“Compared to my debut album Honor, which I released in 2020, Gemini is a very different album… The day I started Honor was the day I started making music in 2010. I was 9 years old, it was July 10, 2010. I’ll never forget that day. My life changed forever. Honor was the culmination of that. The combination of everything I’d learnt in 10 years compiled into seven songs.
There was a lot more to work with, and a lot more of me to put into it compared to Gemini. In the last two years not as much has happened, so I had to focus on it emotionally more so than the longevity side of things. This was very leftfield for me personally. The feelings I poured into this album were very different and I approached it very differently in terms of its concept and visuals.
Musically, I would say it’s a lot more cohesive than things I’ve done before. I’ve always dabbled in a lot of different shit. A lot of RnB sounding stuff, melodic dubstep, future bass, future garage. I was always doing heavy music but never expanded on it. Honor was the first time I went heavy but the difference with Gemini is that I found a style that works. I’ve had a style for the melodic stuff for a long time but the heavier stuff was all over the place. Now I can say I’m genuinely consistent with that side of it, too.
But to be real, a lot of this came down to my interactions with labels. I was shopping a lot of the tracks to labels and a lot of what you can hear on the album are tracks that labels didn’t bite on. I figured if no one is going to bite on them, I’ll release them myself! I fixed them up a bit more and made them cohesive to make everything fit as an album. The outro and intro transitions were made after the tunes were already finished.
Then I spent time bringing it together visually. I was inspired by the blend of sci-fi and horror. I’m not a fan of horror, and sci fi has got stale for me lately, but bring those two worlds together and there’s a vibe that can’t be recreated in any other way. Everything I could find that embodied those two styles together I sought inspiration from.
The SCP stuff – both the game and the SCP Overlord movie – was a big influence for me. Also Pan’s Labyrinth, anything coming out of Oats Studios, and both Stranger Things season three and four were big inspirations. This led to everything you see visually around the album from the photos of me with the mask on the visuals with the bleak, white, snowy atmospheres. I’ve always done my own visuals but these took a lot more time and thought, getting to understand effects more and how to use distortion properly. It was a really interesting exercise. I spent more on that side more than I did on a lot of the music.
It’s hard to explain my general goal as an artist with this project, but I’m happy with how Gemini developed a life of its own and how I’ve been able to include so many musical ideas, including my first drum & bass songs, which I don’t think many people were expecting. But that sums up what I want to achieve as Lizdek in general. If you are expecting something from me, I want to completely flip the switch you.
I would hate to make the same thing for two years straight. That would put a hole in my brain. I want people to go, ‘If this is what he sounds like now, imagine what he’ll sound like a year from now!’ Then a year from now I’ll sound completely different again. That’s the goal.” Lizdek
Lizdek likes to flip things, this much is clear…
His career so far has been pretty prolific and buoyant in exciting ideas and explorations considering he’s only been releasing music since 2017; a continual and stark game of contrasts as he fires through different styles that range from incredibly delicate and emotional vocal works to brutalist dubstep designs.
The cohesion between these adventures has always been there, but on Gemini these links and parallels are drawn in out in real time and put together in a fresh new context as he guides us through every shade and colour on his palette, including ones he’s not yet revealed before. The result is a fusion that instantly disarms you within minutes of pressing play.
A vibrant and contrasting display of sonics, energy and emotion, Gemini is a runaway train of dynamics. Each carriage bucks wildly on to different courses from the last but they’re all intrinsically linked; over the course of 12 tracks we dive deep into Lizdek’s psyche as he weaves between the contrasts.
From the impassioned vocals of tracks such as the opener 3xHausT and the deep, yearning tones of Never Up To Me through to wig-lifting burn-ups like the worm-like twister Bloodfloor and the bouldering thumper Northstar via, straight-up trap business (Click featuring Camogod) and the intense, ever-mutating breakbeat epic Mucus, no matter how broad and wide-armed Lizdek’s sonic spectrum becomes, or how many parameters he sets, there’s a consistency, tonality and sincerity that brings everything together and gives the album an exciting focus and flow that never lets up.
Considering this began as a collection of label demo rejects, the 21-year-old Canadian has done something really special here which highlights both his resourcefulness and his intention. As we said, Lizdek likes to flip things. It’s exciting to hear how he’ll flip things next…