Northampton, Massachusetts’ Darlingside is having a tough time pointing out an origin to their sound. With five members each contributing to song writing duties, and with such a colored past, Darlingside has evolved into something that’s hard to label.
Each member of Darlingside has a history that’s helped build the band. Auyon Mukharkji, for example, grew up playing violin at school, but didn’t find a real passion until he took up the mandolin more seriously in college. He then spent a year traveling across the globe, studying traditional music in Brazil, Turkey, and Ireland. Don Mitchell, guitarist, studied song writing and music theory in college before working as a singer/songwriter on boat cruises in Maine. That’s just the start of it.
Harris Paseltiner has been playing cello since he was six, before appearing on NPR (twice!) with his classical piano trio. David Senft spent his entire adolescence, and the majority of his college years, believing he’d get into web design. That all changed after the bassist spent two years after college as an itinerant street performer, honing his bass chops when the band formed in 2009. Sam Kapala, the man behind the drums, seems to be a jack of all trades, handling the majority of the band’s audio work as well.
In 2010, Darlingside released their self-recorded EP 1. A year later, the group was ready to take on their first album, bringing producer Nathaniel Kunkel (Sting, Maroon 5) on board to help turn their home into a high end recording studio. When finished, the group had Pilot Machines to show for their effort, the band’s first full-length LP.
Darlingside has packed up the touring van once again this summer, taking on a number of cities through September, including Boston, Cambridge, Portland, and their hometown Northampton. When not on tour, the band usually holes up in their home “between a cornfield and the Connecticut River,” practicing, writing, and sharpening their sound, which as the band so aptly puts it, seems to lay “at the intersection of rock, classical, and folk music.”
Dean Goranites | Associate Editor