Darcy James Argue's Secret Society

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Sort Name
Darcy James
Artist Position
18.00
Artist Genre
Biography (Excerpt)

Composer and bandleader Darcy James Argue and his Secret Society ensemble make their Nonesuch Records debut with Dynamic Maximum Tension. The album pays homage to some of Argue’s key influences with original songs dedicated to R. Buckminster Fuller, Alan Turing, and Mae West. Cécile McLorin Salvant joins the ensemble for “Mae West: Advice.” Dynamic Maximum Tension’s eleven tracks, on two CDs, also include a response to Duke Ellington’s “Diminuendo and Crescendo in Blue,” titled “Tensile Curves,” among other originals.

Weight
10
Active Artist
No
Facebook URL
https://www.facebook.com/secretsocietymusic
Twitter URL
https://twitter.com/darcyjamesargue
Instagram URL
https://www.instagram.com/darcyjamesargue/
Youtube URL
https://www.youtube.com/user/darcyjamesargue

Composer and bandleader Darcy James Argue and his Secret Society ensemble make their Nonesuch Records debut with Dynamic Maximum Tension on September 8, 2023. The album pays homage to some of Argue’s key influences with original songs dedicated to R. Buckminster Fuller, Alan Turing, and Mae West. Fellow Nonesuch artist Cécile McLorin Salvant, with whom Argue collaborated on her long-form musical fable Ogresse, joins the ensemble for “Mae West: Advice.” Dynamic Maximum Tension’s eleven tracks, on two CDs, also include a response to Duke Ellington’s “Diminuendo and Crescendo in Blue,” titled “Tensile Curves,” among other original songs.

The album track “Dymaxion”—a portmanteau of “dynamic maximum tension”—takes its name from the term coined by architect and inventor Fuller to describe his concept of using technology and resources to maximum advantage. “Dymaxion” is available today, June 29, along with this video from the song’s recording session.

Argue says of his inspiration for the music: “It feels like our culture today is headed in a profoundly dystopian direction. By engaging with figures like Buckminster Fuller, Alan Turing, and Mae West, I was trying to connect to a more optimistic time, trying to reclaim a sense of agency, trying to rekindle my faith in our ability to grab the future and shape it ourselves.”

Darcy James Argue, “one of the top big band composers of our time” (Stereophile), is best known for Secret Society, an eighteen-piece group “renowned in the jazz world” (New York Times). Argue brings an outwardly anachronistic ensemble into the 21st century through his “ability to combine his love of jazz’s past with more contemporary sonics” and is celebrated as “a syncretic creator who avoids obvious imitation” (Pitchfork).

Acclaimed as an “innovative composer, arranger, and big band leader” by the New Yorker, Argue’s accolades include multiple Grammy nominations and a Latin Grammy Award, a Guggenheim Fellowship, a Doris Duke Artist Award, and countless commissions and fellowships. His prescient 2016 Real Enemies, an album-length exploration of the politics of paranoia, was named one of the twenty best jazz albums of the decade by Stereogum. Like Real Enemies, Argue’s previous recordings—his debut Infernal Machines and his follow-up, Brooklyn Babylon—were nominated for both Grammy and Juno awards.

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Latest Release

  • September 8, 2023

    Composer and bandleader Darcy James Argue and his Secret Society ensemble make their Nonesuch Records debut with Dynamic Maximum Tension. The album pays homage to some of Argue’s key influences with original songs dedicated to R. Buckminster Fuller, Alan Turing, and Mae West. Cécile McLorin Salvant joins the ensemble for “Mae West: Advice.” Dynamic Maximum Tension’s eleven tracks, on two CDs, also include a response to Duke Ellington’s “Diminuendo and Crescendo in Blue,” titled “Tensile Curves,” among other originals. Grammy Nominee for Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album.

