About Axis: Sova
A psychedelic project masterminded by Chicago musician Brett Sova, Axis: Sova produce a trippy, art-damaged form of lo-fi boogie rock framed by pulsating drum-machine beats and laced with copious amounts of effects. Initially a solo venture, with early recordings like 2012's Weight of a Color performed entirely by Sova, the project blossomed into a full band for performances and releases like 2018's Shampoo You.
Brett Sova initiated Axis: Sova in the summer of 2009. Sova's band Mass Shivers was coming to an end, and the talented musician was offered a solo slot opening up the reunion gig of Chicago indie rockers Mantis. Sova played a continuous psyched-out guitar solo, and when members of Mass Shivers were unavailable to accompany him at another show a few months later, Axis: Sova played instead, effectively ending Mass Shivers and shifting the full-time focus onto the new solo project. The name came from that summer's fascination with Jimi Hendrix's 1967 psych-rock masterwork Axis: Bold as Love.
Working alone on recordings at first, Sova's first output with the new project came in 2011 with the (I Feel Like) Laying Low 7" on his own vanity label, Licking River. Songs recorded the same year materialized in 2012 on the debut full-length Weight of a Color. Past the Edge, a more Suicide-informed 7" on Richie Records, showed up the next year, and in 2014 a cassette album titled Worse Fools Cease to Be a Shadow showed up, the first full-band recordings from a newly expanded studio lineup of Axis: Sova. Before that, all recordings had been made completely by Sova, with a revolving crew of friends assisting him only in the live setting. The mellow psych-rock explorations of Worse Fools Cease to Be a Shadow were largely improvised.
Axis: Sova played several opening sets on a tour that fall with Ty Segall, and in early 2015 Segall's God Records released their sophomore LP, Early Surf. This was swiftly followed by the fuller-sounding Motor Earth in 2016. Settling on a lineup of Sova, guitarist Tim Kaiser, and bassist Jeremy Freeze, Axis: Sova recorded Shampoo You live to tape, and the album was released in 2018. ~ Fred Thomas & Paul Simpson