Walking Shapes Are … Walking Shapes

Walking Shapes photo

NYC’s Walking Shapes are still a bit of an enigma.  Founded by Nathaniel Hoho and Jesse Kotansky, formerly of riotously rocking indie poppers The Click Clack Boom, along with Dan Krysa and Christopher Heinz, Walking Shapes released the song “Pusher” last month, via YouTube.  The song doesn’t clarify much about the direction the band is traveling… It would seem to be a postmodern, electronic take on tribal beats.  It’s sunny, fuzzy, dreamy, and muddy, all at once.  I guess it could fall under the umbrella of “art rock.”  It’s quite cool… even if I’m yet to figure out exactly what it is.  I recently got a chance to chat with Nathaniel (whom I’ve known for a few years now) about what the band was all about and… Well, the ambiguity seems to be a common thread among the Walking Shapes camp.   “We just announced the band in December.  It was just an evolution of our songwriting.  The Click Clack Boom just kind of ran its course,” Nathaniel tells me, going on to say, “I’d love to not try to characterize our sound.  It kind of changes on a track-by-track basis…We’re ever evolving,” he tells me.  However, he does describe the song-making process as analog-meets-digital,” and says, “Core elements are that we’re trying to always cater to a song itself… Vocals are always a really important part… Our sound is just Walking Shapes.”

When asked what are the band’s biggest influences, Nathaniel chuckles and admits, “I don’t want to give you the generic answer: life.  But it really is just day-to-day… I would say friends are probably our biggest influence, people who open us up and introduce us to new things.”  One of their friends is actually a bit of a big deal… Ezra Miller, actor best known for his role as “Kevin” in Lynne Ramsay’s brilliant We Need to Talk About Kevin and as Patrick in Stephen Chbosky’s The Perks of Being a Wallflower.  “Ezra is a brilliant guy.  We’ve been friends for quite some time,” Nathaniel tells me.  Ezra produced an upcoming music video of Walking Shapes’, which should be released, “No later than March.”  “We’ve always discussed collaborating.  He was always around us and he got on board and was there for the creative process,” Nathaniel says of Ezra and adds “There’s definitely a future and more projects in the works.”

Walking Shapes have a small handful of dates in February (including a local one this Saturday and a NYC stop at Glasslands on Sunday) and they hit the road in November.  Nathaniel tells me that the band plans to spend large amount of 2013 both on the road and in the studio: “Expect Walking Shapes to release a lot of music in 2013.  We have a lot of music ready to go and ready to be released.  We’re going to be releasing a collection of songs in March, in conjunction with the tour and once we get back from the road we’re going to get right back to the studio… and then lots of touring to support that.

This Saturday, February 2nd, Walking Shapes will be performing at PhilaMOCA for DRGN KING’s record release show, alongside Paragraph Nights, Dangerous Ponies, and Idle Idols.  “This is our first official show,” Nathaniel tells me, although when I ask him what people can expect, he remains coolly ambiguous: “I guess you can expect… I’ve never really thought about it.  It guess it’s just a rock show… Expect Walking Shapes.  I don’t really want people to expect anything.  I just want them to come out for the experience.”

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During the day Izzy Cihak teaches transgression, subversion, and revolution at Temple University. At night he haunts Philthy's best venues to cover worthwhile acts for Philthy Mag. Morrissey is everything to him and, in their own heads, all of his friends see themselves as Zooey Deschanel.