Caspian is an American post-rock and instrumental rock band formed in Beverly, Massachusetts.

Long-running cinematic rock band Caspian don’t want you to call their fifth album a “redemption,” a “comeback,” a “rise from the ashes,” or any of the other sentiments that emerge when bands return from nearly five years of silence.

“I’ve grown weary of reading about bands discuss the renewing, rehabilitative properties their most recent [album] has had on them,” says guitarist/keyboardist Philip Jamieson. “They incur corrosion, come close to running out of gas, descend into the dark abyss, and finally emerge on the other side with a record that has given them crystal clear perspective and a confident path forward. On Circles is not that record.”

Instead, this majestic collision of post-rock, metal, shoegaze, electronics, noise, minimalism and ambient music is an existential meditation, an acceptance of the cyclical nature of both life and career. Recorded at Studio 4 in Conshohocken, PA, by producer Will Yip (Code Orange, Defeater, Quicksand, Turnstile), On Circles marks the most organic writing and recording sessions in Caspian’s 15-year history. Together for four weeklong songwriting sessions, the band (joined by propulsive new drummer Justin Forrest), opted for music gleaming with visceral impact instead of over-thought tangles, over-arching concepts and drawn-out crescendos

On Circles is an art-rock record swirling with fourth-world saxophones, dubby textures, 7/8 rhythms and hard-sawed cello from Jo Quail (Myrkyr, Winterfylleth, Poppy Ackroyd). The band stretches out to make room for guitarist Jonny Ashburn’s melodic interplay (“Division Blues”), bassist Jani Zubkovs’ punk shredding (“Collapser”) and the mandolin of founding member Calvin Joss (“Flowers of Light”). Guitarist Erin Burke-Moran wrote a pastoral-to-epic, chamber-rock journey (“Ishmael”) as a tribute to eight months spent on the Appalachian trail. The wistful “Nostalgist” features vocals from Kyle Durfey of fellow Northeastern alterna-rock grandeur artists Piano Becomes the Teeth. For the first time, each track is meant to stand alone.

“They’re just songs that we got together and wrote over the course of a year while trying to have a good time and reclaim whatever it is that’s simple about all of this,” says Jamieson. “Don’t get me wrong, we kicked our own asses constantly and stayed up staring at the ceiling thinking about song structures all night for a year here … but being free from the yolk of having our music relentlessly try to answer the un-answerable was emancipating and humbling.”

The band’s deeply personal 2015 LP Dust and Disquiet was a concept record about grief, dealing with the emotions after losing friend and bassist Chris Friedrich in 2013. After the two years of global touring that followed, Caspian took their first-ever long term hiatus – or what Jamieson called “an overdue emotional inventory.” The reflection raised questions about the friction between artistic inspiration and financial reality, the increasingly demystified trudge of road life, and if  “the healing power of music” is even a realistic expectation after all. During that time Jamieson personally traversed an “ugly grey underworld of depression, lethargy and emotional ambivalence,” inspiring the lyrics to the title track.

“Music is a mediator to the unspeakable, and the unspeakable is always by definition out of reach, moving somewhere invisibly along the closed curve of a circle,” says Jamieson. “Acknowledging all this, what if we just made an album for the simple sake of making music, with as few existential expectations as we are capable, with as much of our self-importance sidelined as possible in order to facilitate that?”

Eschewing many of the giant, enveloping wall-of-guitar build-ups of past Caspian albums, the songs inside On Circles even take circular paths, with no beginning or ends.

“Life isn’t a series of epic crescendos, ” says Jamieson. “Sometimes it’s the hint of one (‘Onsra’), or a sequential series of crescendos that come in waves but aren’t set up to go for an obvious jugular (‘Wildblood,’ ‘Ishmael’), or end up in a completely different place than where you expected, but pivot at the very last moment back to their beginning (‘Division Blues’).”

