The Photons, a fabulous octet out of San Francisco has just kicked off a grand CD release project. Its a multimedia extravaganza, which is quite appropriate for a band that uses anything they can get their hands on to make their music, they will be unleashing three EP's starting with a limited release of Glory on May 12 via insound (it will go wide on June 23rd) and two others later in the year. The neat part is the "We Are Photons" comic book that will be packaged with each EP. The groups ring leader Calvin Liu is also a comic strip artist and has combined his two loves to bring fans a highly enjoyable package of sights and sounds.
I first stumbled upon the Photons when I was given a mix that included Animals (from their 2008 self titled EP). This group of buddies first got together in 2008 as part of an effort to encourage each other to learn a new instrument. What has resulted is a fun exploration of "instruments" ranging from electro-harp to soda bottle percussion to the bulbul tarang (Indian banjo). The four tracks on Glory are proof that they are maturing into a chamber-ish folk rock sound, suggestive of Arcade Fire. Their lyrics are taut and witty while managing to stay on non-annoying side of the twee divide. The first single Where Were You Last Night demonstrates an impressive leap from last years work. Each instrument contributes a unique cog in this machine. They push and pull each other while supporting the call and answer group vocals helmed by the rasp-tastic James Parrish. Its already got a locked spot on my summer play list.
And the comic book you ask? Its a nice look inside the drama and politics that is the Photons with foot notes none the less! Today is Free Comic Book Day btw. so drop into and support your local shop. Then take a second to relish in the simple joy that are The Photons.
Where Were You Last Night