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Summarize this content material to 540 phrases In 1983, the CIA printed a categorised doc detailing the U.S. Military’s investigation into the “Gateway Expertise” — a time period used to explain astral projection, or the potential means for people to entry altered states of consciousness or transcend their our bodies to journey throughout time and area.The report was quietly declassified in 2003, however resurfaced on TikTok within the spring of 2021, as individuals pored over the mysterious doc for clues on methods to entry “the Gateway.”For Ayo Leilani, a Toronto-based singer-songwriter who performs as Witch Prophet, the sudden curiosity in psycho-physical phenomena opened a possibility to lastly share her story.Since 2009, Leilani has skilled frequent bouts of focal conscious seizures, which disrupts her speech, motion or imaginative and prescient with out affecting her degree of consciousness. The seizures could cause acute episodes of déjà vu or déjà rêvé, lucid goals and out-of-body experiences, however may also result in debilitating negative effects.On “Gateway Expertise,” Witch Prophet’s third studio album, Leilani employs her signature fusion of jazzed-out neo-soul and 90s trip-hop — image Erykah Badu performing a Tiny Desk Live performance backed up by Portishead — to confront the assorted signs of her situation: dizziness, reminiscence loss, moods that swing between excessive pleasure and disappointment.“There’s no telling the place I’m going / Leaping out and in of timelines,” Leilani sings, her disembodied voice floating eerily above a lurching bass line and deliciously crisp snare hits on the eerie monitor “Chicken’s Eye View (O.B.E.).” On “Dizzy,” she attracts the listener into the expertise of a seizure — “Received me spinning/ Head over heels” — her phrases entangled with fiery trumpet trills.“Gateway Expertise,” which arrives Monday, is a transfixing journey into Leilani’s thoughts, and a trippy dive into the nexus of well being, spirituality and human connection. Co-produced with Leilani’s spouse and longtime inventive associate Solar Solar, it’s additionally a classy excessive level from an artist who has pushed boundaries in Toronto’s underground music scene for over a decade.“I’m somebody who doesn’t essentially present all of me,” says Leilani. “If I got here out with an album like this 5 or 6 years in the past, it could most likely be somewhat too witchy or woo woo, however seeing individuals on TikTok saying: ‘Wow, lucid dreaming is actual. There are different dimensions, and there are different issues that we don’t learn about.’ It made it lots much less scary to speak about.”—Leilani’s roots are in East Africa. Her mother and father fled from the decades-long battle in Ethiopia/Eritrea to Kenya, the place Leilani was born and raised till she was 4. Her household immigrated to Toronto, settling within the neighbourhood of St. Clair West.“I come from a really giant, very non secular prolonged household,” she displays between tokes, sitting comfortably at dwelling in a royal blue hoodie together with her canine, a Maltese shitzu named Riku. “Rising up, me, my sister and all of the cousins would all the time be instructed to go away and play. We had a band referred to as The Cousins, and each Sunday after church at my grandmother’s home, we’d do exhibits. This taught me to like music, but in addition made me terrified to do something on my own.”In highschool, Leilani studied vocal music and idea at Oakwood Collegiate, studying to sing in conventional types like opera. In her 20s, she embedded herself in a group of artists that finally discovered expression as a radically-inclusive collective referred to as 88 Days of Fortune. For years, the collective pushed to combine queer artists and music followers into Toronto’s hip hop scene.Later, Leilani and Solar Solar began a band with rapper Jamilah Malika referred to as Summary Random. “That was like electro, dub-hop, political, bizarre experimental music,” she says, laughing. “We wore plenty of costumes and made plenty of noise.”It wasn’t till her mid-30s that Leilani targeted on her solo profession. In 2018, she and Solar Solar launched Coronary heart Lake Information, a queer and women-owned unbiased document label designed to amplify under-represented artists.That very same yr, she launched “The Golden Octave,” her debut album as Witch Prophet. That includes hypnotic manufacturing from Solar Solar and collaborations with native artists like Colombian-Canadian singer Lido Pimienta, the document was each a showcase of Leilani’s daring interpretation of neo-soul, and highly effective expression of her expertise as a queer East African lady dwelling within the diaspora.