Del Rey, Chicago, 2010

Michael Johnson: drums, keyboards, programming
Chris Cowgill: bass, bassVI, keyboards
Damien Burke: guitar, bassVI
Eben English: guitar, bassVI, drums, keyboards, programming
Jason Ward: keyboards, guitar, percussion, atmospherics

DEL REY was born in 1997 in the attic of a three-flat in Chicago's Ukrainian Village. Drawing on diverse backgrounds of Oberlin art-rock, Peoria punk, Scottish pipe drumming, and backwoods-Maine hallucinogenica (a highly combustible mixture of narcotics and electronics), del rey forged a swirling din of pounding, hypnotic rhythms, heroic harmony, and snaking, angular melodies. That is, until they were booted from the apartment by ungrateful neighbors. Fortunately, more friendly confines were soon found, and the rock has since continued unabated.

In '99, the band released a four-song EP, dlry, on their own Dirigible Recordings imprint, which displayed a newborn taking its first breaths, determined to create its own distinct identity. A debut LP, Speak It Not Aloud (My Pal God, 2001), found them molding a vocabulary of sonic lyricism and rhythmic textuality into concise, coherent compositions. On the subsequent Darkness & Distance LP (My Pal God, 2003), this lexicon coalesced into densely plotted tales of dynamic tension & release. A Pyramid for the Living (My Pal God, 2006) featured increasingly epic and aggressive storytelling, adding hints of Middle Eastern and South Asian sounds to the post-rock and electronic roots from which the band's sound springs

The group returned to the studio in 2008 to record the tracks for what would become Immemorial, their 4th full-length (At a Loss Recordings, Golden Antenna; 2010). During the tracking and mixing of the album, engineer Jason Ward joined the band, making the group a 5-piece and allowing even further experimentation in the studio and greater possibilities to translate the ever-more-detailed arrangments to the stage. The album features a stronger, wiser group firing on all cylinders, and the songs are more melodic and evocative than ever before. The music hasn't lost its bite, danger, or desperate edge, but it comes on with a clean, angular, cinematic style that has been honed to perfection.

Del Rey continues to perform in Chicago and across the nation. Live, the music is infused with a feverish urgency, each song played like it could be their last. The signature of the group's shows is the symbiotic intricacy of their twin-drumkit attack, which manages to be punishing yet graceful at the same time.