Reframing The Present With Frameworks’ New LP, REFLECTIONS
A thought. An idea. A concept. A reflection.
This is the current process of producer and multi-instrumentalist Frameworks, who has taken liberty in exploring the inner consciousness of his mind. Driven by the creativity of time away from the constant hustle and bustles of society during the COVID-19 pandemic, he was able to tap into the inner workings of his mind and conceptualize his life experiences of the past, present, and future. The result brings forth his latest full-length project, REFLECTIONS.
Defined by openness, vulnerability, and honesty, REFLECTIONS pieces together 11-tracks for a sonic investigation about time. Through lush melodies and soundscapes, atmospheric vocals, and blossoming percussion, the electronic music album marks the producer’s most liberating project to date as he battled against his own doubt and obstacles to make music that holds meaning in the present moment.
“At first, I found myself really overthinking everything. I thought I had to produce the ‘best new album’ imaginable, and it was really hard to formalize these ideas and come up with themes,” Frameworks told MP3 MAG in an interview. “It just wasn’t working, I was too much in my own head, and I was drawing comparisons at every given opportunity. I ended up having to drop it all and kind of sit down without trying and just have fun with it.
The moment I started doing that, it just started flowing. It felt more honest as I was able to just sit down and write without thinking about the overall production. The album ended up allowing me to let go and not control things and not have too much of an idea of where to take a song.
“Letting the music represent that day, however it looked and sounded, without judgment.”
Through this process of literally breaking down the barriers of the mind and allowing whatever inner thoughts and reflections come to the surface in any given moment, REFLECTIONS effortlessly blends a healthy dose of both the producer’s classic downtempo, nostalgic stylings with elegant and upbeat electronica.
The album’s opening track, “TWENTY-TWO,” perfectly encapsulates the emotive dance tone of the collection as a whole, as it works through yearning piano chord progressions, driving drum rhythms, and euphonic vocal samples. It’s exactly a track you would find yourself running or driving to as you focus on what’s right in front of you and the rest of the worries slowly fade away.
“I ran a half marathon – which is 22 kilometers – to help raise awareness and money for my son. He has mitochondrial disease, and he’s an inspiration to a lot of my writing,” Frameworks said. “ It’s helped me reflect on my own life and just how we tend to give energy and focus on the little things, when the most important things are right there in front of us.”
While staying present and taking one day at a time, REFLECTIONS honors that continual mindset that we all strive for. While some albums cater to a specific mood, REFLECTIONS paints a versatile blend of melodies and rhythms to convey the palette of emotions and feelings of the human experience. From the upbeat, club-ready “NO TIME,” the ethereal, trip-hop inspired tapestry “COLD,” to the richly detailed, IDM-influenced “PILOT” with Australian vocalist Cleopold, the album is brimming with emotional sonic compositions of what it means to be – and literally live – as a human.
And yet, overcoming the obstacles and doubts of his own mind, Frameworks not only has a full-length album to celebrate, but a “reframed” and refreshed mindset. It’s living in the present moment and settling into your true self that helps you recognize what’s important at the end of the day.
“I’ve got to be more conscious of the person that I am and represent that. In the making of REFLECTIONS, I was doing a lot of self-reflection and looking within and realized that everything that I need, I already have,” Frameworks revealed. “It’s easy to get carried away with music, especially as your career develops, and you start looking at numbers and festival plays. That’s all great and all, but everything that means something is right there for you. Chasing that surface level stardom catches up with you eventually, because you’re not being honest.”