Excellent, otherworldly psych pop involving a bizarre backstory about a perpetual 19-year-old with a name suspiciously similar to Bob Dylan's.
Mirage is the alias of Robin Nydal, a 19-year-old musician from Los Angeles. Only it's not.
The story of Mirage is an interesting one. He put out his album 'Blood For The Return' on Bandcamp at the beginning of the year and contacted Todd Ledford of (mostly-defunct) independent label Olde English Spelling Bee about it, but his emails got more and more bizarre as time went on: increasingly demanding, more rambling, and generally more psychologically unsound. It turned out that Robin Nydal has been listed as a "19-year-old" musician from Los Angeles for a good few years now, and that "Robin Nydal" is, as name's go, awfully close to "Bob Dylan"...
Todd Ledford goes into the story in further detail over on the website of Weird World, the Domino sublabel who released Mirage's expanded 'Blood For The Return' earlier this week with a view to pressing it to vinyl in October. It's quite a fun read, a meditation on the nature of 'buzz' in music that links back to Johnny Jewel, who also sometimes records music under the name of Mirage. (Fun fact: Johnny Jewel released a record back in 1996 under the name Twenty Six with the label Bobby J, which was a pre-Olde English Spelling Bee avant-garde label run by Ledford.)
Whether any of Ledford's story is true or not is, obviously, completely beside the point, as the music speaks for itself: you can listen to a drunk and woozy psych pop jam called Do You Remember above.
Update: Todd Ledford emailed us saying that the story is 100% true, and actually provided proof! Obviously we weren't actually doubting him, but more making a point that the music is good enough to be judged on its own merits, and with or without an ~intriguing backstory~ it'd still be just as good... but still, this is an intriguing backstory.
Mirage 'Blood For The Return tracklist:
01. Blood For The Return
03. Serpent Knights
04. Do You Remember
06. Uptown Girls
08. Forest Voices
09. Children Games
11. Savage Moon
Weird World Recordings released 'Blood For The Return' on August 26th 2014 (buy).