Saturday, July 07, 2007

Octopus Project Announcement

Coming off of such recent successes as playing Coachella, several sold-out nationwide tours, an incredible showing at the Austin Music Awards (Best Instrumental Band, Best Indie Band, Best Miscellaneous Instrument -- Yvonne Lambert on Theremin! -- and top ten placement in nine other categories!), and a proclamation by David Fricke as one of Rolling Stone's stand-out artists at SXSW, Austin's The Octopus Project will release its third proper full-length on Peek-a-Boo Records October 9th, 2007. The as-yet-untitled record is the follow-up to the band's collaborative album with Pittsburgh's Black Moth Super Rainbow, The House of Apples and Eyeballs (E-CARD), released last year on Graveface Records.

The band's new album was recorded and co-produced by The Octopus Project and Ryan Hadlock (Blonde Redhead, The Gossip) at Bear Creek Studio in Seattle during February, 2007 and was mixed by Erik Wofford (Voxtrot, Explosions In The Sky). Guest musicians include Stacy Meshbane (Cue) on Violin, Jherick Bischoff (The Dead Science) on upright Bass and Violin, and Nick Smith (Nick and The Six Sick Sticks) on Trombone. The band will kick-off three months of touring in Huntsville, Alabama in mid-August and will introduce material from its new record this weekend at a special performance in Brooklyn, NY headlining one of the now-annual McCarren Park Pool Parties with Dan Deacon, and Erase Errata on Sunday, July 8th at 2PM.

With ragged, furious distorted guitars at one end of the spectrum and the pure, luminescent tones of the Theremin at the other, the members of The Octopus Project mine a staggering variety of sounds in between (via synthesizers, drums, violins, glockenspiel, trombones, etc...) to fill their songs with brilliant contrasting colors and cascading waves of sonic bliss. Although Josh Lambert, Yvonne Lambert and Toto Miranda each have their instrumental specialties, they spread their ideas out on as many instruments as possible, each writing for and performing on any sound-maker they can find. And as if the instruments themselves weren't enough, many sounds on the band's upcoming record were manipulated to push them even further - inhuman drum breaks three layers deep piled over the live drum track, a heavenly four-Theremin choir from a Wizard of Oz soundtrack that never existed, guitar parts mulched into bits and reassembled into a tiny action figure of Prince.

This time around, The Octopus Project wanted to achieve the perfect blend between high-end studio trickery, and lo-fi home experimentation. Partially tracked to tape, partially to Pro Tools, lots of sounds were taken from the band's original demos - sequenced beats, edited loops, practice space recordings etc. Parts of the album track “Upmann” were recorded on a friend's front porch (listeners will note the sounds of passing cars.) As The Octopus Project's Yvonne Lambert has continued to gain notoriety for her expert Theremin-playing skills, the band decided to develop its multi-tracked-Theremins concept to its fullest extent -- something the group first tried on last year's The House of Apples and Eyeballs. The experiments yielded amazing results as can be heard on the album track “I Saw The Bright Shinies.”
The new album (title TBA) will hit shelves on October 9th, with the following tracklisting:
  1. Snow Tip Cap Mountain
  2. Truck
  3. Bees Bein' Strugglin'
  4. An Evening With Rthrtha
  5. Black Blizzard/Red Umbrella
  6. Upmann
  7. Mmaj
  8. I Saw The Bright Shinies
  9. Hello, Avalanche
  10. Vanishing Lessons
  11. Exploding Snowhorse
  12. Loud Murmuring
  13. Queen
Check out the long list of tour dates at myspace.com/theoctopusproject.

The image above was created by Austin-based embroidery expert Jenny Hart.

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