Dark Colour Showcases Evolution on ‘Animal’ EP

Jul 13, 2016 at 1:14 pm
Dark Colour - Photo: Provided
Photo: Provided
Dark Colour

Cincinnati Indie Electronic band Dark Colour is in the midst of playing shows across North America promoting its impressive new EP release, Animal, for which the group teamed up with Montreal’s Kitabu Music to help garner the wider exposure the album deserves. Dark Colour has already performed shows in Canada and New York City in anticipation of the release. This Friday, the band will play a hometown gig to celebrate Animal’s official release date. Beginning Friday, Animal will be made available as a free download at darkcolourmusic.com and darkcolour.bandcamp.com. Fans can also pick up a copy of the EP on vinyl via darkcolour.bigcartel.com or at live shows (while they last).

Friday’s release show is at MOTR Pub (1345 Main St., Over-the-Rhine, motrpub.com). Local bands Fluffer and Young Colt join Dark Colour for the free 10 p.m. show.

Dark Colour began in 2012 as the solo project of singer/songwriter/keyboardist/programmer Randall Rigdon Jr., whose 2013 full-length debut, Prisoner, earned airplay and press attention from all over the world. Gradually building a band around his infectious blend of Indie and Electro Rock and Pop to play live shows, Rigdon Jr. was joined in the studio by drummer Joseph Sparough and guitarist Coleman Williams to record the material for Animal, with production help from Jacob Merritt and Isaac Karns of Cincinnati Indie Pop greats Pomegranates. (Jeff Dawson is Dark Colour’s current bassist.) 

While part of the appeal of Prisoner was Rigdon Jr.’s ability to sound like a full band, by staying away from the more robotic tendencies of Electronic music and giving the tracks a more humanistic feel, Animal is even more full-bodied and focused, showing not only the benefits of studio collaboration, but also Rigdon Jr.’s growth as a writer and arranger. Prisoner came off like an Electronic Pop musician trying to sound like an Indie Rock band — Animal’s eight-tracks sound more like an Indie Pop band that happens to use electronics. 

Rigdon Jr.’s vocals fluctuate between an anxious urgency and a seductive falsetto throughout Animal. “In My Mind” echoes the early work of Prince, with Rigdon Jr. singing come-ons over a pumping groove. “You Knew This Was Coming” moves from a muted Chillwave intro into a robust, buzzing dancefloor anthem, and the title track also showcases the band’s increased sense of dynamics, as the song builds from more stark atmospherics into kaleidoscopic choruses, buffered by a pulsating bass line and a shower of varied voices and harmonies. 

Dark Colour experiments with different hues and vibes throughout Animal, but there is an impressive cohesiveness thanks to the musicians’ lively performances and Rigdon Jr.’s fluid, stream-of-consciousness melodies, which grab the listener’s attention from the very start and never let go. It’s a bit like the ear-worm version of Alice chasing the White Rabbit through Wonderland — you’re not sure where he’s going, but you can’t help but follow him to the end. 

Local Band Reunions Galore 

• One of Cincinnati’s top Hard Rock crews of the ’90s, Liquid Nation, is getting back together for a show Saturday at Bogart’s (2621 Vine St., Corryville, bogarts.com). The band — which is reteaming in honor of the 20th anniversary of its self-titled album release — has only played twice since splitting up in 1998. Local Rockers Smoke Healer and Lift the Medium open the 9 p.m. show. Tickets are $10.

• After reuniting for a show last year, the members of popular Jam/Reggae/Rock band Four Ohms are at it again, and this time the group is spreading the good reunion vibes around. Saturday’s Four Ohms Family Reunion show at the band’s old haunt, now called Buzzard Bay Pub (7121 Dixie Highway, Fairfield, buzzardbaypub.com), will also feature a performance by Four Ohms cohorts Black and Tan Carpet Band, with special guests sitting in to pay tribute to the group’s late guitarist, Mike D. Also getting in on the reunion action is The Ohms, which featured members of both Four Ohms and BATCB. Show time is 9 p.m.  

CONTACT MIKE BREEN: [email protected]