Illusion Tournet Records
I’m having a rough time of it these plague times. The pandemic, the Western states running out of water, the general lack of civility and sanity in our public discourse, it’s enough to sink someone into a deep depression. Scott Tournet, the primary songwriter of Elektric Voodoo has fought with depression and addiction. Telescope emerged as a concept album about changing perspectives and changing lives.
Scott told Relix Magazine that the first six songs started off being about his struggles with addiction and depression. Once the songs went through the woodshed with the rest of Elektric Voodoo, the struggle to find purpose became thoroughly mixed with the lyrical despair. “Chasing Ghosts” opens the album with an infectious blend of Afrobeat, Santana and jam band rock and roll. The charging Latin/African percussion, bright horns and guitars inspired by the desert blues players of Mali and a shock to the nervous system intended to get the body moving. The protagonist of our story has his epiphany on the title track. On “Telescope” Scott sings, “I’ve been peering through a telescope… looking at the world up close… but never opening up both eyes.”
The tone of the lyrics shift dramatically when the songs switch focus from jnternal contemplation to opening up to the larger world out there. “People of Earth” “reflects what psychologists call the “overview effect syndrome” among astronauts. The astronauts are profoundly moved by seeing the world as a blue world floating in the darkness of space. “People of Earth” is told by someone who hitched a ride on a spaceship. Looking back to the planet, he asks, “are we from America? Are we from North Africa? People of the Earth, they all belong.” Telescope closes with an ode top hope and optimism, “Children Are the Revolution,” At the risk of sounding all hippy dippy, Scott proclaims, “always take the path of kindness, Love shines through it all.” Scott finds hope in young people like Greta Thunberg, the Parkland students who founded March for Our Lives and Malala Yousafzai. They are our hope. Hope that they’ll be able to get this world on a better path.