Behind the Music: Interview with DLORE

‘It’s only after you’ve gigged a track that you truly have a perspective on whether it works or not.’

Describe your music style in no more than 5 words: Alt-Soul/Jazz/Hip-hop

Who is in DLORE? Dan Law, Mikey B Shaw, and Joshua Smiley.

Who does what in the band?  Dan plays guitar and sings, Josh plays the bass and backing vocals, Mikey plays drums and is our producer.

Who/what influences your music?  In a time of political and social turmoil, it’s hard not to project current affairs through our lyrics and music – bands like Hiatus Kaiyote, JAALA and 30/70 inspire polyrhythms and blended genres. Whereas bands such as Parliament Funkadelic, Fat Freddy’s Drop and The Meters influence our rhythm, groove and love for vintage ways of recording. This will also make a more profound stamp on our forthcoming project.

What do you hope will be the impact of ‘Jackal’?  As  this  is  our  debut  single  as  a  trio,  Jackal will be a kind of milestone and give us the proper footing to make our next step in our career.

What does a DLORE recording session look like?  We record in Mikey’s studio which is  full of analog equipment and weird and wonderful devices which we use to capture an  authentic style of recording. Although Jackal is more of a production piece and we’ve recorded a lot of layers, our forthcoming tracks we hope to record in more of a Motown-esque live style.

‘It’s hard to get gigs without any music online.’

How does your song writing process work? Dan: I usually write bits of a tune acoustically, like melodies and chord progressions etc.

Mikey: He then brings it to me and Josh and we jam it out for a bit, come up with an idea for a groove and start piecing structures together from there. I think it’s only after you’ve gigged a track that you truly have a perspective on whether it works or not.

Do you prefer performing live or recording in a studio? Mikey: A bit of both really. I’m a proper studio geek so part of me kind of loves that but it can also be a bit stressful trying to engineer a record and play on it in a large studio. I often end up running around getting a bit frantic!

Josh: There are merits to both for sure, and playing tracks live is a really good way to find out whether the tracks themselves are any good.

Dan: Yeah, recording and gigs can both be stressy but gigs are almost always fun!

What live shows do you have coming up in the next few months? Dan: It’s hard to get gigs without any music online.

Mikey: Luckily we have some good networks and contacts from our last band, The Piratones.

Dan: Yeah, we have Boomtown Fair lined up, Harlequin Fayre which is a lush local (Norfolk) festival, and we’re hoping to sort another sell out show in the Autumn at a wicked, award-winning venue in our home city called Norwich Arts Centre.

What has been your favourite performance to date and why? Josh: Probably at the Arts Centre in Norwich! We put on a night with local buddies – Galli and Maya Law and it was a great night. It was our first big show with this project and everything came together nicely.

What can people expect from one of your live performances? Mikey: We try to keep the energy flowing by mixing up a few different styles and genres during the set so there’s hopefully something for everyone. There’s definitely also a theme to it all though. With our minimal trio set up it can sometimes feel like a little bit of a challenge to fill out the entire sound spectrum in rockier tunes, so we often end up pushing towards punchy, hip-hop flavours during the climactic parts of our shows.

What do you listen to when you’re not writing, recording or performing? Mikey: Mostly tinnitus haha!! I’ve always been a massive dub head though – it’s where my producing started. I’m also loving the fresh wave of future jazz spreading out at the moment, like Hiatus Kaiyote, 30/70, Robert Glasper.

Dan: At the moment, badass females like Sampa The Great, Little Simz and Nai Palm are my thing.

Josh: I love a bit of 80’s pop rock like Hall & Oates!

‘Recording and gigs can both be stressy but gigs are almost always fun!’

What is your first musical based memory? Mikey: I definitely have earlier musical memories than this, but I think my first real inspiration came from constantly busting out the Steely Dan 1994 Alive in America album in my dad’s car with him. I would just soak up every beat and ghost stroke and try to play along when I was home.

Josh: I watched Guns n Roses on MTW and saw how cool Slash looked playing guitar, and thought ‘I wanna be a guitarist’. Unfortunately I could only find a bass, so I became a bassist. 

Dan: Probably listening to people like Carole King, Etta James and crying about it.

How different would your life be if music didn’t feature? Mikey: Impossible to imagine! Our lives revolve around it so probably sh*t and quiet.

And finally…  What are the 3 albums/tracks that you couldn’t live without listening to? Josh: Jeff Buckley – Grace

Mikey: For sure on that one! But man that’s a tough question. It changes a lot so maybe Fat Freddy’s Drop – Based On A True Story.

Dan: Amy Winehouse – Frank

Follow DLORE on: Facebook & Instagram
Listen to and watch DLORE on: Spotify and YouTube
Find out more about DLORE’s music at: Track Review: DLORE: Jackal and Track Review: DLORE: Iron

DLORE are part of Listen to Discover’s #FridayFindsFeaturedArtist series which you can keep up to date with on Twitter and Facebook.

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