Although his voice has occasionally been heard on prior releases, Chris Clark has primarily let his highly adventurous electronic music do most of the talking throughout his 20-year career. That will change in a big way on his upcoming album, Sus Dog, which is the first to be centered around his singing. Due May 26 on Clark’s own Throttle Records and billed just by his last name, the project was executive produced by Radiohead’s Thom Yorke, who also sings and plays bass on the track “Medicine.”
Clark says Sus Dog was inspired by the rhetorical question of “what would it sound like if the Beach Boys took MDMA and made a rave record?” Listeners can decide for themselves with first single “Town Crank,” which features drum work from Richard Spaven (Flying Lotus, Guru).
“Chris wrote me to say he’d started singing, looking for feedback/advice or whatever, cuz it was kind of new shark-infested waters for him,” Yorke says of how he came to work on Sus Dog. “I’ve been into what he does for years, and I ended up being a kind of backseat driver as he pieced all the oddness of it together, which was fascinating. I wasn’t surprised to discover he came at singing and words through another door completely, which to me was the most interesting and exciting part. The first thing he sent me was him singing about being stuck between two floors and I was already sold. To me the way he approached it all wasn’t the usual singer/songwriter guff, thank God. It mirrored the way he approached all his composition and recording, but this time it had a human face. His face.”
Adds Clark, “It’s a lifetime’s worth of listening to songs and working out how to make them, tuning into how to customize all the other elements to my tastes. It feels like my debut, in a way.”
Clark will support Sus Dog with tour dates in Europe and North America this summer, with the latter leg kicking off June 15 in Brooklyn, N.Y.