Tonight, The Lyric Oxford hosts one of the most unconventional acts the music industry has to offer. In a weird, Phish-meets-Tycho-meets-Widespread Panic-type scenario, Sound Tribe Sector 9 combines a variety of elements to create a show that could only be described as a bucket-list level experience.
The group has been making music together for upwards of 20 years, putting out a slew of live and studio albums. STS9 has become a standard in the music industry, evolving with each release to almost become the ultimate genre-bender.
“Let’s just say best years aren’t behind us – they’re ahead of us,” Zach Velmer, the group’s drummer, told JamBase.com. “We’re still incredibly inspired with each other, with the music, with how fun it is and with creating music together. As long as that’s happening, we’re going to create.”
The only thing that could be more legendary than the group’s music is its live show. With such a wide girth of material to pull from for live performances, each show is a unique experience.
STS9 tours with one of the most extensive lighting systems of any band or artist on the road. Each show bounces back and forth from what feels like a whimsical stroll through an electric forest to plummeting down a black hole on a bad acid trip. One might find it to be the perfect balance of chaos and beauty.
The group also prides itself on their intense improvisation during live performances, further contributing to the unique nature of each individual show.
STS9 is currently touring to promote its latest release, “The Universe Inside,” which represents a much more intentional attempt to integrate electronic elements into the band’s post-rock, jam-band core.
While the group has released more albums than most acts could dream of producing, each new release demonstrates a new level of innovation for the band, never leaving its core fans bored or disappointed.
“This last record [“The Universe Inside”] was a good example of [of the band’s chemistry],” Velmer told JamBase.com. “It was divinity. It was the magic of how it all came together – writing songs together, feeling the vibe, feeling the funk, all that stuff.”
And as the band approaches legend status, it’s bringing the ultimate party to Oxford for all to experience the show that has put the band on the map.
STS9 plays tonight at The Lyric Oxford. The show starts at 8 p.m., and tickets start at $25.