For their 2015 album Foam Island, Warp Records duo Darkstar spent several months in the north of England, interviewing disenfranchized residents about their daily lives. The recordings of their stories were then woven intricately into the band's shimmering, slowly unfurling electronic pop. For their new short film Inherent in the Fibre (directed by Cieron Magat), Darkstar traveled to South Africa to carry out a similar, shorter social experiment. Over a delicate new score that recalls the highlights of Foam Island, Cape Town residents talk of their dreams, their homes, and their communities.
For Darkstar, the trip was a learning curve. "We went to Cape Town thinking it would be about applying what we did with Foam Island to the people we met with over there," the duo explained in an email to The FADER. "Obviously this only goes so far, as both environments are nuanced in their own outlook and understanding of the world. What worked in West Yorkshire in most parts had not much relevance in South Africa, so it was about learning a great deal on the job and being sensitive to the social dynamic that is in place. For all our intents and purposes, trying to capture a picture of a society that is hugely complex in a week is impossible. But we were able to meet people willing to collaborate and show us a snapshot of their lives. Rather than us trying to create a narrative, we decided to just observe and put together something both they and we knew was genuine."
Thumbnail photo by James Medcraft.