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Texas/California-based psychedelic cyber-synth rock duo Private Life presents their debut LP, Silent Partner, for August release through Dark Operative Digital.

Private Life is the collaborative project between Christopher Royal King (This Will Destroy You) and drummer/multi-instrumentalist Sam Chown (Shmu). The impetus stemmed from King’s desire to start a high BPM, futuristic cyber-synth group comprised of him on modular synths with the accompaniment of drums. After a series of conceptual meetings and rehearsals, the duo hatched out schematics and installed configurations wherein Chown’s drums would trigger additional modular synths beyond King’s main melodies. Demos were cut, and the duo saw tremendous sonic potential in their unique approach. A few months later, the duo holed up in Austin’s 5th Street Studios to capture the seven songs that would become their debut album, with overdubs recorded in both Austin and Los Angeles.

Silent Partner is a fascinating blend of cyberpunk, dream pop, psych, prog, and kraut vibes from the ‘70s, bits of thrash, and modern modular electronic synths. Think of it as the latest operating system update for a computer with plenty of Talking Heads, Gang Of Four, and Bloc Party on the hard drive. The album is completed with psychedelic cover art by Keith Rankin.

Dark Operative Digital will release Silent Partner digitally on August 17th; find preorders here and watch for a physical version to follow. Listen to the premiere of the track ‘Bloody Blister’ below. The band comments:

The whole record, including ‘Bloody Blister’, is based around 2 days of recorded improvisations wherein Chris set the vibe via modular synths & effects pedals setup, while I attempted to match his sonic environments with drum parts that complimented whatever vibe he was throwing at me – After we edited all the best parts from our improvised jams into loosely structured songs, doing overdubs later was a pleasure because the vibe was already set in place, so it was just a matter of adding more melody and harmony to Chris’ sound design layers.

The lyrics and the story behind ‘Bloody Blister’ are purposefully abstract, making the meaning multi-interpretational – To me, the lyrics almost read like a Lynch film in which the plot is offered in non-linear bits and pieces, inviting the viewer, or in this case listener, to do the interpretational heavy lifting of the abstractions offered – I like writing lyrics that create a visual image that compliment the sonic mood. My lyrics have more emphasis on a visual and emotional than a linear thought or clear plot based story.

When I showed my friend the song recently, he told me it sounded like black metal dream pop that he had never heard this particular blend of styles before in his life – I didn’t really see it that way while creating it, but I love that it can be interpreted in that light!


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