Carisa Bianca Mellado’s latest record, Kore, follows the story of a Sirian Dolphin Princess who goes through the underworld journey of being born on Earth as a human girl. The album title, which means ‘girl’ or ‘maiden’ is also another name for the Greek Goddess Persephone and the album explores themes of birth, sex, death, desire, intoxication, the shadow self, love, rebirth and surrender through the mythic stories of Persephone, Inanna, Psyche and the cosmic creation myth of Eros.
Set to music that marries diverse influences, such as Cocteau Twins and Cyndi Lauper, Kore is at once catchy and challenging, presenting an atmosphere unique to the record yet instantly definable: a dreamy shoegaze pink goth pop space opera that seamlessly transcends into sultry swaying death jazz.
Kore features artwork by Los Angeles artist Astral Eyes, who was named “The Psychedelic Icon Maker” by LA Weekly, as well as photography by Los Angeles artist Kaliisa Conlon.
Written, recorded, and produced in its entirety by Carisa, The New Queen explores themes of madness, desire, delusion and the search for meaning. Carisa created classical pieces heavily influenced by the stark, dissonant and often vocal based, pre-renaissance songwriting styles of the dark ages, to create lofty terrifying monuments of experimentalism and maddening dirges pulled back from the brink of death by vocals blending tenderness, passion, hysteria and pain.
There are hints of the chamber music of Nico, the phantasmic classical compositions of Diamanda Galas, and the harsh experimentalism of Scott Walker’s most recent albums in Carisa’s work, but the unique scope of this project renders even influences as fleeting ghosts. The New Queen project presents a video that accompanies each piece on the album, creating a series of landscapes and portraits that will serve to further accentuate the concepts of the tale.
Carisa launched the album in Los Angeles at a full theater performance of The New Queen, with Nora Keyes (of The Centimeters) and Elle Haert as The New Queen‘s Divine Dryadic Choir and Seth Styles, Loto Ball (of Phantom Limbs), Kimbo Calico, Melissa Pleckham and Ken Ramos (of Black Lullabies), as The Black Fae Orchestra. The event was opened with a beautiful performance by Gitane DeMone and Rikk Agnew of Christian Death.