New York artist Gus Dapperton is a true one off.
A songwriter who matches a clear fondness for beauty with an ability to conjure the alien, his new album 'Where Polly People Go To Read' seems to emerge from another dimension.
Parallels could be made with Connon Mockasin's bewitching psychedelics or even the more left field aspects of the Captured Tracks roster, but truth be told Gus Dapperton's work lives and breathes on its own terms.
'Where Polly People Go To Read' gains a full release this summer, with the songwriter also confirming some UK headline shows.
“The album is basically what I see inside of my head, and it’s the dimension you’re entering when you hear it,” he explains. “It’s very personal and honest to me. There are a few emotional roller coasters. I’ve come to terms with reality and the inconveniences inherent in how I see things. Being able to express myself however I want, regardless of the resulting good or bad, makes me feel content and real.”
Clash caught up with Gus Dapperton to explore his Foundations…
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Beach Boys – 'Pet Sounds'
I just really admire Brian Wilson and how much time and dedication he puts into the production and composition of each song – I always thought that the Beach Boys wrote their own songs together but in reality Brian wrote and produced all of them for the band. He’s really just a tortured genius, he had some mental health issues throughout the years and unfortunately they sort of attributed to the music he heard in his head and resulted in really amazing music.
I also admire that he tried to emulate the Phil Spector wall of sound making using the band to emulate the sort of production style.
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David Bowie – 'The Rise And Fall Of Ziggy Stardust'
There's not actually many albums I love and can listen to all the way through but I think that album is a perfect album.
I like that the concept of it is like a queer alien from outer space comes down to earth to save the human race, it’s what the whole album is about actually and I just think it’s pretty genius. Every song on it is a hit and yeah I just love it.
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Toro Y Moi – 'Anything In Return'
I’m mostly inspired by older music but this is probably the one of the first records I was completely amazed by by a current artist. I think Toro Y Moi is one of the only artists, probably the best at combining analogue sounds with digital sounds. I’m not sure how to describe it but I feel like on every song he samples either live drums and then combines them with a digital VST.
I just think he’s really good at producing and combining sounds and I think 'So Many Details' is probably one of my favourite songs ever, there's a bunch of other good ones on there but that is one of my favourite songs.
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Madvillain – 'Madvillainy'
That was the first album I heard growing up that made me realise that I really wanted to make music, I never imagined making music before I heard that album. I was really deep into old hip-hop music and a lot of my friends rapped and I was like “Oh man if I can make the beats then I can get my friend to rap on them and that would be so awesome” so that definitely inspired me to start producing.
I’m obsessed with Madlib’s sampling and production style and MF Doom as a lyricist in general. I’m really inspired by how much attention to detail he puts into his lyrics.
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Beatles – 'Please Please Me'
I am definitely a bit obsessed with the Beatles and go through heavy Beatles phases and although theres so many albums to choose from I really do appreciate their first album.
We play 'Twist And Shout' as an encore when we play shows and it’s one of my favourite songs, I think it just goes every time although its a cover of I think an Isley Brothers song I just love how they make it their own.
'Please Please Me' is also another good song off that and 'I Go With Him' and I just really like this album and I think George Martin was the producer, I like his procession style and the way he combines orchestral moments into their songs – more than "rock musicians” had done.
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Gus Dapperton will release new album 'Where Polly People Go to Read' on July 12th.
Catch the songwriter at the following UK shows:
13 Leeds Headrow House
23 Manchester Academy 2
24 London Heaven
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