Other Lives

Other Lives – Rituals (album review)

by Woody on June 1, 2015


In the span of five years, Other Lives went from having me obsess over them; to having Thom Yorke obsess over them. I’d like to imagine there are a few things I do better than Thom Yorke, but music certainly isn’t one of them.

Much like a Radiohead album, Other Lives albums swallow you whole. It is meant to be consumed slowly and deliberately, savoring every morsel like you were eating a great meal. You don’t dabble with Other Lives. You certainly don’t put an Other Lives track into some playlist when you are having a dinner party. Fuck that. You sit your ass down, put on an absurdly expensive pair of headphones and turn the world off for 45 minutes.

Rituals has taken longer to weave its way into my fabric than their prior two efforts. Their debut sunk its claws in immediately and I spun it relentlessly. Tamer Animals took a couple of weeks of me saying, its OK before realizing; “Holy Shit, this is fucking amazing.” Rituals took well over a month before entwining itself in my DNA. Most of that has to do with their slow and measured approach into more electronica elements. By no means have they abandoned their “folk” roots; they’ve just continually expanded on their sound.

There is three song sequence that is simply magical in the middle of the album. Two Pyramids has this proggy sound to it, sort of like an old Genesis tune before Phil Collins turned them to shit. I have visions of lead singer Jesse Tabish dropping acid and wearing costumes at my next Other Lives show. Need A Line is the tune that would sound most at home on their debut, plowing ahead to Josh Onstott’s bass line. The track opens with a Spaghetti-Western influenced guitar riff and the flourishes throughout are so subtle; right up until to the end where it has this major sweeping and dramatic finish. That’s followed by the very deliberate English Summer. Buoyed by Jonathan Mooney’s piano melody the track dips and rises, finishing with a nice trumpet outro by Mooney. And yes, he can play keys and trumpet at the same time.

I once said to Shirk that an Other Lives album would probably be best enjoyed by lying naked on a shag rug while stoned out of your mind. Alas, I don’t own a shag rug, I don’t do drugs anymore and the sight of my naked body is forbidden in my household. In spite of all those roadblocks, I have still found Rituals to be one of the more compelling listens of 2015 and Other Lives to be one of our nations’ best bands.

Follow me on Twitter at @WoodyHearYa

Other Lives are here


Other Lives – Rituals 5/5/15

by Woody on February 4, 2015


We fucking love Other Lives. Not much more to be said than that. Read info on their 3rd LP.

“There was a spirit of change,” Tabish offers. “We had done [2011’s second LP] Tamer Animals, which was very close to us and about our home. So the next record was about the spontaneity of travel and being isolated. For the first times in our lives we were moving off on our own away from our families and kind of coming into our own. I wanted the songs to reflect that new spirit.”

“This one was a real journey,” Tabish says of the 18 months spent writing more than 60 songs for Rituals, a constant creative outlet for the relentless sonic architect amid a rigorous few years of touring their debut album. “It was a long time spent searching for a new identity,” the soft-spoken singer continues of the writing process, “still trying to retain the past of our musical palate but also really trying to stretch ourselves into a new type of music.” The album was produced by Mooney, Tabish and Joey Waronker (Eels, Atoms for Peace, Beck, etc.).

While Rituals marks a new chapter in Other Lives’ story, it’s also a continuation of a decade-plus passage. “I feel really lucky to be able to have a band and people around me that have been so supportive and we’ve stuck together all these years and still don’t hate each other,” Tabish says. “All three of us are like brothers. I don’t think that will ever go away. I loved those kids then and I love them now. There’s that mutual feeling. If I want to go have a beer with anyone it would be those two guys. That kind of says something.”

We’ve done two sessions with Other Lives. They both were kick-ass. Here and here

Follow me on Twitter at @WoodyHearYa

Other Lives is here



Photo by Coco VanWyngarden

You won’t find a publication, website or twitter account that loves Other Lives more than HearYa. We’ve been lucky enough to have them in for two sessions. So when a new track surfaces, that is a cause for celebration at HearYa. The track is title I Need A Line and is absolutely fantastic.

The only drawback is that it appears as if Jenny Hsu and Colby Owens have left the band. Always considered Colby to be one of the better drummers around and Jenny’s contribution goes beyond words. Will be interesting to see how the band moves forward without them.

Follow me on Twitter at @WoodyHearYa

Other Liver are here

HearYa sessions are here and here




Horse Thief is a 5-piece, originally from Denton, TX. After relocating to Oklahoma City to attend school, they got picked up by The Flaming Lips management team. They are getting ready to release their debut, Fear In Bliss, on Bella Union Records and hit SXSW.

The PR machine had the following to say about Fear In Bliss: The over-arching theme to Fear In Bliss is “finding yourself and what you believe in, and finding the comfort in acknowledging fear. I’ve struggled with anxiety and depression which comes out a lot on the new album. But when everything gets rough, I think there’s always a way to fix it. The biggest thing for me is to give comfort to people, to shed light on the truth that someone is feeling the same way as them.”.

I am digging these guys and looking forward to catching a set at SXSW. The last time I got all smitten with a band from OK was Other Lives. That seemed to work out OK (pun intended bitches!!!)

Follow me on Twitter at @WoodyHearYa

Horse Thief is here

Our sessions with Other Lives are here & here.

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Other Lives – Mind The Gap EP

October 11, 2012

Every since we first heard Other Lives, HearYa has been enthralled with their music. It is finally nice to start seeing them get their just due. Some of that might have to do with some dude named Thom Yorke saying he likes them and having them open for his up and coming band called Radiohead. […]

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Other Lives, Live Session #94

October 12, 2011

Other Lives released their sophomore album, Tamer Animals, earlier this year. It’s not one of those albums that was created spontaneously in one session. The band spent 14 months crafting the arrangements and placing all the right sounds in all the right parts. Lead singer Jesse Tabish was quoted as saying ““There’s nothing like, ‘Hey, […]

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Other Lives in other worlds, For 12 [New Video]

June 15, 2011

One of our most favoritist albums of 2011 is Tamer Animals by Other Lives. Our live session producer, Steve Shirk, cuddles with the record on a regular basis and had great things to say about it. The band just released a video for their first single, “For 12.” I wasn’t expecting a spaceship from an […]

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Other Lives – Tamer Animals [Album Review]

May 10, 2011

Today, Other Lives released their second full length album entitled Tamer Animals.  Tamer Animals is ALL in the details.  Every little bit counts and is meticulously crafted to create a rich landscape of sonic texture.  From the smallest knee slap beats in “For 12” to the thunderous roll of the Timpani in “As I Lay […]

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Other Lives deliver my first Holy Sh*t moment of 2011 in 2010

December 8, 2010

Other Lives’ self-titled 2009 release was one of our favorites that year and the wait is over to catch a glimpse of the next record.  The band has been busting ass in the studio, sparing no time for grooming. Lead singer Jesse Tabish was photographed recently with his unleashed mane of hair and healthy beard. […]

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Why you must see Other Lives tomorrow night in Chicago [Chicago Show]

June 19, 2009

Good news for Chicago people! Other Lives are back in town for a show at Schubas tomorrow night (6/20). It’ll be a special night. The band stopped by Shirk’s studio in April for one of our most memorable live sessions to date. If you haven’t downloaded it yet, get in there. This band has a […]

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