What began as a solo project by Adrian James
– known from his
work as designer and violinist of Evanescence
– is gathering steam as a live act, "Das Gift" (German for "The Poison"). Lurking in the spaces between alternative
genres, the music draws comparisons with acts including the Cure
and Pink Floyd
Das Gift has performed as a Pink Floyd tribute band
, headlining Little Rock's annual Halloween "Cover Up" event; and that well-received live set of Pink Floyd cover songs would snowball into the band's Pink Floyd tribute album
Independently released in 2007, the pensive debut
album features bilingual
lyrics, odd meters, and eclectic instrumentation – from piano to
and violin. Adrian James points to early albums by gothic music groups
Siouxsie and the Banshees
and the Cure
as inspiration for the pounding
tribal drums and pipe organ. Smooth vocal melodies and touching piano
ballads are woven through the symphonic album. Rising from the material are the singles, "Killing Jar
," "Das Gift
," "I'll Never Leave
" and the piano ballad "Beautiful Womyn
Das Gift's music is available through partners including iTunes
Das Gift Concerts Offer Little Rock a Unique Sound
Based in Little Rock
, James maintains his trademark melancholy-tinged vocal delivery for live shows, alternating between guitar, bass, keyboard and even drums. Lifelong collaborator and bass instructor, Zach Carpenter
performs on six-string bass. Taran Ware
provides the band's signature pounding drum sound. Sharla Emory
performs on sitar, flute and backing vocals. Robert Dickey
appears on bass, guitar and backing vocals.
With a growing international following – especially in the regional community of goth music groups – the band is based in Little Rock
and is currently booking. The show
usually features interpretations of the band's musical influences,
including the songs of indie and goth music groups the Cure
, Pink Floyd
, Nine Inch Nails
and Depeche Mode
"One of the better albums I have heard in some time, and that's no exaggeration… Well, WELL worth the wait… Certainly the most earnest and articulate lyrics of what I've seen lately. Highly recommended."
- Gothic Beauty Magazine
"Triply more interesting than [Evanescence]… James' voice seeps in like a velvet wind… Surpassed all of my expectations."
- Virus! Magazine
"Listening to this layered, remarkably realized vision, you wouldn't
suspect it to be the brainchild of just one person…sounds more like a
symphony in several movements than a collection of individual songs…
sneaks up on you and ingratiates itself."
- Localist Magazine
"The next Pink Floyd… I was transfixed through the entire album… It
was at some point in 'I'll Never Leave' that I started to cry. "
- Malice Radio
"AJ’s vocal delivery can be very emotionally penetrating. Only a really anthracite soul would fail to be touched."
.com, New York
"Das Gift is a blessing… a great composition of sound, musical structure, and lyrics worthy of a Triple Platinum."
- American Gothique
"Brings back the roots of Goth with a cathedral rock sound, dark
poetic lyrics with a very personal feel, and well-pronounced down tempo
"- DJ Infam0us of ReGen Magazine
"For a band dressed in all black on a 98-degree day, Das Gift is
actually a fun-loving bunch… Das Gift is fighting against the mundane
music that populates the FM dial."
- Sync Magazine
"Like a darker, goth-tinged version of early Peter Gabriel, progressive but catchy enough to attract a broad range of fans… melancholy and emotive enough for goths but
conceptual enough to appeal to progressive rock and pop fans, as well.
" - Grave Concerns
, New York