O Tempora, O Mores! by Tobias Sichhart
Vrîmuot is a solo project. The recordings for the album took place from January 2019 to March 2020 and were done independently by me. I decided to record the album with lo-fi equipment in my home studio. So, it’s garage folk. From the outset, I have refrained from using digital instruments. I believe that exclusively hand-held devices can deliver a pure acoustic colour that contributes to a particular character. I have therefore recorded all instruments, including harmonica, violin, accordion, drums, kalimba and others. It is fascinating to play instruments without any prior knowledge or skill, but it allows for experimentation.
To reproduce the songs on stage, I organised some support. From now on, my brother plays the drums, and my girlfriend is in charge of percussions. Unfortunately, it is still an unsolvable problem to get the other instruments like violin, accordion etc., on stage.
Specifically, the media represented the title “O tempora O mores” primarily as a reactionist statement by me, since already Cicero bewailed the decay of customs and a negative transformation with this saying. However, my intention is no “everything was better in the old days” slogan but rather an accusation of human development, focusing on the social, cultural and psychological aspects, without reactionary ulterior motives. “Progress” is always represented as something positive, and any remark opposing and questioning this progress is branded as backwards-looking. This is naive and generally explicable by political bias. For me, it is not about politics! It is about the realisation of the actual state of being and the potential of self-optimization thereof.
The title only partially represents a reminiscence, as each epoch struggled with its distinctive “problems”. A pure reconstruction of a certain period would therefore be the wrong approach. Although “O Tempora, O Mores” is based on personal experience and is thus subjective, it can, in my opinion, be macro cosmically extended and related to the modern world and its inherent symptoms. The extinction of mores, normally universally given by a community-specific, nature-based, cultural and spiritual concept of the self, is expressed and perceived as a lamentable point. Humanity urgently needs a radical return to nature!
Myths have a constitutive influence on the texts of Vrîmuot. Many characteristic elements, such as the hero’s journey or metamorphosis, can be found here due to the abstraction of personal experiences and insights.
The term “mythopoetic” describes not only the recreation of a myth but, as in this case, also creates a narrative involving myths. To a certain extent, I mystify my emotions and thoughts, which ultimately receive their cathartic release in music, just in a mythopoetic way.