Formed in 2008 in the suburbs of Seoul, Apollo 18 has risen to the top of Korea’s independent music scene the old fashioned way: by devoting themselves to crafting powerful and expressive music.
On their latest EP Black, the trio combines emotive Texas is the Reason-style post-hardcore with celestial post-rock in the mode of Explosions in the Sky. They keep the guitars silvery and the spirit wistful, even when churning through a mathy breakdown. On past releases they’ve played a little rougher, experimenting with Mars Volta shredding, Galaxy Express raging, and Coheed and Cambria progging-out, sometimes all at once. This can be a lot to process in a live setting. Awed bloggers routinely come away from their shows raving breathlessly, as if they’d seen an actual moon mission depart.
For their efforts, Apollo 18 has garnered slots at festivals in Korea, Japan, Taiwan, and the US, and took home Rookie of the Year from the 2010 Korean Music Awards. Continually pushing on and refining their sound, the hard-working outfit is now working on another album, with a big date to support Blonde Redhead in May. Watch as they continue their ascent: