Story: Jack Foley
SINGER/songwriter, Dan Glendinning used to be part of the mildly
successful band, Headswim, yet his latest incarnation, Black Car,
marks an exciting new venture that is generating a great deal
of excitement among industry insiders, IndieLondon scribes and
His debut EP, Asleep at the Wheel, is a truly great record,
comprised of three songs that were originally written at his East
London home for his own personal pleasure.
It was only after friends insisted that they were too good to
remain home recordings that Dan took the step of thinking about
the songs in a full electric context; up to that point it was
just the 'one man and his guitar' approach.
However, having come to the conclusion that the industry
stifles rather than encourages talent, it was a big step for him
to return to the studio under the encouragement of a former publisher,
who became Black Cars manager.
But it is due to this tentativeness, that the songs on the EP
(and those that make up the forthcoming debut LP) were recorded
in such a way as to make Dan feel comfortable.
"I was recording under no pressure and not worrying about
anything other than getting the songs right for me, which was
very liberating," he reveals.
The approach clearly worked, as the acoustic songs slowly built
into the grandeur demonstrated on the EP.
Dan took control of virtually all the instruments in the studio,
although his brother was brought in to play drums.
The recording process also allowed Dan to begin to think about
himself in the context of being a recording artist for the first
time since the demise of Headswim.
With no pressure to write a hit single, Dan allowed himself to
embrace the big issues; love, loss, hope and despair, and has
produced what he feels is the best music of his life.
With a deft touch and an ability to pluck the heartstrings of
the listener, particularly during the opening moments of Asleep
At The Wheel, Black Car is clearly about bigger things than
an industry midweek or a number 39 single.
Dan maintains that he 'would love to write a pop song', but feels
it is not a process he understands.
The nascent Black Car recordings were heard by new independent
Altered States and the final part of the plan fell into place,
again, much as Dan wanted.
With a label that was interested in the quality of his songs
and excited about the real possibility of a classic debut LP,
Dan had found a way for his songs to reach the public while avoiding
all the industry machinations that had almost convinced
him never to get involved again.
The four piece, live version of Black Car, (featuring Dans
brother on drums), are now rehearsing for live shows later in
The Asleep at the Wheel EP is released by Altered States
on June and is an IndieLondon record of the week.
The debut Black Car LP will follow in July, at a date to be confirmed
- but watch this space!