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The Family Crest

Spearheaded by frontman and leader Liam McCormick, the San Francisco-based orchestral indie rock outfit the Family Crest originally began as an experiment in trying to connect a music community. Looking to record with whoever wanted to be part of the project, McCormick, along with co-founder John Seeterlin, reached out through flyers, friends, and the internet, recording music with anyone who responded and piecing it together to create the band's debut EP, 2010's Songs from the Valley Below. With the project beginning to attract attention, McCormick and Seeterlin decided to try and make their experiment into a full-fledged band. Though hundreds of musicians have performed with them, the Family Crest has a core of seven members, made up of McCormick and Seeterlin, as well as flutist Laura Bergmann, drummer Charlie Giesige, tenor trombone player George Samaa, violinist Owen Sutter, and cellist Charly Akert. With a lineup in place, the band followed up with a second album, The Village, in 2012. Their crowd-funded third album, Beneath the Brine, arrived in 2014, launching the band onto the Billboard Heatseekers chart in the number 16 slot. They returned in 2017 with the Prelude to War EP, which set the stage for the concept album War: Act I, released in 2018. Conceived while working on The Village, it was inspired by personal conflict rather than literal political division.
© Gregory Heaney /TiVo
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