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It has been a slow but steady build for Auckland-based indie rock band Racing but their stars have been well aligned: appearances at the Splore and Auckland City Limits festivals, a NZonAir showcase, their single Motel Pool holding down 32 weeks in the top 10 of the NZ rock airplay charts, live gigs and then a bit of quiet because . . .

They recorded their debut album Real Dancing at Roundhead in Auckland.

The album -- in an eye-engaging cover, see below -- contains Motel Pool and their other pre-album singles Devil's Work, Misbehaving, The Bass and Party Slow.

The four-piece arrive with some pedigree and the media spotlight largely falling on singer Ed Knowles and guitarist Sven Pettersen because they were in the much acclaimed Checks.

But drummer Izaak Houston also had prior form (Space Creeps) and bassist Daniel Barrett was in the always interesting and slightly unpredictable Sherpa who released two albums worth seeking out.

So rather than default to Knowles and Pettersen (and we've interviewed Knowles previously about Racing) let's ask Daniel Barrett to get his head around a questionnaire as their Real Dancing album gets release . . .

The first piece of music which really affected you was . . .
Kiss From A Rose by Seal. It was on the Batman Forever soundtrack I had on cassette. Powerful stuff.

Your first (possibly embarrassing) role models in music were . . . 
Michael Jackson was a big one for me. I had his Video Greatest Hits on VHS. The Thriller video freaked me out so much I would cry, but I kept trying to watch it, so my mum had to hide the tape from me. 

Lennon or Jagger, Ramones or Nirvana, Madonna or Gaga, Jacko or Jay-Z?
Jagger, Nirvana, Madonna, Jacko.

If music was denied you, your other career choice would be . . .
I think I’d enjoy being a tailor. 

The three songs (yours, or by others) you would love everyone to hear are . . .
Sinnerman by Nina Simone. Joga by Bjork. Hey by The Pixies.

ontheroadAny interesting, valuable or just plain strange musical memorabilia at home...   
I have a Rickenbacker 4001 from 1975 which was previously owned by Racho De La Luna studio in Joshua Tree. It was stolen from my house a few days before Racing went in to record our album, but was returned two days later when the police found it while doing a drug raid. 

The best book on music or musicians you have read is . .
On The Road by Jack Kerouac. The way he describes jazz music in incredible. 

If you could get on stage with anyone it would be?
Interpol. Their original bass player, Carlos Dengler, wrote some of my favourite basslines and they currently don’t have a full-time bass player…

The three films you'd insist anybody watch because they might understand you better are . . .
American Beauty. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. Gainsbourg. 

The last CD or vinyl album you bought was  . . . (And your most recent downloads include...)
Last CD I bought was ‘Lock In’ by Heavy. Most recent downloads include Ebo Taylor, The Hives, and Garbage.

One song, royalties for life, never have to work again. The song by anyone, yourself included, which wouldn't embarrass you in that case would be . . .
Whatever pays the most. I feel no shame. 

4ea60191_49c9_48e7_9d44_5b3ac7a9ec77The poster, album cover or piece of art could you live with on your bedroom forever would be . . .
The cover of Unknown Pleasures by Joy Division. 

You are allowed just one tattoo, and it is of . . . 
A zebra-unicorn, and I have it.  

David Bowie sang, “Five years, that's all we've got . . .” You would spend them where and doing what?
New York learning contemporary dance. 

And finally, in the nature of press conferences in Japan, “Can you tell me please why this is your best album ever?”
It is our highest level of creative synergy to date. 


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