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Boson, Massachusetts, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2013 | SELF | AFTRA

Boson, Massachusetts, United States | SELF | AFTRA
Established on Jan, 2013
Band Alternative Post-rock




"I/O Saudade"

Saudade is the debut album from I/O, a five piece post rock band hailing from Boston, Massachusetts. The group has a sincere appreciation for the transcendent experience that the best expressions of the genre can create as indicated by their Bandcamp profile: “I/O believes human experience can be too beautiful and grotesque, inspiring and abhorrent, heartwarming and traumatic, to put into words. We hope you feel the same. It’s as much yours as it is ours”.

The music on Saudade certainly reflects that emotional sincerity, delivering an expansive and immersive set of songs. I/O proves they can deliver a fine melodic post rock opus, as they do on standout tracks like ‘Input/Output’, and ‘Warships’, and create an evocative ambient atmosphere, as they do on the opening track ‘Lakehouse’ and ‘Beta Fish’. That would be satisfying enough, but the band lifts the album to an even higher level by stirring energetic doses of math rock in to the mix on propulsive tracks like ‘Anna’ and ‘Weather Fields’ or uplifting jams like ‘Twins’ and ‘Noise Floor’.

This album should be a welcome addition to any post rock fan’s album collection. It balances big emotion and cinematic scope with moments of intimate reflection and energetic optimism, all delivered with solid and unpretentious musicianship. The band cites Explosions In the Sky, This Will Destroy You, Maybeshewill, Hammock, and Mutemath among their influences and you will almost certainly hear elements of all of these in the music.

And if I may go off on a short tangent, I would like to give special compliments to the playing and recording of the bass guitar on this record. Coming up music in the 70s and 80s, I was always big fan of bassists like Geddy Lee (Rush) and Tony Butler (Big Country) who had the tone and chops to both propel the music as well as add lots of dynamic and melodic elements, even taking the spotlight at times. That style of bass playing is present on Saudade and was particularly enjoyable to hear.

Saudade is currently available as digital download on the I/O Bandcamp site on a pay-what-you-want basis. I highly recommend checking it out and throwing a little well-deserved support their way.

-By Brian Housman - Stationary Travels

"Exclusive Video Premiere: I/O - Input/Output"

We are pleased to be bringing you the premiere of I/O’s first video from their debut album for the track “Input/Output.”

Based out of Boston, Massachusetts, I/O is a six-piece instrumental rock band that has been playing together since fall of 2012. “I/O believes human experience can be too beautiful and grotesque, inspiring and abhorrent, heartwarming and traumatic, to put into words. We hope you feel the same. It’s as much yours as it is ours,” the band says of their background and inspiration.

Recorded live by Fitz Ross Productions, the beautifully shot video displays a mere taste of what is to come from the band in the near future. Watch below!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uEE9ijDKYOs - Arctic Drones

"ALBUM REVIEW: I/O - Saudade"

The term Saudade originates from Portuguese and while it doesn’t have an exact equivalent in English it describes a state of deep nostalgic or melancholic longing for something which is absent. Saudade is the love which remains from passing people and places, a recollection of feelings and experiences in one’s past. The album artwork portrays the same mood, an empty house with broken windows facilitating nothingness and the fallen leaves of autumn reminiscing the passing colors of summer. Everything going their own way.

This collection of longings and yearnings is beautifully put together by a fresh instrumental-rock quintet I/O from Boston, Massachusetts. Their sound rings of influences from post-rock, ambient music and math-rock. Saudade is completely instrumental work, there is no trace of human voice on the recordings. Still, the taste of human yearning is present in its every aching current and is beautifully carried through with tasteful instrumentation and polished timbres of the guitars. Bass grooves are absolutely staggering here, offering warm, lush and melodic lines underneath the cascade of guitarwork. Tracks are actually arranged in a way that it comes apparent that all the members of the band are feeling comfortable on their respective instruments.

Although the concept of ambiance is well rehearsed by I/O (and really, the album lights up the room with its vivid colors and moods), the vibe of Saudade is very spontaneous and youthful. Instead of relying on developing single motifs, I/O playfully twists and turns the songs along their creative narrative. Using intensive rhythmic variations and sudden dynamic changes to keep the progression of the album stirring. However it’s not only the band’s instrumental capacities that provoke the listener, but also the emotional ones. Saudade offers variations of possibilities (and impossibilities) of its recurring theme, but the full spectrum of possibilities can only be met once the listener starts to relate him or herself to the album, and with that the band leaves it to you - “it’s as much yours as it is ours.”

