Art d’Ecco: Androgynous Glitter Melancholy

J.N. 23/04/2021

His official story is he’s ensconced in a cabin in a remote coastal location that he has no interest in revealing. The closest he’ll get to discussing his coordinates is citing one of British Columbia’s lush and magical Gulf Islands.

Not that long ago, the enigmatic West Coast rocker and fashion plate known as Art d’Ecco had resigned himself to the death of his professional music career. His back story includes fleeing Vancouver years ago to hole up in a sprawling island home to care for an ailing grandmother, the relative solitude giving him ample time to invent the character that would become analogue-obsessed rocker Art d’Ecco. His 2018 album Trespasser was the trailer, bracing audiences for impact, and alongside its two subsequent singles – a cover of “This Flight Tonight” for a Joni Mitchell anniversary compilation, and the Gary Numan-esque “I’ll Never Give You Up” – served as tantalizing tasters on which the West Coast bit hard. An outpouring of fan art ensued, with love from critics, a live session for Seattle’s iconic KEXP, and performances at more than 75 clubs and music festivals across North America.

In 2020 he started working on his sophomore album In Standard Definition. Joining forces with producer/engineer Colin Stewart (Black Mountain, New Pornographers, Destroyer) in ocean-side studio The Hive, In Standard Definition sees d’Ecco packing his heftiest punch yet. Through Stewart’s vintage set up, a decoupage of authentic sounds was recorded to 2-inch tape on a 50- year-old console. Embellished with slick ‘70s drums production, it echoes with the textural ambition of Brian Eno’s Here Come The Warm Jets or Toni Visconti on Bowie’s Scary Monsters. Chin skywards, In Standard Definition struts with the striking tonal resemblance of ‘70s glam, oscillating between new wave and new romantic via C86 infusions, or the simplicity of John Lennon’s Plastic Ono Band. Earning his producer stripes, d’Ecco played musical ringleader, building the tracks’ layers with a revolving door of hand-picked musicians: jazz and blues players on horns, Victoria Symphony Orchestra’s string players, soul singers, and his suited and booted live band. And today it’s in your local record store!

Art d’Ecco pages

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About The Author

Music researcher with an unhealthy passion for music and music festivals. Former studio owner, semi-functional drummer and with a fairly good collection of old analogue synthesizers from the 70's. Indie rock, post rock, electronic/industrial and drum & bass (kind of a mix, yeah?) are usual stuff in my playlists but everything that sounds good will fit in.