This feature ran in the spring print issue of Blurt a few months ago, but just recently went up, online, where I can link and share it.
Explosions in the Sky: Speechless
By Jennifer Kelly
"The risk with instrumental music," says Explosions in the Sky drummer Chris Hrasky, "is that it can be background music. We want that sort of feeling that people get when they listen to a pop song."
Explosions in the Sky's fifth album, Take Care, Take Care, Take Care (Temporary Residence Ltd.), is, like all the others, primarily instrumental (there are a few vocals this time). Yet at the same time, the record communicates directly with the emotions, taking listeners through a variety of moods-from anticipation to nostalgia, from joy to melancholy-all without saying a word. Hrasky and guitarist Munaf Rayani both suggest there's no easy way to capture emotion in music. Their process involves constant trial and error and a willingness to throw songs out when they don't achieve their goals.
"We kind of bang our heads against the wall for days that turn into weeks and months and years, and try and try and try to evoke these emotions that we're after," says Rayani. "There's a great amount of discussion that occurs between the four of us, but the actual achieving of the sound is remarkable to us, too. It's almost like a magician did a magic trick in front of us and we're sitting six inches away from us and can't figure out how it was done."
"The Only Moment We Were Alone"