Instrumental post/math-rock band Dialects from Glasgow are due to release their new EP this month and play Wharf Chambers as part of their forthcoming tour. We had a chat with guitarist, Conor, just before they hit the road.
LMS: Hi guys, your new EP Let The Kids Light The Lanterns (LTKLTL) comes out on the 11th of May - can you tell us a bit about the record and the recording process?
CONOR: Hello to yourselves!
LTKLTL basically tells the story of a couple who travel through a portal from a Utopian world and end up in our current timeline. A lot of stuff happens when they are here and the song titles and music lead you through that tale. An example of this is 'Good Luck Felix', an event which happened quite recently in the story and real time, when Felix Baumgartner jumped from space to the planet's surface - that's meant to be a timeline event in this story.
The recording process was carried out at 45 A-side studios which was an ideal location as it was really close to us. I had known Nick Lawrie (the producer) for quite a while and we both had a real love for 'Gangs' by ASIWYFA and 'Sans Souci' by Brontide. We met up one night randomly, both pretty drunk, and somehow we got into a conversation about whether I was writing any music or in a band. Standing out on the street smoking, and blind drunk, I let him hear a really sh*t recording from my phone of 'Unknown Orbit' which we had just finished writing at the time.
LMS: Whilst the EP could be described as being quite heavy in parts there's also some really uplifting, almost 'summery', moments along the way. Would you say it's an important part of Dialects' sound to have these darker and lighter passages intertwine?
CONOR: Not all the time but I think it's been crucial to this concept. A lot of the tracks we have written have naturally gone that way but it's just the way we like to do it. Whilst on the EP there are some real mixtures of light and dark themes, there are tracks like 'Spectacular Supernovae' which is just happy all the way through.
The newer songs we have written, beyond the EP, also break this fashion as some of them are quite harrowing all the way through and vice versa. Personally we strive to write music that we would love to listen to and I think that's an important factor for any band.
LMS: The EP blends together a mix of post-rock, post-metal, math-rock and prog. An obvious reference point for people that haven't heard you before would be And So I Watch You From Afar - what influences do the band have, musically and otherwise, that might surprise us?
CONOR: That's a really flattering comparison, thank you! While we are all really into a tonne of math/post rock bands our individual influences as musicians are a lot wider - from heavier bands like Botch, Glassjaw and The Dillinger Escape Plan through to proggy stuff like Mew, Tool & Cinematic Orchestra and also 90s alt-rock bands like Soundgarden & Faith No More.
LMS: Both Glasgow and Edinburgh have been producing some fantastic instrumental post-rock/metal bands in the past couple of years with the likes of Vasa, Tidings, What The Blood Revealed (RIP), Vasquez (RIP), Mountains Under Oceans, Wojtek, We Came From The North and many more coming out of the two cities - does it feel like there's something special going on up there at the moment and who are your own personal favourites?
CONOR: It's definitely improving! I think it's been tough over the last 4/5 years - since my last band, about 5 or 6 real cool math-rock and post-rock bands split up all at once and it seemed like it was proving to be a real struggle for the genre. The thing that's always fascinated me about it is the camaraderie that all these bands have. We're good friends with most of the bands you've mentioned above and we all try our best to help one another out.
In terms of favourites I think it's impossible to pick some out, they're all excellent and I have witnessed that on record, and live! (except We Came From The North but we'll rectify that soon I hope!)
I'd also encourage people to check out Shambles in a Husk and Bellow Below who are also two of our favourites!
LMS: You go on tour shortly, supporting Luxembourg's Mutiny On The Bounty (dropping by Wharf Chambers on the 8th of May) - how did that come about and how excited are you to be sharing a stage with them?
CONOR: Buzzing! We're massive fans of their music and we couldn't be more grateful that this is our first tour!
At Arctangent last year we met them and ended up hanging out with them for a bit and just got on really well. The alcohol and love for pedals might've helped that along a bit, as well as a love for pretty much every band on the bill! It literally was the best festival and I reckon this year's will be just as good!
We then played with them at the Cut Loose all-dayer in Glasgow last December. The show was headlined by Maybeshewill so it was a big deal for us to be on the bill and we were lucky enough to also have Flood Of Red, Mutiny on the Bounty, Jean Jean and Vasa also playing!
We got chatting again and after the show we both kind of geeked out about pedals and sounds we both created and expressed a want for more shows together. After we had finished our set Nick and Clem (from Mutiny on the Bounty) were backstage and gave us a high five, a beer and some kind of compliment in French that I've never known to this day... I think.
From there they were pretty open about their upcoming album and said they'd try to bring us out with them on tour for the release. Considering that was in December we were stunned that they had remembered with all they have had going on and we are eternally grateful that they have brought us on board for these shows.
LMS: And finally, can you describe yourselves in four words?
CONOR: Experimental Mathy Post Rock
DIALECTS and MUTINY ON THE BOUNTY play Wharf Chambers this Friday (8th May) alongside ENVOYS and LOST GROUND.
LTKLTL is released on the 11th of May.