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Premiere: Dictaphone Blues Shares Video 'Bang Bang Bang' From 'Elastic Meditation'

Premiere: Dictaphone Blues Shares Video 'Bang Bang Bang' From 'Elastic Meditation'

Friday 29th June, 2018 11:37AM

Auckland psychedelic pop artist Dictaphone Blues, the nom de plume of Edward Castelow, has unveiled his first collection in four years Elastic Meditation, following a gripping run of singles. The five song EP was recorded with UK producer Dave Eringa (Manic Street Preachers, The Who, Kylie Minogue), conjuring the perfect conditions for Castelow to whip up the gleaming tunes on offer - surfing a sonic slipstream of fist-pumping anthems and fizzy pop earworms.

Dictaphone Blues has also unveiled a stylish video directed by Charlotte Evans (who has also made clips for Aldous Harding and Stella Donnelly) for 'Bang Bang Bang' from the new collection, which we're stoked to premiere here. He's heading out for a New Zealand tour with his ace live band in July supported by Eden Mulholland, we caught up with the artist via email to chew the fat about Elastic Meditation, his latest video and more. Watch the clip for 'Bang Bang Bang', read Castelow's illuminating words, and listen to Elastic Meditation below...

Congratulations on the release your new EP! We've been digging the rollout of your singles, was there a unifying theme to Elastic Meditation?

Thanks a lot for the support folks. Yeah there was a unifying theme of instruments, if that can constitute as a theme. It started when I picked up an old mono Yamaha synthesiser, that wee guy informed a lot of the bass sounds that you hear on the EP. After getting that synth I started to demo a lot of material that used the same bunch of toys. I've never really been a big stratocaster guitar player, more of a telecaster player, so I invested some time in getting to know the strat. Because it was mixed by a pro it all sounds really sick.

How did you come to work with Dave Eringa?

I heard that he was coming down to New Zealand for some seminars and was going to have some down time while he was here. I got in touch with him and sent him a couple of old songs and some demos I was working on. I've emailed busy pro producers and musicians before so I was prepared not to hear back as per, but Dave was automatically into the songs and wanted to record. I was really taken aback and when it came time to meet him and start working, he was the loveliest man you can imagine. We got stuck in for two days and nights and did two songs together. He had some great Pete Townshend stories (he's recorded The Who), so I made him tell me all of those. He then went back to the UK and a few months later I sent him the remaining tracking that I had done for the EP and he mixed it all.

Please tell us about your new video for 'Bang Bang Bang'.

Well, thanks to NZOA I was able to throw the creative net out a little and ask Charlotte Evans if she would like to work on it with me. Charlotte has done fantastic videos with Aldous Harding and Stella Donnelly which look very lush and are edited to a tee. The song is my big straight up the guts pop tune, so it seemed fitting to make a video in that style too, an excuse to change outfits and dance around in various interesting locations really. Charlotte found the location somehow, it's the abandoned Racecourse building in Avondale. Multi levels of vintage wood-paneled goodness. I had started discussing a dance element with my friend Kate Sullivan who is great at improv movement, Kate brought in Leah Carrel and between them they really took the video to another level. It's was a dream team and I want to do back there.

How do you reckon your songwriting has developed or changed since 2014’s Mufti Day? Are you drawing on any specific inspirations for Elastic Meditation - sonically or lyrically?

Mufti Day had a bit more vintage chime to it I think, sonically this is head and shoulders above anything I could have mixed up. Dave has made this EP sounds baller as. Generally I let my imagination go where it wants to when writing lyrics, and if an idea is shit it won't go very far. I try not to write from a personal stand point to much anymore, I can't stomach whining on about personal shit unless it's in an interesting way, even using the word 'I' too much in a song can make me feel anxiously self absorbed. I don't want to hear an artist go about about internal guff all the time so I try to avoid it myself.

There's definitely psychedelic feelings being conveyed in some of your new tunes - any particular recreational pursuits or research spurring those sounds?

I smoke weed with a little bit of tobacco, then take it from there.

What can punters expect from your coming national tour?

A ruddy good show! A pretty good spread of old and new songs. The band has been playing together for a number of years now and even the new songs we've been playing for nearly a year, so hopefully it'll be all muscle memory and enjoying the moment for us. That generally makes for a good spur of the moment show I think.

What's the plan for Dictaphone Blues for the second half of 2018?

After the tour I'll probably work on some other bands records and maybe ride my skateboard at the park. When summer kicks in we'll do some more gigs then I reckon. Unless we get asked to play again before that, in which case we'll get a band email thread going to see who can do the show.


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