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The Seattle-based group Octant is named for its third member, a robotic drummer created by singer/songwriter/guitarist/keyboardist/inventor Matt Steinke. Also a member of Mocket and Satisfact, Steinke studied kinetic art and music at Evergreen State College and studied electronics after graduation. Wishing to combine all these disciplines, he began building the Octant, an automated collection of mallets bolted onto a drum kit; as it plays, it not only makes music but adds a visual element to the group's futuristic, appealingly off-kilter sound. Singers/keyboardist Tassy Zimmerman and clarinetist/turntablist Pierre Crutchfield are also a part of Octant's shows and albums. Octant's debut, Shock-No-Par, came in 1999 on the Up label. Car Alarms & Crickets followed a year later. ~ Heather Phares