/ The band
In the autumn of 1999, guitarist/singer/composer Marcus Enochsson moved to Lund for his university studies. In December he met drummer Andreas Hanberger, who shared Marcus' interest in symphonic/progressive rock. Together with Marcus' relative Zache Enochsson (violinist/guitarist/singer) they formed a band.
In the beginning of the new millenium the band started to rehearse and made some attempts to play classic prog rock tunes such as King Crimson's Larks' Tongues in Aspic part II, Genesis' Cinema Show and Pink Floyd's Shine on you Crazy Diamond. After a while they included two of Marcus' compositions in the repetoire: the slightly harder Suffocation and the more funky We could love each other.
Unfortunately Andreas suddenly reconsidered his priorities and quit the band to focus on his studies, which more or less forced Marcus and Zache to temporarily dissolve the band.
But sometimes fortunate coincidences occur. In November 2000 Marcus came in contact with bassist Ambjörn Furenhed, who also lived in Lund, on a internet forum for King Crimson fans. Suddenly the band was reincarnated!
Telepilot 380 at Laurentie Stiftelsen, Lund, 2001-12-19.
In early 2001 the band decided to call themselves Telepilot 380, which originally was a name of a television remote control and also a rejected band name from Ambjörn's earlier projects.
Zache's neighbour was chosen to play keyboards. But since he never showed up at any rehearsal, the rest of the band soon considered him as an ex-member. Luckily Marcus met Martin Nilsson, who later accepted to become the keyboard player in the band.
Finding a drummer proved to be the hardest challenge. In pure desperation they recruited Scott Eisenberg, an American bongo player, to add some rhythmic foundation to the band.
In September Andreas Hanberger confessed that he had missed the band and decided to come back.
A demo recording with the cheesy title I jakten på ditt hjärta ("Aiming for your heart") was recorded, in an attempt to be accepted at a demo band evening at a club in Lund. Since the demo was rejected, the band arranged their first gig by themselves instead, just before Christmas, in the meeting-hall of the Laurentii Foundation (where the band had earlier rehearsed a few times). This was the last time Scott played with the band.
When spring came, Marcus went to study in Paris, and Telepilot 380 was temporarly put on ice. At the same time Andreas got a job in Gothenburg and moved there. Fortunately Ambjörn came in contact with drummer Christer Ugglin who even had access to a rehearsal room! So when Marcus returned in the autumn, the band began to rehearse some old songs but also some more epic and mature compositions that had been written in Paris, such as Shadow Dance and The Problem. Then once again, another member quit the band when Zache wanted to focus on other parts of life.
Telepilot 380 at Ulrikedahl, Lund, 2003-10-17.
For the first time ever, the band gained a sense of stability and belief in the future. The band rehearsed more regularly and they managed to get more gigs.
Telepilot 380 at Delphi Pub, Lund, 2003-12-18.
The spring of 2004 was dedicated to the recording and mixing of ten songs from the repetoire. But only four songs (Leaving, The Problem, Shadow Dance, Wallrunner) were chosen for the demo album, The Problem, which was released in June. This was also the last thing Ambjörn did before he moved to Åtvidaberg for a job as a teacher.
Fortunately, Ambjörn had a very good replacement up his sleeve. Markus Nilsson, Ambjörn's bandmate from the disbanded Fin Ungdom, became the new bass player. Shortly afterwards, Martin came up with the idea of adding a dedicated vocalist to the band. Martin's neighbour, Calle Lennartsson, was a superb singer and would perhaps be interested in joining the band. Since Marcus liked the thought of being able to focus more on the guitar, and wasn't too pleased with his own singing on The Problem, Calle was invited to the band.
TP3 at Caf Athen, Lund, 2005-11-07.
To declare the changes of the band's new direction and sound, Telepilot 380 was shortened to TP3 and even a slick logo was introduced to promote the new name. Once again, there was some sense of stability and belief in the future. The band rehearsed more often and had its best gig so far at Kajplats 305 in Malmö.
With some new songs added to the repetoire, such as An idiot and Bright future, it was time to record another demo album. During a few hot summer days, Marcus and Christer recorded the drums for seven songs which were to be included in the upcoming demo album Still not making love (referring to their old slogan "Make music, not love").
But as several times before, when the future seemed to be quite bright, another member left the band. There was a big setback when Martin declared his unability to combine the music with his work as a practising doctor. But the band continued the recordings for the demo album and also rehearsed some new songs, while looking for a new keyboard player.
Signing up for Emergenza - an international music competition for unsigned bands - turned out to be one of the best things that had happened to the band. But first of all, the band had to find a permanent replacement for Martin before Emergenza's regional qualifying round in March. A renewed search with an ad at a musicians web site turned out to be succesful. Mathias Beckius, who recently had moved down to Landskrona (not far from Lund), answered the ad and was invited to the band's weekly rehearsal. After just 20 minutes of playing, Marcus declared (without consulting the other members) that Mathias should become the new keyboard player. TP3 was once again able to perform with a full lineup, but this time with a new and lusher sound.
TP3 advanced from the qualifying round and the semifinals, and was ready for the regional final round (just one step from the national final). 54 band had entered the regional competition, and TP3 was one of the 12 bands that made it to the final, which was going to be arranged the 27th of May at the major rock club KB in Malmö.
The unexpected success brought joy and some pressure to rehearse more often and efficiently, which tightened up the new line-up. Though the band failed to qualify to the Swedish final, TP3 gave the enthusiastic audience a good performance, enhanced by the professional light shows and lots of adrenaline pumping. This became a very special night in the band's history!
During the spring Still not making love was released to promote the band. It was sent out to some progressive rock record companies and somehow generated a bit of interest from Hansi Cross, the manager of the Swedish record label Progress Records. Just before the autumn he offered the band a record deal. He also adviced TP3 to change the band's name. After a couple of weeks with lots of discussions, the name was finally changed to Soniq Circus. The self titled debut album would include improved versions of four songs released earlier on Still not making love (Welcome, Bright Future, Revolution, An Idiot) and three new compositions (Overture, Chain of Consequences, Colliding Stars).
With the new status as a signed band, Soniq Circus got together with Beardfish and Progress Records colleagues Violent Silence in December to play at Tantogården in Stockholm.
For the first time the band played for an audience consisting of mainly progressive rock fans.
However, Soniq Circus are on the Swedish prog rock scene to stay, and with the attention gained through their debut album, they surely have a promising future ahead...