Stories are always something I look for when covering new music. Many would say being a tastemaker is based solely off of the sound itself, but for me I find greatness in an artist's ability to express more than just their musical ability. I had the privilege of hearing the story behind La+ch and his new album +, up close and clear. Although, when I asked Rob to answer some of my questions in a bit more depth, he simply said, "It's very hard for me to think about, but ill try my best..."
Before we get in to what the young musician has to say, it's important to know the journey up until now. La+ch is a part of a quickly growing collective out of Toronto called sideways, comprised of Coleman Hell, Michah, La+ch, and Shan Vincent de Paul. I asked Rob speciifcally where he fit in, and he mapped it out: "LA+CH - Soul. Coleman - Heart. Michah - Legs. SVDP - Eyes." They've been huge on the blog scene in 2015, with our topical man behind a ton of the production in all of their releases. Other EARMILK contributors and myself have been consistent in covering all he's been a part of, but the real focus has been on the imminent release of today's album.
The 13-track project is exactly what we wanted. The man hits a high note (which I'm sure you're tired of me talking about by now) that can make the drawers float off any woman. Not to mention he produces like a beast. My personal favorite is "Hunter" because I think it displays these features perfectly.
Rob AKA La+ch spelled out his answers to my questions, but not in the way where you know exactly what he means. I asked him, "What's the main motivation behind dropping the new album?"
He replied, "Mo - ti - va - ti - on. - escape can be a strong motivation for travel..." That's when I knew finding the narrative behind + would be a bit harder than I anticipated. I came right out with it and asked a follow up question.
"If you could describe the story behind your expression, what would it be?"
"/ləv/: is an intense feeling of deep affection. fāTH/: Putting complete trust or confidence in someone & a little lump of betrayal." I decided to go straight into a conversation, because I was determined to get to the bottom of what the music meant.
I continued, "[...] it seems like you have a deep connection to what you're achieving with music, and you say it's hard for words to describe it. How do you want the music to translate to others? As art? As a message?" He explained that it's not truly about that. Translating. "...I guess i would say its art. i just want people to vibe out to it..."
I realized that for La+ch, this release meant that it was his turn to be himself. His companions at sideways have started their own paths, and now he wants to provide the public with a deep portrayal of not exactly who he was, but what he is. "It's a lot different than when I'm producing for Coleman Hell or SVDP or another artist. This album is more of my own personal expression. I kinda felt I just wanted to do what I wanted to do without any weird genre, or weird things pressuring me to be a certain "style". But i still respect hit music and weird music and all music. [It] just was very dope to do my own thing. It's my first album I ever released with me singing on it so in a weird way its kinda scary/vulnerable worthy[...] but at the end of the day I love it." That was his story.
As I said before, I find greatness in an artist's ability to express more than just their musical ability. For Rob, this first, debut "story" is all about his ability. More importantly, how that ability is an expression of his own personal path. You can look hard for a meaning or some kind of narrative, but with this album, don't think. Just listen, and I promise you'll understand La+ch and why he does what he does.
Rob also said if you listen close enough, "There's a lot of hidden TREATS (messages) in there though for the friends..." You can listen to the full album below, and grab it on iTunes here.
- March 31