|11.11.09||21:00||Berlin - Magnet Club|
|15.11.09||20:30||Köln - MTC NEUES DATUM!!!|
From the very start, the concept was, in stark contrast to the rest of
the Canadian scene during that ‘Nickelback moment‘, unashamedly and
unapologetically POP. Dan explains, “I’d like to write songs that at
least I can remember. And I’m very bad at remembering melodies and the
lyrics, so it needs to be memorable!
” Through a few strokes of fortune, their first public appearances were baptisms of fire in the deep end of concert-dom. Their second-ever show was supporting New Order at NYC’s Hammerstein Ballroom, followed by a US tour supporting Duran Duran. All after recording just 2 songs in their basement.
Dragonette eventually signed a record deal, and, like fellow Canadians Peaches (who they know) and Gonzales (with whom Dan went to school), headed for Europe. The band decamped to London with Joel and hooked up with guitarist Will (the British quarter of Dragonette), where they honed their small but perfectly-formed, all-killer-no-filler repertoire. Ruthless perfectionists, they explain that “We don’t have any spare songs. We write songs till they’re finished, then we kill off other ones. It’s not like we picked 10 out of a possible 20 for the album.”
The results are a dirty, hook-heavy, electropop album called Galore with monsters like “I Get Around” and “Competition”, depicting a world of guilt-free pleasure mixed with an 80s party prowess. Martina isn’t interested in writing, she says, “songs to get depressed to.” As Dan puts it, “It’s hard enough working on songs that are *fun*. I can’t even imagine what it‘s like working on miserable material…” The record has received praise from such diverse sources as the NME. UK dailies the Observer, Times and Guardian, online pop bible popjustice, and has garnered multiple mentions from Perez Hilton (whose showcase the band performed at during last year’s SXSW).
While they were recording Galore, Martina also accidentally became a pop star.when she wrote and sang lead vocals on the Basement Jaxx track, “Take Me Back To Your House”, and fronted the Dougal Wilson-directed video, cossack-dancing in front of a tank driven by Stalin.
After finishing the record they got down to the business of becoming a touring band, playing clubs large and small across the planet, with stops at the legendary Glastonbury Festival, London’s historic Trafalgar Square, Spain’s Summercase, V Festival and Australia’s traveling Parklife shindig along the way. They’ve headlined in Paris, Barcelona, London, Buenos Aries, Sao Paolo and beyond, and are a strong draw across their native Canada, selling out clubs and small theaters from Coast-to-coast.
By putting a great deal of thought into their visual presentation, Dragonette contravened with the any-colour-so-long-as-it‘s-black cliché of alternative rock. “It’s so easy to wear the skinny jeans halfway down your ass, and disappear into your fanbase. The real challenge is to look the way we do onstage, and be that person offstage as well. That’s kinda fun. It’s also terrifying. But we wanna give a great show, and that’s part of it.
” Now, it’s Dragonette’s turn to take on America. Their debut single, “I Get Around,” hit the Top 20 in Canada, stayed on the airplay charts there for over 9 months, and was a major factor in them being nominated as Best New Band at the Juno Awards (Canada’s answer to the Grammys). It still pops up on a few trendy blogs every day across the world, after being out for over a year. Their album track “Get Lucky” has been synched over 15 times, from major movies to major advertising campaigns, from the USA (where it has soundtracked campaigns for JC Penney and Dell) to Croatia. Their music has also appeared on TV shows for Fox and NBC, and has a prominent placement in the new Julia Roberts film (due in January).
Oh, the name? Nothing to do with puns on retro cop shows. “Martina called her iPod that,” says Dan. “I saw it plugged in on her computer, and I thought ‘Wow, that word looks fucking cool.’ Then we post-rationalised it and said it was about this female-fronted male power band. It’s a fire-breathing dragon, but it’s a chick!”
Martina beams. “A dragon in stilettos.”