On the radar: The Darien Venture

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The Darien Venture: Television Was Called Books »

Rising from the ashes of several different bands and fuelled by a string of mutual friendships, the resulting Ayrshire quartet, The Darien Venture, are a considerably more airtight unit.

Boasting rich experimentation and spectacular harmonies, the all singing (some dancing) line-up of Dave Martin, Liam Rutherford, Kyle Shields and Jonny Beveridge are currently carving out a name for themselves in what has long been a cluttered Glasgow scene.

"Myself, Jonny (drums) and Liam (guitar) all lived together for four years while we were at university in Ayr," says bass player Kyle Shields of the band's formation. "Dave (guitar/vocals) and I played in a band together for a while called Fragile, and when the band split we decided to form The Darien Venture with Liam and our friend Marco. Marco has since left and Jonny was his replacement."

Mixing blistering drum-work with intricate guitar interplay and an acute pop sensibility, The Darien Venture create an immensely layered soundscape that offers a rewarding listen far beyond the realm of conventional and formulaic rock dross - lyrically, drawing on everything from post break-up catharsis to the fragility of youth to pirates (no, seriously).

"Dave (guitar/vocals) usually comes to us with something from his book of magic, and we tell him what we think works well!" jokes Shields.

Sourced from the Under the Radar music blog

To slap a big dirty label on it would no doubt sell the band short. Their sound borrows as much from Reuben, Nirvana and Jimmy Eat World as it does Michael Jackson, Rush and every good 1980s movie ever made.

"Its a bit of a mixed bag" says Shields. "We're all into pretty different styles of music, but there are some bands we're all really into. I would say we get the heavy grooves from bands like Isis and Tool, the harmony and melody from the Beach Boys and Weezer and the raw energy of stuff like At The Drive-In."

Their progress, though initially hindered by an unintentional spate of line-up changes, has been given a jump start this year. Several live stints across Scotland and the release of a well-received split release with neighbours, Trapped In Kansas, has gained the band increasing support from local crowds, as well as attracting positive critical attention and even some airplay in the process.

As they continue to put the finishing touches on a second EP with further plans to tour in the pipeline, The 'Venture appear to be making the most of this, now solid, ground. "Just now, we're having an awesome time playing gigs and getting to meet the people that come to the shows as well as other bands." says Shields. "As long as that continues and we get to travel some more we'll be pleased."

What exactly lies ahead remains to be seen, but as their confidence and fan-base continues to flourish, theirs - however odd - is a name to remember.

See The Darien Venture live at the Glasgow Podcart Xmas Party, The 13th Note, Glasgow on 17 Dec.