As the music world transitions from the physical nature of CDs and vinyl into the digital age of mp3s, art is most often the casualty in its wake. Gone are the days of staring at album art and reading lyrics and liner notes on release day. It has been replaced by iTunes, torrent sites and JPEG searches on Google. It’s rare to find a band in Los Angeles that puts art at the forefront of its music, but such is the nature of progressive rockers KOLM.

Born out of a necessity to create psychedelic, progressive and ambient music in the vein of King Crimson, Tool and the Melvins and a desire to express art through different mediums, KOLM exists as a band that merges ethereal concepts of time, space and humanity with thought-provoking complex rhythms and sonic landscapes.

“We wanted to put art before anything else. Obviously with the length of our songs, we’re not trying to do anything mainstream. We’re just trying to be creative, and we’ve also always had the idea of integrating the music with visuals or any kind of art. We’ve performed with painters before. I guess we think of it almost as score or soundtrack music, in a way,” frontman, guitarist and keyboardist Giorg Yela states.

Comprised of Yela, Mikal Baker (drums, electronics) and David Gonzalez (bass), KOLM incorporates elements from Sacred Geometry (used in many ancient structures) in its symbology and identity.

“[Sacred Geometry is] a really subjective thing; it can get kind of weird when people are explaining it. Pretty much, it’s recognition of the reoccurring patterns that make up our reality. You can look at anything from the human body, to plants, to animal migratory patterns, to the topography of our planet and realize that they all have these same geometric, mathematical patterns that keep popping up,” Baker says.

Their EP album art is based off the Flower of Life. It’s a symbol that is constantly used in Sacred Geometry. It can be found in isolated pyramids in Siberia, Egyptian temples and South American temples. Their take on the metaphysical adds to the profound nature of their music and lyrics.

KOLM’s unique identity stems from the various influences each band member brings to the table. Yela is a professed fan of King Crimson and the Melvins, while Gonzalez is more of an old school Metallica and Iron Maiden fan. Their music immediately elicits comparisons to Tool.

“We just live in that time where you have bands that have that same kind of sound that Muse and Tool have, with the technology that we have now,” Yela continues. “We listen to a lot of electronic music as well, and we want to incorporate that more and more to explore music in a way that neither one of us has really had the opportunity to.”

Although Yela and Baker have been in KOLM for over three years, Gonzalez has only been in the fold half as long. You wouldn’t really guess it from their chemistry.

“Music is such a language that I’m still learning, that I’m finding new ways to pull from all these different things and speak it through the music that I write,” Gonzalez continues. “I don’t put too much emphasis on the metaphysical per say, not that it’s not there to a certain degree when I write, but [I write] more strictly on feel and more about telling a story through the music.”

They’ve been a live act for over a year, headlining a Japan earthquake victims benefit art show/concert (Unnatural Disaster) in June with their friend, former band mate and artist Jacob “that really tall guy” Roanhaus. Another show, already dubbed Unnatural Alliance, with similar art exhibits in the vein of Los Angeles artists Chet Zar, Meats Meier and Lustmord. A date for Unnatural Alliance is still pending, but the hope is to create more “unnatural” events featuring local artists and musicians.

“We’ve had a lot of positive feedback in Los Angeles, and now it’s time to go beyond that,” Baker says.

KOLM performs July 6 at the Good Hurt. For more information, visit