Words: Sam Geary
Out now via their own Zen F.C. label, Yard Act make their onslaught on 2021 with the follow-up to last year's 'Peanuts'.
The post-punk quartet's 'Dark Days' sees the Leeds-based band once again hauling their distinctive sound to the fore; melding jagged, snaking riffs with the drawled vocal delivery of James Smith.
"With 'Dark Days' I wrote the first verse and chorus hook quite fast but then I didn’t know how to finish it," says frontman Smith. "The demo Ryan sent was ace, real sparse. The drums were really driven but the bassline felt like it was suspended mid air in the verses, like a dub bassline or something. It created the illusion that you have time to stop and look around amidst the ensuing chaos. It's like in war films when all the noise stops and you just hear the protagonist's heavy breathing whilst they survey their surroundings in slow motion. Then the chorus hit with this ‘Captain Caveman’ vibe, it reminded me of that stop-motion cartoon from the 90's ‘GOGS’ if anyone remembers that? I liked the juxtaposition of the bleak world with the cartoon bass line.
"Despite all the advances humanity has made, the threat of devolution feels increasingly possible in the modern world, and on my bad days when I’m spiralling I can’t help but get trapped in my own head envisioning this post apocalyptic future we’re seemingly headed toward, so fuck knows why I decided to watch Children of Men when I was feeling like that. If I’d fully remembered what happened in it, I don’t think I would've in the middle of a pandemic, but I did, and I actually came away feeling really uplifted by the ending. I saw hope in it, and it helped me finish the story.”
“‘Dark Days’ is the last of four singles before we start work on the album, of which none of those songs will be on," he adds.