Things I Love – Ionic

Engrama concert at SyS

I’ve mentioned Ionic before But thought hey.. You know.. They’re kinda all over my house and Av so maybe they deserve their own entry. Granted there will probably be a few content creators like this, and so a few entries. But inspiration strikes when it strikes. This time it struck yesterday when I had a few minutes to steal to go see the creators create something I love more than SL.. Music.

Pupita Helstein and Iakua Arriaga make some really great meshyness that’s put out in their store Ionic. A combo of furniture, clothes and buildings that in most other cases would be too much; with them it all just screams “TAKE MY MONEY!” The accessories provide that eclectic indie look that reminds me of my favorite place to stay in New Orleans. Frames leaned against a wall; a collage of indie album covers; speakers and guitars and drums. Decor with lyrics of songs from The Cure, The Smiths.. The list drones on of awesome and you’ll probably see more of their stuff as my blogging continues as I’m thoroughly an addict of most anything they produce.

As I mentioned before, where I grew up; this kind of music wasn’t what we heard on the radio. And I felt pretty Hipsteriffic tooling the Corniche with “This Charming Man” blaring over the speakers. As English isn’t my first language, I rarely looked for meaning in the music beyond the way the sounds all came together; but Morrissey spoke to me. The Clash belted out my teenage rebellion with all the discordant gravelly awesome I wished I had the courage for. The Cure gave words to my moony unrequited crushes.

I had a less than quiet moment of rage when I saw a Cadillac commercial recently that featured the Yeah Yeah Yeah’s “Phenomena.” I remember when that song came out. It wasn’t THAT long ago, 2006 I think. Certainly not long enough ago to merit being used to advertise a car I’ve always thought of as being for old people. After all, I’m not old! One of my favorite songs to sing along to on Rockband 3 is their song “Maps.” While I was always rather proud of my high score..I’m hardly that great a singer. Though whatever ego I had in that regard was utterly crushed when I heard Iakua Arriaga belt it out with a haunting beautiful desperation that just stunned me.

Both Pupita and Iakua have a wonderful grasp of both the technical and emotional sides of music. Both have beautiful voices that are as expressive as they are confident and assured. And they moved easily between covering great bands into their own haunting, almost ethereal material. They call themselves ENGRAMA; and I highly suggest grabbing their tracks for a listen here.

One of my RL guilty pleasure is collecting Cure covers. Meaning other bands and people who cover songs by The Cure. The way the message of “Love Song” can change from one band to the next amazes me. Engrama’s version was a jaw dropper. With Iakua’s plaintively echoed beautifully pitched vocals and Pupita’s precise and elegant guitar; their version rapidly fell second in line only to Niyaz’s cover of the same song in my “Favorite versions of Love Song.” Yeah, I just put her over Adele. Deal with it.

So the picture today is of them; not me, at SyS’s anniversary celebration. So, no list of things worn; instead; click through the links above for a more musical experience. And make it a point to stop by Ionic for all of your nostalgic indie needs.


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