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Futurist
futurist is now(ist)
by: Nancy Chow - May 18, 2012

 



With concerts that astonish audiences like the Flaming Lips but on an indie budget, Futurist draws a cult-like following. They don’t need the added theatrics to draw attention to the folk pop rock collective, but it is a well-executed bonus. On the debut album, War is Yesterday, the band constructs a colorful, vivacious musical terrain filled with good vibes. Band ringleader Curtis Peel sounds like he sings with a smile on his face, and the positivity is infectious as it transcends the recording. It’s not enough for Futurist to write solid songs that can stand well on their own, the troupe produces fantastic live shows that they change up for every performance to produce a unique experience. From the stage props to the music videos casted with fans, all the multimedia components are carefully determined by the band and they all come together to present a band that is well rounded in all aspects.

How did you all meet?
Emily and I met in Colorado in the summer of 2007 at a Björk concert at Red Rocks Amphitheater through mutual friends. We hit it off right from the start and have pretty much been playing music together ever since.

We moved to New York together in 2008 and experienced several incarnations of members before we started recording our first album. Brad Weiger joined us on bass for those recordings. In late 2011, Skyler Browning and Joey Campanella joined the line-up, solidifying the Futurist sound as it is today.

How does the Futurist incorporate multimedia elements?
The multimedia element is something that is very important to me. We’ve used multimedia aspects ranging from projections, custom-made lighting, confetti, aerial performance, dance, costumes and audience participation to really make our shows something more than your standard show.

What’s the concept behind War is Yesterday?
War is Yesterday is a conglomeration of ideas that had been sitting with me since the beginning. To me, War is Yesterday is our own personal form of propaganda. We are bombarded with so many opinions that seem to suggest otherwise it just seemed like the direction I wanted to take our first album. The phrase “war is yesterday” is taken straight from the track “The Dragon Upstairs” on that album.

We released the album almost a full year after we finished recording it. I had this idea to create a walk-through album release that featured a room for every song on the album, so that our audience could journey though the emotions and themes from the music.

How did the songs come together for War is Yesterday?
I wrote all of the songs spanning from 2007 to 2009. Once I felt that we had enough to make a debut album, then Emily and I brought on several guest musicians to record the album. We were then able to use those recordings to form our current live line-up.

You recently shot a video for “Blacksheep Army” and invited fans to participate. How did the shoot go, and what is the concept of the video?
The “Blacksheep Army” is exactly what it suggests – an army of misfits, weirdos and compassionate visionaries who want to fight for something other than what’s popular. We essentially hosted a party for people to show up and celebrate the idea. Everyone was dressed up in mock-military attire. We painted our faces, filled the room with fog and tried to capture all we could to piece together something genuine that would fit with the lyrics. I am still editing down the video and am very excited with the results. We shot “Antihero” in the same way, except this video is on a whole artistic new level.

How would you describe a Futurist live show?
FUN. Futurist shows are interactive, collaborative, and above all, unique. No two Futurist shows are the same. Each show has core themes of music, lighting, costume and dance, but every show in an opportunity to involve and engage audience participation to collectively create a unique experience. By taking this approach, we have systematically created countless hours of fun for our friends and us.



 
 
" No two Futurist shows are the same. Each show has core themes of music, lighting, costume and dance, but every show in an opportunity to involve and engage audience participation to collectively create a unique experience. "





Futurist
""War Is Yesterday""




what it is

Love songs for the indie art rock crowd. Recommended if you like: Arcade Fire, Wilco, Of Montreal, Helio Sequence



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