PSY'AVIAH Searching', a more extreme way of accepting the world but perhaps too extremeat times. It was nevertheless a kindof escapism, a quest to deal with the world, in the dreamy to the destructive sense and a mixture in between... 'Bittersweet', the third part, is more of a balance. You can also hear that in the chords and the music. There is a positive vibe in the songs. Although the lyrics sometimes hint at world or personal problems, there are more things that put things into perspective. The music had to sound different,maybe a little more positive and poppy. With'Bittersweet', Psy'Aviah presents not only their tenth album, but also the third part of their trilogy about the alienation of the individual in modern society. What's more: with this record Psy'Aviah celebrates its twentieth anniversary, which is why the release of 'Bittersweet' contains a bonus CD with reworked versions of their songs by several friends. Reason enough to knockon the door ofmastermindYves Schelpe and take his confession. Hi Yves. I can congratulate you twice this time.A first time for the beautiful 'Bittersweet' you just released, and a second time for the twentieth anniversary of Psy'Aviah. Howdo you feel about these achievements? Hey, thank you for that. What makes me most happy is of course that you like 'Bittersweet' – in the end that's the most important thing for an artist, I think... The 20th anniversary has more to do with stubbornness, a sense of storytelling and so on. This is not necessarily an achievement, only if you're happy with what you've done. And for me it's usuallywith the last thing I've released,with this 'Bittersweet' album, or the 'trio' of albums but I think you'll have more questions about that. Indeed. 'Bittersweet' is actually the third part of a trilogy that started with 'Lightflare' and continued with 'Soul Searching'.Canyou tell uswhat the theme of that trilogyis? The goal after 'Lightflare'was always to make two sequels. Where 'Lightflare' mainly focused on being 'angry' at the world and being 'lost' in this world, there also had to be a kind of answer that had some self-reflection.That was 'Soul - 27 - Inwhat way is'Bittersweet'the end of the trilogy? Howdo you actually end a trilogy on such serious themes? Actually by making a kind of synthesis and looking back with a critical eye and offering an answer to that –both in terms of lyrics and music. The intro of the album – again voiced by Dirk De Wachter –plays an even more important role in this than last time. It's really kind of an answer from the"mindset"I had at the time ofwriting.Life is bittersweet, not black and white. You don't have everything under control. Wanting to have everything under control is problematic, as is wanting to have nothing under control. Finding a balance, letting go, trying new things, but being yourself and respecting your own limits – those are the lessons, I think, above all – and that's what the lyrics and music are inspired by, including the songs 'Ok' and ' Tired' which we have completely rewritten. Your music has also evolved throughout the trilogy.You've incorporated live strings into your music for the first time, for example. What have you learned while writing the trilogy and howhas that influenced yourmusic? I already referred a bit to the fact that I needed a different approach as an answer, not only in terms of text but also in terms of musical approach. It is and remains Psy'Aviah. We've flirted with these more up-tempo and pop atmospheres before but we're taking it a step further here. The lyrics and music are still the way I feel it: sincere from the heart, driven by passion. But I wanted to write and elaborate things with more perfection, and also with a different philosophy: more real instruments. So you hear more real guitars, more backing vocals that replace synth pads or synth strings and therefore also cellos and violins that replace the synthesizers. All this gives it a blend of electronics and humanity. Especially violins and cellos give that extra boost of emotions and warmth to an electronic drum beat. Just like backing vocals do. The entire combination is therefore a bit more 'open' in sound,but still with integrity –at least that's my feeling about it. Everyone experiences music differently. www.peek-a-boo-magazine.be

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