Comprised of Kristian Dunn (double-neck bass/guitar) and Tim Fogarty (drums), the Southern California-based post rock duo El Ten Eleven have developed a reputation for using a dizzying array of effect pedals and looping pedals to create a dense, complex, enormous and incredibly cinematic sound. And since their formation back in 2002, the band has been steadfastly DIY in their approach, producing and recording their own records; however, with their forthcoming, seventh full-length album, and first for Topshelf Records, Banker’s Hill, the duo enlisted Sonny Dipierri, who has worked with Animal Collective and Dirty Projectors to produce the album, marking the first time that they’ve ever worked with an outside producer.
Slated for an August 10, 2018 release, the album reportedly finds the duo thematically explore the paradoxical beauty in anxiety, the importance of family and familial bonds, particularly in a world gone absolutely mad, and the fleeting possibility of satisfaction. Interestingly, the album’s first single “Phenomenal Problems” finds the duo deliberately walking a tightrope between an introspective and meditative nature and a widescreen, cinematic quality as the composition is centered around a propulsive boom bap-like beats and drumming, enormous, arena rock friendly power chord-based hooks within a twisting and turning song structure. And while the song will further cement their established reputation for crafting the densely layered and deceptively complex compositions, the new single is a subtle expansion of the duo’s sound and songwriting.
This recently released live footage captures both the simpatico between Dunn and Fogarty while being a revealing and up-close-and-personal view of the musicians’ technical and musical prowess; after all for a duo, they manage to craft a sound that makes you think that there’s 4, 5 maybe even 6 musicians.