It might be the love of warm beer or the unique pleasure of a late-night kebab, but whatever the reason Indie-folk quartet Darlingside will return to our shores for the third time in twelve months this June. The guys are superb live so don't miss the chance to catch them on their summer tour. Please read on for more about Darlingside and those essential dates:
Darlingside became the surprise hit of Cambridge Folk Festival when they made their UK debut there last year. After their performance on Stage 2, they stepped in for an absent headliner on Stage 1. Following a rapturously received set, their busking spot and album signing the following day became major events. The on-site CD stall quickly ran out of CDs and vinyl and their subsequent run of UK dates sold out in a flash. An equally well-received tour in January/February 2017 included the Celtic Connections Festival in Glasgow and a packed show at London’s Lexington.
UK Tour Dates:
22 Nottingham The Maze
25 Birmingham Hare and Hounds
26 Leicester Musician
28 Bury Met Arts Centre
29 Sheffield memorial Hall
30 York Crescent
2 Bristol The Lantern
3 London Union Chapel
This will be the band’s third trip to the U.K., where their unique live performances have been winning over audiences with a refreshing blend of skilled musicianship, seamless harmony vocals and between song patter that suggests an alternative career in stand-up comedy!
Frequently compared to The Byrds, Fleet Foxes, Simon and Garfunkel and CSN&Y and voted Folk Alliance Artist of the Year 2016, Darlingside’s adventurous sonic landscape, group vocals and wry intelligent lyrics defy easy categorisation.
On ‘Birds Say’, the Massachusetts-based quartet’s wide-open arrangements are marked by the skillful vocal interplay of the four singers. When bassist Dave Senft, guitarist and banjo player Don Mitchell, classical violinist and folk mandolinist Auyon Mukharji, and cellist and guitar picker Harris Paseltiner gather around a single microphone and let their richly-textured voices loose, they splash their melodies with a sunny melancholy that brings their lyrics to vibrant life. Subtle musical shadings take cues from folk, chamber pop, bluegrass, classical music, and modern indie rock, while aching harmonies are complemented by tones from the harmonium, frailing banjo, 12-string electric guitar, Wurlitzer, auto-chord organ, and grand piano.
Aside from their sound, one of the most unique aspects of Darlingside is their collaborative approach to songwriting. The band pools ideas and collectively edits and fine tunes songs. Each member sings lead and who plays what can shift from song to song.
The naming of the band reflects the humour, wordplay, and banter that the four close friends share on and off stage “Pesticide is used to kill pests. Fratricide is when you kill your brother,” explains Darlingside’s Dave Senft. “A former teacher of ours used to say ‘kill your darlings,’ which is to say, if you fall in love with something you’ve written you should cross it out. We like that idea and we thought a good name for it might be ‘darlingcide’, but we changed the ‘c’ to an ‘s’ because we’re not super into death.”
Friends for ten years, Darlingside met as students at Williams College and began writing and singing together. The songs that make up ‘Birds Say’ were assembled over the past three years in their kitchens and living rooms, on cabin retreats, and while visiting each other’s childhood homes. They recorded at Dimension Sound Studios in Boston with engineer and co-producer Dan Cardinal during the city’s snowiest month in history, the streets empty due to travel bans. Amid unexpected soundscapes, the songs remain familiar, looking backward and forward at the same time.