“Each monitor is a sleepy shock, every beat gracefully narcotic and topped by easy trills,” Pitchfork declared. “Get to her earlier than Drake does.”Alas, Drake didn’t come a-knockin, nor did every other main labels or promoters.“I’ve by no means, ever been approached by a single label to do something,” Leilani says. “‘My profession has all the time been DIY — not as a result of I needed it to be, however simply because that’s the way it occurred.” In the end, the strategy paid off. “I’m glad that I didn’t wait round as a result of these 10 years of constructing music, performing and making errors allowed me to be the place I’m now. Once I’m in rooms with labels or publishers, I do know what I really need, what I’m price and what the worth of my music actually is.”“I believe it’s an issue inside the Black music scene,” she provides. “Hip hop, R&B, reggae. They’re utterly undervalued within the Canadian music trade, though hip hop might be the primary music style in your complete world.”However Leilani was simply getting began. On Witch Prophet’s sophomore album from 2020, “DNA Activation,” she dug deeper into her roots, working with Solar Solar to craft a hazy, cannabis-inflected sound that blends Ethio-jazz and journey hop. The document, which options lyrics in English, Amharic and Tigrinya, took inspiration from Leilani’s household and the myths of her ancestors. In 2020, the LP was shortlisted for the celebrated Polaris Music Prize, cementing Witch Prophet as one of many nation’s most attention-grabbing and subversive acts.—Leilani’s music has all the time been private — she’s written extensively about her identification and her household. However the resolution to put in writing an album about her well being marked a brand new frontier.“I’ve all the time had prophetic goals, and I’ve all the time considered myself as psychic,” Leilani says, however it was almost 15 years in the past that Leilani skilled a prophetic episode of déjà rêvé — a time period meaning “already dreamed” — that modified the trajectory of her life.It was a pedestrian Sunday in Kensington Market, “in entrance of Golden Patty by the fish market,” when Leilani locked eyes with a girl strolling by: Solar Solar.“As quickly as that occurred, every little thing went into gradual movement,” she remembers. “We related eyes and I used to be like: ‘I do know you. I’ve seen you earlier than in my goals. We’re speculated to be collectively.’ And from that second, we’ve been.”In 2018, Leilani and Solar Solar purchased an deserted home on a farm in a forest in Caledon, about 45 minutes exterior Toronto. The couple renovated it, largely themselves (“we ran out of cash after paying for an electrician, a plumber, and all of the issues that you just really need to pay for”) and constructed a house studio. That’s the place they recorded and produced the brand new album. Regardless of its otherworldly themes, “Gateway Expertise” — which incorporates contributions from Canadian singers Begonia and Zaki Ibrahim and virtuosic trumpet enjoying by Tara Kannangara, — is perhaps Witch Prophet’s most accessible venture up to now.The first power stems from the plain chemistry between Leilani and Solar Solar, who produced 10 of the album’s 11 tracks. “There’s one thing about working with one producer and actually rising collectively, you realize? There’s that rock, that basis. And Solar is my basis.”Throughout “Gateway Expertise,” Leilani traces the highs and lows of her experiences with altered consciousness. On “Dreaming,” she recounts the day she met Solar Solar in Kensington: “I keep in mind, the way in which I used to be / Falling throughout, hypnotized / By your eyes / Time slowed down.”On “Vitality Vampires,” she unpacks a recurring nightmare that visits her throughout occasions of heightened stress or anxiousness.“I began having goals of those extremely tall, hooded figures — like tremendous tall, like bushes in a forest,” she defined. “You may’t see their faces, they’re only a form of silhouette of a physique. They don’t stroll, they glide … and they’re in search of me.” These nightmares render Leilani motionless, exhausted and nauseous, typically for days.“Shamans have instructed me the (unhealthy goals) are vitality vampires that feed off concern and anxiousness,” says Leilani, “They are saying it’s proper for me to run from them. However I’ve had different individuals inform me that these with the brightest gentle…

By Maggi

"Greetings! I am a media graduate with a diverse background in the news industry. From working as a reporter to producing content, I have a well-rounded understanding of the field and a drive to stay at the forefront of the industry." When I'm not writing content, I'm Playing and enjoying with my Kids.

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