ARTIST BIO: LAWRENCE BECKO-VASILIADIS (L/B/V)
Lawrence Becko-Vasiliadis (aka L/B/V) produces Synaesthetic Dance Music, cosmic electronica and dream pop from his studio in Cambridge, UK.
Born in London, he grew up in Athens, Greece before arriving in Cambridge as a teenager in the 1990s. His ancestors originate from Cyprus, Turkey, Egypt, Slovakia and Ireland, and he channels these roots into his music to create a global electronic sound, inspired by Greek synth legend, Vangelis, and contemporary influences including Gorillaz, Daft Punk, Air and Broken Social Scene. His latest release is a three-album cycle set in imaginary future worlds facing new ecological challenges. Their sound blends cinematic pop, disco, electronica, breakbeat and experimental dance. His strong melodic sensibility and synaesthesia - which means he sees and hears music in colour - create a polychromatic sound that would be at home anywhere from a church to a beach at sunrise.
Lawrence began his journey on a TASCAM 414 and learned to loop using proto-software programme, Dance eJay. He went onto have a successful career in bands and his music has been synchronised to major US TV shows. After a five year hiatus, he returned to music with a new electronic sound that comes full circle to his early dance music origins.
Lawrence began writing and producing music as a teenager in Cambridge, UK. His songs increasingly came to reflect environmental themes, particularly how humans impact the natural world and early concerns about climate change. His breakout tracks, Treeology and Torch Song, were written and recorded in 2003 at a time when mainstream news rarely covered the climate emergency.
After studying in Birmingham, Lawrence received the PRSF Atom Award for composition and began performing live. His band shady bard became a fixture of the city's live scene, leading them to sign to electronica and folk label, Static Caravan. This saw the release of Treeology EP and Penguins (2006) and Lawrence's debut album, From The Ground Up (2007) in the UK and in Japan, on XTAL Recordings. Released in hand-designed packaging, several of the band's releases went on to become collector's items, featuring in Record Collector and trading online for over £100 a piece. The band undertook four UK tours and built a substantial live following, playing Green Man Festival, Capsule's Supersonic Festival and Birmingham Town Hall, and sharing stages with the likes of Embrace, Gruff Rhys, Mogwai and I Like Trains. Radio play across BBC Radio 1, Radio 2 and 6Music from the likes of Janice Long and Steve Lamacq, as well as live sessions on BBC Radio 4's Loose Ends, cemented the band's popularity.
In 2007, Treeology was chosen as the soundtrack MTV's climate campaign broadcast to audiences of millions around the world. Lawrence subsequently signed to Reverb Music Publishing, in partnership with Universal Music in the US. His music caught the attention of US TV networks including ABC and the CW and went on to be synchronised to award-winning dramas including Grey's Anatomy, Without A Trace and Vampire Diaries. The follow-up album, Trials, was recorded in 2009 in the aftermath of devastating forest fires in his native Greece. The album centres on a series of personal fables unfolding in an imaginary microcosm ravaged by natural disasters. The album was launched at IKON Eastside with a live performance and synaesthetic lightshow. Once again, the releases earned radio play across the BBC and glowing reviews from the likes of Drowned in Sound. A remix album, Retrials, followed in 2011. In the same year, Lawrence and Broken Pixel, aka Leeds-based film-maker Ashley Dean, released The Winter League, an immersive music and film project, portraying a near future Britain destroyed by climate change. First began in 2008, the project was completed and shown at Leeds School of Art and performed at New Art Gallery, Walsall.
Relocating to London, Lawrence began work on his fourth studio album, Synthesis in 2011, which combined Lawrence's trademark environmental storytelling with new influences from electronic music and science fiction. Inspired by fellow Greek composer, Vangelis, the album's core is recorded entirely on digital keyboards and features no guitars, which had previously a staple of Lawrence's music. Performing under the new name Forests, the material was previewed during a series of live dates in the UK and Sweden in 2012, but the new group disbanded shortly after.
The next chapter
A five year hiatus followed, during which Lawrence worked for a number of music charities and non-profits, including Roundhouse, supporting young people into music careers and the creative industries. During this time, Lawrence co-founded and produced Open Senses, the first festival of synaesthesia and multi-sensory art which took place in May 2017 which saw artists from across the world take over venues across London for a series of installations, performances and open studios. The same year, Lawrence received the Artist International Development Fund award from the Arts Council of England, giving him the opportunity to travel to Montreal and complete Synthesis, in collaboration with chamber music collective, Warhol Dervish and multi-sensory performer and violinist, Leslie Ting.
Selections from Lawrence's first four studio albums are collected as Earth Songs (2003-2018), whilst Synthesis acts as a transitional bridge into Lawrence's new chapter of work, under his own name and the monicker L/B/V.
For artist and sync enquiries, please get in touch here.