Gyroscope frontman Dan Sanders is branching out on his own with a new solo side project dubbed XIII (pronounced “thirteen”).
Launching himself upon the world today with the arrival of his double A-side single ‘Hell Mary / (Don’t) Leave Me Alone’ and the announcement of a debut album coming soon, Sanders explains that XIII was actually born the day that David Bowie died, after he hit the studio to deal with the grief of losing his idol.
“I came to the studio and I’ve never done this before, but I wrote the song, all the instruments, in its entirety,” Sanders recalls.
“I had the Telecaster plugged in, I was necking red wine, and that was musically a total Bowie thing. It absorbed me. I felt I was Bowie.
“But I’ve always got Kurt [Cobain] on one shoulder and Bowie on the other, and it’s not heaven and hell, it’s two cool dudes in my ears. And when I’m doing stuff I check with them both, and if they’re cool I just go with it.”
Partly recorded in his backyard shed-turned-studio, affectionately dubbed The Cabin, the songs that followed sounded like nothing else that Saunders had ever written before, leading him to form the XIII solo project.
“I was born on Friday the 13th,” he says.
“XIII is me. And by recording under a different name I found it gave me a different headspace, and more room to explore my dark side perhaps.”
‘(Don’t) Leave Me Alone’ features Karnivool’s Drew Goddard on drums, with Sanders tracking vocals and all other instruments, while ‘Hell Mary’ was 100 per cent Sanders.
It should be choice ear food for Gyro-maniacs but also fans of Violent Soho, Tired Lion, DZ Deathrays and the like.
You can listen to both tracks below, and stay tuned for XIII’s debut Aussie tour dates, which he’s promised will be announced “shortly”.