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Instrumental band plays the Mill

BY JORDAN MONTGOMERY | APRIL 19, 2012 6:30 AM

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North America is a band composed of twin brothers Josh and Jesse Hasko. The two create dark, psych-pop tracks influenced by strange encounters with energies surrounding their home in New Mexico, dreams, and UFO encounters.

The New York natives will perform at 10 p.m. Saturday at the Mill, 120 E. Burlington St. Admission is $7.

"We have a house in New Mexico that we come back to when we're not touring or traveling," said guitarist Josh Hasko. "We consistently see UFOs above our house and shadowy figures darting or watching us. It's actually become routine. Honestly for us, the veil between worlds is thin, and I think we just attract these things. Some people we work with believe it's due to the fact that we are twins. Others think we ask for it."

Even though most of the inspiration for creating their music comes from these experiences, the two are trying their best to abandon the unwanted visitors.

"Jesse and I had a very private ceremony to pay back some cosmic debts and to shield ourselves from the dark energies that find us," Josh Hasko said. "It has changed a lot for us because of it, and we were grateful that after many years we have some closure with our situation. These days, we are more interested in harnessing light and protecting ourselves from dark spirits."

The duo's music is lyric-less, but the instrumental tracks are able to convey moods the musicians experience. More often than not, the dark songs share eerie feelings with the listener.

"Even though the songs are instrumental, a lot of them are based on stories," said drummer Jesse Hasko. "The way we structure a song is supposed to tell the story, but because there are no lyrics, it's really open to the audience's interpretation. Everyone will get something different out of it."

Despite the albums' dark and subdued tracks, the live shows are usually very different. While music on their albums features a produced and electronic sound, the band's live performances are much more raw.

"It can get almost kind of punk in a way. What I mean to say is, we can get kind of rowdy," Jesse Hasko said. "That's how it changes from the album to the show. When it's live, there are all these other interpretations and feelings coming to us, which makes it a lot more high-energy and a lot more chaotic."

The band has released studio albums in 2009 and 2011, and the brothers plan on getting back into the studio this summer after they relocate from New Mexico to New York. Aside from that, the two don't know exactly what the future holds for North America.

"Way more touring — we're hoping to get down to South America," Jesse Hasko said. "We really hope to work with new artists and head new directions. We're planning on doing some sound installations back in New Mexico. Or maybe we'll just put out a hip-hop album — who knows?"


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