This time, we are getting to you with a band representing art rock embellished with strings, a band creating epic cinematic compositions full of sweeping elegant darkness and hypnotic delicate intensity – Stems.
Based in Huddersfield, UK, Stems formed in 2011 with the idea of seeking a new relationship between experimental guitar and classical instruments, to create music with the energy of rock music but with elongated and intense structures of Western and Indian classical music. The name Stems is derived from the idea of roots diverging to produce unique strands, all of which are bound to a central body.
To date the band have released one E.P – The 20 minute long track ‘Only When All is Broken Can the Truth Be Seen’ and an album ‘Polemics‘.
In 2013 they embarked on their first successful tour of Europe – 15 concerts to promote the album ‘Polemics’, in February 2014 they toured a new limited edition album ‘Shock and Awe’, all of the albums were sold before the tour ended. They have developed a following based largely around their passionate and intense live performances and have a further two tours booked in June and November.
Stems first full length album is 9 tracks that were slowly pieced together over 6 months in late 2012 and early 2013. Originally self released and accompanied by a 15 date European tour, the album quickly sold out of its 1st and 2nd pressing of hand made CD’s. Printed on tracing paper to create see through and multilayered artwork.
The sound of the album is that of contradictions; Calm and delicate yet intense and darkly uplifting. Dreamlike beautiful music that builds from simple rhythms/ melodies/ drones, reaching elegant hypnotic climaxes and intense crescendos that have now been interwoven with a string and wind ensemble.
Post-rock guitar blends with classical strings while eastern influences on technique and composition are mixed with minimalism and classical theory such as counterpoint and organum. The resulting album is cinematic, powerful, elegant, both new and truly engaging in a way that draws you in rather than screams for attention.
The re-release of Polemics by Fluttery Records coincides with the inclusion of three of the album’s videos in this year Tour de France opening ceremony in the bands hometown, Huddersfield.
Stems embark on a short European tour in June, dates below.
(FR) Caen – Porte Sans Clé
(FR) Poiters – La Poppine
(DE) Mainz – Haus Mainsuch
(DE) Dresden – Hole Of Fame
(DE) Nuremberg – Hemdendienst (With extra string players)