Sydney Vs. The World!
@Writerbard has a certain perspective of this community that many people will never be able relate to. As founder and sole-operator of the meritorious Dark Rose Podcast, his scope is something close to Nardwuar’s. Although nowhere close to being as goofy or Canadian, this real-ass-dude got a behind the scenes look at our favorite Australian artists and their humble beginnings on this cloud we call the underground.
Truth be told, the first time I ever heard about his page was when he dropped a podcast with Us Vs. The World. This was before I was even close to being affiliated with this outstanding creative family. After a thorough listen I realized that he had seriously put me on game. Keep reading for an in-depth Q&A where I learn from him and ask about his exceptional craft.
Q1: For those who are unfamiliar, what is your name?
My name is Kyle Hughes.
Q2: Where are you from?
First of all, I’m from Australia, and live in the state of NSW.
Originally, I was born in a small town near the bottom of a place called the Blue Mountains. I grew up in the country, surrounded by cattle, and farmland.
Now I live near Sydney, about 20 minutes from the centre of Sydney.
Q3: Who/what got you interested in the underground?
It was my friends that got me acquainted with the underground – JVLES, and ‘dontsleep’, both musicians themselves who are quite well known in the community. They helped me make connections, and at that time I was running my blog, ‘KLH Writing’, solely, so I was interviewing talent that I thought were intriguing, and talented.
However, before that, I was listening to underground talent without really knowing what the underground was at that time. The underground scene is very different in Australia, and is its own separate scene, so I didn’t know what the US underground was- but I was listening to talent like Bones, Xavier Wulf, Denzel Curry, Father etc. This was like 4-5 years ago.
I mostly found these talents through JVLES, and ‘dontsleep’, as well as a few older friends too outside of the current scene.
Q4: Were you familiar with all of the creators you have interviewed before you started the Dark Rose Podcast?
Mostly yes – I found the creators through KLH Writing, and through just networking. However, I’ve found many new talents whilst running the podcast.
Q5: Which of your podcasts would you say were the most interesting or eye-opening?
This is a very difficult question, and I am unsure if I can give a definitive answer. All the episodes offer differing qualities that I am glad I had those talents on for. I learn so much from the people I bring on.
However, the podcast episode with Fifty Grand was really intriguing – considering Fifty’s impact on the underground - and it was a moment in which I sat back and really reflected on my life. I was interviewing someone who had impacted my life so long ago -alongside the SESH members – and to think I had Fifty on, and was speaking to him, was mesmerising.
Another episode that has had this impact is the Slug Christ episode – which isn’t out yet as of this interview being conducted. If you know Slugs’ impact on the underground, you know why it was so surreal.
Q6: What was your goal when you first started these podcasts?
I don’t know if I’ve ever had a specific goal, other than to continue bringing on people who I want their story to be heard. However, being able to get a studio for interviewing talent in person would be incredible.
Q7: What are your current goals for the platform? (if they have changed)
To bring on a few sponsors so that I can put the income back into the podcast, and develop it further. Getting that in person studio would make everything easier.
Q8: What are the names of some people you would like to interview in the future?
This is a difficult question. I’d like to bring on some members of GBC, and more Misery Club members. I’d also like to bring on some more members of Neilaworld, and BMG. However, I’d like to find a few creatives that haven’t received much attention by platforms – and I am currently looking for these individuals.
Q9: Podcasts are a tough medium to get off the ground. Do you feel like your work often goes unnoticed or is under appreciated?
A little bit, but I understand that there is so much content on the internet that you need to find ways to influence the algorithms to work in your favour.
It doesn’t discourage me. I don’t create podcast episodes to get ‘big’, but rather because I enjoy it, and the conversations I have with creatives are insightful, and educating.
Plus, it motivates me highly – to do better, and continue to grow.
Q10: How do you prepare for these podcasts?
A lot of research. I look at previous interviews, articles etc. I write down speaking points for discussion, ensure that the talent and I have agreed on a time for the interview, and we have chosen the correct speaking platform. I usually use Skype as it works better, I find.
I really enjoy researching. I think it’s one of my favourite parts.
Q11: In your opinion, has an interview ever gone too far off track? If so, how did you handle it?
They always go a little off track, but I love it. It makes the interview feel more natural, and plus it enables the talent to feel more comfortable. I never make the interview feel like an interview because I don’t want the talent to feel uncomfortable.
However, if an interview goes off track for too long, I’ll usually ask questions, or bring up points of discussion that leads the conversation back on track.
Q12: What other creative things do you do?
I write – a lot. I’m starting to step into the freelance journalism realm more, so writing feature articles and the like – I consider to be creative.
But I also write short stories, and am writing a novel. I don’t want to speak too much on the novel yet as I don’t like speaking on things that are subject to major change.
Q13: Without giving away too much, what can we expect from the Dark Rose Podcast in the future?
A lot more episodes. I may have some interviews on the way with your favourite artists, and these episodes will be very big.
However, finding smaller talents is also one of my favourite things to do – there are so many talented people, it’s incredible.
Q14: Any special shoutouts you’d like to make?
All of the Australian creatives, there are too many to name. I’ll name collectives that I am close to who I’d like to shout out; 1st Fleet, BMG, Neilaworld, Club Evil.
The blog platforms also – they give a voice to many creatives, and I believe their impact should never go unnoticed, or unappreciated. My personal favourites include Underground Underdogs, Underground Vampire Club, Fresh Fruit, and Us Versus The World.
Outside of the underground, I really enjoy The Fader, Pigeons and Planes, and a few others.
Also, shout out all of the female creatives. I find that there is limited exposure for these talented individuals, but that is changing – that goes back to my previous point – platforms have the opportunity to give exposure to people that deserve the exposure. That’s why we need to continue to give our support to good platforms, who practice honest, ethical journalism.
There are many creatives I’d like to shoutout but the list would be too long. If you’ve ever impacted my life, you know that your place is on the list.
STREAM BELOW & ENJOY: