Zach Robinson makes music under the name D/A/D. His compositions channel the sounds of the 1980s into dynamic song structures stuffed with anthemic synth melodies and guitar shreddery. Robinson’s background (and current day job) in film composition and classical arrangement elevates his contemporary renderings of synthpop, Italo-Disco, boogie, and funk into a cinematic canon of pan-80s “hits,” transcending nostalgic fixations in favor of a sleek past-present-future hybrid of tones and emotions. (NB: HausMo dudes Doug and Max play with Zach in a band called The Earth Is A Man)
Listen to an interview with D/A/D on the Beyond Synth Podcast.
Stream and follow D/A/D’s music on Bandcamp and Soundcloud.
Check out the incredible video for “Orion Beach.”
“D/A/D’s The Construct is the stuff workout montages are made of, sure, but a tone-perfect memory of that era and those movies. Where others might pound the sine wave for maximum fist-pumpage, D/A/D adds nuance to these compositions, with flourishes that I catch on third and fourth listens. Besides, if she ever heard it, Robyn might eye the one vocal collaboration “Love Will Make You Stay” with extreme jealousy.” – NPR (Lars Gotrich) – 10 Favorite Cassettes of 2013
“The Construct is incredibly authentic and sincere, and consistently shows off Robinson’s impressive grasp of melody. So many of the ’80s revivalists are doing the whole thing with an obnoxious amount of irony that I can’t be bothered, but D/A/D knows what’s up. One listen to the insanely catchy ‘Love Will Make You Stay’, a collaboration with USA Gold and the star of the track, Sharaya Mikael, and you’ll either be throwing up or in heaven. I’m the latter, of course, and once the tune gets to the overwrought guitar solo I am cooked. The Construct has high replay value.” – FACTmag (Brad Rose for CAUGHT ON TAPE – January 2014’s Essential Cassette Releases)
“space-disco-meets-1980s-rock hybrid” – Pitchfork
“The Construct is so intensely influenced by American and German synth pop from the ’80s that at first listen it sounds like a genuine artifact of the era.” – Vice / The Creators Project
“If this fucker was around 25 years ago, and you were a girl that didn’t do a pantomime routine with friends at the talent show, forget about it. You’re not going out with the everyone to see Robocop this weekend and don’t even think about getting invited to Heather Bruster’s pool party.” – Tabs Out – Tape of the Month
“The Construct perfectly captures ’80s synth pop’s charmingly naive attempt to divine the future. “Love Will Make You Stay” is glossy and immaculately produced: every synth tone, corny/sublime gated drum fill, and slick pop-funk guitar lick is meticulously crafted. But the unabashed romanticism of the vocals revel in the contradiction between other-worldly passion and technologically mediated discipline, which made this music so compelling in the ’80s.” – Ad Hoc
“This video for D/A/D’s “Orion Beach” is like if an N64 mated with an Atari Jaguar and its offspring was a warped version of Wave Rider. It’s the perfect backdrop for D/A/D’s delightfully kitschy synth-rock, which screams to be blasted during high-speed jet ski sequences.” – The Needle Drop
“D/A/D offers us virtuosity of a different form. Ever wonder what it feels like to hold the hopes and dreams of 55,000,000 people in your hands?” – 20jazzfunkgreats
“Without a doubt this album is one of the finest experiences I’ve ever heard in 80s inspired synth music. The musicianship is superb in every track but more importantly there is an innate honesty in every single second of the The Construct’s duration. An honesty that is emotionally embracing, offering thoughtfully arranged fantasies and possibilities that I’ve found impossible to resist. After four years absence D/A/D has released an album that will stand up for years to come and is without a doubt one of the most invigorating releases in the 80s inspired synth scene in 2013.” – Synthetix FM