One eskimO Proves to be an Audio and Visual Hit
Not often enough does music leave its traditional medium and embrace other opportunities to the touch the listener. Album art has become increasingly dull and no one seems to even touch physical albums anymore. Labels still give us this art (as thumbnails for iTunes) but no one really looks at that. With the music video and its conventional form dying years ago, many bands now must look other places to make an impact.
Such is the case for London band One eskimO. While the group was originally founded in 2004, lead singer Kristian Leontiou is no stranger to the music scene. Around the age of 19, Leontiou signed his first major label deal and had a top ten single the next year. His album went gold but he soon decided to take a break from his solo work and develop what became One eskimO. This group, with more of an acoustic-based sound has grown in popularity and worked to bridge soccer moms, hippie stoners, and intricate music lovers.
The band is no stranger to life on the road, opening for artists such as Michael Franti & Spearhead, Gomez, and Tori Amos all within the last two years. These tours have been mixed with headlining jaunts all around the US and Europe. Lead singer Leontiou, told me that the tour with Tori Amos rang in as unique and a big step for the group is it provided an proper introduction to America. It allowed the band to play new venues such as Radio City Music Hall and the Greek Theater.
Perhaps the thing that makes One eskimO so unique is their amazing endeavor into animated videos. For their self-titled release in 2009, the group coordinated with Passion Pictures (home to greats such as The Gorrilaz) to make videos for almost all of their songs. Leontiou explained that two initial videos from the album proved to be a giant hit. Numerous honors were received and the group had brief time to kill while their studio slot was on hold. This soon prompted eight more videos to be made in order to complete the visual album. The final result was a audio-visual masterpiece that proves exactly what can be done when mediums are combined correctly.
One eskimO will bring their tunes to Anthology this Tuesday night in downtown San Diego. They’re a must see for any fan of mellow or soulful music. It’s one part ambient, one part acoustic rock, and completely relaxing. Imagine them to be John Mayer or a more toned down Maroon 5 if they were able to retain any indie credibility.