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Artist Spotlight: Orbs
Written by Miles Ellenberg   
Monday, 26 April 2010

Woove staff writer Miles Ellenberg spotlights supergroup Orbs.

It’s not often you come across a band with a sound so unique you can truly say you’ve never heard anything like it before.  It’s even less often that the music is catchy enough for a pleasant first time listen.  Orbs satisfies this rarity with their three track demo, keeping their growing fan base on edge for a highly anticipated album release later this year.

Orbs is a super-group that started in fall 2007 after Between the Buried and Me bassist Dan Briggs began cross-country music swapping with keyboardist Ashley Ellyllon, known for her work with Abigail Williams and Cradle of Filth.  Other members joined the long distance project, including Clayton Holyoak and Adam Fisher from Fear Before as drummer and vocalist, respectively.  The bass player Chuck Johnson was later added to the group.

Don’t let this line-up mislead you; this band is far from a hardcore or metal band.  Orbs’ sound is one of a kind and doesn’t fit into any genre.  Adam Fisher’s sometimes creepy but powerful vocals and witty lyrics stretch out each song, telling stories that challenge the listener mentally and perhaps spiritually. The lyrics’ meanings are debatable, but the band’s MySpace describes the group as “an opportunity for the members to explore common interests in matters of science and wanting to better understand and build a better relationship with the nature/animal community,”  later mentioning that Fisher’s lyrics help bridge the gap between the music and the band’s ideology. 

Most songs have the progressive rock structure: they build up with a few recurring themes, branch off, and reunite in conclusion.  However, each song is unpredictable and well choreographed with frequent pauses and sudden changes that flow so well you’d think it’s too good to be true.  This band doesn’t layer the musical journey without a purpose; epic parts in each song are often accompanied by a climax or turning point in the lyrics.  You won’t notice any blistering solos or repetitive, trite riffs, and you won’t find any time signatures too complex to tap your foot to.  Instead, the music is appealing enough to bring in the listener, while still branching out into experimental and psychedelic sounds and riffs.  Ashley Ellyllon’s brilliant piano licks accompany Fisher’s singing with a spooky sound at one moment that turns around in the form of a musical epiphany to a heavy, sometimes pop-like riff.  Bass and drums usually provide the backbone for the song, although in the track “Megaloblastic Madness”, they take a lead role in the verses.  Look out for noises in the distance from synthesizers and guitars that, whether you catch them or not, bring each song farther away from ordinary scripture.

Orbs’ MySpace, www.myspace.com/orbsband,  currently has three tracks from their upcoming album.  “Asleep Next to Science” is expected to hit stores before the end of 2010.  Watch out for an official release date as well as possible tour dates. 

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