Psych-pop band Unknown Mortal Orchestra hit Memphis this Friday for a show at the 1884 Lounge inside Minglewood Hall. The project of songwriter Ruban Nielson, Unknown Mortal Orchestra have been rising in the indie-rock ranks since forming in 2011 by fusing the weirder parts of psych rock, indie rock, and R&B. The band's 2015 album, Multi-Love, served as Unknown Mortal Orchestra's coming-out statement, and the title track from Multi-Love is one of the most original indie rock songs of the last five years.
Unknown Mortal Orchestra's latest creation is the result of musicians who are completely confident in their abilities and not afraid to turn the conventional indie/psych-rock world on its head. Their songs consistently change on a dime, but while Unknown Mortal Orchestra definitely fit the mysterious, left-field persona they've developed over the past few years, the band still keeps their main priority obvious when playing live: They just want you to dance. Jagjaguwar (Small Black, Sharon Van Etten, Foxygen) released their last two albums, but it wouldn't be a stretch at all to see Unknown Mortal Orchestra signed to a major label in the near future.
On tour with Unknown Mortal Orchestra is Chicago indie band Whitney. Formed by ex-Smith Westerns members Max Kakacek and Julien Ehrlich, Whitney have generated a remarkable amount of buzz for a band that hasn't released a debut album, but if their single "No Woman" is any indication, the hype is well-deserved. Ehrlich also spent time in Unknown Mortal Orchestra, connecting the dots to this stacked tour that stretches across the country. Whitney's debut album is out this June on Secretly Canadian.