The Ocular Concern began as a trio with Dan, Andrew, and Stephen, exploring interlocking rhythmic compositions and improvisations and choice covers of eastern European folk music, contemporary jazz, and the Kinks. Their debut EP was released in 2011. Despite their best efforts to restrain themselves from the logistical problems of larger groups, Dan and Andrew kept envisioning more voices in the band. After Andrew was commissioned by FILMUSIK to write and perform a new score to the 1966 Japanese monster movie “Gamera vs. Barugon,” the addition of clarinet was inevitable. Special guest David Evans was added to the trio for an exciting run of shows at Portland’s Hollywood Theatre performed for over 600 people in August 2011. The following year, Lee Elderton moved to Portland from San Francisco and assumed the permanent clarinet chair, followed shortly thereafter by Nathan Beck on vibraphone and mbira, the traditional Zimbabwean thumb piano of the Shona people. The band was reborn as a quintet and quickly assembled a rich book of originals by Andrew and Dan. In 2013 Dan was awarded a Regional Arts and Culture Council Project Grant for the composition and performance of a new suite further extending the band’s chamber aesthetic to include special guest string players Erin Furbee, Brian Quincey, and Justin Kagan, and Alex Krebs on bandoneon, the tango accordion of Argentina.
Dan Duval, electric guitar, compositions
Andrew Oliver, electric piano, compositions
Stephen Pancerev, drums
Lee Elderton, clarinet
Nathan Beck, vibraphone and mbira