We knew we wanted something upbeat, unforgettable, and just a bit absurd when it came to capping off our twenty-four band run in Austin during SXSW. But not just any act would do. What we found for our finale was an outrageous slice of musical mayhem from a bunch of pros (though they'd never admit it), somehow sent from the heavens...or maybe just Norway. What we found was a mystery wrapped in an enigma wrapped in a bunch of red track suits. What we found was DATAROCK
Like an oddball musical experiment gone beautifully right, DATAROCK tap into the kind of spectacular spirit first pioneered on stage by bands like Devo, The Beastie Boys, and The Happy Mondays. The matching red suits and wrap-around sunglasses the band members sport are almost iconic at this point, and apparently, a move conceived to look like some demented, Formula One race crew. They might as well be gas-powered, pedal-to-the-floor is the only speed they know. The bands catalog is over the top, spanning strange, offbeat locales (like computer camp), and demanding a splash of crowd participation along the way. In our latest concert video, this self-proclaimed "Norwegian, bizarre oddity" close the curtain on SXSW '11...a fitting and explosive end to a week we'll never forget.
Four drunk friends formed DATAROCK on a rainy afternoon drinking beer under a tree on top of a mountain in Bergen, Norway. It was the first summer of a brand new millennium, and the boys were getting into the groove at an outdoor festival of electronic music. Inspired by the heat of the moment, the boys made a life changing decision and came rolling down the mountainside with a tablet of stone engraved with a single word - DATAROCK. The brand new band was signed straight away by the local indie label, llet / Tell Records, pairing our drunk friends with a roster of acts such as Ryksopp, Kings Of Convenience and Annie. And so the boys went out on an endless run of shows in underground clubs and festivals across Europe - the perfect breeding ground for alternative dance music, fostering DATAROCK's mix of indie dance, new wave, pop, rock, punk & funk. As the band so modestly put it - "we are the peak of pop evolution".
DATAROCK's albums are both critically acclaim across the world, and even their debut album was nominated for a Norwegian Grammy. Later on the album came in at 36 on NME's list of "best albums of 2006", and the same year (out of 660.000 registered votes) "Computer Camp Love" came in at number 12 on Australia's national radio's list of listeners favorite tracks - Triple J's Hottest 100.
For the US re-release in 2007, Spin Magazine listed the track "See What I Care" as an "essential download of the summer", and "Computer Camp Love" came in at 88 on Rolling Stone Magazine's list of the best tracks of the year.
DATAROCK's second album "RED" was also nominate for a Norwegian Grammy, it was "critics choice of the week" in New York Times, the singles ended up on heavy rotation on Norwegian national radio for seven months solid (NRK P3), and stateside MTV even headhunted and put the video for "True Stories" on rotation at MTV U - bizarrely as this single was never really commercially released outside of Norway.DATAROCK is now pretty much a global name. A few indications of their worldwide fan base are the number of listenings on DATAROCK's MySpace profile (3.200.000), the number of views on DATAROCK's YouTube clips, the number of fans on on DATAROCK's Facebook profile (32.000), the number of followers on DATAROCK's Twitter account (2.300), the number of plays (4.300.000) & listeners (310.000) on Last.fm, the way DATAROCK is able to tour globally, and the nature of their world wide distribution. Despite this fact DATAROCK is still very much DIY - self-managed, exclusively signed to their own imprint and pretty much handling everything they can themselves.
Their most recent release is billed as The Most Extravagant Single in History, "Catcher in the Rye" includes 105 bonus tracks, 20 music videos, an hour long concert film and 1500 photos - all packed on a 4GB USB stick wrapped inside a custom made designer toy created by Brian Flynn at Hybrid Design and SUPER7.