Philip Jamieson – guitar, keyboards, synthesizers (2004 – present)
Calvin Joss – guitar, pedal steel (2004 – present)
Joe Vickers – drums (2004 – present)
Erin Burke-Moran – guitar (2007 – present)
Jonny Ashburn – guitar (2009 – present)
Jani Zubkovs – bass (2013 – present)
Former members
Chris Friedrich – bass (2004–2013; death)
Jon McMahan – bass (live only, 2009–2013)

Studio albums

On Circles (2020)
The Four Trees (2007)
Tertia (2009)
Waking Season (2012)
Dust and Disquiet (2015)
You are the Conductor (2005, 2010)
Tour EP (2005, 2010)
Split 7 “with Constants (2005, 2010)
Live at Old South Church (2012)
Hymn for the Greatest Generation (2013)
Castles High, Marble Bright (2016)

Caspian (band) - Wikipedia
Caspian (banda) – Wikipédia, a enciclopédia livre
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Bilhetes Caspian, espetáculos de Caspian 2020 2021. | Wegow Portugal


From their quiet corner in Northeastern USA, CASPIAN have built themselves the reputation of kings over their fifteen year existence. Deservedly earning a seat at a table of post-rock’s finest, the Massachusetts-based sextet have forged a career in creating the most beautiful of cinematic soundscapes, churning out record after record of genre defining classics. Sweeping and densely layered, their forte lies in igniting the imagination and painting abstract imagery in the listener’s mind.

And yet with their latest offering On Circles, they have dared to be different. Immediately polarising opinion with the lead single Circles On Circles, this fifth full length will test the loyalty of their fanbase and likely go some way towards redefining what the band are. Why? Because for the first time since their inception we have heard a CASPIAN track that features vocals. In a genre that largely steers clear of any lyrics at all, co-founder Philip Jamieson has dared to open up his voice and add even more texture to an already ambidextrous sound. Quite how the decision will sit with fans once the full album is released remains to be seen, but the band certainly feel confident that it’s a risk that will pay off.
Sonically the album begins exactly how you would expect. Gradually building, Wildblood is a fairly safe lead into the album, opting for a calm and collected approach that showcases distant brasswork accentuated by distorted guitar. It is a cautious lead into one of the album’s longer tracks, and as further instrumentation arrives with a crash, things begin to take shape. Time-earned experience allows layer after layer to seamlessly build like sediment, until we are lost in a swathe of post-rock mist. The devil lies in the details, and CASPIAN certainly excel at impressing through technical skill. Given that the opener largely feels like an opening act, drifting into Flowers Of Light is a pleasant experience. Again, the build up is patient, as the band clearly feel no rush to blind us with science. In fact the first moment that things feel really shaken up is in Nostalgist, where the elephant in the room finally rears its head and we hear those vocals for the first time. Featuring the celebrated voice of Kyle Durfey of PIANOS BECOME THE TEETH, the track plays out like a post-rock/melodic hardcore hybrid, driving forward in a blur of cathartic riffs and appeasing vocals. It is a step away from the CASPIAN we know, but rather than feeling like a band stuck in an identity crisis, they have put their necks on the line. It may work or it may not, but regardless it’s a bold move that seems to have paid off.
For the large remainder of the album CASPIAN return to form, walking us through a variable landscape containing a surprising amount of colour. From the heavier, dense approach of Collapser to the much more stereotypically post-rock structure of Ishmael, there is plenty to keep our minds occupied before we arrive again at Circles On Circles and Philip begins to sing lavishly. Led in by a soft acoustic guitar, it certainly allows the band to display an innate emotion that wasn’t preconceived, rather a natural evolution in the writing process. It plays out the album well, and neatly fits the overall tone. There can be little argument that On Circles is a great addition to the CASPIAN discography. Perhaps not their greatest work, but it certainly seems to be a strong statement as to how they expect their future to look.

Publicado por Aryon Maiden

Aficionado pela música em todos os momentos.

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