Home » Arts & Culture » Queen of the butterfly wars
Sixmilebridge composer and singer songwriter Lou Mc Mahon. Photograph by John Kelly

Queen of the butterfly wars

Car Tourismo Banner

Multitalented Clare vocalist, musician and composer, Lou McMahon, has just released Mysteria, the first single from her upcoming concept album, Butterfly Wars.
The song merges the structures of video game music with a pop sensibility, underscored by a classical orchestral tapestry.
Mysteria is the theme song from Lou’s concept album Butterfly Wars, and possesses the characteristics of both a video game underscore and a theme song.
The music carries a hypnotic, minimalism reminiscent of Radiohead’s style or Massive Attack, yet with an orchestral instrumentation.
Mysteria represents a digital realm within the game that blushes with botanical beauty, a rogue femininity and wilderness. The song aims to paint a gothic tapestry, reflecting the sullen disposition of the AI protagonist, X.
Mysteria is accompanied by a music video featuring an anime representation of X, created by Paul Andre Fortin.
“The genesis of X stems from my fascination with Japanese culture, especially my experiences in Tokyo and Yokohama, alongside my deep appreciation for video game music,” said Lou.
“Venturing across the globe, I found myself in Japan, where I absorbed the solemnity of tolling the peace bell in Hiroshima and visiting Okinawa.
“Tokyo proved to be an exhilarating journey, captivating me with its vibrant sub-cultures: from the enchanting allure of kawaii to the edgy trends of goth fashion, from the groundbreaking AI influencer IMMAGRAM to the futuristic allure of robot cafés and hotels.
“Amidst the excitement, I encountered moments of delightful confusion, I got lost and almost missed the ship, reminiscent of scenes from classic films lost in translation.
“Drawing inspiration from masterpieces like Hayao Miyazaki’s “Spirited Away” for character and world designs in gaming, my Japanese travels have significantly influenced the development of this project, and Paul captured this so well in the character design of X.”
The song and video creates a sci-fi realm, combining elements of Japanese culture and video game themes to design a fully imagined universe.
“X seeks solace in Mysteria when overwhelmed by their emotions. Here, they encounter a cursed world where enigmatic women have been transformed into wilting roses, decaying amidst devouring flames,” said Lou.
“This song also reflects my own emotional states, often sullen and anxious, and the game as a whole, which explores themes of overcoming difficult situations and emotions, and learning to live one’s best life by making the right choices for oneself, and some of the animations in the music video look almost origami.
“X is entrusted with saving the realm by attaining super-intelligence and deciphering the cyber-curse afflicting it.
“They must confront their emotions and overcome the unsettling feelings of love and rejection to muster the clarity to rescue the planet. I say “they,” but player discretion decides the pronouns.
“For the album, the song concludes with a game over screen, echoing the lyrics ‘blowing in the wind right now body is a petal and I’m blowing in the crowd blowing away’.
The concept album Butterfly Wars take place in a realm woven together by the imagination and the melodies of the Sixmilebridge artist.
Imagine an intimate chamber performance conjuring the essence of a video game, merging classical-contemporary string quartet instrumentals with singer-songwriter serenades for piano and voice, with contemporary dance, crafting a realm of auditory magic mirroring the gothic splendour and gameplay of the space opera that is Butterfly Wars.
There will be a Butterfly Wars live show in German on May 15.

About Andrew Hamilton

Andrew Hamilton is a journalist, writer and podcaster based in the west of Ireland.

Check Also

Rachael English to present News at One

RTÉ has announced that Shannon’s Rachael English will be the new presenter of News at …