At the top of an old warehouse, among the worn woodwork of the old shop, a group of jazz musicians found inspiration for their new album.
It was summer in East Vancouver and Brasstronaut was composing its new album, their sophomore release and follow-up to a Polaris Prize-nominated debut.
“It was a more organic, collaborative process with all six members contributing,” said lead singer Edo van Breemen. “There was a real lack of pressure in the whole process.”
The band toured Europe, Canada and other parts of the world, and in the close quarters that often drives bands apart, it drew Brasstronaut closer together.
Writing in the warehouse was just a group of friends, who happen to be professional musicians, churning out ideas.
“No one wants to be a rock star in this band,” van Breemen said. “It’s about the music and the stories we tell with the music.”
Some of those stories will be told tomorrow (May 30) night at the Queen’s during a concert with Útidúr, a band from Iceland.
The freedom of the second album is a departure from the first, which was mostly written and recorded during a residency at the Banff Centre.
Van Breemen said that experience was much more beneficial to him personally as a professional musician.
He explored music with other professionals and people who chose art as a career – something he didn’t imagine while studying chemistry, environmental science and urban planning at the University of British Columbia.
He studied classical piano at age nine and began composing at 17. Music was a way to escape meditatively.
“I’ve played music my whole life,” van Breemen said. “It was always really fun to play in bands.”
Like all members of Brasstronaut, van Breemen has a side project called Mood Hut, a collection of electronica writers and players.
“I get bored sticking with one type of genre,” van Breemen said.
The show begins at 9 p.m., with doors open at 7 p.m. Tickets $12/advance; $15/door. Please call 250-754-6751.