Donnerstag, 13. Oktober 2011


For brothers Ben, Aaron Wylie and colleague Jason Nickel, music has always been a constant. As the Vancouver-based electronic ensemble Au4, the group completed a their debut album in 2006.

 "On: Audio", the group’s full-length release, is an uplifting, ethereal trip through the rhythms of nature and the nature of dreams, mixing blissed-out ambience with melodic, story-told songs.

Ben Wylie (vocals, guitars, keys), Aaron Wylie (keys, vocals), and Jason Nickel (bass, vocals, keys) grew up on music, each starting Royal Conservatory training at a young age.
In high school, the boys formed the requisite rock bands, while continuing their musical study and touring in jazz, choir and theatrical productions. Jason attended Capilano College’s Jazz Studies program, while Ben and Aaron began experimenting with the electronic hardware and software, which would later morph into Au4.

Inspired in part by the electronica explosion, and landmark albums by Underworld, Massive Attack, Björk, and Nine Inch Nails, Ben and Aaron started writing with new tools, layering and shaping sounds late into the night. In 2003, Jason Nickel heard their rough cuts and brought them to producer/engineer Richard Dolmat. The group Au4 was officially formed.

"On: Audio" was produced by Au4 and Richard Dolmat at Digital Sound Magic studios in Vancouver and is released on their own label, Torn Open Records. The nine tracks draw from trip-hop, ambient and dreampop styles, featuring the breathy, haunting vocals of Ben Wylie, who also scripted the melodically woven lyrical stories. A melancholic tone weaves throughout "On: Audio", but the mood is of contemplative optimism: The acoustic-guitar laced love song “Hit and Miss” undulates like a watery embrace. The bass-driven “A Mile From Here” is an up-tempo track ready for clubs. Even the epic “An Ocean’s Measure of Sorrow” rocks, a fresh take on the piano ballad. “Everything’s Always Moving” sums up the album’s hypnotic qualities and themes of hope.

The result of a lifetime of love and study of music, five years of songwriting and two years of studio refinement, "On: Audio" represents the beginning of Au4’s journey.
Their WCMA nomination for ‘Best New Album’ in 2006 was the next welcome addition to their story.
The group is currently working on a second album, and remixes from "On: Audio". They are also working on an innovative website, a collaboration between Ben Wylie’s visual FX background, Aaron Wylie’s DigiCoyote Software company and Juno Award-winning designer Vincent Marcone.

The multi-media and live aspects of Au4 complement and reinforce the band’s musical message.
“We just want to connect with people,” says Aaron. “That’s what, for us, music is about.”