Yossarian to play Smash Palace

NO CATCH: Eclectic collective Yossarian have stripped down to a high-powered three-piece to bring their stadium-friendly, alt-rock sound to Smash Palace, having last performed in Gisborne two years ago. Picture supplied

In Joseph Heller’s satirical novel Catch 22, B-25 bombardier Yossarian runs in circles (figuratively speaking) as he tries to escape the military’s no-win bureaucracy.

Now, UK band Yossarian are about to make a full circle themselves as they prepare to descend on Gisborne with their stadium-rocking sound one year after they last performed here.

Stripped back to a three-piece for their world tour, Yossarian will perform songs from their soon to be released third album All These Fictions as well as numbers from The Little We Know (2013) and Light Up My Head (2015). The alt-rock collective’s first two albums blend string, brass and percussion sections with synthesisers and electronic sounds.

Yossarian’s bottled-up pulse, pop riffs and moody vocals have been likened to that of stadium-friendly acts such as Grizzly Bear, The National and even Pink Floyd.

On their website, the band describes its sound as a blend of “post-rock sensibilities with a quixotic sentiment to create a sky-scraping epic sound laden with accelerating electric guitar atmospherics and orchestral layers.”

Touring as a three-piece, the band manages to bring that anthemic, lighter-waving atmosphere to the stage and rock it out at the same time.

“Like a millennial Syd Barrett, Yossarian make music to express a kind of lunacy,” enthuses British rock mag NME.

“Majestic alt-rock for fans of Joy Division, The National, and Pink Floyd,” hails London listings magazine Time Out.

“Yossarian will take you on a beautiful journey,” waxes the BBC.

“Their sound is like a gathering storm fighting against a calm ocean.”

The band’s song No Body Designs (from the EP Three Songs, Yossarian’s first release) brings to mind the under-the-Berlin-wall inspired existentialism of Velvet Underground, their experimental, electronic big-brain, Brian Eno, with a smattering of Nick Cave.

Rollicking guitar and keyboard-driven piece Electric Fields comes with hints of Pink Floyd’s more aerial, cloud-watching songs Wot’s ... Uh the Deal, and San Tropez.

Yossarian (the band) first came to prominence when it opened Hop Farm Festival in 2012. The majestic alt-rock band launched two albums, crowdfunded with the help of a loyal fan base. Yossarian has since played at festivals across the UK and Europe, been a featured artist on BBC Introducing, had their music synced to the likes of a ski film soundtrack and an advert for UNICEF. They also embarked on a world tour.

In Heller’s 1961 novel, Yossarian is an American anti-war airman who must prove he is crazy to get out of the war. The book is about the absurdity of war and how everything is a social construct, the band’s guitarist Joaquin Rodriguez San Pedro told the Guide in 2016.

“The way we relate to it is: reality is the construct we use to justify notions that are unreal.

“In a way, the music industry reflects that. We want to choose what we do.”


In Joseph Heller’s satirical novel Catch 22, B-25 bombardier Yossarian runs in circles (figuratively speaking) as he tries to escape the military’s no-win bureaucracy.

Now, UK band Yossarian are about to make a full circle themselves as they prepare to descend on Gisborne with their stadium-rocking sound one year after they last performed here.

Stripped back to a three-piece for their world tour, Yossarian will perform songs from their soon to be released third album All These Fictions as well as numbers from The Little We Know (2013) and Light Up My Head (2015). The alt-rock collective’s first two albums blend string, brass and percussion sections with synthesisers and electronic sounds.

Yossarian’s bottled-up pulse, pop riffs and moody vocals have been likened to that of stadium-friendly acts such as Grizzly Bear, The National and even Pink Floyd.

On their website, the band describes its sound as a blend of “post-rock sensibilities with a quixotic sentiment to create a sky-scraping epic sound laden with accelerating electric guitar atmospherics and orchestral layers.”

Touring as a three-piece, the band manages to bring that anthemic, lighter-waving atmosphere to the stage and rock it out at the same time.

“Like a millennial Syd Barrett, Yossarian make music to express a kind of lunacy,” enthuses British rock mag NME.

“Majestic alt-rock for fans of Joy Division, The National, and Pink Floyd,” hails London listings magazine Time Out.

“Yossarian will take you on a beautiful journey,” waxes the BBC.

“Their sound is like a gathering storm fighting against a calm ocean.”

The band’s song No Body Designs (from the EP Three Songs, Yossarian’s first release) brings to mind the under-the-Berlin-wall inspired existentialism of Velvet Underground, their experimental, electronic big-brain, Brian Eno, with a smattering of Nick Cave.

Rollicking guitar and keyboard-driven piece Electric Fields comes with hints of Pink Floyd’s more aerial, cloud-watching songs Wot’s ... Uh the Deal, and San Tropez.

Yossarian (the band) first came to prominence when it opened Hop Farm Festival in 2012. The majestic alt-rock band launched two albums, crowdfunded with the help of a loyal fan base. Yossarian has since played at festivals across the UK and Europe, been a featured artist on BBC Introducing, had their music synced to the likes of a ski film soundtrack and an advert for UNICEF. They also embarked on a world tour.

In Heller’s 1961 novel, Yossarian is an American anti-war airman who must prove he is crazy to get out of the war. The book is about the absurdity of war and how everything is a social construct, the band’s guitarist Joaquin Rodriguez San Pedro told the Guide in 2016.

“The way we relate to it is: reality is the construct we use to justify notions that are unreal.

“In a way, the music industry reflects that. We want to choose what we do.”


Now on their second world tour, Yossarian will returns to perform at Smash Palace next week.
Yossarian, Smash Palace, Saturday February 17, 9pm. $10 at the door.

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