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D'Sound Biography

Last updated: 04/20/2009 12:00:00 PM

D’SOUND are back with their third album ”Talkin’ Talk”. For the very first time Simone (vocals), Jonny (bass) and Kim (drums) did the production work themselves, and the result is thirteen strong pieces of acoustic, rhythmic, melodic and crisp pop music. With a strong foundation in jazz, funk and groove based music, the band this time demonstrate strong influences from contemporary R&B.

The band members consider D`Sound as a modern band where all three of them play equal roles in fronting the band. D`Sound was formed in 1993 when Simone, Kim and Jonny had their first rehearsals in a damp Oslo basement. The band hit the Norwegian charts with the single ”Real Name”, topping both sales and radio charts. Their debut album, ”Spice of Life”, was subsequently released at the beginning of 1997, and established D’Sound as a band of major significance on the Norwegian music scene. Their fusion of elements from acid jazz, soul, funk, pop and drum’n’bass created a distinct and international sound, deservedly praised by both critics and the record buying public. The record was nominated for two ”Spellemannpriser”, the Norwegian equivalent to the Brits and the Grammies. In the singles chart, D’Sound enjoyed success with singles like ”Smooth Escape” and ”All I wanna do”.

At the end of 1998, the follow-up ”Beauty is a Blessing” was released, featuring an even heavier influence from drum’n’bass and modern soul. The record was another major success, resulting in a Spellemannpris for ”Best Norwegian Pop Group” in 1998. The singles ”Ain’t giving up” and ”Down on the Street” became massive chart busters both sales and radio wise, with "Down on the Street" even entering the UK club charts. ”Beauty is a Blessing” has gone platinum, even though the album was never given international release.

D’Sound is long since established as one of the best live bands in Norway. Simone, Jonny and Kim are skilled and ambitious musicians who instantly captures the audiences when get together on the stage. Several successful tours around Norway (including concerts at the Molde Jazz Festival) and international gigs have cemented their deserved reputation as brilliant and electrifying live performers.

Working on ”Talkin’ Talk”
After a short break from band activities, D’Sound started their work on ”Talkin’ Talk” in March 2000. This time they were given the opportunity to be their own producers, and joined forces with long-time collaborator and keyboardist Stein Austrud. This resulted in a golden age of creativity, and at one point the band was working on as many as 35 different sketches. The 13 songs that are featured on the finished product was first developed in Jonny’s home studio during a long, creative and exciting process. ”Talkin’ Talk” is heavily influenced by the band’s wish to preserve the impulsiveness in their collaboration. Playing around and experimenting with each other’s song ideas has resulted in a record that D’Sound are understandably content and excited about.

On "Talkin' Talk" the band really has been able to live out their passion for modern American R & B. Strong sources of inspiration includes Angie Stone, d’Angelo, Jill Scott and Erykah Badu. The songs are still the main focal point, but D`Sound this time has a stronger edge towards beats, and the band members describe the work on the album as a big challenge groove-wise. The bass- and drum-led first single, ”Sing my Name”, is in that respect representative of the whole album.

In January, a dream came true for D’Sound when they went to have their album mixed in Virginia Beach, USA, one of the world’s leading R&B-scenes. There they met up and worked with the highly acclaimed mixer Serban Ghenea, whose previous track record includes several major names, among them Janet Jackson, Prince, Blackstreet, Jill Scott and Kelis. The band and Ghenea really hit it off, and together they ensured that the album got that very special D’Sound prior to its release.

The record title ”Talkin’ Talk’” is one of the band’s own expressions. It’s no secret that during working on the album there has been a lot of ”constructive fighting” within the band, and at the end of the recording sessions the band sat down for a brutally honest three-hour long ”Talkin’ Talk” to clear the air. Since then their collaboration has been even better than before, and the record title was more or less a given.

Major live focus
During March and April D`Sound successfully toured Norway with the songs from the new album. After eight years of playing together, Simone, Kim and Jonny know each other so well that the live setting enables major improvisations and musical adventures, guaranteed to give their audiences rare concert experiences.

On the tour great international musicians joined the band. The backing vocalists were brought over from the States, and have previously toured with Angie Stone and Erykah Badu. DJ Kemit, who was one of the founders of Arrested Development, also contributed to strengthen their live shows. In addition a group of national musicians joined the tour, and D`Sound promise to continue to impress on various stages in the months to come.