By Alex HudsonThe Stills are done and Broken Social Scene's status is up in the air, but Canadian scene staples Liam O'Neil, Dave Hamelin and Justin Peroff aren't letting the dissolution of their groups stop them from releasing new music. Back in the summer, we learned that the three musicians had formed the band Eight and a Half. Now, they've announced that their self-titled debut album will drop on February 7 via Arts & Crafts.
According to a press release, the album "combines electronic structures and scintillating keyboards with visceral, harmony-laden vocals into one of the most satisfying debut albums you're likely to hear next year." The project first came into being when the three collaborators were scattered around the continent, and the musicians gained momentum when they all moved to Toronto.
Their sound reportedly comes from each member stepping outside of his comfort zone. Drummer Peroff "thoroughly deconstructed" his style and incorporated "electronic programming and looped breaks as live performance"; O'Neil, usually a pianist and horn player, "focused on coaxing strange sounds and eerie ambiance out of synthesizers and samplers"; and singer Hamelin adopted a "more confessional, emotionally naked mode of songwriting."
The resulting album is "marked by endless textures: hums, pings, washes, drones, cascades, sounds skittering, snares banging, the feather-soft gorgeousness of an incredible vocal melody."
For a taste of the band's heady, synth-driven sound, listen to the previously released single "Scissors" below. Also, look for the band to tour starting in spring 2012.