Morning Bound

Morning Bound

 Brooklyn, New York, USA
BandRockJazz

Playfully blending electro-pop, jazz-rock, and Mediterranean soul with live vocal loops, Morning Bound is the little rock trio that could.

Band Press

Israeli Jazz Fest kicks off with smart new music from Scheffer – Chicago Tribune

If the rest of the Israeli Jazz & World Music Festival proves as innovative, provocative and alluring as Thursday night's opener, there will be fine listening ahead.

At first glance, Tammy Scheffer's Morning Bound looked to be a trio, the vocalist-bandleader joined by bassist Panagiotis Andreou and drummer Ronen Itzik for an early show at Constellation. But because Scheffer recorded, manipulated and looped the sound of her voice during the course of her performance, her trio often sounded like a quartet, a quintet and, at times, a small choral ensemble.

In lesser hands, this might have come off as a mere stunt, an enterprising singer using technology to distort the sound of her voice for novel effect. But Scheffer knew exactly what she was doing, meticulously orchestrating multiple vocal lines in concert with her colleagues.

At some moments, Scheffer sang a single tone, recorded it, then let it play on electronically while she improvised around the pitch. In other passages, she looped a melodic line, then provided live vocal counterpoint, while bassist Andreou offered vocal improv of his own. All the while, drummer Itzik punctuated the proceedings with carefully placed attacks, giving crisp structure to what otherwise might have veered into chaos.

None of this would have amounted to much, however, if it weren't for the sound at the heart of everything: Scheffer's sometimes plaintive, sometimes other worldly, always enticing voice. Other female jazz vocalists may summon a bigger, brawnier sound than Scheffer, but she wisely plays to her strengths: the wide-open, ethereal, often haunting timbres she commands.

Most of her music was original and some of it quite new, as in her "White." Here the pristine tonal sheen of her instrument was matched by the ingenuity of her unusual melodic lines.

As lyricist, Scheffer dealt in familiar themes such as contemporary love and everyday life, but she imbued them with hope and wonder. Though some of the songs were far more fully developed than others, this concert suggested that Scheffer has a great deal to say in music, sound and word.

The third annual Israeli Jazz & World Music Festival continues nightly through May 22 in various locations; visit isra.li/jazzfest.

Notes from the Brooklyn Jazz Underground (David Cook, David Smith and Tammy Scheffer album reviews) – Ottawa Citizen

Vocalist Tammy Scheffer, bassist Panagiotis Andreou and drummer Ronen Itzik have all the savvy of exceptional jazz musicians, plus a huge appreciation of how to use the studio environment and technology such as looping gear and effects to turn their music that fuses jazz, pop, rock and even disco into something mind-blowing.

That performance of Morning Bound typifies the audacious, innovative and personal music from the trio of the same name, on the EP of the same name.

There are four other tracks on the EP are just as richly layered, absorbing in their details and innovatives. The opener I Did Fine is groovy, artisanal ear candy, highlighted by bits of headphone-optimized music deftly distributed across the sonic environment, panning, expanding and swirling. Let Your Freak Flag Fly is a disco delight. Want For Nothing is a ballad that writes its own rules. The Hebrew song Im Kvar Kevad closes the EP has been set to a driving beat.

This is music that feels unbound, as Scheffer, Andreou and Itzik flex their collective creativity to their fullest with intoxicating results.

Inspiration Bound: Tammy Scheffer Celebrates New Music at Shapeshifter Lab – Jazz Police

Morning Bound came together in 2012 at a casual gig in Long Island City, and since have played several residencies in the New York City area, creating a sound that is heavily rooted in grooves and complex rhythms, using vocal looping effects and various percussion instruments, and exhibiting an unpredictable playfulness. Lying somewhere between "pop, rock, jazz, and Mediterranean soul," the resulting sound can suggest The Bad Plus meets Kendra Shank Meets Bobby McFerrin -- there's a rock beat with improvisers' sensibility.

The EP recording, Morning Bound, includes three Scheffer originals, her lyrcis to the title track composed by Itzik, and her arrangement of Micah Sheetrit's "Im Kvar Levad" ("If You're Already Alone") with its Hebrew lyrics. This is not just songwriting -- this is complex orchestration for voice, bass, drums and a seemingly endless array of effects created with a looping device and (probably) other electronic wizardry. "I Did Fine" leads off the set with wordless, melodic vocalizing as the loops generate haunting harmonies; soon Tammy breaks into a syncopated song expounding on following one's own path. The supporting "band" suggests a much larger ensemble as electronic effects collaborate with drums and bass, the latter closing with a rockish burbling. The title track--a song of searching for self-- features a very catchy bass vamp throughout and a larger assortment of "voices" supported by heavier percussion, yet there remains a gentle undercurrent.

