Ask 100 artists, which I have come very close to doing this pandemic, and at least 75 percent will tell you they had planned to be on wanted to be on tour in 2020. But musicians, by nature, are creative people. And so whether you’re Tim McGraw, G-Eazy, Mike Shinoda, Travis Barker or Phoebe Bridgers, the chances are you have found a new way to work and a sort of creative freedom.
Scarypoolparty (real name Alejandro Aranda) is squarely in that 75 percent. But like all artists he has learned to adjust, resulting in the release tomorrow (September 4) of his stunning, atmospheric EP Doom Hologram.
“All of [the songs] were written a couple months back, but I just never had the time to finish them. I started to record all of my ideas a couple months back and that’s when each track was born,” Aranda says. “[Then] the whole world stopped in its tracks and I feel like I got more creative with my ideas and being free of a schedule.”
The Pomona, California native will celebrate the release with a close to hometown drive-in show at the Grove of Anaheim tomorrow night. Thinking about how he prepares for the unique record release show, Aranda says, “It’s just different in general for a drive in show, because instead of a crowd of people it’s a crowd of cars.”
Who would he want to see play a drive-in concert? ” Probably Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds or Tom Waits. That would be dope,” he says excitedly.
While the concept of drive-in concerts are still relatively new and most artists aren’t quite sure what to expect until they do their own, he is very familiar with drive-in movie theaters.
“There is a drive-in in Pomona, CA and I would always go to for the swap meet,” he says, adding, “The first movie I ever saw at a drive in was Batman, The Dark Knight.”
Though the Grove is a concert venue successfully and smartly transformed into a drive-in spot during Covid, it is highly fitting that Aranda is doing the first show at a drive-in.
Doom Hologram, as its name suggests, is an incredibly visual and cinematic work. From the epic, Cure vibes of “Fake Smiles” to the gorgeous strings on “Angel Delete,” Doom Hologram feels like the lost soundtrack to a lost ’60s film by the great Michaelangelo Antioioni (Blowup, L’Avventura). For Aranda, he would love to collaborate, he says, with David Lynch or Wes Anderson on a film score. And his dreamy arrangements would fit in beautifully if Lynch does another Twin Peaks reboot.
Looking ahead to the show tomorrow he says, “I think the [song] I’m most excited to play is ‘Angel Delete.'”
This isn’t just a filler EP in the time of Covid, as Aranda says they are planning on two videos — “Sun Moon Earth” and “Judas” — at least from Doom Hologram. Still, the song that feels most like a movie is “Fake Smiles.” So if Aranda could turn the song into a film who he would cast to play the leads?
“Oh my gosh, if I could turn ‘Fake Smiles’ into a film I would choose Joaquin Phoenix and Winona Ryder to act in it,” he says enthusiastically. That is a film we would all love to see.