- By Ahti Arumetsa - Sound And Beyond


Words fail to express the intensity of feeling found in I/Ø’s debut album Saudade. It’s a reflection of life—in all its senseless joy and tragedy—as they see it. They are an instrumental post-rock band hailing from all corners of the globe to converge on Boston in a furor of sound that’ll knock your socks off with a depth of emotion that’s as gripping as it is refreshing. I/Ø believes that the “human experience can be too beautiful and grotesque, inspiring and abhorrent, heartwarming and traumatic, to put into words,” a statement vehemently backed up by their music. True to its title, Saudade (a Portuguese word with no direct English translation), is a compilation of the heights and depths of emotion that define our formative years, taking you back with a twinge of longing and aching solace to the twilight hours of your youth and the moments that should have been. “Bait & Switch” evokes the sorrow and rage of betrayal with heavy timbre and excellent use of bass, while “Twins” captures the bittersweet nature of farewells in a series of build-ups that leaves one pensively somber.
Unlike some more notable post-rock bands, I/Ø’s work never finds itself confined to one mood or structure; they sooth with their dynamism. Each track alters its temperament as seamlessly as the seasons; though don’t mourn the passing of one, for the next is sure to enrapture.

- By Spencer Ward - HIIBYE

"I/O - Saudade"

The term "saudade" is of Portuguese origin, but it does not have an exact translation in English. The word implies a profound feeling of nostalgia or longing for something or someone. The band I/O out of Boston, Massachusetts chose Saudade as the title for their first full length album. That implication of melancholy runs throughout Saudade, and reinforces I/O’s understanding of their own music: strong, youthful post-rock with a surprising emotional depth.

I/O came together by a series of random of events. Originating everywhere from the USA, Australia and Thailand, the members all met while attending school in Boston. Despite their geographical diversity, the group’s talents come together to form a cohesive and balanced final product. The elements of a post-rock group must work together in harmony and I/O’s music exhibits this well. Though they are a young group, ‘Saudade’ is a prime example of all the pieces fitting together.

The album opens with a trio of songs that serve as a spacious introduction to Saudade. Angelic synths build on 'Lakehouse' towards the second track 'Twins'. The delicate opening deceives the song’s next movement- a heavy hitting middle section that transitions between coursing guitars and heavy bass lines. The song returns to its quieted introduction before slipping into the not-so-coincidentally titled 'Input/Output'. This is the longest track on the album at just under ten minutes. No time is wasted throughout 'Input/Output', however. It is structured similar to 'Twins', but has a tendency to move in a more patient yet no less powerful manner.

What becomes apparent in the album’s opening series of songs is just how equitable I/O is as a group of musicians. There does not appear to be a so-called “lead guitarist.” Instead, Tyler Hicks and Teddy Murphy trade off lead guitar parts throughout the album. There are points where both guitarists play separate lead parts that intertwine to create an extraordinary progression, such as on the track 'Weather Fields'. Chatchon Srisomburananont’s fantastic, taut drumming sits perfectly amongst the group’s other elements. Most of all, I/O ensures that the bass, played by MacKenzie Tate, has a distinguished place in the mix as well. Auxiliary percussionist Sean Camargo was added to the group after Saudade was recorded, but his presence is sure to be welcome in the future.

The fourth track, 'Noise Floor' marks a shift in the album’s tone. 'Noise Floor' finds I/O changing gears from something similar to Explosions in the Sky to something more like Caspian. Although they list these groups as strong influences, they do not allow their influence to be overbearing. The vibes on 'Noise Floor' become the defining characteristic through the rest of the album. Complex, reverberating guitars sway above charging bass and flourishing drum progressions. What’s more, nearly every guitar progression is catchy and acts as a defining characteristic for each song.

For such a young group, I/O bring an extraordinary amount of talent and know-how to the ever-growing post-rock scene. Despite Saudade being their first album, the group manages to balance all the elements necessary to formulate an extraordinary, cohesive collection of songs. Whether it is the rain drenched streets of Boston or the vibrant geographical origins of the band’s members, everything about I/O’s Saudade works. Very well.

- By Willie Cross - Echoes And Dust

"Interview: I/O"

I/O, a five-piece instrumental band hailing from Boston, Massachusetts, released their debut album “Saudade” last February. The album reflects the different angles of the human experience — from the most heartwarming, inspiring sides to the more traumatic, abhorrent ones. We got in touch with them to learn their story, the inspiration behind their music and their plans for the future.

Before we start talking about your music, it would be nice to tell us a little bit about what you guys did before the band.

Nothing too exciting really. Most of us were either going to school or working pretty average jobs.

So how did the five of you end up together?

We all met when we started college in Boston. Tyler and Mackenzie met after a conversation about The Smiths (very 500 Days Of Summer), and decided to start playing together. Tyler was in a class with Chatchon as well, and after a conversation about how good the band Toe is, Chatchon was brought in on drums. It continued like that for a semester, until Mackenzie asked Teddy to try playing with us. Even though Teddy was more of a gypsy jazz player at the time, he fit in perfectly with what we were doing, and we began writing our first album, “Saudade,” that summer. After recording the album, we added our good friend Sean on auxiliary percussion.

Being from different countries, how did that affect your music and harmony?

