Modcast #173: Darkside

Guitar and effects maestro Dave Harrington is well versed in the art of orchestrating arresting soundtracks. Switching from a mournful Nick Drake cover to classical inspired house within the opening minutes, the Darkside member applies his performing musician principles to DJing with this captivating Modcast that pulls you in instantly. He even found a minute to discuss pop song structures vs improvisation and his Olympic pin collection with us below.

Don't miss Harrington and Nicolas Jaar's Darkside perform at The Hi-Fi in Sydney on April 2 and Melbourne's Palace Theatre on April 4. Both shows supported by Movement. Tickets are running low and additional dates will not be announced. The Modular released 'Psychic' is now available in Australia via I-Tunes and all good record stores.

Allowing the Psychic material to spontaneously evolve night to night, is there a particular track that's the most fun to perform?

For us the most exciting thing is that we're finding new moments and new ideas in all of these songs and night to night we find different things in different songs. Every night we discover something new.

I remember likening Paper Trails to Dire Straits after hearing it in the studio, then retreating in my seat thinking I'd offended you. Do you have a guilty pleasure guitar hero? Please tell me its Mark Knopfler.

I'm definitely not offended! Honestly I don't really believe in the idea of guilty pleasures when it comes to music - if you love something you shouldn't feel guilty about it!

Was there a pivotal moment in your musical upbringing that set you down the path you're on today?

I was very lucky to have some incredible teachers growing up and studying jazz in NYC so I really have them to thank - Kelvyn Bell, Brad Jones, JD Parran, and Daniel Bernard Roumain. They exposed me to such great music and taught me to improvise and that's what I love most about playing music.

The Visuals EP that you and Nico produced was really cool. Hearing this wonky pop music and your treatment of Daft Punk, how do you balance an interest in structured song and free music?

For me those two ways of approaching music really inform one another and in a way balance each other out. When those kinda of seemingly disparate musics can begin to speak to one another and change the way you think about ideas of structure, melody, and harmony interesting things can happen.

How do you spend your days off on tour? Do any recent inspirational sights come to mind

On a recent off day we were in Missoula, Montana which is David Lynch's hometown and it was his birthday AND they were showing episodes of Twin Peaks at the local movie theater so of course we watched Twin Peaks! The day before that we went to Mount Rushmore - it was a pretty trippy few days.

Have you seen any films recently that you'd care to recommend?

I've been re-watching Orson Welles' F For Fake which is this amazing, strange, meta-quasi-documentary about Elmyr d'Hory and Clifford Irving and art forgery and magic.

Do you collect anything?

When I was younger my dad worked for CBS when they covered the Olympics so I have this strange collection of Olympic pins.

The mix includes a few of your own remixes and edits, even a new solo track. Were these created specifically for the Modcast?

Yes! The first track is a cover of a Nick Drake songs that I made with Tamara - a vocalist who also sang on a remix I did of one of Nico's songs. Also the last track is a kind of a cover I did of this John Scofield song Holidays from a live album called Out Like A Light. That's one of my favorite songs of all time and one of the simplest most beautiful chord progressions ever. Both of these were made specifically for the modcast.


Nick Drake - Things Behind the Sun (Tamara cover)
The Range - Everything But
Terje Rypdal - Silver Bird is Heading for the Sun (DH remix)
Metrika - Jeel K'eex (DH instrumental edit)
Laurie Anderson - Commencement Address (DH cut-up)
Empress Of - Realize You (DH edit)
Gang Gang Dance - House Jam (Benoit & Sergio remix)
Sun Glitters - Mouth (Shigeto remix)
Braids - Amends (DH remix)
The Knife - Without You My Life Would Be Boring (DH instrumental edit)
Sex Mob - Quiet (DH edit)
Ricard Villalobos - Ichso
Frankie Rose - Pair Of Wings
David Lynch - In Heaven Everything is Fine
DH - Holidays

January 30, 2014 at 11:00am in modcast



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