Empty Space Orchestra certainly knows how to fill a room. The Bend, OR quintet of impeccable musicians crafts a symphonic, melodic sound that seamlessly weaves together elements of space rock, prog-metal, noir jazz, post-rock and afro-punk all in one massive blast of energy. Having built up a substantial following in the Pacific Northwest, the band will release their self-titled debut album in May and bring their genre-defying sound nationwide.
Check out the first two tracks from the album "Intergalactic Battle Cruiser" HERE and "El Viento" HERE. The band's impeccable musicianship must be seen live -- watch videos for "Exit Strategy" HERE, "Brainjar" HERE and "El Viento" HERE.
Their 9-song, 50-minute self-titled debut album is a hook-laden marriage of heft and harmony that veers far away from the navel-gazing jamming often associated with music of such explorative origins. Elements of The Mars Volta's most frenetic moments merge with soaring post-rock of Russian Circles, as well as hints of Deftones, Dub Trio and lilting chamber pop all colliding in brilliant synergy from one song to the next.
The group of classically-trained musicians is anchored by the stunning power and precision of drummer Lindsey Elias -- clearly a musician soon to hold rank amongst her most celebrated male counterparts. Guitarist Shane Thomas and bassist Patrick Pearsall provide a balance of head-bobbing riffs interspersed with tasteful and inventive lines that weave like musical narrative throughout. Meanwhile, multi-instrumentalists Keith O'Dell (keyboards, piano, lap steel) and Graham Jacobs (saxophone, flute, synths) add myriad melodic layers and cinematic moods that often deftly counterbalance heavy riffs with glissando piano melodies and swaggering horns.
The disc was recorded at the popular The Hangar Studios in Sacramento, CA with engineer Robert Cheek (RX Bandits, Deftones, Tera Melos) and mixed by Matt Bayles (Mastodon, Pearl Jam, ISIS) at Red Room Studios in Seattle, WA. Since the band's inception in late 2007, ESO has built a devoted and rapidly growing fan base in the Northwest exclusively on the weight of their highly memorable live performances. While the album perfectly showcases the band's musical precision, it must be noted that ESO is an extremely loud band -- quite possibly the loudest band you will ever see with a saxophone on stage.
"I was spending a lot of time thinking about what Miles Davis used to say; ‘It’s not about the space you play, but the space you leave,'" explains Thomas. "That’s where the ‘Empty Space’ came from… ironically we don’t leave much space in our music." Nonetheless, the sum of Empty Space Orchestra's myriad parts never seem bloated, overblown or obtrusive.
Empty Space Orchestra's self-titled debut will be available everywhere on CD/Digital on May 10th.
EMPTY SPACE ORCHESTRA LIVE:
03/02 Portland, OR @ Someday Lounge (w/ Thomas Pridgen's The Memorials)
03/03 Seattle, WA @ High Dive
04/20 Seattle, WA @ Sunset Tavern
04/22 Portland, OR @ Portland State University campus (free)
04/22 Portland, OR @ Ash Street Saloon
Artist: Empty Space Orchestra
Album: Empty Space Orchestra
Label: Empty Space Unlimited
Release Date: May 10th, 2011
01. Brainjar (VIDEO)
02. Exit Strategy (VIDEO)
05. Get Some
06. Tiger Puss
07. Tennessee Red
08. The Hangar
On the Web:
Hi-res photos, cover art and bio:
Members of Empty Space Orchestra are available for interviews. For more information, please contact Dave Clifford at firstname.lastname@example.org