Our love of the genre is what really brought us together. Music is a universal language, especially when it’s instrumental. Our similar taste in music was really what allowed us to become friends in the first place. As for drawing influence from the traditional music of our different countries of origin, well, that isn’t really happening.

You say that you believe that human experiences are too rich and meaningful to be put into words, could you tell us a little about the experiences that affected your music to come out the way it is.

This is going to sound like a cheesy cop out, but the same experiences as everyone else: relationships, friends, family, nature, happiness, loneliness, isolation, self-doubt, triumph, and saudade—they are all in there. For us, post-rock and ambient music make the listener engage on a whole other level. There are no words telling you what the song is about, or how to feel. The listeners have to take a part of themselves and put it into the song. Whatever the song means to you is what it is about, because at that point the artist’s meaning and intention is no longer important. The meaning is so different between listeners, and even between separate listens, that it has the power to transcend the original context. That is why we write and play post-rock.

A friend of yours featured “Lakehouse” and “Twins” in a short film before. What did that mean to you, and are you looking into making soundtracks in the future ?

It was really powerful seeing how our music could help tell a story and influence the emotion of a film. There is a theater here in Boston that has live film scoring, and we would very much like to do something similar to that. Hopefully, we can get in contact with some filmmakers and get a chance not only to score a film, but also to perform live with it. If any filmmakers reading this are interested in using our music, we would love it if you contacted us.

Sean Camargo was recruited on percussion after the album was recorded. Why did you feel the need to add new instruments to the mix, and what are your plans for his role in the future?

One of our friends asked to record us for a school project, but the requirement was that the band had to have at least five members. Sean has been one of our good friends since the beginning of college. He even assisted the engineer on the night we recorded our album; he got us all pizza and coffee. So he has been around the music for a while. We ended up liking his playing so much that we asked him to join the band afterwards. Sean is a huge asset to us. Not only does he fill the empty space with his percussion and help us with the structures and songwriting, he is also consistently the most rocking/turnt member of our band. He is the guy you watch at the shows, because he is in the back beating the living hell out of his drums.

I’ve read that Teddy is going to Uganda. Is there a special reason behind that, and what will you guys be up to until he returns?

Yeah, Teddy is working as a music therapist for Tunaweza Children’s Centre, a NGO that provides special education and therapy services to children with special needs in Kampala, Uganda. We are all really proud of what he is doing. We can’t wait for him to get back in August though, so that we can pick up where we left off. The rest of us are not doing anything too important: some writing for side projects, going on bike rides, working on school, but mostly just drinking beers and watching the world cup, haha.

So what are your future plans? Any upcoming tours or a possible second album?

So far we have about three songs written for the next album, and a whole bunch of ideas that we need to work through. It may just be that they are new, but these songs have been our favorites we have written so far. We are trying to be more ambitious with this next album, and hopefully we can include some string and horn arrangements, as well as other instrumentation. That album should be out around spring of next year. As far as tours go, we may do some small tours through New England at the end of summer or early in the fall, but our plan is to tour extensively next summer.

We seem to be hearing more instrumental acts coming from the States recently. Did that make it easier or harder to newcomers, such as you, to stand their ground among that scene?

We have had more success internationally than we have domestically. We have our friends and fans here in Boston, but most of our fans are from other places in the world. When we released the album back in February, we contacted a lot of post-rock blogs who were good enough to share our music on their websites. It has been really awesome to have people from different countries reach out to us about the music. For us, it is less of a battle against other post rock bands, and more of a product of being an instrumental band in general. People who listen to post-rock are really receptive, but it is harder to be taken seriously without a singer outside of that circle. We love the scene in America, but it feels like post rock bands are so uncommon, in Boston at least, that it has been hard to get a foothold. Right now we are just trying to cut our teeth and make a name for ourselves the best we can.

-By Tarek Zakaria - Arctic Drones


Saudade - 2014



Based out of Boston, Massachusetts, I/O has been playing together since fall of 2012.

Drawing heavy influence from bands like Explosions In The Sky, Sigur Ros, and Hammock, I/O finished their first instrumental full-length album over the summer of 2013. Based on open textures, nuanced melody, and heavy artillery dynamic, the I/O sound allows the audience to form their own subjective aesthetic intention for the music, free from the confines of language and clarity. The songwriting process is organic, similar to the ebb and flow of the emotional states that fuel the final product, difficult to observe and often impossible to define.

I/O believes human experience can be too beautiful and grotesque, inspiring and abhorrent, heartwarming and traumatic, to put into words.

We hope you feel the same. Its as much yours as it is ours.

I/O has played an international North America Tour that includes 16 cities in the U.S. and Canada as well as a number of venues in Boston area. Boston venues like The Berklee Performance Center, The Peabody Essex Museum, O'brien's Pub, Church Boston, The Red Room @ Cafe 939, The Middle East, Lesley College, T.T. The Bears, and The Democracy Center. 

I/O has received international attention from a number of blogs and web magazines, including being featured on Arctic Drones and having the album of the week on Reddit's /r/postrock page.

Band Members