PUSH Artist Of The Week: Freelance Whales

Freelance Whales make full-time jams.

Freelance Whales are about to swim into your heart. The New York group got their start with a burst of blog enthusiasm, coming out on top of the Great Whale Band Flood of 2010 (Remember Or, the Whale?). Freelance Whales have been hyped by NPR, The A.V. Club, and Entertainment Weekly, who dubbed Freelance Whales’ album Weathervanes “the best electronic indie-pop debut since Ben Gibbard last tuned his laptop.” You’ve heard Freelance Whales on the MTV show The Inbetweeners, and you’ll hear them again during the season finale. And the band’s even been thrown some shade from the infamous tastemakers at Pitchfork, so you know they must be doing something right. Fun fact: Multi-instrumentalist Chuck Criss is the brother of “Glee”‘s Darren Criss — musical prowess must run in the fam!

On the group’s sophomore set, Diluvia, the Whales combine fuzzy synths and drum thunder with twinkling acoustic arrangements, an approach that recalls the maximalist indie rock of Passion Pit or MGMT. “Aeolus” leads with a banjo-plucking melody that hints at Dave Matthews Band¬†before going full-on M83, while “Follow Through” finds frontman Judah Dadone singing, “I am not one of them” while slow-moving drums echo meaningfully in the background. “Spitting Image” gives bassist/multi-instrumentalist Doris Cellar a solid turn on the mic, but the great thing about Freelance Whales is that the music sounds like a full-time party no matter who’s on the mic.

+ Watch Freelance Whales perform “Aeolus” live, and see more interviews and performances after the jump.

Freelance Whales On How Their Band Started

Freelance Whales On Getting The Most Out Of Instruments

Freelance Whales On Their Recording Space

“Aeolus (Live)”

Photo credit: Mom + Pop Music