Limelight: Diatessaron

It’s been a pretty sporadic few years for Calgary’s Diatessaron. After spending a lot time honing their sound, the band released a brace of EPs in 2010 before they were effectively put on hold while guitarist Darren Young completed a music degree in Toronto.

Reuniting in 2012 and releasing their Cobalt 60 Blue EP a year later, Diatessaron have been completing work on their debut album, which is due for release this summer.

“I really think that the new album is a composite of all the different styles we’ve approached so far,” explains guitarist Young. “On our first two EPs, Monument really concentrated on the proggier side of things whereas Sky Blue was a bit more stripped down and had more straightforward songs. I feel that both of these are showcased on this album.

“You know, we have a few songs that I guess are more radio friendly, and then a big three-part song called Sunshine that exploits the more progressive element of our sound.”

“One of the things we’ve identified that we do fairly well is to make more progressive sounds slightly more accessible to people who might want that poppier edge to their music,” says vocalist Simon Tumasz-Jordan. “So, for example, we don’t have any five-minute guitar solos, but we’ve got complex structures within the music that we hope will be good for the more progressive-minded.”

Whereas many bands rely on a solitary songwriter to provide the musical drive, Diatessaron have three capable writers, each bringing rough demos to the sessions for the new album. These are then fleshed out thoroughly to produce the crisp, resourceful sound that the band have been carefully developing.

“I will bring a basic idea of a main part for the song that everyone can then embellish in their own special way,” says bassist Erik Smistad. “One of the great things about writing for these guys is that you don’t have to write everything for them. You can just come in with a basic idea and know that everyone is going to put something sweet on top of it and not just show off their own particular guitar technique.”

Aside from their fresh material, they are also re-recording a number of songs from their previous EPs, as well as other early demos, to include on the upcoming album.

“These are the songs Sky Blue and also one called The Place Where The Sun Never Sets,” says Young. “We just wanted to re-record those because we felt like our earlier recordings didn’t really capture the liveliness of the sound we can now create and I think we rushed those original recordings.”

The band are also hoping to perform some live shows over the summer, and already have a few dates scheduled for the UK. However, with their drummer living in Germany where he’s kept busy working for music software production company Ableton, that has understandably reduced the number of live performances that the band are able to undertake.

“Yeah that’s true,” says Young, before jokingly adding: “We’re hoping he’s at Ableton designing the machine that will replace him.”

Prog File

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Stephan Bots (drums), Carl Janzen (guitar), Erik Smistad (bass), Simon Tumasz-Jordan (vocals), Darren Young (guitar)

sounds like

Coheed And Cambria with a twist of pop

current release

You can listen to their three EPs on their website. Their debut album _Sunshine _will be released soon