LIGHT FM | “TOURIST” EP | MOONBOOT records | NOV. 15TH, 2019
Los Angeles-based record producer and engineer Josiah Mazzaschi (Jesus and Mary Chain, Built To Spill) will celebrate the 20-year anniversary of his bedroom dream pop project Light FM this year with the release of a new EP “Tourist” on Nov. 15th.
The four-song non-stop bop is the first new Light FM music in five years and features the EP’s title track as its first single, along with the upcoming single “Dreamerz,” a collaboration with Brett Anderson of The Donnas.
Light FM was most recently seen on tour in the US and UK as a trio while supporting its previous EP, 2015’s “Pointless,” sharing stages with Smashing Pumpkins, The National, and Ra Ra Riot along the way.
Even though Mazzaschi is back to recording solo now, the “Tourist” EP represents a new, collaborative approach to his songwriting, with half of the EP comprised of co-writes.
“This was the first time I have ever collaborated with other songwriters for Light FM,” Mazzaschi says of the “Dreamerz” single written with Anderson and the title track with Pittsburgh-based songwriter, Alex Aleco.
When Mazzaschi started Light FM while living in Chicago, the aim was to shroud what he calls his “pretty depressing lyrics” in upbeat music and melodies. After relocating to the west coast in 2005, and releasing several albums, Mazzaschi perfected that style, so much so that other artists began to seek out his production touches.
As Mazzaschi became an in-demand producer – recent clients at his The Cave Studio include Smashing Pumpkins guitarist Jeff Schroeder’s new project Night Dreamer, Deap Vally collaborations with The Flaming Lips, Jamie Hince of The Kills, and Andy Rourke of The Smiths’ new project Blitz Vega – his Light FM recordings slowed, but the “luxurious, atmospheric textures” (The Big Takeover) of those songs were still in demand. “Mazzaschi never met a pop hook he couldn’t dirty up a little bit,” said L.A.’s most important music discovery website Buzzbands, and Mazzaschi continues to prove that on the “Tourist” EP.
“I’ve always been heavily influenced by The Cars and have been pretty bummed about Ric Ocasek’s death,” Mazzaschi says about the legendary frontman, fellow Boston native, and world-class master of memorable pop hooks. “I grew up in Boston and remember hearing them on the radio.” The Cars and Ocasek not only influenced Mazzaschi’s songwriting, but his production techniques as well.
“I’ve always had mono-synth lead lines in most of my music. It’s actually the same kind of synth (The Cars keyboardist) Greg Hawkes played. I feel like that sound is what drove me to move to California.”
New fans of Light FM can be “tourists” through the band’s history prior to the release of the “Tourist” EP on Nov. 15th. A 14-song compilation “Turn On The Light FM” covering the band’s entire career will be available via all streaming services on Oct. 25th. The title track from “Tourist” lands as a single on Nov. 1st.
“‘Tourist’ is a song about feeling alien in your hometown,” Mazzaschi says about the tune. “This song kinda identifies with not feeling like you belong.”
Twenty years into Light FM, it appears that Mazzaschi has been accepted anyway.
“Tourist,” the new EP by Los Angeles-based trio Light FM arrives on Nov. 15th, preceded by the title track on Nov. 1st. The band’s career-spanning compilation “Turn On The Light FM” is out on Oct. 25th.