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Thursday
Apr262018

Kris Orlowski and Budo - "Astronauts, Divided"

Kris Orlowski has long been known for his striking sincerity and understated song craft. Which is why, in 2016 when he released “Waterski to Texas” with Macklemore producer Budo, it created quite a stir. Was this a transparent attempt to become algorithmically palatable to trigger-happy teens? Was this a name-boosting exercise, a crass commercial media play? Call me cynical but this is the music industry where crass commercial name-boosting exercises are more common than White House indictments.

Then I listened to the song. Orlowski’s understated delivery and Budo’s atmospheric tone collage swelled in harmony, accented beautifully by an Andrew Joslyn string arrangement. So much for educated cynicism, I’m just an asshole.

After a performance at Upstream, a prime time tv sync and some radio play, Orlowski retreated from the public eye while Budo soared to new heights, producing Macklemore’s “Gemini” and touring extensively to support it.

Now, after two years of collaboration, the duo have come back together to release their debut EP “Astronauts, divided”. The creative potential evidenced in “Waterski to Texas” has been refined, Budo’s gift for ethereal texture plays beautifully against Orlowski’s elegant, stirring melodies.  

“I Arrange”, the lead track, sets the tone for all that is to come. Beginning with vocals and a simple piano, the song craftily introduces subtle psychedelic elements before cascading into a thundering climax. “Stormy Weather (feat. Embee)” takes a more contemporary approach, almost entirely electronic with Orlowski singing outside of his comfort zone successfully.

Circling back to the first paragraph, I can now say that Kris Orlowski and Budo created an unlikely collaboration that is likely to be algorithmically palatable to trigger happy teens. It will also likely boost Orlowski’s name ID. But all of that comes about as the result of a genuine experiment that yielded remarkable results. “Astronauts, divided” is a most worthy endeavor.

Kris Orlowski and Budo will be celebrating the release of “Asronauts, divided” this Saturday, April 28th at Barboza. Tickets available at https://www.ticketfly.com/purchase/event/1661269?utm_source=artist.

 

Words by Patrick Galactic

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