Lakeman, the genre-bending Okanagan-based band, is taking a step back from the performance scene, but not before one last show at the Mile Zero Wine Bar in Penticton on Nov. 30.
Performing in the Valley for the past four years, the band is comprised of Josh Bissonette, Josh Pym, Warryn Berry and Robert McLaren. Their genre has been described as sonic meditation or heavy mellow, and their new album, Progenitor, looks at the “veiled and macabre history of the Okanagan Valley.”
“Our live performances are different than most local bands you’d see. We switch instruments, you’ll find any of us playing the synthesizer to the drum kit. I’ve been playing a banjo and fiddle through some of the sets,” said McLaren.
“The interesting thing is that we keep the music going while we’re doing this, so we’ll set soundscapes that will play during the parts when we’re switching instruments. So there’s always something happening musically no matter what.”
McLaren said the visual component of their shows is just as important to their audio performance, so he often crafts music videos or other visual representations to play during their live sets.
“Instead of just putting out albums, I really wanted people to connect with the fact that we’re exchanging instruments so we always like to have some sort of a visual stand-in for each song, as well as audio,” said McLaren. “So when we release a new song we try to have a studio video or some type of visual to allow our audience to explore who is playing what because that’s kind of the fun of the band. Like wondering who is on what instrument for each song.”
McLaren said while their music is mellow and ethereal, the new album considers the sort of dark underbelly of the Okanagan’s history. He said an example is the legend of a man whose daughter supposedly went missing in the wilderness, and when he was looking for her, he died.
This has led to the belief that a ghost man wanders the wooded parts in the area, still looking for his daughter.
The show at the Mile Zero Wine Bar will have an added element since the band has a lights technician set to accompany their set. The admission for the show, which starts at 8 p.m., is $10.
According to McLaren, Lakeman won’t be focusing on live shows moving forward as all of the band members are dads that want to spend more time with their families. That being said, they will continue to look for other projects for their musical ensemble such as creating movie soundtracks.
For more information about Lakeman, visit their YouTube channel.
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