know

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Known to his friends and loved ones as Scott Hansen, and known in the graphic design world as ISO50, San Francisco based artist Tycho creates lush melodic soundscapes that are the sonic equivalent to the images and palette he favors in his visual art work.

Bold, washed-out yellows and oranges, stark desert landscapes, shimmering stars, and crashing waves, and human figures appear in silhouette with a real attention to detail and form, but also a real appreciation for mystery and the resulting wonder.

His music captures all of that, to the point that one ends up asking, is he making images to complement the music or vice versa. The fact is, as an artist, it’s probably both and neither, I doubt Mr. Hansen is concerned with this kind of question, as it seems to just emanate from him.

He’s released a few albums and EPs on Ghostly International, and his latest full length is called “Dive.”

The first track “Hours” is available for download now and it’s really beautiful stuff. A glorious beach sunset of a track, it builds slowly and then continually washes over you for almost 6 minutes. Amidst the drum clacks there are breezy rushes and the faint sounds of waves landing on the shore, you can virtually feel the sun on your skin.

Like Ulrich Schnauss, Bibio, and Boards of Canada, Tycho’s compositional strength is not only in his layering and panning the sounds, but utilizing decay as a means of coloring the sound and adding enough actual organic elements so as to make the synthetic seem more organic.

It reminds me of Tyrell in Blade Runner iterating the company motto, “More Human than Human.”

Hours” stunningly achieves a verisimilitude that makes it somehow, “More Beach Sunset than Beach Sunset.” Considering that we’re in LA, that’s alot.

Mario Cotto