Quickly becoming a transcendent figure in the Milwaukee music scene, Jaems Murphy’s latest project, Etherium Ensemble, claws at a certain sonic purity that will draw him notoriety that is likely unsought. Adhering thoughtful progressive rock to ambient jazz, soul and neo-soul sub genres, Etherium Ensemble took the floor for an November performance at Circle A Cafe in Riverwest.
Bestowing an uplifting and reflective set of compositions, Etherium Ensemble is a sextet containing guitar (Murphy), bass (Bob Schabb) trumpet (Brett Westfahl), drums (Demetrus Ford), vocalist (Keshena Armon), and vibraphone (Michael Neumeyer), all possessing extensive expressive proclivities.
The word that most comes to mind if I were to describe Etherium Ensemble is authentic; authentic in their intent, authentic in their commitment, and authentic in their desire to pay tribute to the all voices that contribute to Milwaukee’s creative spirit.
About that vibraphone, until Etherium Ensemble, this element is one that I have yet to see incorporated in a Milwaukee act. Mike Neumeyer does Roy Ayers proud (one of the definitive American Jazz Vibes composers), working his way end-to-end on the chimed instrument clutching two felted mallets. In the sound-scape of Etherium Ensemble, the vibes venerably takes the place of keyboard, and expands that role to offer warmer tones to the range of notes that section usually imparts.
Jaems Murphy also headlines Vedic Eden, a amorphous project leaning on alternative rock foundations. Vedic Eden was recently included in a blog post from The Examiner announcing “11 acts you may not be paying attention to…”. Go ahead and throw Etherium Ensemble on that list, and to give Jaems Murphy two spots in 2015.
Suns out at least for a day, so lets pretend it will be tomorrow as well. While one hundred thousand people will be down at Henry Meier Festival Grounds, the rest of Milwaukee will carry on the per usuals. BBC has Antony and the Tramps to simmer the musical stew tomorrow night. They got ambient American Gypsy down on the floor laying a woven mat of thread bare roots.
Grappling forces that oppose the good and bad times, Anotony and The Tramps sing their memories through their instruments. Unfolding their hands, they reach for what you have buried within your mental diary. The outfit carriers dimensions that overlap quadrants of taste.
Upright bass stands prominent in their soundscape, with an assortment of percussion, keys, brass, and woodwinds for ample sides, suiting their proclaimed gypsydom. Antony and The Tramps has roots, folk and Americana stained in their sheet music. Mother’s Nature Tree (The Warrior pt 1) typifies their ability to animate unvisited places scrapped off lonely paved country highways. Gradually, keys seep through thick layers of reverbed guitar scales, kept in their place by a mellow racket of drum snares.
Antony and The Tramps, Mother’s Nature Tree (The Warrior pt 1)
A harmonic chant brings you to The Warrior, a benediction to their self titled album, music heart bred.
Antony and The Tramps, The Warrior
Their out of that scary place 90 minutes south of here, coarsely ground good times leave the threats behind. They’re glad to take you deep enough to remember. Antony and The Tramps embark at BBC’s tomorrow nite Friday June 27.
Suddenly tons of stand-up basses have rumbled on the Milwaukee music scene. Notably, Thistletown Thunders and Calamity Janes, Jaems Murphey’s Vedic Eden, and The Flood offer the bass’s ruminating thuds in bluegrass dialect. Add to that list Barry Paul Clark.
Fluent in Jazz and electric composition, Clark fused both as his super alter-ego adoptahighway at 414Melt. Adoptahighway superbly tasks his hands with queuing electronic samples of live recordings resonating from his bass strings that he played moments before.
The live instrument sampling technique compels attention every time it’s done. Maybe not quite as vicious as Manual Controller, but not many things are.
A recent discussion about what to do to grow Milwaukee’s music scene made me wonder what or where people look for music. Hyper-talented artists like Clark do their part by contributing to niche collectives like 414 Melt. He also spins a silken thread with traditional jazz adding to the potion blended by Unrehearsed Milwaukee, which you will have a chance to see this Sunday (May 4th) at the Jazz Estate
Showcasing for 414MELT, Horseforce spews dissonant sound concepts evading any accurate classification besides rocking. Carrying a persona projecting beyond his name, Horseforce embodies the performance aspect of electronic music rarely acknowledged by critics.It’s not necessarily easy on the ears, I’d compare it to anchovies on Caesar salad, a matter of taste. One thing you can’t deny is the dude is having mega fun.
Horseforce is mystical creature appearing only when barometric pressure increases 0.56 millabars during a 24 hour period.
A lonesome voice brings everyone into his realm, they savor the feeling. His guitar sings the cryptic melodies of life’s winding road. Everyone’s route has its charms. Jaems Murphy quaintly celebrated the release of his most recent expulsion Mono No Aware, with a small ensemble of musicians and audiophiles at Brewed Cafe. Outside is cold as February in the year 2014.
A sheet draped over the picture window made a silver screen for the Vidic Eden to accompany Jaems Murphy’s numero uno rip Right Your Will. Murphy tumbles through escapades expected for a man in his shoes, somehow unscathed like sopping wet clothes renewed in a gas dryer, better for their tumbles.
Right You Will, Jaems Murphy’s Vedic via Jaems Murphy on Youtube
A gnarly bunch, the Vedic Eden has Murphy’s back on rhythm guitar, stand up bass, keyboard, trumpet and various percussion, not withstanding a door key chime.
If eclectic weren’t cliche they would be serially riding your emotional whims until personal sands are stirred. The Jaems Murphy’s Vedic Eden release can be sampled here on Bandcamp.