Formed in 2009, their name refers to a quote from English writer Sir Arthur Quiller-Couch (often attributed to other authors such as Ginsberg and Faulkner) – “Kill your darlings” – which advocates the importance of simplicity in great literary works.
They were supported by Hannah Read, a multi-instrumentalist and songwriter born in Scotland who now resides in Brooklyn. Fresh off a new album release in February ‘Way Out I’ll Wander.’ It features standout tracks such as ‘She Took a Gamble.’ Read set the tone for the evening with some beautifully arranged roots music given a distinctly contemporary spin.
Years of touring the globe with a variety of artists, including being part of UK folk supergroup Songs of Separation, has given her a very assured stage presence and she captivated the crowd throughout her intimate set.
As is the curse of all good support sets, Read’s seemed criminally short, but she received a great reception from the audience. She spent much of the night – when she wasn’t joining Darlingside for a brief onstage collaboration – chatting to fans and the newly converted alike by the merch table.
Before long, it was time for Darlingside to take the stage. The four musicians gathered around a single condenser microphone and dived straight into a track from their most recent album ‘Extralife’.
Throughout their set, the four members frequently switched up instruments – Don Mitchell switched between guitar and banjo, Auyon Mukharji took on the mandolin and violin, Harris Paseltiner alternated guitar and cello, while David Senft formed the backbone with bass and kick drum. All four of them shared vocal duties and, for a few tracks, Mitchell and Senft also took turns manning a synth that gave tracks a distinctly future-folk feel.