Say it aloud. Kaz-yak.

Let it spring from your mouth. Kazyak. And, in saying it, you can’t quite decide if it’s made up or not.

Like the word, Kazyak’s music has the feeling of being composed and improvised. But it’s not simply the presence of both composition and improvisation that makes the music shine – it’s the blending of the two: A slipping in between planned and spontaneity. Sometimes what is composed wanders and gambols into improvisational territory, and sometimes what is improvised comes together so well that it may as well have been composed.

All Kazyak songs are primarily folk songs, brought to life in the studio and on stage. The sound is grounded in authentic sentiment that is infectious, warm and overflowing. The lyrics are often abstract, but they never wander into absurdity. Each song is direct, evocative and natural. The songs are snapshots, threads in a tapestry and though you never get the sense that there’s a rigid theme or set of rules to the story, you can’t help but feel that each song is connected on multiple levels.

Kazyak's beginning is cloudy. It may have started in a basement practice room in central Minnesota. You could argue it happened on the road in 2008, somewhere in the middle of America while the group drove to their new home in Austin, TX. Maybe it was somewhere on the road home to Minnesota in 2010. However you look at it, it existed before anyone knew to put a name on it.

Kazyak began as a dive into the unknown, and it often feels like it's still diving: becoming more itself by plumbing deeper into its curious, expressive, and experimental personality. From its earliest days, Kazyak has been about learning to listen, both to others and to one's self. It was the time spent in the practice room, in the car, and continuously making a sound that challenged the group to listen both harder and softer. The music is a revival, pairing a vibe level rarely seen today with the flavor of sound that peaked several decades ago, when mainstream music didn’t shy away from truthful, honest expression and feel.

Upon arriving in Austin in 2008, the outfit spent a year writing enough material for three albums and started two in-house recording projects: A Beautiful Brontosaurus (Kazyak’s debut album) and Rorrimirror (Kazyak's storybook album). After returning to Minnesota in 2010, releasing their first record, and spending a year on the road playing more than 100 live shows, the group made a difficult decision to stop touring. As difficult as the days were that followed, it was not the end. Instead, it was the beginning of a new chapter in Kazyak’s story.

After a brief period of hibernation, guitarist/songwriter Peter Frey decided to continue the project and create a new record. The record, titled “See the Forest, See the Trees,” was created in the midst of the transition and is about “a problem that is only aggravated by attempts to solve it.”
January 3, 2013 by Monica Millsap Rasmussen


See the Forest, See the Trees
April 8, 2013

'Pieces of My Map' - Free MP3 Download
April 16, 2013 by Cameron Matthews

'Part I: Rabbiting Fox' - Post
April 3, 2013 by Sean Delanty

'Pieces of My Map' - Post
March 23, 2013 by AlphaWolf

KDHX Indie Song of the Day 
March 14, 2013

High Res Press Images

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Press Releases

Kazyak announces See the Forest, See the Trees release
May 14, 2013
(One Pager)

Album Art

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