Mark Cook - Warr guitar, fretless bass, guitar, programming, keyboards, samples
Gayle Ellett - Mellotron, Moog, Hammond organ, guitar, and field recordings
Mike McGary - Rhodes, piano, synth, Mellotron
Rick Read - Chapman Stick and bass
Ross Young - drums
Bill Bachman - drums
Bob Fisher - sax and flute
Stephen Page - violin
Mike Davison - guitar and guitar synth (2007-2014)
Jason Spradlin - drums (2007-2014)
HERD OF INSTINCT release date: May 17th 2011
Published by Firepool Records.
Featuring 10 tracks, digitally recorded. Total time: 46:15
Following the 2007 demise of their previous band 99 Names of God (having spent the previous 10 years as Art Rock anomalies in the Texas music scene) drummer Jason Spradlin and Warr guitarist Mark Cook decided to create a new group. They acquired guitarist and fellow Texan Mike Davison, whose chameleon like approach with NERVEWERKS, added great depth to their musical vision. With their new metamorphosis now complete, the band went into seclusion and began writing all new material, emerging only rarely for a few choice live shows.
Herd of Instinct's debut was published by Djam Karet’s indie label Firepool Records. The CD was four years in the making. The music created was a dark and varied form of contemporary instrumental Progressive Rock. The self-titled release is truly for fans of King Crimson, Steve Tibbetts, Djam Karet and big picture music.
Pushing the limits of their own creativity, HERD OF INSTINCT draws from a vast source of influences: multi-cultural music, literary clues, Horror and cinematic film scores, and obscure elements of Rock, Avant-garde, Electronic, Prog, and Psychedelic music. Recording sessions took place in Texas, North Carolina, and various global locations, from 2007-2010. As a live unit, HERD OF INSTINCT performs as a trio, but during this recording process, the band decided to expand into a large-scale entity featuring many guest musicians including Dave Streett, whose secret treaties with such luminaries as Jerry Marotta (Peter Gabriel), Pat Mastelotto (King Crimson, XTC), Gayle Ellett (Djam Karet), Gavin Harrison (Porcupine Tree), and Markus Reuter (Tuner) helped bring these all-star musicians into the HERD.
The results are very provocative as evidenced by such songs as "Room Without Shadows," the lysergic "Road To Asheville," the schizoid-frenzy of "Anamnesis," the pagan majesty of "Hex," and the beautiful "Blood Sky" (the albums' lone vocal piece, courtesy of Kris Swenson). With looping samples provided by Steve Tibbetts, impeccable production, deep compositions, and impressive performances by all of the musicians involved, HERD OF INSTINCT is a well-crafted, landmark debut album.
Herd of Instinct "Conjure" release date: January 22, 2013.
Published by Firepool Records
Featuring 12 tracks. Total time: 53:13
FIREPOOL RECORDS RELEASES CONJURE Herd of Instinct's Second Album Pushes Instrumental Boundaries Pushing the limits of their creativity, instrumental group Herd Of Instinct draws from a vast array of influences-multi-cultural music, literary clues, horror and cinematic film scores, obscure elements of rock, avant-garde, electronic, prog, and psychedelic music-to create a style that is uniquely their own. Released by Djam Karet's label Firepool Records, Conjure builds on the success of their first album. With guest musicians including Colin Edwin (Porcupine Tree), Joel Adair (Legacy Brass Quintet), Bob Fisher, and looping samples by Steve Tibbetts, combined with their impeccable production, deep compositions, and impressive performances, Conjure is a real treat for fans of King Crimson, Pink Floyd and Mick Karn.Conjure is a finely-crafted, landmark release. In order to create a more dynamic and lively sound, no compression or limiting was used on this recording. This sophomore effort features polyrhythmic Warr guitar and powerful drumming, classic keyboards by Gayle Ellett (Djam Karet). and beautiful guitar solos and textures. Songs such as Praxis brim with intense, fiery energy. The beautiful and calming Alice Krige pt.1 has dreamy flute and jazzy trumpet melodies, whereas Solitude One, with its Indian dilruba lines, has a more dance vibe. The album closes with the psychedelic lullaby, The Secret of Fire, which completes this diverse yet coherent journey. On Conjure the focus is very much on composition, arrangements and orchestration. Their music is not just a set-up for showy solos. Instead, they create music that is full of great ensemble playing and group dynamics. Herd Of Instinct has a clear vision of what they are trying to do. And, fortunately for us, on Conjure their goals are fully realized.
September 1, 2013 Herd of Instinct played a rare show in Chapel Hill, North Carolina at the ProgDay music festival.
November 2013 the band began writing new material with the addition of Mike McGary playing keyboards.
2014 has turned out to be a tough year for HOI. The writing for the next album has continued, but there have been major setbacks. Sad news arrived in early 2014 when Mike Davison had to leave the band for personal reasons and more bad news arrived in September when Jason Spradlin decided to step out of the band to pursue other interests. Mike and Jason will be missed!
October 2014 a new Herd of Instinct line-up is announced and begins rehearsing! The new HOI will feature two veteran Dallas musicians – Rick Read on Chapman Stick/bass and Ross Young on drums. This transition has been seamless due to Mark having a long history with both musicians in the previous band called Minefield. “They are the perfect fit for what HOI music requires – passionate musicians willing to take risks and be adventurous.”
Herd of Instinct: Manifestation
Published by Firepool Records
Featuring 10 tracks. Total time: 48:06
Herd of Instinct’s third album, Manifestation, is a transitional phase for the group. The group has expanded its sound from the original three-member unit to a larger ensemble. The music’s densely layered sound gives the listener a “textural” listening experience with pieces ranging from the bombastic Dybbuk to the somber flute/violin piece Nocturne. Many songs are based around Mark Cook’s Warr guitar and Rick Read’s Chapman Stick combined with Ross Young’s detailed drumming to create a clock-like precision of a layered polyrhythmic machine. Keyboardists Gayle Ellett (from Djam Karet) and Mike McGary play a crucial role in adding mood and texture to the music. Ellett also adds rhythm guitar to a few tracks and a poetic guitar solo on Shatterpoint. Bob Fisher, flute and saxophone, and Stephen Page, violin, are featured soloists who add diversity to the sonic palette of the band. Drummer, Bill Bachman, came on board towards the end of the recording process to add another element of intensity to the mix.