AroarA is not only one of the most interesting sounding bands I have come across a long while, but they are also very artistically intelligent. They really know and truly understand art. For example, the name of their debut CD is “In The Pines“, which borrows its title from a book of poems by renowned writer Alice Notley (a finalist for the Pulitzer in 2007). The book tells the story of a woman recently diagnosed with Hepatitis C. While it may have a morbid premise, the music it inspired is truly unique.
AroarA is a duo, consisting of Ariel Engle & Andrew Whiteman. Hailing from Montreal, they were asked by fellow Canadian Martha Wainwright to be in her backing band. While they do a fine job in that regard, they really shine on their own. (They have been opening for Wainwright on her current tour). It is hard to describe their sound. While I would “label” them as experimental indie-folk/post rock, their facebook page states that they are “currently at work in the spirit/science of sonic gene splicing.” Some songs have a traditional rock feel, others tend towards folk-pop, while some are ambient experimental aesthetics with fairy-like vocal qualities. Both Whiteman and Engle play the guitar, and many of their songs make use of a synthesizer.
It is clear that AroarA likes to play with sound. Not only are they genre-bending artists, but they truly appreciate each individual sound as its own. This shouldn’t be surprising coming from a band who based their music of off poetry. Poetry and creative writing often talk about strings of certain letters and words together, their hard and soft tonal qualities, verse and structure. AroarA has mastered the structure of sound. Indians mentioned to me that he is inspired by sound in general, he likes to smell things. Clearly AroarA has taken those aesthetics and senses of music to a whole new level.
Their album “In The Pines” is out now and definitely worth a listen. True to the form of the book, none of the songs have titles, only numbers. Engle’s vocals are haunting at times and Whiteman is a very good guitar player.
Recommended If You Like: Lavender Diamond, Sandro Perri, Snowblink
on twitter @aroaraaroara