The Key Studio Sessions: Myrrias

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Psychedelic rock powerhouse Myrrias is a Philadelphia indie scene supergroup of sorts. Mikele Edwards of Arc in Round (and, going further back, Relay) fronts the band with hypnotic vocals and immersive keyboard lines. On guitar, April Harkanson of The Downtown Club explores atmospheric spaces and gripping leads; on bass, Emily Robb of Louie Louie (and Lantern) adds a rhythmic low end; both add entrancing vocal harmonies to the mix, driven forth by primal drumbeats from Casey Bell of Break it Up.

Their resumes are an undeniable part of the story; were it not for their respective places in the Philadelphia scene, these four musicians may have never connected. But that’s only part of the story, since the music they make together far transcends the whole “featuring members of” thing. Myrrias’ incredible Key Session boasts moments reminiscent of Broadcast (one of Edwards’ all-time faves) as well as Warpaint and Slowdive. The way the drums crash and the harmonies drift in their cover of Nico’s “60/40” distinctly recalls Brian Eno’s “Deep Blue Day.” Also stunning are the single “All Alone,” the back catalog cut “Focus” and an untitled new rager that culminates in a breathtaking call-and-response coda.

We recorded the session on the tail end of Myrrias’ fall tour; it was their first run since Bell relocated to Nevada, and while the band knew it was going to continue, it wasn’t certain about its percussive future. Would they audition a new drummer? What would that mean for their tight-knit creative bond? After tour went so resoundingly well (as heard in this session), Edwards tells us the plan is to mix it up by gigging with a drum machine when Bell isn’t available, and performing with her on the road. Thinking long-range, that seems like the ideal plan – chemistry like this is too much to give up.

Listen to the Key Session recordings below, grab a download over at Soundcloud and see Myrrias play a free show (drum machine style) this Sunday, October 25th, at Dilworth Park’s Oktoberfest (more info here). They’ll also be at Everybody Hits on November 9th and there’s talk of a show with Bell over the winter holidays, so keep tabs on the band’s Facebook page for more on that.

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