Blogs The Music Sounds Better

Danimal Collective a remarkable experience, makes way for future ventures

Have a band you want to promote? Send it to The Roundup to feature in “The Music Sounds Better” blog

By Michael Mandeville ’11
THE ROUNDUP

Photo by Ben Jackson '11 - Roundup Managing Editor and "The Music Sounds Better" creator Michael Mandeville '11 plays with Danimal Collective at Brophy's annual Fine Arts Extravaganza Nov. 23, 2010.
Photo by Ben Jackson '11 - Roundup Managing Editor and "The Music Sounds Better" creator Michael Mandeville '11 plays with Danimal Collective at Brophy's annual Fine Arts Extravaganza Nov. 23, 2010.

At last semester’s Fine Arts Extravaganza a group of musically inclined individuals dubbed “Danimal Collective” performed an hour’s worth of music for a vivacious crowd of about 350 wonderful faces.

I was indeed one of these individuals.

Indulging in the energy of the music and audience, I can very well speak for the entire ensemble that it was an exceptionally marvelous experience, one we hope to recreate in the near future.

Amidst the collage of trombones, guitars and multi-layered drumming lay a rigorous route of preparation and rehearsal beginning five and a half months before in June; planning initiated months before then.

The concept fabricated through extensive conversation idealizing a multifaceted group of musicians performing primarily music that was regularly only DJ-ed. This was all after prior ambitions.

Dominic Scheuring ’11 and I had thought of recording Daft Punk’s LP “Discovery” in its entirety in a live-band setting. Though we only got around to tracking one of the cuts (“Digital Love”), it was this project that gave us the first initial thoughts about a band of this caliber.

I remember it so clearly, walking toward the McCain Colonnade in mid-April offering each other these ridiculous thoughts about what exactly we could do, maybe just performing “Discovery.”

Of course the ideas were a bit more absurd at the time and we didn’t actually play the album through, but towards the end of the semester the form of the ensemble began to take shape after rationalizing the logistics.

This brought us into the summer with a few primary goals, and soon after Chris Perkins ’11 joined us the weekly practice and planning initiated.

All throughout the summer we were choosing and practicing different songs, contacting musicians and working out arrangements.

I wanted to expand outside the realm of the conventional high school band so I thought, why not add some strings and horns in there, maybe a few synthesizers, a group of vocalists and yes, two drummers?

Well I definitely learned a thing or two about instrumentation.

It certainly allowed the arrangements to be a bit more complex and interesting, but let me tell you, it’s not easy playing with 10 other people.

The end of October is when full group rehearsals began, giving us about a month to put it all together.

Packed into my living room tangled between speakers, amps and cables, I had my fits and doubts during this period, but it came together.

With the support of the school and the student body, we were able to be fairly successful.

Now we’ve instigated the planning for part two, if the school allows it. It’s difficult to say where exactly it’s going to end up, but I’m certain it will be better than before.

That is if people show up.

Do you have band or project you want to promote through The Roundup? E-mail us about a potential write up to communicate with Brophy students about new projects, shows and releases. Contact us at roundup@brophbroncos.org.