Since we can’t stop listening to his latest album ‘Charm Offensive’ we thought we’d get to know more about Damien Done so we invited him to our Q&A buffet. Loosen your belts and get eating! Then check out the video for ‘Curious Thing’ below.
There’s a full 80s/90s pop culture and music resurgence happening right now, are you into it?
Inadvertently. I’m pretty opposed to the flat-out aping of past eras’ aesthetics. I think it’s sort of lazy, and a weird form of worship that I also reject. I do enjoy when you can suss out the influences or formative forces behind an artist, but I never want those influences to manifest in an overt or carbon-copied way. I’m told my music has aspects of various genres-gone-by, like grunge, new wave and post-punk, but I’d like to think those are fleeting impressions that change from song to song, or even part to part, where some bands just seem to set out to rewrite their heroes’ catalogs.
Are there any band photographers that you’re into and would love to be shot by?
Nathaniel Shannon is a great friend of mine, and shot the cover of my new LP Charm Offensive. He’s done some impromptu shots of me that are great, but I’d love to get some time to do something a bit more conceptual or lavish because we come from similar backgrounds, artistically, and I think he’d capture the Damien Done spirit well. On a similar note, Alison Brady, whose photos were used for the covers of the Stay Black EP and accompanying 7”, is one of my favorite conceptual artists around, and I think she could do some really cool portraiture if we ever found the time.
What is the first song you ever wrote and did it make it onto a release?
The very first song I wrote was more of a part than a song. It was called “Up and Went” and it did get recorded and was on the last As Friends Rust release, A Young Trophy Band in the Parlance of Our Times.
The first Damien Done song I wrote was “Dude Becomes Sea,” and it’s the first track on my first release, Stay Black.
Without invoking genre, describe your music…
Like chasing a mouthful of feathers with a glass of molasses.
How was your high school experience? Were you in a band?
It was OK. I got stoned a lot, then stopped going, then took my high school equivalency instead. I joined a band at 15, which we called US Decline. I had a shaved head and a bus pass.
What was your first ever favourite song?
Either “Doctor! Doctor!” by Thompson Twins or “Telephone Line” by Electric Light Orchestra
Lots of songs start out with a working title and are eventually renamed, what were some of the original names of your songs before they were complete?
I don’t remember original/working titles of songs, but I can tell you this: Damien Done was first called Rubbers.
Who would play you in a movie about the band?
Tell us 3 bands that we should be listening to/be keeping an eye out for?
Gold, Rope Sect, Unmaker