Sometime in the spring of 2012, the musicians that would go on to form the Chicago and Minneapolis-based trio ON AN ON found themselves at a tipping point. The three of them—Nate Eiesland, Alissa Ricci, and Ryne Estwing—had played music with one another in various capacities for the better part of a decade. Most recently, they had shared the stage and studio as three-fifths of the indie-pop outfit Scattered Trees, which had seen its fair share of success. But with the band’s studio time only a few weeks away, and the other members now spread out across the country pursuing other endeavors, they would chart their own course and come out stronger for it. What emerged was ON AN ON.
For ON AN ON, the precariousness of breaking new ground only three weeks before recording with accomplished producer Dave Newfeld (Broken Social Scene) provided a jolt of creative energy. The musicians had become disenchanted with their past approach to songwriting and recording. Newfeld proved the perfect counterpart to their initial vision for the record, encouraging them to push boundaries and go with their instincts. Eieseland, Ricci and Estwing embraced musical risks that in the past they might have shied away from. In the studio, the band members explored a natural chemistry and honed their sound – synthesizers, scattershot electro beats and ambient ear candy gave guitars, bass and drums a ghostly sheen.
November 2, 2013
22:40 Harpa Norðurljós