Somewhere between the country music heartland of Texas, the bustling palm trees of Los Angeles and the sandy shores of Australia, a sublime ode to yearning and living in the moment was conjured, with the debut single London from Dan Keyes + The New Rides officially out today. Also arriving armed with a captivating music video, London not only marks the first official single for Dan Keyes + The New Rides – it also features the group as the first new signing to the resurrected Wheatley Records, first established in 1980 by the late Australian music icon Glenn Wheatley.

A project many years in the making, helmed by the eponymous and enigmatic Keyes, Dan Keyes + The New Rides flow with warm country tones alongside fresh and unique twists, with the group’s debut single London finding Keyes writing alongside Australian songwriter and producer Tim Metcalfe, whose previous work includes work on Robbie Williams’ platinum 2012 album Take The Crown. With its distinctive 80s synths juxtaposed with acoustic and slide guitar, the balanced sentimentality merged with modernity throughout London was no accident, as Keyes elaborates, We wanted it to sound classic, familiar and new all the same time. A modern, Aussie take on Americana, if you will… The song lyrics are quite intentionally vague; it’s how you interpret it.  Do I sound like I come from London? No. Does Tim, who I co-wrote the song with, sound like he is? Maybe. Its about wanting to walk, or run to someone, in the middle of the night, for no real reason other than wanting to be with them; in that moment.”

With the accompanying music video for London weaving a narrative starting in the desert under the sun before ending in a city late at night, Keyes brings to life the longing and languid love story beating at the overarching track’s core. With Keyes himself beckoning the listener and watcher to follow as he walks “through the night just to be with you”, both lyrically and in person in the clip, London flows with a powerful poignancy; and it’s one that has been growing for years through Keyes musical upbringing, as he explains, When I was a kid, I used to sit on the porch and listen to my Grandfather play country songs that he wrote in San Antonio, and that’s how I started writing songs. After he gave me that guitar, he told me I should become a plumber because I’d always have work. Now, we want to make music that people can dance to, drink tequila to, make love to, and live their lives to. It even sounds good driving too.”

Born and raised in Texas and now splitting his time between Los Angeles and Australia, Keyes began touring nationally at the age of 18 after his band, Texan post-hardcore quartet Recover, inked a deal with Fuelled by Ramen. Touring alongside the likes of Jimmy Eat World, AFI, My Chemical Romance and Thrice at the time, Keyes’ personal musical tastes also developed alongside his craft, with the talented artist going on to form a dance rock project Young Love in New York City in the mid 2000s. Releasing their debut album Too Young to Fight It in 2007, Young Love garnered significant and high-profile attention, with Keyes soon finding himself sitting poolside with Beyonce and under the wing of Jay-Z, aka the man powering Def Jam Recordings at the time. But for Keyes, it became a case of “too much too young”, who soon packed up and headed west, leaving Young Love behind. And it was this very move that would ultimately lead to the birth of Dan Keyes + The New Rides, alongside the revival of the iconic Wheatley Records; an independent record label established in 1980 by Glenn Wheatley that changed the landscape of the Australian music industry, flourishing the careers of John Farnham, Real Life, Pseudo Echo and countless others.


Post-Young Love and with Keyes initially embarking on a songwriting fellowship with friend and fellow creator Tim Metcalfe, the pair soon revisited their roots, weaving tales of musical sojourns and fusing their eclectic backgrounds in a coating of warm, compelling country-hued music. Bringing together Keyes and Metcalfe and also featuring Jy-Perry Banks (Kasey Chambers, Lime Cordiale) on pedal steel for the project’s debut release, Dan Keyes + The New Rides is Keyes riding high once again – and the chance to be the first new signing for the revitalised Wheatley Records is a shining cherry on top of many great things to come for the group, as Keyes concludes, It feels sensational. We’ve been working on this project for a few years now and it’s finally ready for people to hear. We’ve put our heart and soul, quite literally into this, so I hope you like it as much as my mum does.”

is out today, Friday November 17.

Listen: LONDON


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