Imagine you’re at a party and it’s the middle of the night. Music is blaring, people are dancing and the whole house, plus everything in it, is buzzing. That is, until you step outside and close the door. Suddenly, all the music fades into silence, the crowd noise dissipates into a quiet hum, and you look up at the sky in solitude. In many ways, this solitary moment accurately portrays the overall feeling Odesza’s latest album, A Moment Apart, delivers.

It’s about “stepping away from all the things that maybe weigh you down in life, and taking the time to really digest a lot of your ideas and thoughts,” explains Harrison Mills, during a phone interview. While many aspects of their latest album’s creation, attribute to this philosophy, perhaps the most direct correlation can be seen in their hiatus from touring. When asked about the inspiration behind A Moment Apart, Mills divulges that stepping away from touring for three and half years to find out who they were as musicians and as people played a big role. Although, while this break from touring allowed for inspiration and space, the production of this album was not without its challenges.

“I think what was different about this one was it was the first time we’ve ever felt pressured before,” admits Mills. “Before we would just make music and put it out and hope people like it, and this time around there was so much hype and build up.” While the duo has been steadily on the rise since their debut in 2012, it was the release of their sophomore album, In Return that catapulted them to fame, appropriately proliferating the anticipation for their next release.

LEAD_WEB_ODESZA 2017 Photo - Credit Tonje Thilesen_WEB-1


“We approached it [A Moment Apart] differently and really took a lot of time to experiment and figure out what we wanted to make first, instead of putting a lot of singles together on an album,” says Mills. They began composing A Moment Apart, by writing the first and last song first, and then aimed to shape a journey within those. “We’ve always taken a lot of time to make something that feels full and works as an album,” says Mills, explaining that he’s never really considered Odesza as a singles band. As a result, the electronic duo has released their most orchestral album yet.

“We took a lot of time letting the songs breathe and creating a lot of space. It’s the most pre-meditated album we’ve ever made,” expresses Mills. He also describes this album as patient and the most cohesive album they’ve have ever made. However, despite their personal appreciation for this latest release, the duo was not expecting the same positive reaction from the public, or even from their own fan base. “I think one thing we were surprised by [was] because our album is so patient, we thought that a lot of people wouldn’t like it,” confesses Mills. “We were kind of ready to be told it wasn’t something people wanted to hear.” This turned out to be a far cry from reality.

The band attributes their success to staying true to their vision. “I think that you can’t really ever make music for other people because, once you do, it’s pretty transparent and most of the time the music is lacking because of that,” states Mills. Rather than attempt to follow or adhere to what they think other people want, the band has worked hard to avoid being pigeonholed into formulaic expectations. Instead, they’ve focused on continuing to do what made them successful in the first place, which seems to have once again worked out in their favour.

Odesza plays the BMO in Calgary Monday Novemeber 6 @ 6 pm. Check

Words: Avery Lee

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