An anthem for creative individualism, "Let Your Freak Flag Fly" boasts a jagged rhythm with Tammy's staccato cadence, sequences of vocal repetition over trance-inducing drum and bass. The track itself flies one big freak flag! From "do it your own way" Tammy moves on to "do it with very little" in her "Want for Nothing," at once suggesting a cappela voice and bass/drum beat. Sustained bass tones and the repeating lyric are mesmerizing. The set closes with the most complex track, Micha Sheetrit's "Im Kvar Levad." Sung in Hebrew, there's also the feel of an African chant over percussion that evolves into a funkisk rhythm with Tammy's loops doubling and splitting harmonies and adding background voices. Bassist Andreou's own vocal gymnastics and electronic devices add to the circus -- is this Hebrew scat?

This music is intriguing as an auditory adventure, but seeing the musicians live (check out You Tube!) is even more so (e.g., https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BE1NPsSSMnw). Anyone who enjoys thoughtful experimental music should plan to be at the Shapeshifter Lab on June 12th to go for an auditory-thrill ride with Tammy Scheffer-- not only with Morning Bound but her other projects as well, a perfect opportunity to immerse your ears in one of her generation's most creative talents. Let your freak flag fly -- and you'll want for nothing.

Morning Bound – ‘Morning Bound EP’ – The Musical Melting Pot

The hell with the UK. I’m moving to NYC.

New York has long been associated with none-more-cool music of assorted kinds, and this EP continues that home-town tradition by eschewing norms and traditions in favour of a purely eccentric, experimental approach to composition and performance. I Did Fine features looped harmony vocals, syncopated melody lines, finely fractured lyrics and winningly jazzy bass/drum interplay; Morning Bound gets vulnerable and plaintive in inimitable style; Let Your Freak Flag Fly encourages individuality, leading by example; Want For Nothing drips with minimalism; and Im Kvar Levad jumps off the deep end with Hebrew lyrics, tangential Jamiroquai-style basslines, and high-speed bass/scatted-vocal sections.

Morning Bound’s long-awaited debut EP is definitely different. Influence-spotting is particularly tough; there’s definitely plenty of jazz flavour in there, while this EP’s title track harbours shades of Muse and Incubus – but connections to pre-existing inspirational sources are tenuous at best. This is the sound of three almost unfairly talented musicians aiming to take your mind and throw it like a frisbee, while making sure you enjoy the process.

TMMP RATING: 84%

Morning Bound: I Did Fine – No Treble Magazine

Ever since Morning Bound released the video for their first self-titled single, I’ve been craving more.

Now the trio, consisting of vocalist Tammy Scheffer, bassist Panagiotis Andreou and drummer Ronen Itzik, has just posted a new video for the second single from their EP called “I Did Fine.”

Their beautiful use of dynamics and textures make this track as much a ride as it is a song. Andreou starts out keeping time by tapping a pitch in his right hand while following the bass hits with his left before the song opens up. His mind-melding groove with Itzik gives Scheffer a perfect foundation to use her vocal prowess.

Producer Eyal Amir once again provided the mix and recording with Alessio Romano capturing the magic on video. Morning Bound’s EP is set to drop this fall.

Panagiotis Andreou, Tammy Scheffer & Ronen Itzik: Morning Bound – No Treble Magazine

Morning Bound is a fantastic new trio consisting of vocalist Tammy Scheffer, drummer Ronen Itzik and bassist Panagiotis Andreou, who you may know from Now vs. Now.

The trio describes their sound as “somewhere in the realm between pop, rock, jazz, and Mediterranean soul,” is readying their debut EP for this fall.

This self-titled track is the first glimpse of what’s to come. The song’s ethereal vibe is heightened by Scheffer’s other-worldly vocals and lyrics, while Andreou and Itzik lay a perfect foundation to make the odd meter sound perfectly natural. The breakdown/buildup that starts at 2:49 is absolutely epic.

Live Review: NJ Proghouse Homecoming Weekend – Fire of Unknown Origin

Though the Sunday opening act was the only unknown quantity to the vast majority of the audience, Tammy Scheffer’s Morning Bound, an experimental trio of voice, bass and drums led by extremely talented Israeli-born singer Tammy Scheffer, proved to be the real surprise of the festival. Drafted in a few months ago to replace Oblivion Sun, they provided that genuine boundary-breaking element that progressive rock seems all too often to have left by the wayside. When the slight, curly-haired Scheffer stepped on stage and started to sing, my jaw dropped to the floor and stayed there for the whole duration of the band’s set. Her voice soared effortlessly, pitch-perfect and smooth as honey, bending the music to its will and twining with the intricate patterns laid out by bassist Russ Flynn and drummer Ronen Itzik. Tape loops were used sparingly but effectively to add further layers of interest to her performance, but she would have caused a stir even if she had sung without any accompaniment at all. With her graceful posture and charmingly measured gestures punctuating her astonishing vocal exertions, Tammy offered a performance that while devoid of any references to classic prog, was as progressive as they come. One of the undisputed highlights of an hour of musical excellence was her deconstruction of Suzanne Vega’s wistful “Marlene on the Wall”. Tammy’s flawless set proved once again that it is not necessary to rely on overly complex arrangements and large instrumentation to produce authentically forward-looking music, and celebrated the power and beauty of the human voice.