EBSK. Space: 2003 / Deep Red. 3"CDR

EBSK, a duo consisting of Eric Bruns (Clarinet, Bass Guitar) and John Rickman (Casio SK-1s, Casio SK-5s), have been bridging the indie-rock underground and the electronic listening crowd with their live shows up and down the east coast. Combining structured melody with a touch of sonic improvisation, the EBSK sound merges the aesthetics of ambient music with the potency of psychedelic free-rock.
click here to visit EBSK's official website

EBSK's 1st single for Scarcelight (SLR15) Secret Highways / Wobbly was described as; "a very goddam original take on contempo basement prog (or some such thing)." - Byron Coley, The Wire "inhabits an inspired interzone where lo-fi electronica, kraut, prog, & post-rock intersect" - Ron Schepper, Stylus

01. Space: 2003
02. Deep Red

|: cover by EB

The sensibilites of an artist can be determined by the format with which they release their music. Any artist or label choosing to release music on miniCD's (or CD3) is obviously choosing to follow the road less traveled. Considering these discs only allow for twenty minutes' worth of music, this format requires an artist to be terribly succinct; a limited amount of time certainly kills any self-indulgent tendencies. The tiny format of the CD also helps to remove any possibility of 'casual listening.' It's a demanding format, and it's understandable why some artists would take a liking to such a medium. Then again, a band like EBSK, which combines the talents of a clarinet player with a keyboard wizard, won't soon be mistaken for a band following the primrose path to stardom. That being the case, the CD3 format works perfectly for EBSK's music. The two songs on this release are quite engaging, but in a rather unhurried, unassuming way. Both songs are instrumental, and though they don't differ dramatically, they're both rather distinctive. "Space:2003" starts with a mellow spaced-out drone, but then picks up tempo and becomes rather jazzy and slightly funky, but not in a terribly overwhelming kind of way; though the bass and keyboards are rather soothing, there's a small rumbling growl underneath the mellow grooves that keeps the song slightly ominous. "Deep Red" is definitely a bit funkier; out comes the clarinet, and after two minutes of a hypnotic spaced-out clarinet groove, the band turns away from that, introducing a beat-box and a funky groove, which, after two more minutes, is reintroduced, leading the listener into space and into blissful waves of sonic love. The groove is comparable to Drums & Tuba's music pre-jam-band makeover. Thanks to the brevity of the format, EBSK is allowed the ability to make a concise statement about their art--and they do it quite well, thank you. In the time since listening to this, I've really fallen for this band, and I recommend wholeheartedly a visit to their website, where you can experience some great mellow instrumental rock.
--Joseph Kyle, Mundane Sounds

Washington-based EBSK (Clarinetist and Bass Guitarist Eric Bruns and Casio SK aficionado John Rickman) returns with a second 3-inch CDR on Scarcelight, this time a two-track set that nicely showcases the duo's carefully calibrated fusion of indie-rock, psychedelia, post-rock, and electronica. Woozy electronic tones bring ethereal flavour to “Space: 2003” though the tune's explorative, often ponderous comminglings of bass fuzz and lilting, metronomic pulses also point it towards remote galaxies. In contrast to the chillier opener, Bruns' clarinet imbues the more episodic “Deep Red” with warmth before twitchy scrapings and needle-point flutter take over. Halfway through, a muffled horn sound initiates a placid interlude followed by a more insistent post-rock outro of dub bass and wave-like shimmer. Though short at seventeen-minutes, the disc's material strikes a commendable balance between improvisation and structure.
Textura December 2005

Eric Bruns and John Rickman seem to be quite comfortable within the restrictions of the 3” CD format with it’s a little over a quarter of an hour playtime, for this is the second 3” CD they are presenting to us on Scarcelight and it is either a complete step away from what they have done before or just another part of a puzzle that comprises the EBSK universe. If the latter theory is true then it promises for a large vision of music. Some of the facts are analoguous to “secret highway”, e.g. the cover artwork is closely related and there are also two separate tracks on the disk. Musically, there are some connections as well, but then there are some things that are completely different. “Space: 2003” is a laid back, almost psychedelically grooving bass- and organ grinder with effect pedals and just a little of noise, electronic beats and digital effects thrown in for good measure. While the note-heavy bass-noodling might not be to everybodys taste and the glassy light sound of the organ might remind some people to much of dance bands on cruise ships, the control Bruns and Rickman have over the evolution and dynamic of the track is remarkable. White noise washes in and out like water hits the beach and it never ever feels as a disturbance. As if the cocktail party would go on and on in the wee morning hours and break away as soon as the clock strikes midnight, ie. long before there is any noise to be heard. “deep red” starts off with what could be an oboe or another kind of mellow horn, together with other, more synthetical sounds, before a soft layer of electric current noise, scratches and pulsing glitches set in, in a very gentle and reduced mood, mind you. The pace and atmosphere is even more soft spoken and sensitive than before. After about three minutes a steady bass line and a slight beat evolving out of the noise ground fog wrap up the track, but before you can get into the grove, ready set for doing a ten minute trip hop analogy, the track breaks up and it is back to the oboe, some organ and other woodworks. I have no idea for what kind of music this could be the soundtrack. Anything that works mainly on a visual level of static instead of movement; which would be completely against the basic rules of the cinematic profession. I mean a movie that freezes atmospheres in its cadres, even if there is some movement on the screen, the meaning will come from the images as a whole and not the detailed depictions on the screen. There has to be a reason the music was so damn important in Koyanisquaatsi. In comparison to “secret highway” as well as to the other releases on Scarcelight (especially some of those also on 3”CDs e.g. Trust Riots, freiband or Violet), “space: 2003 …” is an unobtrusive, introverted and gentle piese of music, but those are also its main and redeeming qualities. For one guy standing up with a bassguitar and one guy sitting down twiddling the knobs, EBSK manage to keep interest and convey a sense of gentleness, self-centeredness (as in Zen and the art of electronic noise) and warm welcome of the world, the coming day and whatever it may bring. What else do you need?
Cracked Zine