**SXSW Spotlight** The Helio Sequence


Photo by http://briantamborello.com/

I've always had a special place in my heart for The Helio Sequence. If you've seen them live, you know what I'm talking about. I caught them most recently, last October when they opened for Minus The Bear. Looking around Emo's, you could tell not a lot of people were familiar with them. By the end of their set, people for cheering for them to play a little longer. If you not familiar with the band, here's where I come in. Brandon Summers (guitars/vocals/harmonica) and Benjamin Weikel (drums/keyboards) make up the band up this Oregon band. Yup, that's right, two guys make all that sound. They have toured with Blonde Redhead, Modest Mouse, Kings of Leon, and Secret Machines.

All that sound was almost lost in 2004, when Brandon lost his voice while they were on tour. he was bummed but made the best of it [enter the whiskey]. Halfway through, though, he could hardly speak—let alone sing—and literally had to stop talking during daylight hours. To kill the boredom of forced silence during the day and the frustration of dissatisfying performances at night, he polished off 60 books in about as many days, beginning with Bob Dylan’s Chronicles. Upon returning to Portland, Brandon’s doctor forbade him from singing for almost two months. “I really hit the wall,” he recalls, “Going into 2005 I actually had to think, ‘If I lose my voice, what will I do?’” Off the whiskey and with a new appreciation for music, he taught himself vocal excercises and mic technique. He began jogging and devoted himself to not being a lazy. His voice came back and they began work on Keep Your Eyes Ahead, which by the way, came out last month via Sub Pop.

SXSW Tourdates:

Friday, March 14 - Sub Pop SXSW showcase @ Bourbon Rocks (11:30pm)
Saturday, March 15 - Sub Pop Showcase @ TBA

[Myspace] The Helio Sequence

"Everyone Knows Everyone"