The Flux is a quintet of musical veterans who have come together to create high-energy music with a positive message. Blending progressive jam rock, Afro-Cuban rhythms, and funk, they have forged a style that amazes the trained musical ear while still remaining highly danceable and appealing to the casual listener.
Since their genesis in early 2005, The Flux has electrified the West Coast scene from their home in Berkeley, California. In that time they’ve shared the stage with bands such as Vinyl, Blue Turtle Seduction, Sol-Jibe, Delta Nove, and the K23 Orchestra, building a devoted fan base attracted to their combination of quality compositions and a bit of on-stage silliness.
The Flux released their debut CD ‘Burst’ in October 2006, with a blow-out party at the Ashkenaz in Berkeley. The 10 song collection runs the gamut from funky dance tunes (O Anna, Love is a Wave, Sorcerers of Funk) to Caribbean grooves (Downhill, Feed) to epic Afroprog explorations (Aloft, Subterranean Refuge). The progressive music underlies a progressive message: an appeal for social and environmental justice and self-empowerment. The songs on ‘Burst’ urge the listener to “Feed your hopes, not your fears”, and proclaim that, though our situation sometimes looks bleak, we still have the ability to change the world through our collective everyday decisions.
The five members of The Flux each bring a unique contribution to the band’s sound. After studying neo-classical composition, Joe Balestreri developed his strong lead vocals and sublime guitar style with Midwestern jam band Torque. Recently, Balestreri has enjoyed stints with Zigaboo Modeliste, Albino!, and Congolese guitar master Samba Ngo. He is joined by Phil Gorman on keyboards/vocals/trumpet, another classically trained composer with serious jazz chops. After composing musicals for several years, Phil now aims to turn the rock show into a theater piece. Percussionist Matt “Smitty” Smith has spent 12 years developing his amazing 4-limb Afro-Cuban technique, including 6 months training with master drummers in Ghana. Smitty has performed from NY to SF with groups such as Mojive, Josh Jones Ensemble, and Albino!. On drum set, Brian Huston brings an explosive and fluid beat, refined at the Berkelee School of Music and countless rock, pop, and Latin fusion projects on the East Coast. He, like Smitty, has studied drumming extensively in Ghana, and the two lock together with the precision that only a decade of playing side by side can bring. Rounding out the rhythm section is bassist Ryan Lukas, a graduate of the Crane School of Music proficient in all styles of music from jazz, to classical, to rock and funk. He is a serious composer as well, having won the Music for Miracles songwriting contest in 2004.
Solid grooves, intelligent lyrics, innovative arrangements, positive energy… that’s what their fans expect and what The Flux delivers!