Between introductions and welcomes, the seven-member band from the US, House of Floyd, chat about Indian food, karmic connection with India and the irresistible urge to travel here from half-way across the globe. “We are in love with India and don’t mind staying here forever,” says vocalist Sheri Showalter.
The group was formed in 2005 in San Francisco Bay area, USA, as a tribute to the iconic rock band Pink Floyd. Established musicians in their own right, it was their die-hard love for Pink Floyd’s progressive soul-stirring music that got them together to recreate the “Floydian” magic.
“We have grown up with this music, thrived on it, lived with it, breathed it and so, needless to say, are irrevocably in love with it. Also, no one else had formed such a band and we took it as a vantage point,” says Mark Showalter, who plays the keyboard, saxophone and is also a vocalist.
The group that has already performed in Chandigarh, will perform at DSOI, Delhi, on September 5, followed by performances in Gurgaon, Pune, Lucknow, Hyderabad, Bengaluru, Guwahati and Kolkata. Their music recreates the layered lyrics, sonic experimentation, elaborate live arrangements, sound and tape effects and electrifying energy on stage, just like Pink Floyd. Like the original band, House of Floyd changes its act with every show in terms of interpreting music and improvising. “The genius of Pink Floyd lies in the fact that they would make and play a whole new song live in front of an audience, and then record it. For instance, Sheep was sung live first as Raving and Drooling before being recorded as Sheep,” says Mark. Sheri adds that it’s far from easy to play Floyd. “It is challenging as there is immense change in tempo, the songs are long and one has to reanalyse, regroup and recreate the same mood and energy,” explains vocalist Angie Montgomery. Floyd’s music, observes bassist and vocalist Lou Portela, has a powerful cinematic quality. “They would do an entire album on a concept, on one theme and story with lyrics that still resonate in people’s memory. These are not merely songs, they are part of history, these are archives of greatest moments of our times,” says Portela.