My introduction to ESP was via the eye-popping video for their song “Serenade,” directed by Alexandra Pelly, and described as an homage to Yellow Magic Orchestra. As a fan of WTUL’s Techno 2000 radio show in the ’80s, I am familiar with YMO’s music, particularly that of member Ryuichi Sakamoto, who also worked with Japan and David Sylvian. Naturally my interest was piqued.
According to their press materials, “ESP is a new Los Angeles-based trio whose primary interest is, as their name implies, Extra Sensory Perception.” Apparently they seek to explore this phenomenon through their music. It’s a fitting title; their music is psychedelic but not beholden to the 1960s sonic palette normally associated with that word. Their lyrics are more about creating a mood than telling a story.