The Story of Dark Lake
Monks, merchants and mystics have travelled along the silk road for hundreds of years. Plying the ancient routes between Rome and Chang'an, China's imperial capital, they brought together two of the world's greatest civilizations. Equally important, they fostered a process of cultural exchanges which had a profound impact on the musical traditions of the nations lying along its path.
Dark Lake is the contemporary embodiment of this long tradition: the band's vocalist, leader and songwriter is a Uyghur from Karamay, an oil town in China's Westernmost province of Xinjiang. The drummer and lead guitarist, both Han Chinese, hail from Beijing, while the bass player is of European stock.
Reflecting its members' diverse backgrounds, the band's sound is eclectic, mixing pounding, Zeppelin-style 1970s riffs with Central Asian rhythms and melodies. The result is a unique musical tapestry - there is nothing like it on either sides of the Tianshan mountains.
The creative force behind Dark Lake has always been its frontman, Jurat T.T., one of the most gifted Uyghur musicians of his generation and the composer of the band's music along with much of its lyrics. But Jurat is not working alone. Although he has teamed up with numerous musicians over the years, he keeps returning to a core of three faithful collaborators who currently form the band's line-up.
The first is Zhou Hao, the best drummer south of the Great Wall, and the keeper of the beats for most of dark lake's history. Another is Zhang Qiang, a cool and composed lead guitarist who has supported dark Lake on all its recording endeavours. Ably rounding up the quartet is a talented bassist, who adds grooves to zhou hao's metronomic precision.
On the back of its three studio albums, which have come to enjoy cult status on the indie rock scene of China, Dark Lake has nurtured a devoted fan base. This has in turn helped the band tour all over the country on several occasions.
Dark Lake entered the studio in late 2019 to record its fourth album, which will be released in early 2020.