Masstransfer << Rewind: Au Revoir Borealis

This article was originally published in the fifth issue of Masstransfer, 2002.

“local Detroit shoegazers that have seem to come out of nowhere to become the most talked about band in town”

Once in awhile, a band comes along that catches you by surprise, both by the quality their music and their ability to walk right into a scene and make an impact. Such is Au Revoir Borealis, who after only releasing 1 EP, has many people interested in following their progression.

I asked guitarist Steve Swartz how long it took them to break into the biz. “Well, we’ve actually been together for years, but only as a band for about 3 or 4 years. I (Steve) met Michael Carian, our drummer while in college. We shared a common obsession of music and went to tons of shows almost on a weekly basis. Through Michael, I met Justin VanSlembrouck who primarily plays bass in the band. Justin and Mike sort of grew up together.

Now at this point, I had been actively playing music for about 10 years. Justin had only been actively playing for about 2 years and Michael had never played drums actively ever. He always wanted to play drums, but never really had a chance to dig in. One day, Justin called me and wanted to get together and just jam out for a while. When we did, I think we played for about 8 hours straight! It was crazy! We had so much fun though. Justin and I kept playing for kicks. Michael eventually wanted to join the fun and Justin happened to have a drum kit in his basement. That’s basically how Au Revoir Borealis formed.”

Continue reading “Masstransfer << Rewind: Au Revoir Borealis”

Sonixcursions:002

Hello, and thanks for joining me on another audio-go-round of cosmic bliss. In this episode, I’m revisiting some of my favorite bands and albums from 2018 – starting off with probably my favorite band of the moment, Ulrika Spacek. In fact, many of the artists in the episode have only flown across my radar in the past few years or so, including Listening Center,  and The Advisory Circle.

Sprinkled in among the new blood are some long-time favorites like I Am Robot And Proud – who released a kickin’ album late last year called Lucky Static; and My Autumn Empire – aka Ben Holton, one-half of the classic British post-rock duo Epic45, with the epic title track from his latest album “Oh, Leaking Universe”.

Rounding out this episode, and easing you into oblivion, comes “A Living Thing” – the title track of the recent album from ambient kingpin Steve Swartz (Swartz Et), who has been immersed in the Detroit space/ambient/folk scene for close to two decades now. At one time, he was part of the dreampop group Au Revoir Borealis, who achieved some success in the early 2000’s. From there he went on to a more acoustic sound with his solo project For Wishes, and in the last few years has gone in a more ambient and conceptual direction. Stay tuned for a Masstransfer Rewind on Au Revoir Borealis in the coming weeks.

For more information on the podcast and the bands included, please subscribe to the email newsletter. See you on the flipside!

My Favorites of 2018

As we make another trip around the wheel of life, let me take a moment to look back at some of the releases that made the year a little more bearable. Drumroll please (rimshot where necessary)…

  1. LandingBells In New Towns
    This band continues to amaze with each release, progressively fine tuning their own unique soundscapes. Well done.
  2. Ulrika SpacekSuggestive Listening EP
    Probably my favorite new band of the moment – hoping for another full-length in the near future
  3. My Autumn EmpireOh, Leaking Universe
  4. The Asteroid #4Collide
  5. SpiritualizedAnd Nothing Hurt
  6. Adrien75The Deep State
    Although Mr. 75 has released several albums last year, this is my fave of the bunch
  7. The Advisory CircleWays Of Seeing
  8. Chatham RiseMeadowsweet
  9. Lazy SalonBoot Magna
  10. A Year In The Country – The Quietened Mechanisms (Various)
  11. LowtideSouthern Mind
  12. I Am Robot And ProudLucky Static
  13. Swartz EtA Living Thing

You’ll hear some of these artists on the next Sonixcursions podcast episode – on its way shortly. Subscribe to the Podcast or the Email Newsletter to get updates when new episodes are published.