Happiness… a feeling, conquest, goal, that everyone painfully strives for each day, yet it sometimes seems just out of reach. “Happiness, it’s just around the corner. Taste it. I want to taste it. I want to taste it ’til i’m wasted.” These are lyrics to the rapidly rising, Seattle-hailing dream pop, post-punk duo, Iska Dhaaf‘s recent single, “Happiness.” The track is dreamy, heartbreaking, and touches on the very real desires yet realities most people struggle with on a daily basis. So who are these musical talents known as Iska Dhaaf, and what do they know about happiness, or the lack thereof?
Iska Dhaaf, which loosely translates to “Let it go” in Somali, is the moniker for Nathan Quiroga & Benjamin Verdoes. According to this article in Seattle Weekly, Verdoes was a former bilingual teacher located in a largely Somali neighborhood and began studying the language. “… I just fell in love with the sound of it; the words will get stuck in my head like songs do.”
Both Verdoes and Quiroga come from vastly different musical backgrounds prior to Iska Dhaff. Nathan Quiroga (vocals/guitar) was previously known as Buffalo Madonna in a crew of notorious electro “hip-hop hedonists” called, Mad Rad. They essentially wreaked havoc, created debauchery, landed themselves in jail and were banned from more than five Seattle venues.
Benjamin Verdoes (drums/synths/backup vocals) previously played in a more likely to envision indie rock group, the Mt. St. Helens Vietnam Band, and toured with various big band names like Japandroids and Cursive.
Together, the two make raw, honest, emotionally driven music, all of which attributes to their up-and-coming success. Have a listen to both of their recently released singles, and watch the brand new video for “Happiness.” Also, give ’em a follow and a listen on Facebook or Bandcamp.
Iska Dhaaf – Happiness
Iska Dhaaf – Rumi