AOTW: Dark Dark Dark

It’s a dark rainy night on the streets of Paris circa 1910 and your love has just left you for good…no wait! That’s not right… it is America and it is 2010. But there’s no reason to nitpick about such things when the music you’re hearing has you so enraptured in a time and place gone by. The experimental sextet Dark Dark Dark is so effective at painting a forlorn dripping canvas of antiquated beauty  that it is easy to get wrapped up in the reflection. And one can imagine that that is precisely what Dark Dark Dark wants.

The Minneapolis-based group has members from New York and New Orleans. Arguably two of the most musically inclined cities in the country. With the Big Apple’s theatrics and the beauty of the Big Easy’s multi- tentacled musical history Dark Dark Dark is a show within a show. Appropriate to the atmospheric melancholia, piano and violin are writ large here. Phantom of the opera-esque melodies drive vocalist Nona Marie Invie down meandering pathways. The curious thing about these guys (and gal) is that they somehow sound simultaneously heartfelt and offhanded. Invie sings like the words are just occurring to her. It’s like a sing-song inner monologue on a slow lazy walk home. But trust there is nothing spontaneous or haphazard going on here. The precision, like placement of creeping piano keys and stirring violins is all meticulously preconfigured to be sure. It is a commonly annoying trait of the talented to make their work seem effortless.

The group has just released a new album entitled Wild Go courtesy of Supply and Demand records. The second in their discography belt. The band’s first album The Snow Magic was released in 2008 and somewhere along the line they also put out a self-titled 7” of remixes. The track “Daydreaming” evokes a less electronica inclined Radiohead with clear evenly- strewed female vocals, somewhat reminiscent of Bat For Lashes’ Natasha Khan.

Dark Dark Dark doesn’t mask their intent, they are moody, cinematic, at times bordering on tragic. They are a contemporary melancholic study on all things missed, lost, or shrouded in the light of every day. The commonplace becomes remarkably infused with weight. Dark Dark Dark is probably best characterized as psychedelic folk, or weird America if you prefer. However, labels can be limiting and this band is better heard than described.

And, here’s your chance (to hear their sound live)…  Ahhh, sorry New York, just missed em’ but for the rest of the free world…

Dark Dark Dark Tour Dates

October 18- Space Gallery- Portland, ME
October 19- The Temple- Boston, MA
October 24- AS220- Providence, RI
October 28- Helter Skelter- Pittsburgh, PA

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– Amanda Decker

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