Music For Plants #8


Swiss Cheese Plant

Monstera deliciosa

Monster by name and monster by nature. If you want to turn your living room into an instant junglescape then look no further than this abundant houseplant. To brush past its lush, large leaves is to feel the humidity of the jungle on your skin. Grown and immortalised by the artist Matisse (‘La Gerbe’ 1953), Monstera has always inspired a reverence for its otherworldly quality. There are very few plants whose leaves are able to make you feel something and this is definitely one of them.

Each leaf of the Swiss Cheese plant is unique like a fingerprint, unfurling a preordained pattern of holes and splits developing over time, that either let light through to the lower leaves on the forest floor or create an ambient shadow show on your wall. So popular are the stunning leaf shapes of this glossy green climber that they are now enshrined in all areas of design and adored on Instagram, where it even has its own dedicated day – #monsteramonday! 

Growing wild in the jungles of Mexico and Guatemala they produce flowers followed by delicious cone-like cream fruit (which is why they are called ‘deliciosa’), tasting like a cross between a banana and pineapple. It also produces such immensely long aerial roots that the locals are able to make baskets out of them. This evergreen climbing shrub is happiest in these primeval forest conditions, loving indirect light but is remarkably adaptable and has resulted in its success as a houseplant. They are very easy to look after, asking for little extra care except perhaps the occasional dusting of their dinner plate sized leaves, which we suggest you do along to this track…

Pariah – Seed Bank

Monstera deliciosa requires something substantial and lush as its musical partner and London’s Arthur Cayzer, aka Pariah, is the man to deliver it. Monstrously delicious is one way of describing Seed Bank, taken from his stunning debut album Here From Where We Are, which was released by Houndstooth in 2018.

In an album of drifting, abstract ambience, Seed Bank has a solid structure. Crystalline arpeggios unfurl within a soundbed of synthesised jungle effects (birdsong, drops of rain, a trickling stream), soon joined by a shimmering, lysergic melody that gives off the illusion of a tropical haze. Cayzer has created the perfect aural ecosystem in which Monstera deliciosa can thrive. Yum.  

Follow Pariah on Bandcamp.