samedi 27 avril 2013

Click + Listen #43 : DARK DARK HORSE

From Leicester, UK

Dark Dark Horse - Ethics

Dark Dark Horse - Midnight Mass Acoustic

Dark Dark Horse ? If you're like me, you might think of a hard rock band or a psychedelic band who plays very dark songs... But sometimes you don't have to trust band names...  Hopefully, I was curious enough to check that that was a wrong first impression. I actually quite enjoyed the three songs at first listen : "Sharks", "Ethics" and "Mercury Nevada". If you like post-rock, instrumental, experimental and electronic music in the same kind of The Album Leaf, James Yuill, Kyte, Maps and The Postal Service, you might like this band. Let's have a listen !

Dark Dark Horse - Sharks

Dark Dark Horse - Mercury Nevada

Slow tempo, with electronic beats on 'Sharks' and gentle piano notes on 'Ethics'. Kind of smooth and ambiant songs, that you could listen to when it's raining outside.You can feel at the same time that their songs are simple and that the band worked a lot to mix all this instruments and these good sounds together.
The main person behind this new electronic project is Jamie Ward from Leicestershire, UK, who was a member of the band Kyte (interview on Drowned in The Sound) who supported the band I Like Trains. As I wasn't sure about some information I found on the Internet, a short interview with Jamie Ward in 2010 was a proper way not to write mistakes about the project.

Thank so much to Jamie for his patience and for answering a few questions!

Thank you for contacting me! I really enjoy your three songs on your MySpace ('Sharks', 'Ethics' and 'Mercury Nevada'). So, I'd like to know more about your project. Could you tell more about it?
Dark Dark Horse has been some time in its gestation. It's basically my first foray into making my own music. Before this I've been in a few bands including kyte, tired Irie and maybeshewill playing various instruments but have never been a principal songwriter. I started making some of the tracks while I was playing in Kyte (just for kicks really) but didn't find the singer James until after my time with the band. It was not until then that I began to take my electronic doodles seriously.

I noticed that Dark Dark Horse actually is a duo, you work with James Stafford (who is also part of the band Kids In Cars). Do you also work in other projects or play in other bands? If so, could you talk about them in a few words?
Perhaps something is lost in translation but dark dark horse refers to the project being a sort of unexpected underdog. A few of my friends were quite surprised when I told them I'd been working with a singer and had finished an album as I've never been known as a songwriter. I kept things close to my chest until I felt I'd created something special.

Who plays which instruments in Dark Dark Horse?
I also play bass in and produce maybeshewill. I'm just on my way back from a tour of the Russia and Ukraine. Some of their music is perhaps a little too rock orientated for me but the touring has been really fun and I'm looking forward to finishing up their third album.
Live I play drums in dark dark horse as that's my favourite instrument to play, James plays bass and sings, my cousin Joe Norledge plays guitar and at the moment robin from maybeshewill plays keys but his other commitments may prevent him from doing it in the future.

We have a gig coming up supporting maybeshewill at a Christmas show in Leicester but I'm trying to build more interest in the band before really taking to the road. 

A few words about your Japanese label, Rallye label (website / blog) ? I saw that they put out albums of many artists, like Au Revoir Simone, The Whitest Boy Alive, Rubies, Klaxons, South Central, Joy Formidable, Teenagers, Jeremy Warmsley, Violens, Tanlines, Kowalski, etc.
I'm really happy to be doing a release on Rallye. I met the owner fumi when touring japan with kyte and really admire the care he takes with presentation and also a lot of the bands on the label. 

Any future plans? 
In the future I'm looking to secure releases in the UK and Europe but I quite like the idea of releasing things as far away from home as possible first, I like the escapism that playing music so far away from home can offer.
To know more about Dark Dark Horse, check out these reviews:
Review by The Monograph
Review by Off The Radar
Review by Liquid Jesus

Discover other great artists on the CLICK+LISTEN series.
[27th April 2013 : edit of the post of 12th November 2010]