Face Candy

Defined only by change, Face Candy is in a constant state of flux. Nothing ever happens twice. Something is always happening NOW.

Consisting of two vocalists Eyedea and Kristoff Krane and musicians Casey O’Brien (bass) and JT Bates (drums), the group’s dynamic comes out in their “in-the-moment” sound- they are as compatible musically as they are personally.

Formed in 2005, the group was originally known as “Eyedea and Friends,” and consisted of the four current members, as well as Twin Cities standouts Mazta I and Carnage. Eyedea states: “I wanted to do something that no one else was doing, something raw and honest, something therapeutic.”

The result was a Midwest tour and the group’s debut album, This Is Where We Were, released by Rhymesayers Entertainment in 2006. Evolution and change followed, including a more concise lineup, an appearance at the Sons d’Hiver jazz festival in Paris (2006), and monthly performances typically taking place at historic jazz venues throughout the Twin Cities (Artists’ Quarter, Black Dog Cafe, Clown Lounge.)

The newest chapter in the band’s story is Waste Age Teenland, the result of two days at Winterland Studios and one night at the Black Dog Cafe in January of 2009. Engineered by Brian Johnson and Graham O’Brien, and mastered by Eyedea himself, the album captures the spontaneous expression of these young men, as they explore their “inner world” and share it with the world outside of them.

Unpredictable at every turn, the album defies genre and classification, managing to seamlessly meld free jazz with auto-tune, (a feature more characteristically found mainstream R&B music) and avant-garde jazz with ambient instrumentation. Whether due to laughter or the realization of tragedy, listeners should prepare to have their stomachs tied in knots. Taken as a whole, the album is perhaps best classified as a “headphones” or “road-trip” affair, one that invites the listener to focus in, engage with what the band has offered them from beginning to end, and then reflect.

More than anything else, Face Candy demands the trust of their listeners.

Face Candy is undoubtedly a “Performance Art.” Eyedea and Kristoff Krane often address their philosophies, worldviews, and personal conflicts via the perspectives of characters they believe will most effectively communicate their principles. Bates and O’Brien reveal their talents as musicians by proving that, not only do they know how to perfectly “back” the intentions of Eyedea and Krane, but also how to simultaneously instigate their own exploration as well.

“I wake up, sun between the clouds. It feels really safe, but that’s only because it’s right now.” -Eyedea

The next split second could bring with it anything and everything, and the only guarantee is that it will be different from the present. In this sense, Face Candy is a representation of the human element at it’s most raw; vulnerability, adaptability, susceptibility.

Whether in the studio or on the stage, the world can only attempt to keep up with Face Candy’s widening approach. Are you ready to take the leap?

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