Posts Tagged ‘Yours Are The Only Ears’

theepoch

The Epoch Collective, is a community of musicians, writers, visual artists, filmmakers, and more. We were grown together, and are growing still.

One of the final shows of the recent Bellows/Eskimeaux tour. Gabrielle Smith, aka Eskimeaux, was selling merch in a tiny, dusty cellar when a fan approached Smith and gushed to her something of how, The Epoch changed her life!” While flattered, Smith was not terribly surprised this is the sort of reaction The Epoch receives regularly.

Searching The Epoch tag directs one towards a seemingly infinite number of posts citing the group’s influence, pictures from shows, and even handmade cross-stitches. But gaining Internet fandom is not terribly difficult. Over the past three years, The Epoch bands has transformed from being their own biggest fans to having an incredibly devoted and wide spread fan base. For example Told Slant the band’s emotional outpour is overwhelming in itself, it was even more powerful to see how cathartic their music is for their fans. But perhaps the most admirable part about The Epoch is that they have found success completely by their own means. Starting a band with your best friends is a dream many have, but being in three or four bands with your friends, touring together, living together, and being genuinely kind people is actually an accomplishment. This is obviously a group worth examining.

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Most of the members met through attending the same schools or the same shows in the New York City area. While the details of their friendship foundations would require a much longer piece, the core Epoch members orated a brief timeline of the group, from their repressed high schools bands to now, when most of the members lived together in Brooklyn. The Epoch has transformed and will transform still. Because, as the collective says, “We were grown together, and are growing still.”

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The first unofficial Epoch band was The Mighty Handful. The self-described super group of relative unknowns would hand everyone in the audience instruments and shred paper from their parents’ offices for confetti; the concept was very much 2007-DIY party. But even back in 2008, there are glimmers of The Epoch as it is today. A majority of The Epoch members were involved in the band, even on the periphery: Henry Crawford, Jack Greenleaf, and Felix Walworth played in the band, Oliver Kalb may have made an appearance once, and Smith cites the shows as the beginning of her friendship with her future bandmates. But while the grandiose showmanship of The Mighty Handful may barely resemble the performances of its members now, Crawford said the “grains of the language and the attitude” would influence The Epoch. Specifically, the importance of mantras. The group’s future collective would be called The Epoch.

The collective had no trouble finding members; they were already there. But one large struggle was the creation of a logo. Finally, they agreed on the birds of flight because they felt the image best represented a group that may not sound similar, but love each other completely.

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Around the time of its conception, the Epoch members were spread across the country, each member had began independently writing music. Crawford was attending college in Chicago when he began Small Wonder. In January, Crawford released Wendy, a weighty, emotional record filled with soaring melodies. Greenleaf, like Crawford, also relocated to Chicago. It was there that he rediscovered his teenage love of Pop and The result became Sharpless, whose sophomore album “The One I Wanted To Be” was released in May.

sharpless

Back on the east coast, room mates Kalb and Walworth created Bellows and Told Slant,  Kalb released As If To Say I Hate Daylight, Bellows’ first album. After touring extensively with Bellows and Told Slant, graduating college, and returning to New York City, Kalb released his sophomore record, Blue Breath. In 2012, Walworth released the debut Told Slant LP Still Water. Now, two years later, the album has been re-released on vinyl. Kalb and Walworth, roommates, enlisted a variety of friends to play in their bands, but each has been a mainstay in each other’s bands, along with Gabrielle Smith. Smith describes herself as “a pretty late bloomer with music.”One of her first bands, Legs, was composed mostly of members found on Craigslist. Smith’s  current project, eskimeaux, are now, with a solid four piece live band, eskimeaux will be following up several EPs with a new album.

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Emily Sprague grew up in upstate New York. After performing for years in the Woodstock area under her own name, she moved to Albany. It was there that she met the Epoch gang. About a year ago, she adopted the name Florist, and has released several EPs of shivery honesty. Susannah Cutler is an artist and a musician. Cutler has been around The Epoch since its beginning , but she was “primarily represented as a visual artist up until recently.” She credits The Epoch as giving her the confidence to give her music a name and take her musical desires more seriously. Her project is called Yours Are the Only Ears.

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A lot of the NYC bands were trying to create a feeling , Most of our bands don’t sound similar but a uniting quality is that we all want to create music that people can feel like they are a part of rather then feel like they are just watching.

If you like this you should check out these bands.

Small Wonder, Florist, Bellows, Eskimeaux, Told Slant, Yours Are The Only Ears, Sharpless,Lamniformes,