We have been mesmerised by Io Echo since hearing the stunning ‘When Lilies Die’. Hailing from LA the band are made up of Leopold Ross, from the Big Pink and Ioanna Gik. Having recently supported the Drums they are currently working on a debut album. We went along to see Io Echo at The Drop on a very cold Monday night.
The Drop is a cool venue, perfect for a gigs, except maybe when there are more than 3 members on the rather small stage, but we like the way the audience can practically stand nose to nose with the artist. Aware of Io Echo’s goth rock image I still found front woman Ionna to be quite striking sporting black lipstick hidden behind long dark hair draped over her face. Leopold Ross dressed in big boots, leather jackets, pale with long black hair looked like the ‘dirty rocker’ I expected, alittle taller maybe!
Opening with ‘Shanghai Girls’ a slow but powerful track Ionna raised her arms to the sky as if welcoming the start of a séance on the first strike of a chord. Using synth to create a cool dynamic in bringing out the tuneful melody is simple but effective. Io Echo kind of remind us of ‘Cold Cave’ and even with the heavy rockness of their image the synth brings a more melodic and upbeat pop feel about the track which sounds incredible.
Ioanna jumped up and down like Kate Bush trapped in a box. Entwining herself with the microphone cable she looked like an cheap imatation of Karen O, a rock goddess that should never be copied. The slow motion posses were slightly cringing too but this could have been down to the lack of space on stage. Song ‘Monsters’ really made the crowd move and ‘While you are Sleeping’ received a great reception but it wasn’t until the finale of ‘When Lilies Die’ that the place erupted.
We would like to see them in a bigger venue where the sound system could do the songs justice, but we urge you to go forth and see the guys. We caught up with them after the gig for a quick chat…
US: We recently came across you guys and were instantly hooked by your song ‘When Lilies Die’, for people who heard it tell them how you sound?
IO ECHO: Thank you. We hear a lot of strange sounds in our heads, and we try and replicate them as faithfully as possible.
US: What is the video all about?
IO ECHO: We liked the subtlety, simplicity, and strange undertones of the kabuki dance and felt that it shared a common emotion with our song. There is a lot of Asian imagery in our new songs. Ioanna wears a Kimono on stage.
US: How did you get together?
IO ECHO: We met at a star trek convention.
US: How did you come up with the name Io Echo?
IO ECHO: “Io” is ioanna’s nickname, and “Echo” is a reference to the sound of our music.
US: How has it been supporting the Drums?
IO ECHO: It was great. They put on a really good show, they are incredible people and performers, and their fans were very kind to us.
US: What does 2011 look like for you guys?
IO ECHO: We will be releasing more music early in the year and touring in support of it on both sides of the Atlantic.
US: What are you listening to?
IO ECHO: My neighbour having sex!
US: What has been your favourite record of the year?
IO ECHO: There’s been a lot of good stuff this year. I like a lot of Odd Futures stuff, and I really liked the new Grinderman album too. Nick Cave can do no wrong!
Download ‘When Lilies Die’ for free here and check out the video below:
Thanks to Io Echo and Tasha from Anorak