Dev Hynes at the Primavera Sound Festival in Barcelona, Spain, May 2008.
|Birth name||Devonté Hynes|
|Also known as||Lightspeed Champion
23 December 1985 |
|Genres||Indie pop, folk, baroque pop, Post-hardcore, country, funk, soul|
|Instruments||Vocals, cello, guitar, piano, drums, violin, bass|
The New Tom Cruise Film
Hope of the States
Florence and the Machine
Emmy the Great
Pun Lovin' Criminals
We Are Scientists
Devonté "Dev" Hynes (born 23 December 1985), better known as Lightspeed Champion or Blood Orange, is a British composer, songwriter, producer, artist and author, who has written for artists such as Florence and the Machine, Diana Vickers and The Chemical Brothers on their 2007 Grammy award winning album We Are The Night. He is currently signed to Domino Records.
Hynes was born and raised in Essex, England . He was educated at the Chadwell Heath Foundation School, now known as Chadwell Heath Academy. He currently resides in New York. The name 'Lightspeed Champion' comes from a series of comic strips Hynes drew as a teenager in his school mathematics books. Hynes was voted the 49th 'coolest person in rock' in NME's 2007 Cool List, jumping to position 20 in the following year's list. From their formation in 2004 until their break-up in 2006, Hynes was a member of the band Test Icicles, playing guitar, synth, and occasionally performing vocals. The band were known for their blisteringly crazy and diverse music and for their raucous live performances. They released only one full-length album (For Screening Purposes Only) in 2005.
Falling off the Lavender Bridge 
In early 2007, Hynes recorded his debut album in Omaha, Nebraska with Saddle Creek producer Mike Mogis, most famous for his involvement with the band Bright Eyes. A number of Omaha-based musicians appear on the record, including Mogis himself, trumpet player and pianist Nate Walcott (also of Bright Eyes), The Faint's drummer Clark Baechle and guest vocalist Emmy The Great - along with moonlighting members of Cursive and Tilly And The Wall.
Hynes has also recorded a number of bootlegs and unofficial releases, made available to the public through his blog and MySpace. These include an album written and recorded entirely in a day and an EP consisting only of covers of Green Day songs.
Writing and producing for other artists 
Hynes has also written and contributed songs to a number of other acts. His arrangements and vocals have appeared on songs by The Chemical Brothers ("All Rights Reversed", from 2007's Grammy award winning album We Are The Night, which entered the UK Albums Chart at #1), Basement Jaxx (on their album Scars), as well as on Florence and the Machine's #1 album Lungs and songs by Solange Knowles.
Hynes has co-written and produced songs for Diana Vickers on Songs from the Tainted Cherry Tree, another #1 debutante on the UK Albums Chart. He has also produced and written songs for the forthcoming Theophilus London album, including the Lovers Holiday e.p.
Hynes contributed music to the 2010 film MacGruber, including the duet "Rock My Body" with Saturday Night Live cast member Kristen Wiig. In late 2011, he produced Australian noise-pop duo Bleeding Knees Club's debut album Nothing To Do, which was released on 2 March 2012.
He is currently working on the new Solange Knowles album and on news songs for Mutya Keisha Siobhan and Kylie Minogue.
Soundtrack and classical performances 
In December 2008, Hynes was asked on behalf of The British Film Institute to perform the Soundtrack of the cult Hal Ashby film Harold And Maude after a screening of the performance. Hynes then had to cancel this due to an operation he had to undergo on his throat. The event was rescheduled for May 2009. In July 2009 Hynes will reprise the soundtrack and perform at Latitude Festival.
In June 2009 Hynes performed at The Barbican in London in commemoration of the composer Moondog. Singing renditions along with London Saxophonic of songs from the Moondog Album "Sax Pax For A Sax". He also sung "Fujiyama part 2" backed by The Britten Sinfonia conducted by André De Ridder and Andi Toma (Mouse On Mars).
In April 2010 Hynes returned to The Barbican to perform with The Triffids for a special concert in honor of their singer Dave McComb along with Warren Ellis, Tindersticks and members of The Brian Jonestown Massacre.
