Ardalan Releases Debut Album, ‘Mr. Good’ on DIRTYBIRD
Ardalan has released his debut LP, ‘Mr. Good’, which captures a distinctive and emotional look into the heart and mind of a young artist. It’s a coming-of-age tale and an aural exploration of the producer’s path—from growing up in his two homes of Iran and San Francisco, to finding success and grappling with the sacrifice that comes with it. The story unfolds across eleven tracks produced amongst the crests and valleys that define the perpetual search for creative freedom.
‘Mr. Good’ is housed on DIRTYBIRD, who to Ardalan is more of a second family than it is his label home. As a nascent raver living sans parents in San Francisco, the teenage artist began his relationship with the brand at its very first BBQ event in 2007; by 2010 his career set sail with his Justin Martin collaboration “Mr. Spock,” and two years later he found himself living with his production partner. After cultivating his career and giving him a safe place to experiment, Ardalan returns the boundless love and support he’s received from DIRTYBIRD over the years with a forward-thinking record that enters the imprint into an inspiring new chapter.
“‘Mr. Good’ is about a story of self-acceptance. In some cases, we strive to be the perfect person. Yet, we never learn to be ourselves. We and society are forced to wear a mask to hide our true traits and flaws, which are the very reasons that push us to be a better person in this world.”
In pushing his sound into the future, Ardalan looks to the past. ‘Mr. Good’ brims with analog accents from a carefully curated collection of hardware the producer has built over the years—adding a classic feel to an otherwise futuristic project. Instruments like the iconic Yamaha SP1200 and a Deckard’s Dream add warmth to the breaks number “Lift Up,” and a spacey element to the proceeding “Happy Place,” and in the penultimate “Zombie Village.” “Osci” is bursting with vintage appeal.
Ardalan’s Iranian roots also play a heavy role in the album’s inspiration. His musicianship began in Iran, where his adoration of the artform was bred into him from a saxophonist father and a mother who was once a singer. While he draws a lot of his inspiration from melodic dance music of today, he writes with the minor key and melancholic melodies that come from the music of the country he was born in.
This motif ties into the larger story ‘Mr. Good’ tells; the poignant “I Can’t Wait,” for example, conveys the isolation that can take over when one chooses the life of a touring artist, and the necessity of finding balance between family and gigs. The brooding “Mr. Bad” is an expression of inevitable human imperfection. Meanwhile ‘Mr. Good’s’ title track utilizes minor harmonies beneath otherwise breezy melodic parts—and ode to the mask often shown to the outside world in an effort to hide one’s inner “Mr. Bad.”
“‘I Can’t Wait’ is a duet with my girlfriend. It’s one of the last songs I made on my album. Through the process, she was always waiting for me to watch Game of Thrones with her and would say, ‘I can’t wait any longer.’ I never ended up watching it. The song is open to interpretation for the listener.”
Ardalan is currently undertaking a 36-stop tour in support of ‘Mr. Good,’ showcasing the new record with extended sets in some of North America’s most intimate club environments. The tour kicked off in Santa Barbara in September, with upcoming showings at Chicago’s Spybar, Sound in Los Angeles, and many more key stops. Justin Martin, Soul Clap, and more will be joining him for support duties across the tour with additional dates alongside legends Claude VonStroke and Kevin Saunderson.
Ultimately what Ardalan has created in ‘Mr. Good’ is something bold, unexpected, and entirely his own. Genres are fused together and twisted into captivating new takes on house, techno, and beyond. It is with a sense of vulnerability and maturity that Ardy turns towards this next chapter, with the malleable future of dance music at his heels and the full support from the label that raised him.
Mr Good Album Tour Dates:
November 1 – 99ten – Edmonton, AB
November 2 – The Great Northern – San Francisco, CA
November 8 – Sonia – Boston, MA
November 9 – Home Bass – Orlando, FL w/ Justin Martin
November 15 – Casa Cobra – Guadalajara, MX
November 16 – Vinyl – Denver, CO
November 21 – The Patron Saint – Indianapolis, IN
November 22 – Wallflower – El Paso, TX
November 23 – TV Lounge – Detroit, MI
November 27 – LVL44 – San Jose, CA
November 30 – Open Studios – Vancouver, BC
December 5 – TBA – Miami, FL
December 7 – Warehouse on Watts – Philadelphia, PA w/ RYBO
December 14 – Bang Bang – San Diego, CA
December 20 – Sound – Los Angeles, CA
December 21 – Meow Wolf – Santa Fe, NM w/ Kevin Saunderson
December 27 – Spybar – Chicago, IL
December 28 – Monkey Loft – Seattle, WA
January 10 – The Parish – Austin, TX
January 11 – Fox Theatre – Boulder, CO
January 17 – Site 1A – Milwaukee, WI
January 19 – Sunday Night Mass – Burlington, VT
January 22 – Holy Shipwrecked – Punta Cana, DR
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