I was introduced to these guys when they opened for godspeed you black emperor! at a local show. At the show, they had 3 guitars, 2 violins, a bass, a drummer, and a keyboardist. We'd never heard of these guys, and an opening act was never announced, so at first we thought it was godspeed. But of course once they started playing we realized it wasn't. They played for about an hour and blew me away, during the intermission I went out to the lobby and bought their cd.

Boxstep hails from the wonderful world of Pittsburg, PA. They were formed in the winter of 2000 by Eric Graf after disbanding his former band Fiveball. Eric met up with David Wallace of another Pittsburg band called Isabella, and when they also broke up, the two got together and formed Boxstep. They've played with various violinists, drummers, and keyboardists, and as far as I know the latest mix features 8 people.

Their website describes them as "an eight piece band that orchestrates love songs for lonely hearts." I'm not sure how much I agree with that, but hey... Now how to describe the music... I don't really have anything to compare them to, if you like godspeed there's a good chance you'll like this, but it's not godspeed. Godspeed does a more heavily layered sound with alternating periods of quiet that explode into an intense cacaphony of noise that absorbs you. Boxstep, on the other hand, focuses more on melodies and emotional hooks. The songs all seem to start out slow and build, and just when you think the music is about to explode, they slowly let you back down. The lyrics are sweet, the singing is beautiful, the sound is lush and layered without being noisy or overwhelming, and the beautiful melodies never give way to a harsh explosion of distortion and feedback. The changes in dynamic are often subtle and slowly draw you in, and the emotion on the entire cd is amazing.

Their only cd to date is Faces all look on released on Overcoat Records out of Chicago. You're probably not going to find it in your local cd shop (unless you are in Pittsburg), but you can find it on CDNow, Amazon.com, etc. All I can say is this cd is simply amazing and you should go get it right now. Really.

Faces All Look On - 2001

  1. Ryan's Glacier
  2. Airport Arrivals
  3. UPS Worker
  4. My Slate Roof
  5. Irish Elk
  6. 11:55
  7. I Will Forget
  8. Love That Well
  9. Second Wedding Anniversary

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