Getting a handle on Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros isn't easy. The Los Angeles band's bio doesn't mention the names of any members or any serious facts about its formation. Instead, it focuses on a story about the fictional Edward Sharpe, a child who went from deafness to "hearing too much." The group's debut album, Up From Below, takes a similarly bizarre approach.
SALVO!, a new 12-part music video, attempts to tie the CD's songs into one continuous and trippy narrative. It all begins with the swampy "Desert Song," a sneaky tune with tribal, thumping beats and the ominous twinkling of bells and chimes. New orchestrated tracks fill the gaps between the album songs — appropriate since much of Up From Below is actually a jumble of different sounds and influences balled together. The result is more like random bursts of joy or hurt than songs.
The music's sporadic nature stems from the huge cast of musicians and friends frontman Alex Ebert gathered after writing the demos that form the basis of Up From Below. In concert, the group changes in size, depending on the day and where they're playing. The touring band is usually made up of ten musicians, though that number occasionally jumps to 13. "We have a lot of different friends around the country," explains drummer Josh Collazo, "so whenever they wanna play with us, they can just join in and come onstage."
Read the rest at the Cleveland Scene.