By Arielle Lessard
CALGARY — The Darcys have made an impression after announcing a 180° change in direction, from creating alternative art rock to focusing on a new, somewhat contentious pop-infused record in order to keep making music. Despite some closed-minded flack, the duo now boasts “high-energy danceable songs” that people want to hear and are requesting on the radio, says band member Wes Marskell. “We’ve seen some changes; the audience is a bit younger and there’s a lot more girls that seem to be into the music than before, but there seems to be a more diverse audience than before, not so many guys with beards.”
In terms of their performance, it’s changed somewhat “because of a different atmosphere or different mood while onstage, it might have been difficult to try to absorb a lot of the old songs, but there’s been an immediacy and a strong connection with the audience today, the conversion rate of playing a show in front of a new audience is more contagious. It’s been really fun in that sense.”
Marskell reflects that “Miracle” (their latest single) connects with people while still incorporating Easter eggs to appease their more art-rock leaning fans. When it comes to the issue of authenticity, Marskell says that “there’s an element of sarcasm in the new record and new releases” and that he’s embraced playing a character. “I’m not necessarily as into Miami Vice as it may appear that I am.” What is authentic, Marskell notes, is that they’re focused on “promoting something that we created” along with “a decorative element that goes into the creation of a show and that extra mile makes a difference.” The ferns, palm trees and neon signs are there to make things exciting and people seem to be responding.
It’s not all about the new and shiny, The Darcys still revisit some of the old songs, and they’re selling a bunch of their old records at shows, or maybe, as Marskell notes, “all these people thought they were buying the new record and are going to be wondering, ‘What the fuck is this.’”
Their highly regarded producer, Bragg Creek native Shawn Everett, had a big hand in the upcoming album. Marskell excitedly recalls that Everett is “insane and looks like a wizard,” decked out in leather and knee high Doc Martins all the time. “He is absolutely phenomenal. Everything he did and everything we wanted to do, we got to. We spent a month with him figuring things out and got to work with him on all our songs right before he won a Grammy. We needed someone that would really push the production side of things and push us in the new direction we wanted and that’s exactly what he did. ‘Miracle’ is probably the most simple song on our next record and there’s a lot of wilder moments that he helped us cultivate. I don’t know that in a year from now we could have got him. He’s insane and I love him to death.”
The Darcys are set to make their album release date public in early August, and have shows lined up for the rest of the summer season to spread their ritzy pop rock tunes.
The Darcys perform at The Commodore Ballroom in Vancouver on August 11th and 12th, in Edmonton at Sonic Boom Festival on September 3rd, in Calgary at X-Fest on September 4th, and in Victoria at Rifflandia Festival on September 18th.AB, Alberta, BC, British Columbia, Commodore Ballroom, Rifflandia Festival, Sonic Boom Festival, The Darcys, X-Fest, X-Fest 2016