This is definitely one of my favourite bands these days. The 3-piece Oakland CA-based Once & Future Band has quite the variety of inspirations, and it’s nearly impossible to stick them to a certain genre. There’s certainly a 70’s psych/prog/fusion-vibe when these guys fire up their engine, but there’s so much more intertwined in here. Yes, Crimson, Rundgren, Baccarach, Zappa, Steely Dan…there’s hints of a lot of greatness baked into this EP. The trio of Joel Robinow (keyboards/guitar/vocals), Raj Ojha (drums) and Eli Eckert (bass/guitar/vocals) have been partners in crime for many years, and shared duties in Drunk Horse, Howlin’ Rain, East Bay Grease among many others. They’re also functioning as the backing band for the extremely musically gifted Danny James (watch out for his solo debut-album “PEAR”, out on Burger Records anytime soon) who also came up with the bands name.

There’s an instant certain familiar feeling surrounding these 4 tunes (clocking in at aprx 24 minutes), which gives any musically experienced listener a warm feel of reminiscense, but they definitely manage to take total control of their compositions. The arrangements on “Brain” are quite exquisite throughout, and there’s enough complex, tasty artistery in here to ensure that you’ll find new hooks and details with every listen. The outcome on this EP is a really grand effort, deeply personal and heartfelt. This is one that will stick with you and grow with each and every listen.  Highly recommended!

The Details

Once & Future Band is
Joel Robinow - Vocals, Keyboards, Guitar
Eli Eckert - Backing Vocals, Bass, Guitar
Raj Ojha - Drums, Percussion, Synth Programming

With
Phil Manley - Lead guitar on outro of “Brain”
Danny T. Levin - Played, arranged, recorded horn arrangements on “The Old Brain”
credits
released 15 May 2014
Produced by Raj Ojha

All songs written and performed by Once & Future Band

Engineered by Phil Manley and Raj Ojha at Lucky Cat Recording and OKR Studios.

Mastered by Roger Seibel at SAE Mastering

Album artwork and design by Chris Appelgren

Price $15

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