Drawing as many comparisons to Terry Riley
and Philip Glass
as they do to Grizzly Bear
and Animal Collective
, Portland, OR's Au are the brainchild of singer/songwriter Luke Wyland, who began the group in 2005 while studying at the Massachusetts College of Art.
After relocating, he connected with a rotating cast of Portland instrumentalists, including drummers Mark Kaylor and Dana Vlatka and multi-instrumentalist Jonathan Sielaff. The group's 2007 self-titled album -- which wove together bluegrass, contemporary classical, and indie rock influences -- was a favorite with local and online publications, with the Portland Mercury naming it the year's number two Portland album and Stereogum and Pitchfork
giving it positive reviews. The group's second album, Verbs, arrived in summer 2008. The following year, they issued the Versions EP, which featured alternate takes on Verbs songs. Vlkatka and Wyland reteamed for 2012's Both Lights, which made the most of the duo's backrgounds in classical and jazz. ~ Heather Phares, Rovi