Today, Darkstar announce a new single and video for ‘Text’ ahead of their upcoming album ‘Civic Jams’ which is out this Friday. “Text” is a sentient moment of sweet melancholia from the album and arrives with a new video directed by Alex Shilt.
The experiences of everyday life and beauty and heartbreak it brings offer an important source of inspiration for Darkstar. In “Text”, this plays out in the vocal snippets that address the experience of losing a loved one and the unflinching grace that comes with it. In the accompanying video, Darkstar remind us that our memories are shaped by those we share them with. Black and white home movie footage capturing family moments is interspersed with imagery of unforgettable football moments and iconic raves, which blur together like an ephemeral photonegative.
Discussing the video process, Shilt, the director explains: “Living next to Aiden and briefly in the same flat with James, I was particularly inspired by the relationship between the two of them. I aimed to create an abstracted visual dialogue that embodied their brothership and love for their families through the various personal clips they’ve sent me. We worked together in exploring various looks inspired by modern communication tools & tactile graphics to harmonize a visual language that fit with the tune.”
Watch the video for ‘Text’ – BELOW:
Darkstar find themselves at once looking homeward and venturing further into their own psychic hinterland with each record. They’ve covered a lot of ground from the introspective expanse of their debut North , to utopian visions of society in News From Nowhere  and the unique dynamics of a pre-Brexit northern England on Foam Island . On their latest offering, home is within reach. Inspired by the intervening years, Darkstar (aka Aiden Whalley and James Young) show how the personal can be political and reveal more of themselves than they’ve ever done before. Imagine emotional realism built from spectral rave echoes, anchored in timeless songs of love and loss in the digital now and you’ve got it.
Darkstar’s (aka Aiden Whalley and James Young) idiosyncratic take on electronic pop music has positioned them as key voices within the scene for the best part of two decades. In recent years, Darkstar have worked with the likes of Actress, Wild Beasts and Zomby. They have also released music with Empress Of (XL) and Gaika, collaborating with director Lucy Luscombe and Random Acts for Channel 4, working on ground-breaking live dance performances with choreographer Holly Blakey (Mica Levi) and scoring the Palme d’Or nominated short film ‘Dreamlands’.
Darkstar have continued their dedication to collaboration and been commissioned by PRS to create a piece for the New Music Biennial, in a response to the 2017 City of Culture, which was performed at Royal Festival Hall with organist James McVinnie. This collaboration with McVinnie has since continued and saw Darkstar compose a new work for Organ Reframed festival which they performed together with the London Contemporary Orchestra in 2018 at Union Chapel. In 2019 they performed two of their new compositions at Queen Elizabeth Hall for Unclassified Live.
Alongside these, the band has worked with St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, in Minneapolis, Metal Liverpool, Arts Council England and Harthill Community centre to create an installation and performance piece with teens from migrant communities. The final performance, TRACKBED, was performed at the Barbican in London.