Releases

News

  • January 19, 2024

    As part of Nonesuch Records's 60th anniversary celebrations, the 2024 Big Ears Festival lineup includes fifteen Nonesuch artists past, present, and future. Ahead of the festival, taking place in Knoxville, TN, March 21–24, we've got a playlist of music from all of those artists: Sam Amidon, Laurie Anderson, Darcy James Argue’s Secret Society, Tyondai Braxton, Rhiannon Giddens, Mary Halvorson, Robin Holcomb, Wayne Horvitz, Hurray for the Riff Raff, Kronos Quartet, Brad Mehldau, Ringdown (Caroline Shaw and Danni Lee), Davóne Tines, Molly Tuttle & Golden Highway, and Yasmin Williams. You can hear it here via Spotify and Apple Music.

  • December 13, 2023

    Congratulations to all of the Nonesuch GRAMMY Awards nominees! We're celebrating with 25% off all of this year's nominated albums in the Nonesuch Store using code GRAMMY25 at checkout: Thomas Adès's Dante, performed by LA Phil and Gustavo Dudamel (Best Orchestral Performance, Best Contemporary Classical Composition, Producer of the Year, Classical); Darcy James Argue's Secret Society's Dynamic Maximum Tension (Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album); Julia Bullock's Walking in the Dark (Best Classical Solo Vocal Album); Rhiannon Giddens's You're the One (Best Americana Album, Best American Roots Performance); Cécile McLorin Salvant's Mélusine (Best Jazz Vocal Album; Best Arrangement, Instrumental and Vocals); Molly Tuttle & Golden Highway's City of Gold (Best Bluegrass Album); andThe Blue Hour (Best Engineered Album, Classical).

Tour

Fri, Mar 22
Knoxville, TN
Bijou Theatre
Fri, Mar 22
Knoxville, TN
Bijou Theatre

Photos

About Darcy James Argue's Secret Society

  • Composer and bandleader Darcy James Argue and his Secret Society ensemble make their Nonesuch Records debut with Dynamic Maximum Tension on September 8, 2023. The album pays homage to some of Argue’s key influences with original songs dedicated to R. Buckminster Fuller, Alan Turing, and Mae West. Fellow Nonesuch artist Cécile McLorin Salvant, with whom Argue collaborated on her long-form musical fable Ogresse, joins the ensemble for “Mae West: Advice.” Dynamic Maximum Tension’s eleven tracks, on two CDs, also include a response to Duke Ellington’s “Diminuendo and Crescendo in Blue,” titled “Tensile Curves,” among other original songs.

    The album track “Dymaxion”—a portmanteau of “dynamic maximum tension”—takes its name from the term coined by architect and inventor Fuller to describe his concept of using technology and resources to maximum advantage. “Dymaxion” is available today, June 29, along with this video from the song’s recording session.

    Argue says of his inspiration for the music: “It feels like our culture today is headed in a profoundly dystopian direction. By engaging with figures like Buckminster Fuller, Alan Turing, and Mae West, I was trying to connect to a more optimistic time, trying to reclaim a sense of agency, trying to rekindle my faith in our ability to grab the future and shape it ourselves.”

    Darcy James Argue, “one of the top big band composers of our time” (Stereophile), is best known for Secret Society, an eighteen-piece group “renowned in the jazz world” (New York Times). Argue brings an outwardly anachronistic ensemble into the 21st century through his “ability to combine his love of jazz’s past with more contemporary sonics” and is celebrated as “a syncretic creator who avoids obvious imitation” (Pitchfork).

    Acclaimed as an “innovative composer, arranger, and big band leader” by the New Yorker, Argue’s accolades include multiple Grammy nominations and a Latin Grammy Award, a Guggenheim Fellowship, a Doris Duke Artist Award, and countless commissions and fellowships. His prescient 2016 Real Enemies, an album-length exploration of the politics of paranoia, was named one of the twenty best jazz albums of the decade by Stereogum. Like Real Enemies, Argue’s previous recordings—his debut Infernal Machines and his follow-up, Brooklyn Babylon—were nominated for both Grammy and Juno awards.

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