Now are an east London based ensemble, who fuse elements of krautrock, free jazz,
lo-fi, synth pop and music from various ethnic sources, to create their own unique,
highly inventive sound.
In Scar studios London, in 1999, songwriter Justin Paton met drummer Giles Narang during weekly jam sessions, and asked him if he'd be interested in playing some of his songs in a new band. Justin’s incorporation of home made lo-fi with intricately crafted songs, combined with Giles' understated relentlessness and intense attention to detail would create the basis for the Now-sound. The pair arranged regular rehearsals in Giles' basement, and with various friends helping out on other instruments, Now was born.
Along the way, a line-up solidified: in summer 2000, Justin bumped into Craig Tamlin; they recognised each other from parties and gigs, and soon discovered their shared interest in free jazz, African music and repetitive grooves. Originally a drummer, Craig switched to hand percussion and began to teach himself the trumpet. By joining Now, Craig gave the music a looser feel and encouraged improvisation. Yuhi Nakano was already performing solo gigs, using classical Spanish guitar and electronics, when he heard a Now CD in 2003 and became curious about playing with the group, which he did soon after being introduced to Justin by a mutual friend. Lee Mackinnon already knew Giles and Justin through friends, so when she heard that Now was looking for an extra singer and percussionist, she offered herself after seeing an instrumental, electronic performance in January 2004 at London’s Klinker club.
In March 2004, Angela Last came to a collaborative concert Now performed with ex-Can singer Damo Suzuki, and was impressed enough to introduce herself to Justin. A few jams later and Angela was playing synthesizer with Now, and soon enough spread her special touch to many different instruments, including guitar, bass, violin and voice. Craig, Giles and Justin already knew Chris Irish from his time with the group Limn, the Utrophia collective and his experimental remix project, Albino Radio (in which Now participate). By mid-2004, Chris was jamming and recording with Now, neatly slotting his trumpet playing alongside Craig’s. He also brought additional electronic devices into the Now sound, along with an extra singing voice. Depending on the audience and venue, Now play a range of styles from experimental improvised sounds to rhythmic, dance-y, driving pop music that often transforms into extended percussive jams in which the audience sometimes participates. Now could be described as catchy, contemporary, inventive, exotic, melodious and harmonious 21st century pop music.
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