Photo Credit: Gingerdope Photography
We caught up with the musical geniuses that are known under the name DARLIA before their first headline show in over 1,5 years at The Camden Assembly in London. We talked about the break, being back on the road again and how they ripped off “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia”.*
How was it like to play those secret sets you have been doing lately, being your first live shows in a long time?
Nathan: It was amazing to go back on the road and it was quite interesting to do the unannounced shows because obviously we didn’t tell anyone. It was just the best feeling in the world to play, to be back doing it after the break.
How has the writing process changed since you’ve added the new members and instruments? Do you still write the core of the song on an acoustic guitar first and then let it evolve by rehearsing with the others?
Nathan: I have a Midi Piano now, so I write loads of shit on that and obviously the acoustic guitar. Having more members is just the best thing because now we can actually play the songs live that have piano and strings in them.
Do you think it makes it harder to find your place in the current music scene after being gone for a while, since it’s constantly changing?
Nathan: Maybe, but when we first started out we didn’t have a clue about any bands that existed anyway. We wouldn’t know any of the bands that were also on the radio, that were also starting out at the same time. We didn’t know of anything and it’s kind of the same thing now. We were just getting on with it behind the curtains and now we’ve sorted it.
Will you approach this whole music scene differently the second time around?
Nathan: We learned loads of stuff, we’ve learned everything from that first year where we were busy. We are well different now, you can’t fuck with us anymore, we’re too cynical. No one can touch us anymore.
Do you feel like you’ve missed out on anything by taking the break or are you glad you took time off?
Nathan: I’m 100% glad. We were in this position where we were touring and I had so many songs ready, probably like 11 albums, but we couldn’t progress into the newer ones with strings and piano. We were so absorbed in the bubble of what we were doing. We we’re constantly touring, doing rehearsals or recording so there was never a time to go like hang on a sec, we need to fucking sort this out, we need someone to play the piano, we need someone to work out how we’re going to get strings. There was no time to ever do that. We had to do it and I’m glad we did it. Every single day during the break all I did was carrying on writing, preparing and planning things. I never had fun during the time off, ever.
I recently saw an episode of “It’s always sunny in Philadelphia” in which Dee says: “I’ve never even been to Ohio” – Is that just a coincidence or could this line be the inspiration for “I’ve Never Been To Ohio”?
Nathan: I didn’t get that line from there, but it’s actually my favourite show!
Dave: We were playing ‘Ohio’ before we even knew about ‘It’s always sunny’. Nathan wrote it a long time before we started watching it.
I remember you saying ages ago that before shows you would like to go out and give some of your art to charity shops where people could buy it – Do you still plan on doing that?
Nathan: I wanted to do it for this show. My brother made most of the merch for tonight and I was doing a music video at the same time. I was trying to work out how I was going to do this charity shop thing and I’m definitely still going to do it.
Are there more headline shows planned before festival season begins?
Nathan: It’s weird because you’re not allowed to say when you do. If you say it you just get in trouble.
Dave: It’s not really a case of me or Nathan saying ‘Oh, we’re gonna go on tour’, it doesn’t work like that. I actually don’t know when our next headline show will be.
*yes, this is a joke.