The Soul and the Machine
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The Soul and the Machine

Spokane, Washington, United States | SELF

Spokane, Washington, United States | SELF
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"Up For Review"

THE SOUL AND THE MACHINE
WWIII

“We let the sound dictate,” Elan Toby told The Inlander in a September 2010 interview. “I suppose that sound is mainly at the hands of the equipment. We might have some sort of sound in mind that we’re going toward, but the instruments tell us where go.”

The Soul and the Machine appears to stick with the same idea on their newest release, WWIII. Employing the use of a drum machine, guitars and synth, the trio continues to produce tracks that seem to develop on the fly. Droning electronic tones over reverberating vocals —it’s a step outside the box from the usual three-chord nonsense we hear around town so much. While this release isn’t too much of a deviation from their previous works (with the exception of a few more effects,) that’s not necessarily a bad thing. This band appears to know its sound and is sticking with it. As an aside, like ska and a sunny day, the Soul and the Machine’s music matches up well with certain environments: environments with lots of fake smoke and lasers. (TH) - Inlander


"The Pack A.D., Belt of Vapor, & The Soul and the Machine"

Two guitars, one bass, and recorded drums known as The Soul and the Machine. It was funny at first because it took about 30 seconds to realize they don’t have a drummer on stage. You can hear the drums on some of the songs but no set on stage; weird but striking. I love the look of the band, a trio of men with electric instruments. They kind of sound like a 70’s band with a hint of psychedelic that’s a lot hipper. I don’t mean jam band like the one your dad is in; an indie jam band. The song “DMT” is fabulous, so catchy… over and over, my head just kept bopping with the beat. I hadn’t heard of The Soul and the Machine until tonight and I am very ready to see them again, it is a cool stage presence and sounds good. What more do you need? - checkitoutmusic.com


"The Sound and the Fury - The Soul and the Machine take noise and a stream-of-consciousness construction to form Spokane's newest sound."

Music is simply a manipulation of sound. Vibrations. The buzz of strings. It’s all noise.

As strange as it sounds, most bands aren’t driven by noise. Instead, their music is focused on melody, harmony and progressions. The game of sustained noise experimentation is played by a curious few — and the Soul and the Machine is one of Spokane’s most consistent players.

“They’ve progressed faster than a lot of bands I’ve seen,” says Patrick Kendrick, a promoter with Platform Booking. “Yet not many people have taken notice, which blows me away. The quality of their sound and the direction that they’re going is something no one’s doing in Spokane.”

The band’s spectrum of noise has expanded recently. In the last five months the band ditched the drum kit and added a synthesizer, a drum machine and a second jazz guitar. And the Soul and the Machine are confident about their sound. But you wouldn’t know it watching them onstage. Without drums, the trio stands even with one another, feet planted, heads to the ground. The three are reluctant to even speak of shoegaze (My Bloody Valentine, the Jesus and Mary Chain), but that’s what they are doing.

We let the sound dictate,” says 23-year-old guitarist Elan Toby. “I suppose that sound is mainly at the hands of the equipment. We might have some sort of sound in mind that we’re going toward, but the instruments tell us where to go.”

“But it’s hard to have a certain sound goal in mind, because once you reach the end of it, you’re done,” says Kurt Gyllstrom, the band’s 20-year-old guitarist.

It’s not that the construction process or finished product is haphazard. Songs remain fluid, well rehearsed. The band’s exploration of sound just comes naturally.

It has taken five years and three different lineups (they were Space Age Fur before becoming the Soul and the Machine) to get them in the right creative mind-space.

The band formed at Shadle Park High School and cites every one from the Velvet Undergound, the Black Angels and the Kills as their greatest influences. Their first album, Psychotropic Drawl, is loud, surprising and fresh. They create their own breezy, trancing sound. And combined with the sheer earnestly and likeability of the three young musicians — the Soul and the Machine is simply traveling into uncharted territory for Spokane.

“We want to give the audience an experience,” Toby says. “Our definition of psychedelic, trance music is any music that has a strong mood. It’s something that will catapult you somewhere else. Take you out of the room or venue you’re listening in.”
- The Inlander


Discography

WWIII (2011)
Brain Police - Single (2011)
Psychotropic Drawl (2011)
We Live In The Year Now EP (2010)

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Bio

The Soul and the Machine are:
Kurt Gyllstrom
Scott Gyllstrom
Elan Toby

Location: Spokane, WA

The Soul and the Machine have never turned down an opportunity to play live; playing everything from festivals, clubs, house shows and art exhibits. In addition, some of those shows were supporting touring acts such as The Blakes, Young Prisms, Jucifer, Batrider, The Pack A.D, Generationals and Bare Wires. They have been featured several times in local mag 'The Inlander', and have a tape only EP coming out on Leftist Nautical Antiques. Most recently the band released their second album WWIII (available @ thesoulandthemachine.bandcamp.com) and are mapping out a west coast tour in support of the record.