SB.TV interview Little Dragon

Co-signed by the Gorrilaz, SBTRKT and DJ Shadow. Swedish electro pop outfit Little Dragon, fronted by the icy cool Yukimi Nagano have had an incredible year bringing their up-beat eerie minimalism to crowds around the globe. Georgia Lewis Anderson swaps the mic for a notepad and catches up with the band at Rough Trade after their performance for Clarks Originals‘ at an intimate event for super fans only…

How’s it going? Sounds like you’ve had a really busy time this year, right?
Little Dragon (Yukimi): Yes it’s been very busy.
Little Dragon (Hakan): Busy, busy, busy. Since 2004.

How are you gonna be celebrating New Years Eve then, having had such a successful 2011?
Little Dragon (Fredrik): Go and buy champagne.
Yukimi: We’re gonna get away from each other and I don’t know. Fred’s gonnna be in Bali maybe, right?
Fredrik : Yeah somewhere.
Yukimi: Somewhere. I will probably be in our home town. Hakan, where are you gonna be again?
Hakan: I don’t know. We’re gonna have a Skype party and go on YouTube, like a DJ session party, send different links to each other.

So you’ll be glued to your computers all night?
Fredrik: Internet on New Years. Yea, yea, yea!

Aww lovely, well I suppose it is the modern age…
Hakan: Cyber phone. Cyber phone.

So have you had enough of each other then? Or will you be glad to have a break?
Yukimi: Well we just had a little break, we’re actually glad to be back together. It’s a really good feeling actually.

Yumiki, how does Little Dragon feel different from the other projects you’ve been involved in? There’s been a few…
Yumiki: It’s the only project that matters, definitely! I think that all the other collaborations we’ve done as Little Dragon, that’s Gorillaz and DJ Shadow. That’s actually all been Little Dragon collaborations, sometimes people write that that’s just me, but the guys have been adding syncs and stuff, so it really is a band collaboration.

And do you feel it brings you guys closer, as you’ve known each other for so long?
Little Dragon: Yeah definitely!! (Chorus of agreement)
Fredrik: It’s fun to get to travel around the world with the people who know you the best, who’ve known you since you were little and when you’re being stubborn, or a piece of s***.
Hakan: Asshole.

Aaaah, nice to see you love each other.
Fredrik: We was just joking.

What do you think of the music scene over here in the UK?
Yumiki: I like Adele, I think she’s cool.
Fredrik: Oh yeah, I love her so much.

And how was it collaborating with SBTRKT?
Yumiki: Was good, yea he’s a nice fellow yeah.
Fredrik: We met him a couple of times actually, once in Ibiza. And…
Hakan: He was so high, it was like. It was incredible!
[Laughing] Yumiki: Yeah we could hardly talk to him, he was out of it wow.

Obviously you’re here for Clarks, what do you think of the shoes today, do you like them?
Yumiki: Yeah we love them, we’re all wearing them right now.
Fredrik: I have a couple of pairs, I always forget the names. They’re Clarks we wear them every day…
Hakan: My fave ones ever are called the waved sole or something? They’re so old they’re smashed at home but I still keep them. Source.

Gardens & Villa confirm their ‘Top 10 of 2011′ to FILTER Magazine

One of our favorites from this year, a band that just seemed to keep coming up all year ’round, was Santa Barbara quartet Gardens & Villa. Their self-titled debut was an early delight, and their good vibes seemed to strike a chord with everyone, everywhere. The band emarked on a huge tour in 2011, hitting Los Angeles no less than two times, where we got to see the band for the first time live at Origami Vinyl (see the below video captured via OnTheRecord.tv), as well as an international tour that wrapped up at the end of November. We’re looking forward to 2012, but won’t blame the band a bit if they take a bit of R&R. Below, check out the band’s “most listened to” albums of 2011. Source.

1. John Maus, We Must Become the Pitiless Sensors of Ourselves (RIBBON)
Dreamy… Sentimentally charged… Some songs remind me of pizza and video games in the early ’90s. He has an incredible pop sensibility and it really comes out on this record. Definitely my favorite of the year.

2. Junip, Fields (MUTE/CITY SLANG, 2010)
José González can do no wrong. Junip is psychedelic and absurdly groovy. From start to finish, it feels live and timeless.

3. Little Dragon, Ritual Union (PEACEFROG)
Great beats, insane synth work. [Yukimi Nagano’s] voice shakes my ribs. Dancey and/or contemplative, depending on your mood.

4. Fleet Foxes, Helplessness Blues (SUB POP)
Magical.

5. Wolves in the Throne Room, Celestial Lineage (SOUTHERN LORD)
Take you into a world of epic tragedy, fog and dreams of fjords… Pure black metal from Seattle.

6. Future Islands, On the Water (THRILL JOCKEY)
[Samuel T. Herring] sings about love as if no one has ever sung about it before. Amazing vocal melodies and delivery…honest. Immaculate arrangements. It’s a perfect record.

7. Youth Lagoon, Year of Hibernation (FAT POSSUM)
Innocent and beautiful. Double rainbow.

8. Richard Swift, Walt Wolfman (SECRETLY CANADIAN)
Soulful to the beyond. Sounds like it was recorded in 1975. Swift is a god.

9. The War on Drugs, Slave Ambient (SECRETLY CANADIAN)
We listened to this record at least 20 times whilst on tour over the summer. Amazing to drive across America with and it never gets old!

10. Clams Casino, Clams Casino (SELF-RELEASED)
Innovative and vibey. Fits wih most relevant gatherings, just don’t listen to it late while you’re driving…it may entrance you to sleep. Source.

Pitchfork rank SBTRKT & Little Dragon’s collaboration as the 89th best song of 2011

If you wake up one day to find that your genre of choice has been suddenly co-opted by bandwagoneering rock-bros, there are a couple of good ways to shrug it off: Network with people who share your ability to imbue music with shapeshifting versatility, take it to somewhere it hasn’t been, and slap the prefix post- onto it. SBTRKT does just that, and “Wildfire”, the first single from his self-titled debut, is a savvy lure. Little Dragon’s Yukimi Nagano drops a vocal in full diva mode, wrapping her sultry voice around words that sound romantic until you catch the underlying threats. And what she’s given to work with is a track that winds its way through a couple different satellites of landmark R&B, a slinky slow-jam 80s drum machine holding the door open for fat synths that draw a path of lineage from dubstep all the way back to “Pony”. Source.