Noonday Underground

The duo of DJ Simon Dine and vocalist Daisy Martey threw their hats into the ever-growing ring of record-collector rock as trip-hop collective Noonday Underground. After Dine's departure from Adventures in Stereo around 1997, the duo hooked up after allegedly bumping into each other at a Clapham pizza restaurant. Debut EP How Happy appeared on Underground Sounds in 1997, followed by swinging single "London" on Jonathon Whiskey in 1999. Culling their influences from all things late '60s -- from exotic film music to West Coast pop to the production techniques of Jack Nitzsche -- they quietly issued their sample-heavy debut LP, Self-Assembly, on M21 in 2000. Setanta reissued the record the following year, and the album received acclaim, garnering the group a small but dedicated fan base. Paul Weller was an early supporter of the duo; in a poll for NME, he rather bizarrely listed them as "Most Influential Band of All Time." After a few more singles, sophomore album Surface Noise (featuring two guest appearances by Weller) appeared on Setanta in 2002. Japanese label Vroom Sound Records issued Set Sail, a collection of tracks taken from the group's singles and EPs, in 2003.

In 2005, Martey joined popular trip-hop band Morcheeba, temporarily replacing their original vocalist, Skye Edwards, who released solo material before eventually rejoining the band. She still remained a member of Noonday Underground, however, singing on their third full-length, 2006's On the Freedom Flotilla. The 2010 album The K-O Chorale featured a patchwork quilt of sampled choral vocals, rather than Martey's singing. Noonday Underground returned in 2015 with Body Parts for Modern Art, a lengthy compilation of previously unreleased songs and instrumentals dating back to Dine's days with Adventures in Stereo. The CD was released by Japanese label Stubbie Records. ~ Andy Kellman

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