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Forged from a pact between founders Phoebe Spier and Zach Dunham, the seedling that was to become Northeast Northwest (NENW) took root in early 2009. Pushed to play together by friends, an initial improvised jam at a barbecue yielded an accidental but undeniable chemistry. The then-recent Portland transplants and lifelong musicians would soon agree to undertake an official collaboration with an alt-country / folk-rock vehicle as the natural junction for their powerful vocals, tight harmonies, heartfelt lyrics, and unassuming, natural songwriting styles. With Zach sharing duties on piano/guitar and Phoebe holding down rhythm guitar, the duo’s fresh take on Americana soul gained a following, but was only the first step towards achieving the vision of lush folk-rock they currently deliver with their five-piece band.
Through the tremendous polish and professionalism demonstrated on their records, both tracked, mixed and mastered in Portland by Mystery Machine Studios (Y La Bamba, Nick Jaina) and Telegraph Mastering, they have found little difficulty in recruiting a cast of elite musicians to bring their rich, dynamic arrangements to life. With Nick Chura on drums, Jack Wright on bass and Lee Howard on guitar, NENW projects a muscular yet nuanced sound, capable of laying out with intensity on their rock numbers, but possessing the precision and focus to deliver a hushed immediacy to their more intimate works.
Now, thanks to the strength of their bond and a shared dedication to their craft, NENW maintains a formidable portfolio: ever-improving gigs at bigger and better venues, a growing list of touring artists with whom they've had the privilege of sharing the stage, an EP and LP of all original works ("Direction of Arrival" and "Where We Come Apart") and critical / popular support including recognition by The Portland Deli Magazine as “Band of the Month” and live radio features on Portland’s KZME and Sessions from the Box. Coupled with the makings of a third, as-of-yet-unnamed album (slated for a late-Spring release just in time for Summer 2013 touring), NENW continues to seek ever-greater platforms to spread their lyrical gospel and share their blue-collar ethos.