In December an EP titled "Bye Bye" was released in collaboration with composer Van Dyke Parks.
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The touring band for the Falling off the Lavender Bridge album at various points consisted of friends of Hynes' from other bands, including Florence Welch of Florence and the Machine, and UK singer-songwriter Emmy the Great. Mike Siddell, formerly of Hope of the States, plays violin with the band. He is a prolific musician and a core member of the Brighton based Willkommen Collective, playing with Willkommen bands such as Sons of Noel and Adrian, The Leisure Society and The Miserable Rich. He also plays with Troubles and made a guest appearance on the debut EP by A Genuine Freakshow.
Anna Prior, formerly of Leeds bands Dead Disco and The Ivories, played drums for most of the tour. Other guest members to have contributed in live shows include Alex Turner of the Arctic Monkeys, Faris Badwan of The Horrors, Frederick Blood-Royale of Ox.Eagle.Lion.Man, Jack Peñate and Eugene McGuinness as well as We Are Scientists' Keith Murray on Late Night with Conan O'Brien on 6 June 2009.
Backed by a full band he appeared at the NME 2008 Awards, broadcast on Channel 4 on 29 February 2008, dressed as characters from Star Wars, including Princess Leia on the drums. The band's affinity with Star Wars continued when they played the main theme to the trilogy at O2 Wireless Festival 2008. Hynes and a violinist Mike Siddell began a short U.S. tour in March 2008, ending with an appearance at SXSW 2008. At SXSW they befriended The Wombats, and ultimately supported them at a Royal Albert Hall concert. Hynes also performed with We Are Scientists at Glastonbury 2008, with latter's front man Keith Murray joking to Zane Lowe in a post-show interview that "he owed us a sandwich!". Hynes appeared at Belgian music festival Pukkelpop in August 2008.
By the end of what became a two year touring period, Hynes had suffered severe damage to his throat, and had to undergo extensive surgery.
He then took a lengthy two and a half year hiatus from touring, popping up occasionally to play shows in New York and a top billed slot at the Carling Festival in 2009. He returned for a 2 week European tour in June 2010. The touring band for that tour consisted of the band Spacekamp who are also the backing band for Adam Green.
On 9 April 2012, he embarked on a tour as Blood Orange opening for Florence + The Machine.
In March 2008 Hynes self-published a small comic book titled I'm Asleep - Comics, Photographs and Illustrations to mark the release of Falling off the Lavender Bridge. It featured comics by himself, Ferry Gouw, Faris Badwan of The Horrors and Gary Card, and photography by Hynes.
June 2009 saw the release of the book Punk Fiction: An Anthology of Short Stories Inspired by Punk, which featured a short story by Hynes titled "The KKK Took My Baby Away..." (from the Ramones song of the same name), described as a "comedy sci-fi monologue". Proceeds from the book went to the Teenage Cancer Trust.
In October 2009 he also contributed two comics and stories to the group CTRL.ALT.SHIFT's comic anthology as well as being a judge with Marjane Satrapi in judging a national comic competition where winners had to adapt a script written by Hynes. Hynes contributed the stories "Behold, King Listpin III" and "Juice This!". The anthology is titled "Unmasks Corruption". There was a gallery exhibition at London's Lazerides Gallery to coincide with the event which launched at Comica.
His first collection of short stories titled "Bad Era Of Me : A Collection Of Short Stories by Devonté Hynes" is scheduled to be released by February 2010.
Blood Orange 
With Lightspeed Champion on effective hiatus, Dev decided to concentrate on a new musical project more focused on electronica called 'Blood Orange'.
Various Blood Orange live performances have taken place in New York and London within November and December 2009, consisting of Hynes, a guitar, and a laptop.
On 17 December 2009, Hynes performed a Blood Orange song titled "Forget It" on the final It's On With Alexa Chung show on MTV. He performed to a backing track dressed in a wizard costume.
Hynes' debut single under the moniker Blood Orange, "Dinner", was released in January on Terrible records, with an accompanying video directed by Alan Del Rio that debuted on Pitchfork TV. Following this, his full-length record Coastal Grooves was released in August 2011 on Domino records. Two tracks from the album, "Sutphin Boulevard" and "Forget It", were released as singles.
