℗ © 2013 Kneebody LLC. Under exclusive license to Concord Music Group, Inc.
The Line is Kneebody's debut recording on Concord Records. Their sound is... explosive rock energy paralleled with high-level nuanced chamber ensemble playing, with highly wrought compositions that are balanced with adventurous no-holds-barred improvising. All "sounds-like" references can be set aside; this band has created a genre and style all its own. This project explodes with rock and jazz influences through engrossing improvisational instrumentals, includes 12 original compositions, and contributions from various members of the group.
The album, produced by Chris Dunn, Sr. Director of A&R, and Kneebody, features the band’s five players; keyboardist Adam Benjamin, trumpeter Shane Endsley, electric bassist Kaveh Rastegar, saxophonist Ben Wendel and drummer Nate Wood. Kneebody bassist Rastegar says, “Personally, I think calling Kneebody "jazz" or "electric jazz" is fantastic because then we can move on from that hang up and play our music -- and alter expectations of what ‘jazz’ is.”
The Line opens with a dark rock tune titled “Lowell,” then moves to a lighter mood with Cha Cha, a contrapuntal number with an engaging swing beat. “Trite” embodies the non-linear approach the band gives to compositions and “Sleeveless” provides a slow-moving feel with dark undertones. Still Play has a twisty, technically challenging horn line that is complemented by the other players’ musicianship. The title track from the album, “The Line,” is hard-hitting, embracing the rock energy of the band. “E and E,” is a lush, improvised intro to “Pushed Away” with three basses. Keyboardist Adam Benjamin describes "Work Hard, Play Hard, Towel Hard" as “a tribute to those of us who don't want to dial it down,” and “Greenblatt” as “a song about open space and subtle transformations.” “What Was” has jarring drum beats matched with a flowing melodic line. “Ready Set Go” manifests their industrious indie rock side and is the final piece on the album.
Kneebody draws upon influences spanning D’Angelo’s Voodoo to music by Elliot Smith, Bill Frisell, and Miles Davis. Their live shows are known for intense sonic landscapes of the Radiohead ilk, for the rhythmic bombast of a Squarepusher or Queens of the Stone Age show, and the harmonic depth and improvisational freedom experienced at a Brad Mehldau concert.
The quintet met in their late teens while at The Eastman School of Music and Cal Arts, became fast friends, and converged together as Kneebody amid the vibrant and eclectic music scene of Los Angeles in 2001. Since then, each band member has amassed an impressive list of credits and accomplishments over the years all while the band has continued to thrive and grow in reputation, solidifying a fan base around the world. Tour dates include Japan, Europe and North America.