Music List | posted 28.04.2020
Peaking Lights
10 All Time Favs
In these days the new album «E S C A P E» of the Peaking Lights is released on Dekmantel. We had the opportunity to ask Aaron Coyes and Indra Dunis about 10 records that they have shaped, improved and formed.
Text Kristoffer Cornils
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»E S C A P E« is the name of the new and, depending on how you count it, eighth album of the Peaking Lights and a little bit the title reads exactly the way the music of the now Amsterdam-based duo has always sounded: With a lot of space between the individual elements and always on the run. Peaking Lights in, reality out. Aaron Coyes and Indra Dunis met and loved each other in California, moved to Wisconsin and, now as a married couple, founded Peaking Lights in 2008. After an extremely productive initial phase, they were able to celebrate their breakthrough only three years later with the LP »936«. Their freaky, noisy one seemed to settle right between all the wide-sitting chairs in times of Chillwave, Hypnagogic Pop and Seapunk. A few more albums followed, including the acclaimed »Lucifer« including a full-length dub version and the programmatically titled double album »The Fifth State of Consciousness«, as well as a move back to the Sunshine State and finally to Amsterdam, as the two found a new label home with Dekmantel. With »Sea Of Sand« Dunis and Coyes already hinted that they had found their way back to the dancefloor after the big long-form freakout: Although the total playing time of the six tracks was over 30 minutes, the washed-out sound was exchanged for concentrated rhythm work. Just the right foretaste of »E S C A P E«, which dares to give up its lysergic effects even more towards pop, wave and Italo disco. Like all previous releases of Peaking Lights, the 13 tracks open up a lot of space and above all want to allow their audience to escape. Into the psychedelic retro depths of the Dub universe or forward towards the dance floor? Both of course. Because, as the duo’s 10 All Time Favs also prove, they attach great importance to a balanced mixture between dissolution of boundaries and confrontation, reflection and the will to set off. Dub and Dance, combined in the best possible way.


You can find the Vinyl records of Peaking Lights in the webshop of HHV Records.


Gareth Williams & Mary Currie – Flaming Tunes 1 – Gareth Williams & Mary Currie – Flaming Tunes ( Contagious Tapes) (1985) | Vinyl LP
Peaking Lights: This record was a perfect lo-fi journey for our early endeavors. We had rips of the cassettes, this inspired us to focus more on melodies, but still keep it fuzzy.

Brian Eno – Here Come The Warm Jets 2 – Brian Eno – Here Comes The Warm Jets (Island) (1973) | Vinyl LP
Peaking Lights: While there are a lot of Eno records or songs we could site we picked this one. Because it was his first. At one point we got to listen to this record on a very very Hi-Fi system and hear all the little bits of magick super clear. Production wise this was something to strive for.

Chris & Cosey – Songs Of Love & Lust 3 – Chris & Cosey – Songs Of Love & Lust (Rough Trade) (1984) | Vinyl LP
Peaking Lights: This record as well as the rest of Chris & Cosey , TG, Coil etc… Has had a huge influence. Again, this fucked up pop music with a really free feel is something we find the Peaking Lights sound is drawn to.

Cluster - Zuckerzeit 4 – Cluster – Zuckerzeit (Brain) (1974) | Vinyl LP
Peaking Lights: In a weird way we actually did a loose cover of a Zuckerzeit track on our first album Imaginary Falcons. See if you can figure out which one :) In our early days we played with a lot of homemade synths and noise boxes. The Cluster gear set-up was super inspiring as well!

Kraftwerk – Trans-Europe Express 5 – Kraftwerk – Trans-Europe Express (Capitol) (1977) | Vinyl LP
Peaking Lights: Again with Kraftwerk we had tons of choices , as there are so many great albums. We picked this album because not only is it badass, but it crossed multiple genres. We seem to be attracted to albums that cross polinate.

Can - Tago Mago 6 – Can – Tago Mago (United Artists Records) (1971) | Vinyl 2LP
Peaking Lights: This album is filled with beautiful noise and long uncompromising jams. The vocals are free . The recording Aesthetic has a rawness to it. We loved that Can (along with Faust) seemed to really take the DIY aesthetic somewhere special.

Lee Perry & The Upsetters – Super Ape 7 – Lee Perry & The Upsetters – Super Ape (Island) (1976) | Vinyl LP
Peaking Lights: What’s not to say about this! The original cosmic traveller. Music would be really boring if this record was never made. Pure inspired music!

New Order – Substance 8 – New Order – Substance (Factory) (1987)
Peaking Lights: New Order has been a huge influence- their pop sensibility is something to strive for. Putting on this record Is always uplifting, even though there’s this complete sense of of nihilism. These jams never get old.

The Slits – Cut 9 – The Slits – Cut (Island) (1979) | Vinyl LP
Peaking Lights: New Order has been a huge influence- their pop sensibility is something to strive for. Putting on this record Is always uplifting, even though there’s this complete sense of of nihilism. These jams never get old.

Grace Jones ‎– Warm Leatherette 10 – Grace Jones ‎– Warm Leatherette (Island) (1980) | Vinyl LP
Peaking Lights: Such a classic record, Grace Jones, with Sly and Robbie! Her vocal delivery and presence transcends – there’s no one like her. We saw her perform many of the songs from this record last summer and the show stands out as one of the best we’ve seen. Since the record is all covers, it touches on a lot of other artists we grew up with as well. And this was one that truly mixes reggae with pop and rock. We put this one in because of the crossover aspect … In all honesty we probably needed to do a top 20.


You can find the Vinyl records of Peaking Lights in the webshop of HHV Records.

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