A gorgeous new album release from Dan Rose beckons classic Folk with a record that displays more character than many with a graceful display of honesty and a certain warmth that welcomes you with open arms.
The This House Is On Fire album is a set of songs that serve almost like chapters in the artist's life, and they do have a way of interconnecting strangely which makes you wonder if this is actually a concept record or not.
Either way you're definitely getting glimpses of the artist's history and some of the things that build his Persona which spills out into the music on a constant basis throughout this record.
This is part of what makes the album so addictive and beautiful. That persona is what you really come to like so much the way it's displayed is through what is one of the only ways the artist knows how to.
He lets those inner parts and thoughts of himself out through his songs and this is a big piece of the puzzle that we've been missing in different kinds of genres for quite some time.
This record has personality and character built into it to the point where, halfway through the record you feel like you know this person a lot better.
He's willing to wear his heart on his sleeves and his style and approach crosses Nick Drake with Bob Dylan, and on top of that there are loads of layers and elements that are straight from his own and this is what makes an atmosphere that you can fall into.
There are definitely songs on this record that stand on their own two feet as singles beautifully, but this is really record that's meant to be soaked in as a whole from beginning to end so you really get the premise and the point.
The record shows everything from strength to weakness making it human and I think with singer-songwriter and real folk music that's the point. To show that you're human like everyone else.
You sing and talk about the things that others are sort of afraid to and that's what makes you brave.
This is also what makes the listeners feel accompanied like they're not alone in their thoughts.
Good art and any form will have this effect.
This is definitely not a straight-up folk record either there's a lot of different genre-crossing that happens even though that folk is the basis of everything.
You have songs that come through stripped down and one-on-one, but you have songs that come through lush with different kinds of instrumentation and make it full-bodied.
This is definitely one of those albums that you feel like was a long time in the making but only because there are certain things, he had to live to be able to weave into song first but if you think about it, that makes perfect sense.
This was something of an opus in terms of a big and personal release and it comes with a lot of heart and a lot of soul, and all that authenticity is what keeps you there and lets you get washed away with everything in the end.
With such a beautiful record we wanted to have a sit down with Dan Rose to talk to him about the album and more.
Here's what went down.
Buzz Slayers: Welcome back Dan! "This House Is on Fire" has a very honest feel to it! How did the album actually come together for you?
Thanks for having me back! Yeah I was writing these songs from a totally honest and personal place with absolutely no intention of trying to please any playlists or mainstream audience. I was writing the songs for myself with the hope that the songs might just find a friendly ear and green heart somewhere down the line. Recorded in my bedroom and in the corner of a shared practise space, using the music recording software Garageband, a USB-microphone and the microphone on my phone. Simple and raw, honest and authentic. I didn’t use auto-tune or pitch correction like most other music released these days, I didn’t even layer my vocals to make them sound fuller and stronger. It’s not about pleasing sounds, it’c a communication. It’s all very real, just like the climate crisis.
Buzz Slayers: It feels like a lot of the songs were drawn from real-life. Was this the case for you?
Yes, the songs are very much drawn from my own experiences and conversations with people. It’s my point of view on climate and sustainability issues, but I find that I’m not alone with these thoughts and feelings. I’ve met a lot of people and organizations with the same kind of mindsets and feelings about the state of the world. There is power in unity and togetherness.
Buzz Slayers: Listening through the record, it actually seems almost like a concept record. Would you say that's right in a way?
I understand that it and I agree a little bit. It’s not a big concept, but there definitely was a vision for how I wanted to structure the songs and the recording of them and have it be very lo-fi and DIY, even the plan to make the special cassette-tape version was planned out before the songs were finished. Some of the songs and recordings was even just me recording stuff on the memo-app on my phone and using that on the album. The track “You Will Burn” is my phone recording the sound of my electric kettel while I chant “you will burn” over and over again. It’s weird and it fits perfectly on the album and it happened very organically and natural.
Buzz Slayers: Are these all fresh songs or are there songs that have been reworked?
The oldest song on the album is ‘Knowing The Unknown’ and that was written and recorded previously. I re-recorded the vocal, but I honestly can’t remember if it the old or new vocal recording on the album, haha. It’s about preparing to live in a world that is increasingly unsuitable for humans, know what I mean? Everything else was written with the intention of having it on the album. I wrote more songs that are on here, songs that I might revisit some day, who knows.
Buzz Slayers: What is your absolute favorite thing about what you do?
Connecting with people through music. That’s the absolute most rewarding and fun thing about all this. I love to write and record the songs, but sharing my songs online or at live shows with people who respond to what I’m all about is where the magic is. Finding your tribe and purpose is key.
Buzz Slayers: Do you give friends and family sneak previews of the releases before they are out?
There’s a few very close friends that I share stuff with when I’m working on it. They’re part of my tiny indie record label Lady Lux Records. I’m very much a solo artist, but that doesn’t mean I don’t value the opinion of those who understands what I’m doing and what these songs are about. I value togetherness.
Buzz Slayers: Being in the music business, you get plenty of criticism. Would you say you've learned how to handle different kinds?
Life is full of criticism. Sure, when you put yourself out there with songs about sustainability, the climate and a minimalist lifestyle, there’s going to be those who just wants to criticise or promote negative behavior.
Buzz Slayers: Do you normally write songs at home by yourself?
At home by myself or in that rehearsal space that I share with an instrumental math-rock band and a jazzy cover-song group. There’s a giant poster on the wall of an exotic beach, look out for that whenever I go live on Instagram.
Buzz Slayers: How do your songs start? Is it chords first, lyrics, melodies?
Everything everywhere all at once, to quote a movie. Things pop into existence, things are grounded out over time and some things are manifested. Songwriting is a big pot of whatever you put into it.
Buzz Slayers: Are you planning any tour or set of shows for this album release?
I’ve played a fair few shows builidng up to the album release, promoting the pre-orders of the cool cassette tape version. A few showcases here and there, but I’m actually planning for more live activity for 2024, including shows in Germany and anywhere else where I’m welcome.
Buzz Slayers: What do you think is next for you as an artist?
Continuing to promote the issues of the climate crisis, a sustainable future and a minimalist approach to modern life, that’s on the top of my list. I’ll be releasing a lo-fi Christmas song and I’ve begun to write the follow-up to this album. That will be released next year and continue with the same agenda, but with a tighter sound and an added background setting of the great symbol of modern civilization, New York. That’s the plan, follow me to see how it goes.
Buzz Slayers: Last but not least, what would you want to express to fans of the music?
Thanks for listening! Stay tuned and keep fighting! Say hello on Instagram or wherever you hang out online, I’m @danrosedk.