Orchestral progressive folk rock. Any label is inherently limiting, but then so is language itself. And yet there's a world of musical possibility in this combination of four words. This kind of paradox runs throughout the music, lyrics and even the name of the band greater>than.
At age 17, guitarist/vocalist Drew Miller has already been writing songs for over five years, drawing inspiration from the likes of C.S. Lewis and St. Augustine; attempting to use finite words to point to the infinite...
Have I been living like a shadow on a wall?
Kept alive by a light who could swallow me whole
As the sun starts to rise, I squint my eyes
And run away from the keeper of my soul
'Cause I'm afraid that my soul is not my own
The rest of the band and its influences are equally intriguing. Isaac Johnson contributes complex arrangements of cello, piano, organ, mandolin, banjo and accordion. His sister, Mary Grace Johnson, adds her classically-honed precision on violin. But these lush textures are balanced with the raw energy of bassist/guitarist Payton Thomas, whose influences range from early blues to dubstep.
In their debut EP Break Us, you might hear traces of Mumford & Sons, Gungor, The Avett Brothers, Jon Foreman or Dave Matthews. But artist comparisons can't describe music much better than genre labels can.
Which brings us back to that paradox. These words are an incomplete attempt to describe the music, which is a creative but incomplete attempt by this group of friends to describe ideas greater than themselves.