FORMER Kasabian guitarist Chris Karloff returns with his new project Black Onassis and an album on the way in September.
He has joined forces with musician Nick Forde and a host of guest vocalists including Ben Gautrey of The Cooper Temple Clause on first track Brain.
As a founding member, lead guitarist and one of the chief songwriters for Kasabian throughout their swift ascent to global fame, Karloff admits it was a kick in the teeth to leave the band back in 2006.
After his departure, Chris left his native home of Leicester, in England, to move to New York City – a completely different change of pace.
Still feeling the burn from the separation, he used that, along with the influences of his new home, as inspiration to form something different.
He said: "Electronic music to me is surprisingly soulful, there is a warmth that comes from the simplicity of sounds, something inconspicuously expressive and emotional.
"Growing up it was everywhere. Artists like Vangelis, Kraftwerk, The Prodigy and Tangerine Dream were massive influences on the songs I wrote with Kasabian, and even more so now.
"But rock music has always played a massive role as well, and I'm inspired by artists like Jimi Hendrix, Primal Scream and Nirvana. I try to fuse these two worlds to create the kind of music I want to listen to."
As well as Gautrey, the album features Liela Moss of The Duke Spirit, Morgan Kibby of M83/White Sea and Steven Young of The Black Marquee.
"Working with multiple singers makes writing every track a unique experience, a new musical adventure," Karloff added. "A voice can change the whole dynamic of a song, and it's really freeing and feels limitless to write without being constrained by the vocal abilities or stylings of one person."
When it came time to start playing live, Black Onassis knew their unconventional lineup could pose a problem. To compensate for the fact that they would be touring with no singer, the band incorporate a huge visual element to the show.
Karloff said: "The fusion of sight and sound is the perfect marriage in terms of stimulation, and we wanted to put a lot of thought into making it an overall experience for our fans"
The band teamed up with filmmakers and visual artists to put together a presentation that is tailor-made for each song. The result is an extreme and elaborate visual and sonic environment that floods the senses and takes people on a 60 minute journey through the album.
Desensitized comes out September 23rd on their own label Minus Man Records.