Inside your own personal indie dance floor there are two wolves. One yearns for the slutty early aughts days of electroclash, while the other dreams of the overdue blog house renaissance, taking us back 15 years to the last great IRL subculture. The Dare, a new Brooklyn-based electronic music project from Harrison Patrick Smith (NYC’s Home Sweet Home, Turtlenecked), doesn’t give a fuck which side you’re on, as long as you meet him in the bathroom, drink in one hand and nostalgia for the Before Times in the other.
And so last month he dropped his scintillating debut “Girls,” a whorish romp of an indie sleaze revivalist tune that drops a big beat back down on stale nightlife, feeling the sizzle of parties of recent yesteryear that feel as long-gone as your own sense of adventure. Call it blog house, call it electroclash, call it whatever — just be grateful it’s even calling you at all.
Smith chatted recently with Open Tab recently, the digital singles imprint of The Dare’s label Fire Talk Records, and he says this of “Girls”: “[I] just wanted to make something like ‘Fuck the Pain Away’ by Peaches, ‘Daft Punk is Playing at my House’, or something off Paul’s Boutique. Whipped it up in like 30 minutes at 3 a.m. in my bedroom.”
So just what, then is The Dare all about. “The Dare is my foray into the worlds of electroclash, techno, and house,” Smith elaborates to Open Tab. “For a long time I kept everything I made under the umbrella of Turtlenecked, but the name didn’t fit the aesthetic of the new material and I feel like a different person from the 18 year old who formed Turtlenecked. As far as separation between indie rock / club music, I love the early 2000s so much because there was so much fluidity — the Maison Kitsune remix EPs, the DFA remixes of Le Tigre or The Rakes, Diplo remixing Bloc Party, etc. There’s a feeling of optimism and openness in underground music from that time that I feel faded into genre camps again in the mid 2010s. I wanna bring that feeling back.”
Us too. Experience a musical tingle down south for the first time since you felt a flash go off, and absorb your demons of the last fun night with the “Girls” video, shot at Home Sweet Home in the Lower East Side and starring the cast of clubland characters that orbit The Dare’s world. It’s only a matter of time before his gravity pulls us all in.