Play Along (feat. Sarah Williams White)
Released: 28 May 2012
Popping electro bass lines and layers of synthesized vocals make Play Along an addictive first taste of dan le sac’s forthcoming solo album. Featuring the vocals of rising star Sarah Williams White, Play Along is typical of dan’s leftfield pop.
Set for released on July 9th, his debut solo album Space Between The Words written and produced by dan, includes collaborations with Emmy The Great, Merz, Sarah Williams White, B Dolan, Joshua Idehen and Pete Hefferan. Fans of his long-standing partnership with Scroobius Pip, will see dan taking a sideways step from the percussive atmospherics that were the backdrop to Pip’s words on Top 40 albums ‘Angles’ (2008) and ‘The Logic of Chance’ (2010), as he embraces everything from electro-pop to psychedelia, all accompanied by an impressive array of vocal talent.
dan hasn’t veered completely away from rap and spoken word as the groovy, chatted ‘Tuning’ shows, a collaboration with long-term peer and poet Joshua Idehen. There are also two songs featuring rising mic-master B. Dolan, the bass-punching party tune ‘Good Time Gang War’ and the crafty, crunk-tinted smasher, ‘Caretaker’. “In the last year or so,” Dan admits, “B. Dolan has become my favourite rapper of all time. He has that real rap thugginess but he’s also really intense about how he writes, intellectual but with the sense of humour you’d expect from a big, New England, baldy, bearded bloke.”
Along the way he lets the spotlight fall on some wonderful, fresh new vocalists, as well as working with one of his musical heroes, the cult electronic folk singer Merz, who appears on the album’s opening number, a pulsing house-pop gem, ‘Long Night of Life’ and the lush melodic song ‘Zephyr’ that seems to have escaped from the late 1960s via Le Sac’s electronica time machine. One established name who contributes her unique voice to the album is Emmy the Great. Her track ‘Memorial’ is a delightful surprise, with a touch of a Shirley Bassey Bond theme about it, albeit filtered through clubbier beats. Elsewhere Dan hook up with new talents such as Pete Hefferan – formerly of Pete & The Pirates – on one of the album’s two covers, a deliciously doleful, piano-tinted take on Arab Strap’s ‘Cherubs’, a tune Dan had wanted to record for years.
Dan le Sac’s reputation for vibrant good times at festivals and club nights is unarguable, but he’s also proved with ‘Space Between The Words’ that he’s a lot more than simply the bloke behind the bloke with the big beard. He’s a musical force to be reckoned with and in ‘Space Between The Words’, an album dan le Sac has created a smart, zingy debut shot that will appeal to fans of indie, dance, hip hop, electronica and much else besides. It’s one to file alongside Metronomy, Hot Chip and Field Music as a sharply individual snapshot of modern pop’s endless possibilities.
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