Here is a local release that really deserves a mention. Silence has been surrounding the partly local outfit, The Gang OK, since they released their debut concept EP, Locations, a while back; a three-track EP with a special focus on longer tracks accompanied by mind-blowing visuals. Now they are back with their newest EP, NOEMA. Last week we premiered the first single ‘Shiny’ from the new release, but then suddenly they decided to release the entire EP a couple of days later. Therefore, even though the EP is actually released a couple of days ago we still think that the EP deserves a premiere for you to check out.
After a first listen to the four-track EP, here is my perspective on it. With ‘NOEMA’ they have decided to focus on shorter tracks spanning around four minutes, compared with the 15+ minute-tracks on their former release. Moreover, ‘NOEMA’ shows a change of musical direction. Where heavy beats and techno sounds were the keywords for ‘Locations’, this new four-track EP shows a move towards the more radio-friendly sound. ‘NOEMA’ is concentrated more on the golden balance between lead singer Martin Bejder Jensen’s voice and the surrounding soundscape, creating more radio and stage friendly tracks. As stated yesterday, this more or less moves the band from the end of the night to the middle of it instead.
The result is a different sounding band, almost changing their genres from heavier electronic techno and trance to a melting pot of pop, indie-electro and tight drum beats on ‘NOEMA’. Personally, I hear inspirations from Turboweekend, Major Lazer, and Nicolas Jaar. Remember, that you can see the boys perform their new material live, when they will be a part Electric Waves with Kenton Slash Demon at Stakladen on Feb 18.
In order to find out more about ‘NOEMA’ we decided to have a small chat with the boys.
Hi boys, thank you for taking the time for a little chat. First of all, can you guys describe your new EP for us – feel free to use some sort of analogy, some stories or mental images?
It is often quite hard to say much about the things you have made yourself, without it turning into clichés and empty words. One of those is that we have tried to capture and direct certain atmospheres, feelings and moments. We have tried to create some tracks that you as a listener will continue to explore, so it’s been all about the atmospheres and details. The exploring and digging deeper also reflects on the lyrics, which sort of ended up with being based on frustrations and indifference, which is both killing and compelling – another platitude.
Despite the fact, that we have made shorter tracks this time, we’ve still tried to keep the trance-elements, while the song writing was given a central role.
We have always struggled to describe your sound; can you guys please describe your own sound without any genre labels?
It’s a mixture of all sorts of things; maybe because we’ve tried to take trance-like elements with loads of repetitions and an often hard and tense pulse, and then mix that up with both ”ugly” and ”pretty” elements from different places; you might be able to find both grand piano and analogue drums on the EP.
In what ways are NOEMA different compared to Locations?
The biggest difference will be the length of the songs, obviously. Locations was most of all just a big playground to us – a playground where we could try different things in different areas. With NOEMA we have tried to give the song writing a more central role. This is also why NOEMA is containing four more traditional songs. You might say, that we have tried to work with different frames than usual, which might make it easier to relate to these new songs.
What have been the most challenging things and moments in the creation of NOEMA?
It has definitely been, that we have done everything ourselves. We have not had the economy to involve people from outside, so basically, we have been doing everything ourselves, including recording, mixing, and mastering.
On your previous release Locations, you focused a lot on the visuals. Can we expect some visuals for the some of the new tracks on NOEMA?
Locations was build up on the fact, that there was supposed to be some sort of visual side to it, which could support the live-element and combine the different tracks to different locations or spaces. It has not been completely decided yet, what will happen with NOEMA on this matter.