Track Premiere: “Dizzy” by Chain of Lynx
Six months ago, Matt Dicks and Neil Clarke started releasing songs they had been tinkering with in their basements in Newfoundland. While it is typical for most musical projects to start in a basement or a garage, for Dicks and Clarke, the workshopping of their collaboration took place in houses over 650km apart.
The result is Chain of Lynx, a recording project that spans from Dicks’ home in St. John’s to Clarke’s in La Scie, a town at the head of the Baie Verte Peninsula. The near seven hour drive isn’t the only creative stretch at the heart of the project, as the wider goal of Chain of Lynx is to break the mold of a rock duo and lay groundwork for a collaborative medium that melds inclusive contribution from musicians, artists, photographers, and engineers from around the island.
Chain of Lynx ultimate goal has been to release a new song every month, and some of which have featured an eclectic cast of contributors made up of folks from around the province who inspire the two. Since June, the goal has been fulfilled. Beginning with the release of “Wolfwool“, Chain of Lynx have rolled out a new single every month and have worked with a roster of colleagues including Brandon Hopkins from Cabbages & Kings, artist Cody Best, and the crew behind the web-based Grind Mind horror film series.
Now for December, Matt Dicks and Neil Clarke mark 6 months of Chain of Lynx with their 6th single, and we’ve got the exclusive premiere.
“Dizzy” cracks open with a bluesy bellow that invokes the spirit of a booze-breathed and bearded Jim Morrison in his haunting penultimate performances on the LA Woman sessions. The echo of a hungover howl is not a stylistically hollow happenstance, as Chain of Lynx thematically dive into the bottom of a bottle with a gaze into the darker depths of addiction.
“The song itself is about addiction – not to anything in particular, rather how our vices tempt and control us,” Chain of Lynx explained. “What starts as fun, exciting and fulfilling can quickly spin out of control, leaving you wishing you could find a healthier path to that feeling. ”
“It’s tragic, you make the choice to head to a certain destination, but you often give up control of the route to get there.”
Musically, “Dizzy” bends a stabbing contemporary hard blues rock riff over a rhythmic bedding that dazzles with a rich texture of auxiliary percussion, and a cinematic feel that drops hints akin to old moody psychedelia (for some reason, “Time of the Season” by The Zombies comes to mind). The chorus chugs a muddy mouthful of modern grungy rock, and while one might be quick to draw some thin comparative lines to the work of a Josh Homme, the thickness might roll closer to the brim of his production and guitar work on Iggy Pop’s Post Post Depression than it does to his Queens of the Stone Age.
Following the November Chain of Lynx track release — an interpretation of “Everybody Wants to Rule the World” originally by Tears for Fears — “Dizzy” further builds the wide-ranging repertoire of the duo’s output. To add to the uniquely open and enthusiastically cooperative demeanour of the project, Chain of Lynx not only offer each song for free on YouTube and other streaming services, but they also make all the stem tracks from the recordings available for others to “practice mixing or use in their own music”.
With Chain of Lynx synergetic efforts to weave their musical ingenuity with the talents and artistry of their peers throughout the province, it is safe to say “Dizzy” is just another early drop from a vast melting pot that could continue to boil for a long time coming. If all things continue to go according to plan, Chain of Lynx have their sights set on a prolific 2019.
Putting the songs themselves aside, the ambitious nature of what Chain of Lynx have sought out to do should be nothing but a drive and inspiration for other creatives who strive to heighten the idea of what a recording project can look like.
Here’s to a future with many more tracks by the likes of Chain of Lynx, and hopefully many others who will help stretch the confines of rock music in 2018, 2019 and beyond.
Track Premiere: “Catacombs” and The Genius of Geinus