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Dark Water - Dark Water Newsletter Interview

27 Apr 2017 // An interview by butch181

Thanks Nathan (vocals & guitar for Dark Water) for taking the time to talk with us. Let’s start with the band. You’re a 3 piece from Taranaki, and you’ve been around since 2009. What got you all into the music scene?

Dark Water started in a gun club in the middle of a paddock, with a stereo as a PA, guitars that couldn’t tune properly and a kit that had rope for a cymbal stand, so a few things have happened along the road to where we’re at now, but ultimately what got us all into the music scene was just that - 'music'. Everybody on the same page, wanting to write original music and to contribute to NZ music.

Who are your biggest influences, both international and within NZ?

So I was a youth of the 90’s and the type of music that exploded through the world then was “grunge” and that was no exception for little ole New Plymouth. Bands like Nirvana, Sound Garden, Alice in Chains and Tool just to name a few, and for NZ bands, the likes of Shihad and The Feelers was the music that we as teens were listening to, and in turn influenced by. 

You describe your sound as post alternative rock. That encompasses a wide range of music and musical acts. What makes your brand of music unique?

Music usually tends to follow a format of sorts, especially mainstream, right down to the time signature, so as far as the brand of music we play, we tend to keep it open minded and don’t keep it to any real formula, for example a song could have several time signature changes throughout, and be heavy in one section then melodic and atmospheric the next. People just don’t know what’s coming, it keeps it interesting for me and as well as the band. Doing things like that can be detrimental to us though regarding the audience, cause familiar music is appealing for people, and people just know the format of a song inherently due to the music that mainstream radio plays, so when you play something that’s not of that familiarity it can make the listener feel some what awkward especially at gigs, cause the songs don’t necessarily end the same as they started.

Have you noticed an increase in the popularity of “post” and “alt” bands in recent years?

Um, to be honest, I’m not sure, cause “popularity” is such a subjective thing and the music scene, as I see it, seems to be somewhat swamped with just music in general, I mean there are great bands around but music has changed since the digital era has come into full effect, there’s just so much music around in all genres, you know, anyone can do music now, I’m not saying it’s a bad thing, I’m just saying maybe not everyone should...haha!! Nah, again that brings me back to "popularity" being subjective, music/art are also subjective and comes down to personal taste. Regarding “post” and “alt”, I think really anything after the alternative rock scene (grunge) is essentially post alt rock, so bands coming out now in the “alt rock” genre are essentially “post alt rock” bands.

The music video that you’re releasing is for a track from your 2016 album You’re Only As Addicted As You’re Willing To Be. Was there any overall theme or inspiration behind that record?

The record itself isn’t really theme based or been inspired by anything in particular apart from life experiences and observations, which is quite broad.

The title, You’re Only As Addicted As You’re Willing To Be, stems from the idea that addiction is somewhat of a choice, I mean we’re all obsessed with something, and what ever that something is it can have an effect on your life whether it be good or bad. I suppose I’m using the term “addiction” not only with the understanding of abuse or dependency, there just seems to be an underlying comparison between addiction and obsession, but its not the substances or the thing that made the choice for you to embrace it, ultimately it was you…. and in this case, the addiction was music and the album is the result on how willing we were to produce it.

How has the reaction to the album been?

We’ve had a couple of pretty good reviews regarding the album and good feedback from those that have heard it, which we’re stoked about.

Why did you choose Little Time as the track to be given an accompanying music video?

Yeah, that’s a good question cause it was going to be for the track Harmonic Tinker Toys at first, but that fell off the tracks, though not to say completely off the tracks. I had an idea regarding time, on one occasion when I arrived at a friends house who was under the influence of liquid fun, and I ended up filming him in time lapse and got him to play the drums as slow as he could, and the result of it was real cool, hard case, freaky and strange all wrapped up in one, and I thought that it would make a cool music video, so there inlaid the concept. After playing around with it a bit more, the track Little Time just seemed appropriate to that concept, and after fleshing it out further for the idea of altering time to the song, it became more and more apparent that Little Time was the track that complemented the idea- thus we had a music video project. So i suppose it was more the concept that choose which track we used. The theme was loosely based around a “Mad Hatter/ Alice in Wonderland” idea cause that also touches on time, with the Mad Hatter and the March Hare being stuck at 6pm. Then it became costumed based which we sourced and of course come time, come clocks, so clocks were rounded up and put around the set that was designed.

It took two 12 hour days to shoot. Was it fun to film? Were there any challenges?

Yeah it was a couple of long days, hard work but definitely fun. The challenges came down to the logistics of the concept really and the location, props, costumes, just the general organizing of a shoot. Because of the nature of the video concept, the audio had to be slowed down and sped up for play back, as well as needing a crew to operate the camera/dolly and to cue the audio, not a big crew (2) but never the less very important. Once all that had been established with a shot list and a general understanding of the direction/vision of the project, then it all had to be put together, as in building the set at the location which consisted of rope, sheets, pegs and polythene to be erected in a shed, the ole something from nothing scenario, but it all worked out great! It’s these challenges of organizing what’s needed and how its going to be done that determines the work flow and in turn the vibe on the set and the productiveness that makes it all worth while and fun!!

Basically it all worked like clockwork, excuse the pun.

What is next for Dark Water? / Where can we listen or purchase the single/album?

So following up with this music video, we’re looking at doing a 'Little Time' tour in various towns as well as writing new material which we’re in the process of doing, and slowly accumulating a good amount to go through to another album, but I imagine a single or EP being released before that.

Our latest album is currently available for stream/purchase here. At the moment we’re in the process of lining up an aggregator to distribute it to a wider range of music platforms e.g. iTunes and Spotify but to keep updated on what we’re up to you can check us out here.


About Dark Water

DARK WATER are a three piece Taranaki, alternative Rock band formed in 2009.

DARK WATER started life as a four piece, after a lineup change, they are now a hard hitting three piece. Their first year together was spent developing their sound and style, which has developed into a gripping yet gritty sound with a heaviness that enfolds melody.

DARK WATER have already started making a name for themselves having played at G Taranaki and opening for Shihad, The Feelers, I Am Giant and The Checks in their home town of New Plymouth. .

Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Dark Water


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