LA Music Review | Art, stories and advice
Edgy, upbeat, and captivating!
Hi Dark Side of Light, welcome to LA Music Review! Tell us a little bit about you and your music.
Dark Side of Light is a sound child of the Nouveau California scene. Natives Nik Frost and Grant Conway birthed this tangerine slice of a novel, tripped-out folk-hop to counteract the anxiety-filled hours of our new normal. Tired of searching for something fresh and new, they burrowed into a deep, sonic exploration to make a sound of their own: “We didn’t want to be a traditional band,” says Frost, “so we started writing from the genesis of beats and rhythm tracks that we thought were cool.” Conway is a drummer by nature and a producer/engineer by trade. Put this up against Frost, a singer/songwriter/DJ who’s worked with everyone from Malcolm McLaren to Photek, and the duo was bound to come up with something fresh and inspiring.
“I’d been working on a bunch of Stoner Rock stuff out in the desert with the Rancho De La Luna gang and started revisiting some of the stuff Goss (Chris Goss) had been doing with Unkle a couple of years back,” Frost says. “This got me spinning Grant some tracks I’d done as a kid with the Liquid Sky crew in Germany and BOOM we had a vibe.”
Frost calls on melodies, harmonies, and psychedelic lyrics which harken back to everything from the early 70’s Eno-produced pop of The Roches to CSN&Y. Conway’s broken, poppy/nouveau trip-hop grooves never disappoint: As most of the songs originated from the beats, Conway’s playing shines through on every groove, never pretentious, true to the vibe, and never thirsty for attention.
Start streaming “Hit Repeat” here:
Congrats on the release! What was your inspiration when you were writing this project?
“Sometimes, you have to let go and just let things happen. The universe has a way of making things work out,” says Grant “GGQ” Conway, drummer and co-producer of indie/psych-pop duo, Dark Side Of Light.
Released on December 14, 2022. “We all got drunk and had a blast enjoying a video shoot that wound up becoming a backyard party with a bunch of old (and some new) friends from our creative scene.” Dark Side Of Light’s singer and co-producer, Nik Frost, recalls, “We wanted the first half of it to look like something out of a 90’s Spike Jonze music video, or maybe a Wes Anderson film.” The video starts at a “cattle call” audition for the actual music video.
The very “meta” storyline unfolds in 115-degree heat, with the auditioners so
uncomfortably miserable that they start insulting each other. Battles ensue. As sunset approaches, things mellow and the audition morphs into a kind of sexy-ass jam session. James Hazley, a featured actor/musician who stars as Eric Andre’s giant sidekick in the latest season of his eponymous sitcom, “The Eric Andre Show”, reflects, “Director Brewington’s treatment is pretty much what ended up on the screen. Some of the details changed as we all had to work within the multitude of challenges we were faced with.” The initially salty and defiant auditioning musicians (Hazley plays a chronically annoyed bass player) wind up redeeming themselves through the course of the video, as every one of them becomes a star in their own right.
Despite the budget, or lack thereof, here is funny performance-based music video with multiple musicians that attended an audition that transcends being horrible, hot, and downright hostile by day. We ended up having a sexy, resounding success by night. The audition footage becomes the music video! Instead of a select few getting the gig, everyone winds up getting the gig. Everyone winds up in the music video. “We accept everyone” is the message here. “All comers, no judgment!”
The end of the video revealed the whole event could have just been concocted in the minds of Nik and Grant. They are performing alone to no one. Just for themselves. So we are left thinking, was it real or fantasy?
What is your vision for this song? What lessons would you like to impart with your audience?
Could mass acceptance in a judgement-free society be real, or just something to fantasize about? Certainly, something to strive for, as is the case for Dark Side Of Light.