Dysphemic, son of Vernon Treweeke, who was named as ‘Father of Psychedelic Art’ of Australia, in the 60s, comes from a musical background; experimenting with music from the age of 10. This producer (and MC) from Melbourne, Australia boasts a diverse musical outlook, with tracks ranging from jungle and drum & bass, to hip hop.
Miss Eliza, also from Melbourne, derives from an artistic background aswell; her father, Filipino sensation Maestro Julian Quirit, aided her musical endeavours as a young girl at the age of 5, when she started playing the violin. Since, she has won 3 Ferrier Hodgeson awards for most outstanding violinist in 3 national competitions and has 40 1st prizes under her belt!
Together, this unlikely duo form Dysphemic & Miss Eliza: A bass-heavy mix of signature classical melodies with the wobbles and glitches of your modern day dubstep track. Sounds interesting doesn’t it? It would be a lie to say that these days it’s a rarity to find a clash of musical genres, forming a new sound; more and more we see the combination of complimentary genres to create a sound more unique. It began with cheesy pop songs developing a more electronic/trance-like sound. Something for the masses that craved a heavier beat and distinct basslines to rave to in the early hours. Then the meeting of Hip-Hop with every genre under the sun; we can go back to the days of RUN DMC & Aerosmith’s ‘Walk this way,’ to the combination of old soulful classics such as Mr West’s Through the wire, arriving with the more present collision of hip-hop and dubstep; ‘Wild for the Night’s’ A$AP/Skrillex collaboration.
Why then, does Dysphemic & Miss Eliza stand out amongst the above? For starters, I doubt you could find two genres of music so different. The stereotypical ‘dubstepper’ is a lot more likely to be seen at festivals such as Global Gathering or maybe Creamfields, rather than the Proms. However, Dysphemic & Miss Eliza’s debut album fittingly named ‘Synthetic Symphony’ brings both ends of the spectrum together, creating a harmonious refreshingly different perspective on both genres.
Beginning with Hungarian folkloric classic, ‘Hungarian Dance’, Synthetic Symphony sets the scene for those new to classical music with the vastly familiar tune. Miss Eliza’s bold recital of the melody displays her expertise with clear brisk strokes of her bow. Dysphemic backs her up with gritty sounding bass lines and a hard hitting dubstep ‘kick-snare’ which displays a full bodied sound. It’s not every day you hear such rumbling bass perform the particular melodies of Johannes Brahms. Then, a clash of the two instruments; violin and synthesiser both spurring each other on in what seems like a freestyle battle of sound.
Dysphemic proves his diversity with the second track of the album, ‘Drum & Bach’ which does exactly what it says on the tin. Brings the solemn keys of Bach together with the pulsating energy of modern day Drum & bass.
Scripture Sickness follows; My favourite track of the E.P; ‘sampling’ a melody of my favourite classical work; Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto in E minor, which brings a fresh look to the old masterpiece. Backed up again, by signature dubstep drum loops, the song is heard in a new light. Surprisingly though, the duo team up with MC Heinz to add another sound to the mix. Heinz’s lyrics over the descending notes of Miss Eliza compliments the musical fusion in a manner that screams originality. A track to be enjoyed by a wide range of people that breaks the mould.
‘You are your father’s daughter’ takes the listener back to Miss Eliza’s roots, giving a taste of Eliza’s musical expertise with the help of her father. We then move onto ‘Bounce Dat Shieet’, another favourite of mine, in which Eliza really comes out as a violinist, boasting her own diversity playing ‘Paganini’s Caprice (No.24),’ which even for the best of players can be a handful! Dysphemic appears to feed off Eliza, joining in the display of expertise; his synths really add depth to the track, falling back as Eliza goes on to literally ‘bounce her shieet’ at particularly difficult parts of the song. This track shows off the intricacies of classical music and how they really can be brought alive with the unlikely coupling of Dysphemics harsh ‘wubs’. Ending with ‘Melbourne’s burning,’ again, a widely known tune; taken from Vivaldi’s ‘Summer’, from the Four Seasons.
Synthetic Symphony is an album that strives to bring together opposite ends of the music spectrum. To me, it succeeds in doing so. However the unison goes further than that; it also has the potential to bring together it’s listeners to create a new highly diversified following in which Classical fanatics and bassheads enjoy music together.
The music also offers a new way maybe, for those who practise music themselves to enjoy and explore their own talents in ways which may not have been considered following the traditional route of music learning. The possibilities are endless. Dysphemic & Miss Eliza have brought a collection of musical opportunities to the table. Whether you’re involved deeply with your Dubstep/Drum & Bass following, have a passion for classical music or feel indifferent about both, Synthetic Symphony is an album that shouldn’t be missed; there is something in it for everyone.