Pilotdrift are a cinematic rock band from the Piney Woods of East Texas. Like it sounds, the state line of Texas and Arkansas runs directly through the middle of their city, Texarkana. Now, any preconception as to what a band from there might sound like should be thrown out the window. Pilotdrift is an exploratory unit moving through atmospheres, stories, melodies, electronics, and orchestrations with surprising sonic precision. Pilotdrift truly exists in its own atmosphere and would be just at home on Saturn as it would be in Texarkana. "Home" is, however, very important to Pilotdrift.
The members of Pilotdrift began as a group of friends; most of them have known each other since adolescence. A musical bond originated out of their friendship with one another, and soon something special happened as they began to find ways to express a developing musical vision of Pilotdrift's songwriter, Kelly Carr. Songs intermingle styles, expressions, instruments, and lyrical scripts in an extraordinary way.
Pilotdrift moved closer to its destiny after consigning a self-released CD at Good Records in Dallas, Texas. The self-produced CD caught the attention of Tim DeLaughter and Julie Doyle of The Polyphonic Spree, who own Good Records. Capturing the eyes and ears of the Good Records crowd became a catalyst for Tim and Julie to pursue Pilotdrift as the first band to be signed to Good Records Recordings that was not a product of DeLaughter's own musical pursuits. Invigorated by the developing relationship with Good Records Recordings, Pilotdrift began to play to larger and larger crowds in the Dallas area and nationwide, sharing stages with The Polyphonic Spree and Eisley. Their unique pairing of cinematic orchestration and melodic rock amazes audiences; it is easy to see the shock in people's faces during their set. Pilotdrift is not merely knocking on destiny's door, but threatening to knock it down.
Pilotdrift released its debut label album Water Sphere on Good Records Recordings on September 20, 2005. "Water Sphere is like a little movie rental store," says Carr. "You have your drama, sci-fi, thriller, fantasy, romance, historical documentary – whatever it takes to help you escape the daily grind."
Water Sphere begins with the theatrical, haunting, dark, (and yet somehow inviting) "hit-you-from-behind" rock of "Caught In My Trap." Layers of instruments surround and enfold dangerously evocative vocals, drawing the listener, inescapably, into its net. From there it drops you into the unchartered pop waters of "Bubblecraft," which sounds like a 1970's James Bond, passed out in a Jazz lounge, dreaming about the far future. After the electrical rain dance of "Passenger Seat", Pilotdrift entertains you with the fantasy story of "Late Night in a Wax Museum". The middle of the record is anchored by a haunting 10-minute epic entitled "Jekyll and Hyde Suite" that sounds like a two-faced orchestra battling within itself to struggle free from a straitjacket. Immediately following is the Antarctic tale of Shackleton and his journey to "Elephant Island." A train ride through the Middle East takes you to "Rings of Symbols", an intense, mesmerizing sitar rock song. The album then cools you off with "Comets", a trance-instrumental that leaves you rested and ready for the last song, "So Long," an anthem in every sense of the word. Galloping and triumphant, it feels like coming up over a peak and seeing the sun burst out in front of you.
Water Sphere carves out a genre that the world will soon know as the sound of Pilotdrift.
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