Lakeman is for fans of Russian Circles, Mogwai, Godspeed You! Black Emperor, And So I Watch You From Afar. Okanagan Proggers Lakeman Share Visually Atmospheric Live Video Pandosy,
Visual instrumental prog band Lakeman split up earlier this year, but before they say goodbye to the age of their EP Progenito released this past January, the band is sharing with fans their live video Pandosy, which captures footage of the band’s final night of rehearsal and last three sold-out shows in Kelowna and Penticton during November 2019.
Lakeman’s Robert McLaren explains further: «We worked really hard to try to get every song we wrote filmed in order to highlight the fact we were exchanging instruments and using more than the standard rock band set up. We tried to film/record Pandosy on multiple occasions and it would never work out for whatever reason: technical difficulties, poor quality recording, bad performances». The track Powers Creek,
«When we decided to stop playing live for an indeterminate amount of time, possibly for good, we knew our final shows would be our last chance to film Pandosy. All week at rehearsals and even the first show of the weekend we were shaky, I remember my fiddle was out of tune the first night. Pandosy is always our big ender of the night. So we played it for what might be the last time and we captured this beast of a song on film and record. It was a fitting end if that was the end. At that time we weren’t sure».
Progenitor was the second audio-visual release from Lakeman. Most of the EP was recorded live off the floor by Kaylub Burke at the Center For Arts And Technology with mixing and mastering by Andy Ashley. Visual elements for the EP were filmed and edited by Jonathan Robinson, and lighting was operated by Joshua Goodwin.
Lakeman’s Robert McLaren explains the release: «We all seem drawn to lo-fi expression for this project. I personally love to capture moments rather than reproduce them. 90% of “Progenitor” was live off the floor, recorded as a band playing together in a room. I would not suggest this for most bands, it is a waiting game to find the take that everyone played their best and usually, time is not a luxury when you are in a studio. However, you have to learn to love your blemishes and flaws as a band when you record this way. It is a form of radical self-acceptance». The track 25000 + Hectars,
Lakeman had a devoted cult-like following throughout the Okanagan Valley and British Columbia. The band’s long-form instrumental and genre-bending approach beckoned audiences of various musical forms. They reveled in the band’s ability to exchange instruments everything from drums to guitars, bass, keyboards, synthesizers, and even the fiddle and banjo. All this happened on stage while the music continued seamlessly through ambient soundscapes.
The overall theme of the band was a sonic meditation of the veiled and macabre history of the Okanagan valley. The group found their sound in a deeply collaborative approach, very little of the composition was done apart, and there was no songwriter. The band started the compositions by first improvising together, the feel of each improvisation being vastly different based on who was playing which instrument. As mentioned earlier the band did not have assigned instrument roles as most other bands traditionally do.
You could find any one of the members doing anything from turning knobs on a synthesizer to singing into a violin before they started bowing it. After finding the improvisation the band liked, they would then begin the long process of composing around this initial improvisation. Once a Lakeman piece of music started to take form, the band would start considering a local myth or legend to devote the theme to, this deepened the band’s thematic composition. This was when the piece would usually take its final or close to its final form.
1. Powers Creek (8:08)
2. 25,000 + Hectares (7:12)
3. Pandosy (10:38)
EP Length: 25:59
Band Line Up: Josh Bissonette: guitar, bass, keys/synth, drums, Josh Pym: guitar, bass, keys/synth, vocals, Warryn Berry: guitar, keys/synth, drums and Robert McLaren: guitar, bass, keys/synths, drums, vocals, fiddle, banjo.