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Darto – Photo Credit: Dusty Henry
Seattle-based experimental college rock band Darto have announced their new Fundamental Slime EP, which is being released via Aagoo Records, the same label that released their latest album Human Giving, and also The Limits of Men, the solo debut album of Darto frontman Nicholas Merz.
“Everyday Actor” is the second single from this EP, following “Brotherhood”. Both tracks see the band source a range of musical influences and vibes not previously explored. On “Everyday Actor”, the female vocals are a welcome surprise. It was a real delight to hear this track with its pulsating electronic baseline.
Formed in 2010, Darto is Gordon De Los Santos, Gregory Flores, Candace Harter, and Nicholas Merz. This album was self-recorded on April 12th through 14th on Whidbey Island at the Flores Roost. It was mixed by Steve Fisk (Screaming Trees, Nirvana, Soundgarden, Low, The Wedding Present) and mastered by April Golden (Soundgarden, Car Seat Headrest, Goat, Rob Zombie).
This EP as a whole ought to appeal to fans of Broadcast, Neu, Sunny Day in Glasgow, David Bowie, Mark Lanegan, Wand, and Father John Misty. Aagoo Records consistently releases good music, and this current EP upholds that high standard.
Continuing to broaden the scope of instrumentation allowed Darto to wander into new territory on this album. Working with saxophonist Neil Welch of groundbreaking Seattle jazz duo Bad Luck, the massively varied sonic qualities of the performance by a genius gave each song its own body – startling, confusing, soothing, airy, void, distant, deploring, and beautiful.
Darto’s Greg Flores explains, ““Brotherhood” is about power and dominance. Men in particular seem to protect their power with violence without ever questioning the reasons why they feel the need to protect power in the first place. The irony is that violent dominance is an ultimate display of weakness, and it’s a way to express insecurity while still maintaining power”.
“These songs share a similar theme of power and control, and speak from a variety of perspectives. We all sat down and co-wrote most of the lyrics together, each of us taking the lead on a different song. I really liked that process because it allowed for instant feedback and there were three other people helping me with putting ideas into words. I think this record touches on the shadow of what is happening in this world and how people are being mistreated. Overall, it’s just a record about misuse of power,” says Candace Harter.
Fundamental Slime is an observation on the darker end of the human-possibility spectrum. Ego, power, and nihilism are dissected from the viewpoint of various individuals struggling to dominate or be dominated. Where the lyrics give voice, the sounds give flesh.
Aagoo Records is home to vinyl releases by Xiu Xiu, Phillip Petit, Eraldo Bernocchi & Chihei Hatakeyama, Lucky Dragons, Philippe Petit, CUP, connect_icut, and The Use. Darto frontman Nicholas Merz also recently released his solo debut album The Limits of Men through Aagoo Records.
Slated for release on September 14th, Fundamental Slime will be available in various formats, including 12” vinyl and CD. It can now be ordered in physical format from Aagoo Records’ website and digitally via Bandcamp.
4. Everyday Actor
Catch their first single “Brotherhood”:
And their latest video “No Self” here:
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