Lightspeed Champion 
Studio albums 
|2008||Falling Off the Lavender Bridge|
|2010||Life Is Sweet! Nice to Meet You|
|2007||"Galaxy of the Lost"||
|2008||"Tell Me What It's Worth"|
|"Galaxy of the Lost" (re-release)|
|"My Turn" (with Basement Jaxx)
Nice to Meet You
|"Madame Van Damme"
Official bootlegs 
|2007||Bad Covers EP
|Team Perfect presents: Green Day's 'Nimrod'
|I Wrote And Recorded This In Less Than Five Hours
|Garageband Xmas EP
|2008||Album In A Day 2
Blood Orange 
Studio albums 
Remix albums 
|2011||Remixes Part I|
|Remixes Part II|
- "I'm Asleep - Comics, Photographs and Illustrations", March 2008
- "Punk Fiction : An anthology of short stories inspired by Punk", June 2009
- "CTRL.ALT.SHIFT : Unmasks Corruption", November 2009
- "Bad Era Of Me : A Collection Of Short Stories by Devonté Hynes", February 2010
- "Lightspeed Champion Biography". NME. Retrieved 2009-02-20.
- "Lightspeed Champion performs live from SXSW". Minnesota Public Radio. Retrieved 2009-02-20.
- "NME Cool List". NME.com. Archived from the original on 2008-01-02. Retrieved 2008-01-04.
- "NME's Cool List 2008 announced". Twisted Ear. Retrieved 2009-02-20.
- "Lightspeed Champion - artist page". Domino Records. Archived from the original on 2007-12-20. Retrieved 2010-02-13.
- "Galaxy of the Lost listing". Domino Records. Archived from the original on 2008-04-18. Retrieved 2010-02-13.
- Basement Jaxx unveil guests on the new album. InTheMix.com.au.
- "Diana Vickers goes for indie debut". The Sun. Retrieved 2009-04-07.
- "A Genuine Freakshow". MySpace. Retrieved 2008-06-20.
- "NME". NME.com. Retrieved 2008-01-04.[dubious ]
- "Watch: Lightspeed Champion, Arctic Monkey, Ipso Facto, 'Fred Les' play one-off covers show". Drowned in Sound. Retrieved 2008-02-22.
- "NME Awards 2008". Channel 4. Retrieved 2008-03-02.
- "You're talking publish...". Lightspeed Champion. Retrieved 2009-04-07.[dead link]
- Dev Hynes' Blood Orange. Interview Magazine. November 29, 2010.
- Skins › Songs From the Show. MTV.com.
- "Falling Off The Lavender Bridge (Limited Edition 2CD) listing". Play.com. Retrieved 2008-01-13.
- "Lightspeed Champion releases new album on 1st February 2010". Domino Records. April 11, 2009.
- "FREE MUSIC LOL". Dev Writes blog. lightspeedchampion.com. July 8, 2007. Archived from the original on 2008-04-16. Retrieved 2011-02-14.
- "TEAM PERECT presents : GREEN DAY'S NIMROD". Dev Writes blog. lightspeedchampion.com. July 16, 2007. Archived from the original on 2008-04-16. Retrieved 2008-02-05.
- "London - New Lightspeed Champion Bootleg". Vice Magazine. August 21, 2007. Retrieved 2008-02-05.
- "lightspeedchampion.com blog entry". Dev Writes blog. lightspeedchampion.com. Retrieved 2011-02-14.[dead link]
- "Lightspeed Champion Unveils New Website and Free Download". idiomag. July 23, 2009. Retrieved 2009-07-23.
- "Lightspeed Champion’s Icky Pasta E.P.". zdanz.com. May 5, 2010. Retrieved 2011-02-14.
- Official website
- Lightspeed Champion on Myspace
- Hynes' YouTube page
- Lightspeed Champion Live Session at CNETTV
- Lightspeed Champion Interview on Platforms Magazine
- Lightspeed Champion live set at Spanking New Sessions
- Lightspeed Champion covers Michael Jackson
- Live Photos @ The Troubadour (July 2008)