LEIA: Slow Down, Everyone Will Wait For You

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said by: Chas Wiederhold

About every six months I re-download a meditation app and try to make a routine out of its prompted breathing exercises and techniques of emptying out my thoughts to focus on the ambient waters of nothingness. I typically last a week before coming up with excuses for how I’ve learned what I’ve needed to learn from meditation and I back to my non-reflective lunge through daily life.

Over the past two weeks, however, I’ve had the chance to try out a new-to-me meditative exercise, and that is the echo-y suspension of LEIA’s newest album, Slow Down, Everyone Will Wait For You.

LEIA is a project of Oliver Mullikin, a SAID 4th year architecture student from Northern Kentucky. His latest album isolates singular moments in our auditory experience of the world and examines their deeper qualities. In a bit of synesthesia, the songs on this album savor the ear candy of daily life. Stretching out an oration to test its tension. Bouncing a word up and down to test its elasticity. Dissolving a familiar phrase into an uncertain solution. Losing yourself in this sound experiment you re-emerge to find a cross-sensorial landscape where voices bubble like molten lava, sugary peripheral pops frame sweeping chords, effervescent zips sizzle across percussive planes.

The title of this album comes from ‘Late Lives’ a song by Pianos Become the Teeth, but it presents itself more as instruction than reference. With the inclination to listen to Oliver’s new album while working on a model or drawing in studio, or pairing it with some other mindless task, I implore you: give some mid-semester meditation a chance. You may find that a gentle pace may reveal richer details that are obscured to our typical rapidity. Sit back. Slow down. Everyone will wait for you.


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