A conversation with Torres

 

    Eric Slick spoke with singer, songwriter and musician Mackenzie Scott (Torres) about detaching from your body, sensory deprivation, her cat’s Instagram account and whether the electric guitar will live or die.

    I am both an observer and the sole proprietor of my energy because I am the sole proprietor of my vessel – my body and my mind.

    1

    Eric Slick

    I love the lyric “Consider the source of your energy.” It reminds me of an exercise in Eckhart Tolle’s The Power Of Now, where you detach from your body to become the non-judgmental observer of your emotions. When you write, do you feel like an observer or the sole proprietor of your energy?

    Mackenzie Scott

    My idea for that lyric and concept was partially spawned by reading Alejandro Jodorowsky’s Psychomagic. I am both an observer and the sole proprietor of my energy because I am the sole proprietor of my vessel – my body and my mind. I am a cistern, in a way. I receive energy. I carry energy. I dispense energy. I am not the main source, but I retain and and bear water from the source.

    2

    I hear a vastness in your music that reminds me of a Barbara Kasten video installation. If your music was a preexisting piece of art or painting, what would it be?

    The Great Masturbator by Salvador Dalí.

    I know for sure I would convince myself there was a mammoth shark or whale or prehistoric other-creature floating beneath me the entire time, waiting to swallow me whole.

    3

    Imagine that you’re in a sensory deprivation tank or floating chamber in an undisclosed location. A metric ton of Epsom salt would allow you to float indefinitely. Describe your experience as a full body hallucination.

    I would rather do anything else than be forced to seal myself up into one of those tanks. My greatest fear is dark water. I know for sure I would convince myself there was a mammoth shark or whale or prehistoric other-creature floating beneath me the entire time, waiting to swallow me whole.

    But waiting patiently, playing a game with me. The psychological aspect of it is the scariest part. I’ve already thought about this a lot, clearly.

    4

    David Lynch once said that he’d love to “feel that you could bite my paintings. Not to eat them, to hurt them.” Is there a song you’ve written that achieves this for you, and how does texture inform your existence?

    I’d say I think about my songs more in terms of architecture than texture, though texture is woven into everything I suppose. There’s a guitar solo melody in one of my songs, “Skim,” that kept presenting itself to me in the form of a house. I kept drawing and re-drawing it on paper and dancing it out using my entire body to recreate the structure of the melody in the air, like if I could visualize the lines enough then the house would build itself.

    5

    Do you have a daily saying or mantra?

    “Enjoy every sandwich.” –Warren Zevon

    I love the electric guitar because it’s only a means to an end. You can run it through anything and make it sound however you want it to sound.

    6

    You have a cat named Little Bat.

    Refer to @littlebatthecat on Instagram.

    7

    Astrologically speaking, you’re an Aquarius. Do you identify as an archetypal Aquarius?

    I am a textbook Aquarius, although I’m a Virgo rising, which makes me twice as insufferable.

    8

    There was recently a Washington Post article that said the electric guitar was dying. Guitar Center is $1.6 billion in debt. Brian Eno once said that the electric guitar would endure forever because the flawed design implicates limited options. You play guitar. Do you want to kill it, or do you feel like it will endure?

    I love the electric guitar because it’s only a means to an end. You can run it through anything and make it sound however you want it to sound. You can mentally conjure an image bathed in sound and then build it with whatever fuzz or modulation or delay or anything else you want to use to get to the sound you’re hearing in your head.

    The possible combinations are infinite, so it’s actually a remarkably boundless instrument when paired with other tools. Maybe some people think the electric guitar is dying because they’re not hearing the same classic rock tones and licks they grew up hearing on the radio.

    I know there are a lot of people who will hear a guitar that’s being synthesized and pushed through a lot of various mechanisms, and they think it’s not really guitar music, or they erroneously think it’s being created with a computer or something.

    Thank you.

    Data


    Conversation: 17
    Curated by: Eric Slick
    Conducted by: Email
    Edited by: Morgan Enos
    Published: July 26, 2017
    Total questions: 8
    Word count: 671
    Reading time: Three minutes
    Hyperlinks: 8
    Most used noun: guitar
    Cistern: Mackenzie Scott
    Prehistoric other-creatures: Feared

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