Exclusive Interview: Dirty South opens up about new album ‘darko’
Dirty South has just released his 4th studio album “darko“. If you have had the chance to hear the collection of songs you’ll notice it is a very unique piece of work and something extremely refreshing. Oscillating all around different shades of tech house, South manages to take us on a darker journey into his musical turf and gives fans a truly eclectic album to get lost in. We Rave You were able to connect with Dirty South and pick his brain about how “darko” came to be.
Congrats on your 4th album! What does ‘darko‘ mean to you? What makes this particular album unique from your others?
“Thanks! I think this is the evolution from the previous album ‘XV’. I would say ‘darko’ is the moodier cousin of ‘XV’.”
This album is void of any vocals, did you have this vision in mind before working on the album?
“Kind of, but usually the way it happens is that I work on lots of ideas and music and once I start finishing all the ideas, the whole project takes shape and it all makes sense in my head on how everything should be packaged.”
The overwhelming majority of dance music is in minor keys. Your last album “XV” for example, was mostly minor keys, why do you think dance music/house music is so conducive to working in minor keys?
“I’m not really sure. I don’t really think about that kind of stuff. When I make music it’s literally whatever feels right, and it just happens that I love melancholy chord progressions and melodies and they kind of fall into that minor keys group.”
What is your creative process like? Do you mess around on the piano or guitar before heading to the studio and laying down ideas?
“It’s always different. It can start with me messing around with some synths or just making a drum groove or fiddling with effects until I find something interesting. Also I work on ideas and sketches first, then I leave them for a while to sit on the computer. I pull them up few days/weeks later and then I see which ones I really gravitate towards and then I finish those ideas. I rarely finish a song in the same day that I start the sketch idea. I need time away so I can rest my ears and then come and see if I really love it.”
What inspired you to make two albums in one year? It isn’t really the standard for most artists, is there something that is seriously inspiring you at the moment?
I was just really inspired to be in the studio and I wanted to push myself a little further than before. I decided to tour less and just having that time in the studio gave me more inspiration to mess around and try different things. I love DJ’ing but I think being in the studio is where I feel most comfortable. It’s definitely not standard to do two albums in one year so it just means next year I have to try and outdo myself again.”
EDM has never been this diversified with so many popular, prominent sub-genres. Given ‘darko’, and how your sound has slightly moved away from the sunny ‘City Of Dreams’ feel over the years, what compelled you to undertake this darker, more organic sound ?
“It’s just a natural evolution for me. I get bored of things so I try not to repeat what I did before, and the older I get, the more I feel like doing this is very important for me to stay happy and inspired.”
A true manifestation of his sound; Dirty South called it his favourite album he’s made. It is an eight track collection that is hot, heavy, and yet somehow still perfect for multiple occasions.