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What’s “Moksha?” It’s the Hindi word for “liberate” - and it’s also the name of an incredible new band that has blown up out of the Las Vegas music scene. “Moksha is the real deal” said Beatplay, while Las Vegas Citylife noted their ability to put out “unpretentious, fun sway-able funk jams.” Even Travel Nevada sounded in on their neighbor, citing, “Moksha combines modern sound with that of classic New Orleans for a huge jam session that pleases every crowd.”
Life began for Moksha in the hot summer of 2007, when a handful of musicians drawn together by a common love of funk, rock and jazz formed under one flag. Bassist John Heishman and guitarist Jeremy Parks were in a local band when they joined musical forces with drummer Pat Gray. Keyboardist Brian Triola sat in with the band, and Moksha’s musical seeds were planted.
Moksha quickly gained a reputation for the energy and appeal of their live shows. “We like to put on a show that we would want to go to,” said Parks of the band’s noteworthy live performance, which Heishman describes as “a high energy, swampy dance party.”
In 2010, after doing a ton of live shows, both locally and on the West Coast, Moksha hooked up with guitar legend Brian Stoltz (Neville Brothers, Bob Dylan and more) to record Mammal or Machine armed with a sound that the Las Vegas Weekly lauded “can only be described as unstoppable, while Getexposedmusic.com called Mammal or Machine “a sound we can all groove on.” The same year, Moksha took home the award for “Best Alternative Progressive Band” at the Vegas Rocks! Award show.
2010 also saw the band add vocalist Sam Lemos as a permanent member after having previously worked with him as a guest vocalist on Mammal or Machine. Four years prior, Lemos worked with Triola and Gray in Vav Ohm and several jazz projects. With Lemos in place, the new line-up of Moksha was complete.
In 2011, the band entered the studio with four-time Grammy Award winning engineer/mixer James “Bonzai” Caruso to record their current album, Here to Go. “Overall, Here to Go seems to be a bit more cohesive,” says Triola, adding, “being able to track together for every song was huge for us since the live dynamic is so important for the kind of music we make.”
Here to Go is slated for a July 2011 release. Moksha plans to hit the road in support of the 13-track album.