Introducing weirdo-pop project D.C. Maxwell (NZ), who has shared his highly anticipated debut single, ‘The Leading Man’ via Danger Collective Records.
Here’s the blurb from the good folks at Dinosaur City:
The former frontman of teenage high-octane punk band Roidz, who amassed a cult following in New Zealand and the States, ‘The Leading Man’ marks Maxwell’s long-awaited foray back into music after a five-year hiatus.
Referencing 1960s hitmaker Glen Campbell, the tight studio pop of Lee Hazlewood and Scott Walker, and the outlaw country of Townes Van Zandt, ‘The Leading Man’ builds like a show tune, complete with strings, a horn section and a choir.
Behind the rich and detailed production of the track – which features contributions from Elizabeth Stokes (The Beths), Dave Khan (Marlon Williams), David Harris (Princess Chelsea) and producer and collaborator, Peter Ruddell (Wax Chattels) – is the story of an actor crazed with envy, and a plan to steal the spotlight through violence. Maxwell cites a disturbing, near-fatal incident at a school in Auckland, where students’ throats were slashed with a razor during a production of Sweeney Todd, and Lee Hazelwood’s ‘The Rising Star’ as inspiration behind the lyrics.
“I was thinking, how the hell did this happen? What events led art and reality to collide in such a violent way?”, Maxwell shares, adding, “I also love Lee Hazelwood’s song ‘The Rising Star’, about a jaded old musician who became a drunk shadow of his former self. These two ideas collided, and we got ‘The Leading Man’.
Accompanying the new single is a video by acclaimed director, Fraser Chatham (L.A.B., Lilly Carron, Lance Savali). The clip depicts an egomaniac actor losing his mind to a backdrop reminiscent of a country-western film set, referencing Lars Von Trier’s Dogville and the backlots of old Hollywood. Maxwell vigorously dances his way through the set, growing more frantic and unhinged as it is deconstructed around him.
The music video highlights the frenetic energy of D.C. Maxwell’s hyped live show, where he physically embodies each of his song’s characters, backed by a rotating cast of musicians. A magnetic performer and storyteller, Maxwell has already caught the attention of Village Sounds, landing a slot on their coveted roster, playing multiple sell-out shows, and scoring support slots with international acts including Future Islands, without releasing a single.
‘The Leading Man’ is out now through Danger Collective Records (US). Stream ‘The Leading Man’ HERE, and watch the accompanying music video HERE. To stay up to date with shows and releases, follow D.C. Maxwell on Instagram.
“[‘The Leading Man’ is] a remarkably assured debut, coolly stylish and lightly alluring. Maxwell confidently strides into the spotlight on his leading single, clearly eager to vindicate all the seemingly premature.” – Conor Lochrie, Rolling Stone
“A creative powerhouse who demands to be experienced live.” – Under the Radar (NZ)