NewTracks New Artist: Madly

NewTracks New Artist: Madly

We’ve heard little from Auckland pop punk four-piece Beach Pigs since the release of their 2014 album ‘Grom Warfare’. Having collaborated previously on each other’s solo projects, singer Dahnu Graham and drummer (now better known as a sound engineer, producer and electronica artist in his own right) Suren Unka got into the studio together once more to work on some electronically driven pop. Recording under the name Madly, their single Cloud Nine subsequently featured on NZ On Air Music‘s NewTracks compilation this April. Here’s Dahnu Graham re-introducing himself, this time as a solo act.

What’s the background story of how Madly came to be?

Suren Unka came to me with some ideas and asked if I wanted these beats he’d been working on for a side project of my own. We started quite quickly bringing songs together and formed the project Madly.

How did you come up with that great name?

I was dead set on actually calling the project Tiffany… but for obvious reasons, it then changed to yTiffany. We then tried the project name Dahnu, but it felt too me-me-me buzz. So I mingled on my page and a close friend said they like the name Madly. So here we are…

What makes Cloud 9 stand out for you as a single?

It was never intended to be the first single. It just had such a strong music video, with help from NZ On Air and an amazing director and crew, so we changed our plans to come out strong.

Who did you make the video with?

This video was frickin’ bonkers to make! Directed by Eddy Fifield, shot by Ziga from Flying Fish. We also had an incredible crew that worked tirelessly for 18 hours on the first day and backed up with a 13-hour shoot… in two days we got this gnarly piece of absolute nek level bullshit!

What’s your favourite moment, musical or lyrical, of the single?

“Yeah, I wanna – kinda wanna – wanna risk it all.”

Who did you work on Cloud Nine with and where? 

We recorded it in Suren’s studio on Karangahape Rd but we really wanted to see if a grand piano would trump ours. Levi Patel not only had one but is a great composer himself, so we travelled up to Matakana to record at his. If anyone’s partied with him at his you’ll know how ridiculous this place is! Anyway, he took what I thought was a perfect part and gave it some Levi love.

In one sentence, what do you want listeners to take away from this song.

I want the listener to take their own idea of what the song means to them.

How do you work out what song would make a good single?

Generally, it’ll be obvious… the one you love the most. Or it can also be the most complete / beginning of a chain or vibes you’re planning to unleash.

Are there other musical endeavours you’re working on that we should keep an eye out for?

The new Beach Pigs album… It’s a beast.

Have you mzde previous applications that didn’t get funding or inclusion on NewTracks? Got any advice for people out there?

Heaps! There’s some really good advice on the NZOA website/Youtube of industry cats sharing some light on that, but hmmmm… my advice is to write an undeniable banger.

Was there an NZOA criterion you struggled with in the application? How did you work it out in the end?

How will you promote/market the track? This one is a tricky one for me because apart from the obvious places to try plug your track, the world of marketing music and the forever changing landscape of that is a real headbanger to try keep up with. How I worked through it was to be honest and say that I would do everything I can. Cold call the top places, contact everyone via everything.

How can we find you on social media?