Interview - Ducktails set for UK tour

Exotic pop augurer Matthew Mondanile

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Interview - Ducktails set for UK tour

Exotic pop augurer Matthew Mondanile, alias New Jersey DIY buff Ducktails, has a hedonistic day ahead. ‘I just woke up,’ he says from his Brooklyn home. ‘After this interview, I’ll probably take a shower, have some coffee and pay a couple of parking tickets.’

Mondanile recently released his third ‘official’ Ducktails album, Arcade Dynamics, via Woodsist Records (Wavves, Moon Duo). It’s a typically giddy blend of psych, drone, summer jams, tropical riffs and hazy vocalisms. In addition to playing with NY surf-poppers Real Estate and acid-rock diviners Predator Vision, Mondanile has recorded as Ducktails since 2007. ‘I was living in Northampton, Massachusetts, in a nice house near the fairgrounds,’ he reminisces. ‘We had a big backyard with a tool-shed that had a bed in it facing a farm with cows. It was pretty ideal.’

‘I’d just moved back from Berlin,’ he continues. ‘I recorded six songs with an amplifier and a four-track, and I wanted to sell the tape at a show I was playing, so I photocopied some stuff and asked my friend to write Ducktails in a silver font on the tape.’

Mondanile’s day-glo melodic wooze has since been aligned with the intangible cultural (specifically, 80s) nostalgia of hypnagogic pop and his three ‘formal’ long-players have been augmented by many lo-fi cassettes, LPs and CDRs – all intoxicating, and many embellished with the ultimate 80s emblem: the palm tree.

‘These days in the Western mind, palm trees speak of sunny skies and relaxing vacations,’ Mondanile reflects. ‘The head of the palm is visually comparable to our glowing sun-star, and so many symbolic meanings of the palm are related to solar attributes. It means a lot of things.’

Can we expect palm trees from Ducktails in Scotland? ‘Unfortunately there will be no palm trees on stage. However, there will be four cute boys with me.’

With Julian Lynch, Big Troubles Captain’s Rest, Glasgow, Fri 3 Jun; Sneaky Pete’s, Edinburgh, Sun 5 Jun

Julian Lynch, Ducktails and Big Troubles

Ambient pop from Lynch with one-man-psych project Ducktails (aka Matthew Mondanile) in support.

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