Pick A Piper prepared to impress at APK
Credit: Scott Barber
Pick A Piper will be at APK on April 19.
Begun late in 2008 as a means to keep occupied during his downtime, Pick A Piper represents for Weber the opportunity to make music that he loves on his own terms.
“After I'd been touring with Caribou for a bit, I came home and needed a new project to get my creative urges out, get my song ideas out,” he recalled. “We slowly started with the intention of making dance music around really organic instrumentation, so we had tons of acoustic guitars, hand drums and percussion ... it wasn't that balanced at that point, maybe, but it was us figuring out where we wanted to go with it.”
Enlisting the collaborative help of Clint Scrivener, Angus Fraser and Dan Roberts, Weber built and released a pair of EPs as far back as 2009, when the first of the tastemakers began to take notice. Years later, the timing couldn't be more right to celebrate the fruit of that collaborative relationship.
Information on the group can be scarce at best, but the story so far is that their self-titled 2009 EP turned a few heads, earning them high praise online. When the time came for Weber to return to the road with Caribou, Pick A Piper was put on the back burner.
Now Weber and company are back with a more focused sound than that which appeared on their earlier EP and featuring guest vocal appearances by Ruby Suns' Ryan McPhun, Braids' Raphaelle Standell-Preston, Enon's John Schmersal — who also sang vocals on the lead single “All Her Colours” — and more.
The music on this album is undeniably sharper, and benefits from the unfortunate amount of time that Weber, Scrivener, Fraser and Roberts all enjoyed away from each other — by taking an extended amount of time to complete the album around duties in other bands, the four were all able to take a figurative step back and get better organized, working slowly on this new album.
“Most of the songs started off as some little loop or beat or melody written on my laptop in a van or on a plane, heading somewhere,” Weber said, explaining that the greatest challenge he faced was finding the time to work on the material. “Over time I took those ideas to Dan and Angus and we slowly fleshed them out into full songs; we were away so much that it took us two or three years to get everything together and fully finish it.”
Considering the attention that he captivated with two EPs so far, it's little wonder that the new full-length album has received the kind of praise that it has. Media outlets everywhere are celebrating its odd blend of organic and synthetic sounds, but none so much as Weber himself — the album release tour extends for much of the month of April, with plans for the band to head out west around the summer.
For more information on Pick A Piper or their new album, visit pickapiper.bandcamp.com or follow along on Twitter pickapiper. Their April 19 show at The APK on is 19-plus and also features The Danks and Illitry, 347 Clarence St. across from Citi Plaza. Admission is $6, doors are at 9 p.m.