This very first curation has been compiled for us by Douglas Dare. You can listen to tracks and find out more about his eight selected albums below.
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This week, London-based singer-songwriter Douglas Dare has released his debut album Whelm on Erased Tapes. We dig it. With the piano at the core, Dare vocalises his short prose and poems to a backdrop of drums, electronics and brass. It's an album that is both intimate and an expansive listen. But don't take our word for it alone, you can stream it in full below.
Douglas Dare's 'Whelm' album has an official release show this week (16th May) at Birthdays, Dalston. Tickets are available here.
St Vincent - St Vincent I love how Annie has gone more towards the heavier sound we heard in her 2012 Record Store Day release, Krokodil. She's also clearly been influenced by her most recent collaboration with David Byrne. I really enjoy the story telling in this album especially on tracks like Prince Johnny and I Prefer Your Love.
Warpaint - Warpaint On first listen I was missing the "songs", I felt like it was all vibe - beautifully honed in vibe, but missing good songs. After a few listens I really started to get in to this record. Unlike a lot of the other music I listen to, I can hear them playing their instruments in the practice room and feel there's a real tangible feel to the album. I'm pleased they didn't loose this on the second album.
Atoms For Peace - Amok I think I love everything that Thom Yorke touches but this really is special, even though it came out a good while ago I honestly listen to this album every week. Will all of both Yorke's and Radiohead's output I feel there's so much to go back to and discover even after years of listening. The arrangements on this record are perfect and Thom Yorke's voice is truly the only male voice that I love.
Anna Calvi - One Breath I'm only really a fan of a select few of the songs on this record, but the one's I do listen to I love! Sing to Me is work of art in my ears. It's anthemic and just a very well written song. I appreciate the simplicity of both the lyric and the arrangement. Anna's delivery is restrained on this track and that's how I prefer her voice.
Goldfrapp - Tales of Us I loved Goldfrapp's first album Felt Mountain and this record harps back to that in someways. The mood of this album continues effortlessly throughout and it's the sort of album I like to listen to from beginning to end. Annabel is beautifully sung and I feel it's one of those songs where the melody perfectly matches the lyric. This song was found not written.
Nils Frahm - Spaces I was lucky enough to hear this album be performed live countless times whilst on tour with Nils but I still listen to it at home regularly. The control and the freedom in Nils' work is something that boggles me and tracks like Says set me in this dreamlike state that I never want to leave. Love it.
Tune-Yards - Nikki Nack I've been waiting for Tune-Yards to release another record for what feels like forever! Meryl is in incredible singer and her melodies remind me why songs exist and why we sing. This record is so visceral with my favourite track being The Water Fountain that just makes me want to sing and dance. I need albums like this to soundtrack my upbeat days.
Dave Brubeck - Time Out I grew up hearing my mum playing these tracks but I've only recently gotten back in to this. Brubeck's tracks were the first pieces that taught be about feeling something other that 4 beats in the bar. His effortless movement through irregular time signatures is so inspiring and this album is like exercise for my musical brain.
https://driftrecords.com/products/douglas-dare-whelm304976417Douglas Dare - Whelm//cdn.shopify.com/s/files/1/0161/8690/products/download_d7961c7b-e0b3-4469-8cff-c788565f533a_large.jpeg?v=1526971760//cdn.shopify.com/s/files/1/0161/8690/products/download_d7961c7b-e0b3-4469-8cff-c788565f533a_medium.jpeg?v=152697176010.99GBPOutOfStockDouglas Dare2014 Half Time ReviewDouglas DareEaster 2016Erased TapesIndie & AlternativeMay '14 ForecastMusic Released in 2014SALE2016London-based singer-songwriter Douglas Dare releases his debut album Whelm on Erased Tapes. With the piano at the core, Dare vocalises his short prose and poems to a backdrop of drums, electronics and brass"_
It was in November last year that the duo Douglas Dare and producer/percussionist Fabian Prynn decided to record an album, and by January they were listening to it. Finding themselves out of the home-studio for the first time, the pair recorded much of the album in Flood's studio Assault & Battery in West London. Other touches were recorded back in Fabian's home. With the comfort of familiar songs from his live set, such as Clockwork, Caroline and London's Rose, the session was equally driven by the excitement of creating brand new tracks like Nile, Swim and Unrest in a new environment.
The recordings began with finding the perfect piano - a grand piano, battered and bruised, but with a beautiful sound. Flood's studio provided a treasure trove of gear, including Dare's favourite new instrument, the Mini Moog, which inspired bass parts on tracks like Unrest. Prynn engineered, produced and mixed the record, and with just the two of them involved from start to finish, their vision for the album remained clear and unclouded.
Lyrically, Whelm is often written from other people's perspectives, with a few of the songs stemming from historical events. London's Rose for example came from a poem Douglas wrote about the use of underground stations as bomb shelters during WWII; whilst Whitewash addresses the Magdalene Laundries in Ireland, and Clockwork was inspired by the Antikythera Mechanism, an ancient analogue computer found in the ocean. Despite the weight to some of these subjects, Dare has always enjoyed the use of plain language that is simple and very human. Most of his songs begin with words, as it's the stories that inspire the music.