Circular Reasoning is an unconventional old-school retrofitting from the fertile grounds of the Seattle music scene. The project was conceived on a rainy night in Lynnwood, Washington in 2011 when keyboardist and vocalist Mikko Nynäs was visited by Rick James in a dream and presented with a series of cohesive and well-constructed arguments about why the band should exist. The project has since spiraled into an adulteration of trippy soul and funk music, drawing from the uninhibited worlds of early-70’s psychedelic soul and British prog rock. Included in their sound are nods to the transcendent grooves of old-school funk legends like the Ohio Players and Heatwave, and the powerful soundscapes of hard-hitting progressive groups like Yes and Camel. With these influences and lyrics that range from moderately sincere to wholly sarcastic, Circular Reasoning does their damnedest to delay the inevitability of replacement by sophisticated song-writing bots.
Having released a debut album in 2016, today they romp about the Seattle area spewing tidings of their fresh grooves and unorthodox lyrical musings for the listening pleasure of those who least expect it. They en route to a second feature-length record, Simple Music for Simple Times, slated for release in 2024.
“Remember,” said Rick on that fateful night, “All you need are some solid grooves, heavy punches, and some pretentious descriptions and liner notes.”
Mikko Nynäs, keyboardist, vocalist, and composer, can be found scribbling music in ballpoint pen on the backs of coasters in various smoky Seattle-area dive bars.
Raucous guitar is provided by Jim Sloan, who can be found on his porch smoking fine Indian tobacco and thinking about amps, effects pedals, and particle physics.
Bassist David Murray can be found stuck in gridlocked traffic cussing a blue streak with the music blasting and just the back passenger’s-side window rolled down.
Industrious funky frameworks are provided on the tubs by drummer Tai Taitano, who can occasionally be found reading about philosophy on a park bench while enjoying the ambience of chirping birds.
Saxophonist Charlie Phillips, who can be found on the beach clam-digging and deriving musical inspiration from the crashing of waves, the smell of saltwater, and… whatever sounds clams make.