Features - Interviews

Inbound: Dear Desert

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In this installment of Inbound – a feature introducing some of the country’s finest fast-rising musical talent – we chat to newly-formed Dublin-based band Dear Desert about how they got together, their influences and plans for the future.

Hi guys. Can you tell us a bit about yourselves individually?

Brendan: We are a Dublin based band but we all come from different parts of the country. We’re all working in Dublin and doing our best to make time to write and head to gigs. I work in music, so its easy to keep an ear out for new bands to see. The two guys are architects so I’m not sure what they do really! Should I mention that I’m actually a qualified chemical engineer? Probably not, it might upset my mother.

James: Myself and Richie met in college. We have a very basic home studio set up and Brendan lives nearby. We make him cycle over every night.

Were you in any bands previously?

We’ve all played in projects previous to Dear Desert; namely Hush War Cry and Futures Apart.

How did Dear Desert come together and what does the name mean?

Brendan: My old band was based in Dublin, the guys were based in Cork. We had a similar sound and ended up playing a few gigs together. When we met up, the conversation was usually about new music and our favourite bands. It seemed very natural coming together to make music when the opportunity arose. It began as a project between Dublin and Cork. It was difficult at times but the music we were making kept us motivated.

Richie: The name was initially inspired by a Charles Lamb poem, ‘The Old Familiar Faces’, one line specifically spoke to us: ‘Earth seemed a desert I was bound to traverse’. We had demoed a lot of stuff before we came up with the name. Dear Desert seemed to fit the atmosphere we were creating.

What can we expect from your sound?

James: Describing your own sound is always difficult. A starting point for most of the songs would have been experimenting with drum loops, synthesisers and effects pedals.

Richie: We wanted a certain human element to the sound and were drawn to imperfections in the recordings. So much so, that we ended up using some synths and samples from our original demos in the final tracks. We didn’t want a really polished sound.

Brendan: There is a tension or contrast in the songs. The lyrics often describe overcoming tough situations or having hope during dark times. We’d like to think that the sound reflects this.

Who are your biggest influences?

Our influences are a mix of older bands like Prince, David Bowie, Pink Floyd, The Smiths, Blue Nile, Talk Talk, Cocteau Twins, Duran Duran; and more modern acts like Frank Ocean, Twin Shadow, Vondelpark, Future Islands, The Horrors, Wild Beasts, Young Fathers, Blood Orange, John Maus, Yeasayer and The Antlers.

Any plans for releases this year?

We’ve a few tracks recorded and will have a release sometime later in the year.

Finally, where can we find out more about you?

For now get to us through our Twitter, Facebook and Soundcloud.

And if you’d like to see us in person we’ll be playing Castlepalooza in August. Come say hello to us after the gig!

Photo by Loreana Rushe

is the co-editor / photo editor. She also contributes photos and illustrations to The Thin Air print magazine.