Kraken Quartet Unseals the Gates

Polyrhythmic Austinites preview debut LP

Like the mythical North Atlantic sea monster that predates part of their moniker, Austin’s Kraken Quartet operates with eight restless arms. Except they all hold sticks!

Two drummers, one vibraphonist, and a marimba player comprise the experimental troupe. Together, Chris Demetriou, Andrew Dobos, Taylor Eddinger, and Sean Harvey make a percussive, classically leaning sound. Think Steve Reich gone math rock.

“When we all met, we were studying music at Ithaca College in upstate New York, so you’ll hear hints of contemporary composers for percussion,” explains drummer Harvey. “We wanted to take that, as well as the instruments that we learned this concert percussion repertoire with, and add elements of styles we’ve been listening to our whole lives, like math rock and post-rock.

“In the really technically proficient sections of our music, you’ll hear us play some stuff that sounds like Reich or TTNG, Tera Melos, and Giraffe Giraffe. Then, when we get into an expansive section, it could be inspired by Explosions in the Sky.”

Electro spiker “The Gates,” off the group’s forthcoming full-length debut, Separate | Migrate, unfolds with a tranquil foundation of drums and vibes. That quickly compounds into a challenging polyrhythm and epic breakdown in which arpeggiated synth, glitchy beats, and dinging bells hold a complex conversation. The piece closes in a mathematical melee of disparate time signature played simultaneously.

Separate | Migrate arrives April 28 digitally and on vinyl. Catch the Kraken Quartet in action at their record release show inside Cheer Up Charlies on May 4 alongside like-minded inventive acts Ballerino, Vorcha, Dude Elsberry, and Seven Circles.

Open “The Gates”:

And to appreciate how the local foursome generates its music, check out this live video of “The Gates” as well:

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 36 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

More by Kevin Curtin
2017/18 Austin Music Awards Reveal
2017/18 Austin Music Awards Reveal
Black Angels and Lucinda Williams lead highlights

Jan. 18, 2018

Playback: No Really, How Are You?
Playback: No Really, How Are You?
Daniel Johnston provides backstory to Hi, How Are You? Day, plus the first 2017/18 Austin Music Awards talent reveal

Jan. 19, 2018


Kraken Quartet, Sean Harvey, Chris Demetriou, Andrew Dobos, Taylor Eddinger, Steve Reich, Explosions in the Sky, TTNG, Tera Melos, Giraffe Giraffe, Ballerino, Vorcha, Dude Elsberry, Seven Circles

AC Daily, Events and Promotions, Luvdoc Answers

Breaking news, recommended events, and more

Official Chronicle events, promotions, and giveaways

Updates for SXSW 2017

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle