Raised between Barcelona, Munich, London, and NYC, Dark finds herself drawing inspiration from her multicultural upbringing and eclectic music taste (from Françoise Hardy to Portishead, to Nancy Sinatra and Arctic Monkeys), as well as her love for film noir and French New Wave cinema. She began writing her own songs and poetry in her early teenage years, quickly taking this to the stage, where she began performing live in London both solo with her acoustic guitar and in different bands, honing her artistic direction and arriving at her unique sound and presence.
After the recent release of her highly praised single ‘Villain’, Spanish/American multi instrumentalist singer songwriter Alexa Dark is back with her brand-new track ‘Fantasy Girl’ and debut EP ‘Dark, Vol. 1’, both slated to drop 24th March 2023 via AWAL. A perfect opportunity for a DMCWORLD exclusive…
Alexa, nice to meet you. How are things going? Whereabouts are you chatting from right now?
Nice to meet you too, things have been great! I’ve been splitting time between Los Angeles and New York City. Right now I’m in NYC.
Can you tell us a bit more about yourself?
As a kid, I was always writing poetry and songs. I moved around a lot, but I mostly grew up in London and its indie rock scene, where I started performing on stages at a young age, both solo and with different bands, and really found myself as an artist. I now live between NYC and LA, recording music, playing live shows, etc.
You have grown up in Barcelona, Munich, London, and New York City? How has this upbringing impacted your music career?
Coming from a pretty multicultural background and getting to experience different cultures and cities first hand from a young age really shaped me and my love for music. When I started my journey with music, I got the chance to meet and work with a lot of different artists from different places, especially performing in these small bars and venues in London, as well recording with my producer in New York City and playing a lot in that downtown live scene. I wouldn’t be the artist I am today without all those experiences.
Who are your biggest musical influences?
French artists from the 60s like Serge Gainsbourg and Françoise Hardy, as well as other 60s artists like Nancy Sinatra have a huge influence on my music. Songwriters like Leonard Cohen have deeply inspired my love for lyricism and musical poetry. I also love bands like Portishead and Massive Attack, who mix different instrumentation and genres.
What kind of inspirations have you drawn upon when making your upcoming EP ‘Dark, Vol. I’?
Films were a huge inspiration for me when I was putting together the sounds and visuals for “Dark, Vol. I,” specifically 60s Bond movies, film noir from the 1940s and 50s, and French New Wave cinema. I wanted to incorporate their mystery, their cinematic emotion and retro style in the sound and look of this EP, almost like transporting the listener to another world entirely.
You have released your single ‘Villain’ which will be featured on your new EP. Can you explain the inspiration for the song and how it fits into the larger project of the EP ‘Dark, Vol I’.
“Villain” was actually the last song I wrote for the EP. I had been in a pattern of self sabotaging the things in my life that should’ve felt perfect, yet couldn’t have felt more flawed. Inspired by the femme fatale archetypes from 40s and 50s noir films, I began thinking about the complexity behind these seemingly black and white archetypes. I started questioning what makes the villain, the villain, and considering my own place in my own story, asking: am I the villain for demanding respect, for wanting more? To me, “Villain” is the final chapter, capturing the core of this origin story I’m telling throughout the seven songs on the EP – the darker side of femininity, how heartbreak and loss might shape us into being something other than ‘the hero’ in our story, and how most often times the battle between the good guy and the bad guy takes place inside of us, facing off ourselves.
How is this new EP different from other projects you have put out?
This EP is my first real longer form work. I’ve had the vision for it since I put out my first single. Each of these songs feels like a piece in the puzzle of this story I’m trying to tell, and finally they’re all together.
Do you have a track that was your favourite to make? Why is that?
“Fade to Black and Blue” probably. It’s the first song I released and it’s the last song on the EP. Writing the lyrics was a huge emotional release – I remember sitting down one night in my New York apartment and they just poured out of me. During the recording and production process, it felt like my producer Matt Chiaravalle and I were soundtracking the last scene of an old film. It felt cathartic and almost apocalyptic. It was definitely a very raw experience.
What else can we expect from your new EP ‘Dark, Vol. I’?
“Dark, Vol. I” is a kind of villain origin story – throughout the seven songs, I give into love, lose it all, and transform into this darker character. But it’s not simply about revenge, it’s also introspective, where your biggest enemy is often yourself. In many ways, I think of it as the end of an era and the start of a new one.
Great to chat with you today and wishing you all the best with the album release! To finish, is there anything else upcoming from yourself that you can let us in on?
Same here! Going to be playing a lot of live shows, and I’m in the middle of writing and recording a lot of new music. I can say it’ll definitely be the start of a new chapter, and I can’t wait for you to hear it!