The first time I heard about Drab Majesty was in an interview given by George Clarke (Deafheaven – vocals) where he was asked about his favorite records. He mainly mentioned older influences, but also yours truly as the only “fresh” act he listens to. Of course, I was intrigued and not in vain, since their last record, “The Demonstration”, has extracted respect from the global music audience. Concerning their appearance on Greek soil by 3 Shades of Black at Saturday, May 6th on Death Disco’s stage with The Rattler Proxy, I wouldn’t miss the chance to have a word with them for Metal Invader, as always.
Hello, Deb and welcome to Metal Invader! It will be your first performance in Greece with Drab Majesty. How do you feel about introducing us physically to your music for the first time?
Hello! I am deeply honored to be performing in Greece. It’s been a dream of mine for quite some time.
After “Careless” tremendous success you returned with the much acclaimed “The Demonstration”. Had you ever expected moving in such a few years from underground radio waves to a household name in the contemporary new wave scene?
I have no expectations! I’m very grateful that the sounds are catching on and reaching wider audiences…but the music is ultimately beyond me and out of my control, so I too am witnessing Drab Majesty’s growth alongside everyone else.
Your sound is perfect to accompany lonely thoughts and adds much to a deep personal experience. However, I have the feeling that your music doesn’t stop there and can be seen by a completely different angle live. What should we expect from your show in Athens?
I think you should have no expectations but just an open mind and heart. Every show is different and an out of body experience for us, so we will just have to see what happens.
It is common knowledge that each person’s environment influences the whole person’s stance in life and output. Los Angeles has fueled artists and creative personalities since way back. How did the city of angels treat you as an artist?
LA is a very saturated and distracted city. Its energy is frenetic. To have a project that separates itself from the pack and to maintain an audience can be a tall order. That being said, the LA underground electronic music scene is very tight knit and has been very supportive of Drab Majesty.
“The Demonstration” sounds like someone took a splash of The Chameleons, filtered it through 80’s video game soundtracks and added a touch of Depeche Mode catchiness without missing in darkness, that’s where I got some Cocteau Twins vibes. But that’s just my ears. What was on your mind while creating?
All those influences I’m sure are within the subconscious. I don’t necessarily have any one vision while making this work.
Expanding the question above, where you ever a video game fan? Do you believe that inspiration comes from many places?
I was always a fan of the classics: Centipede, Galaga, Double Dragon, Mortal Kombat, but haven’t really thought about how DM and video games connect. Inspiration absolutely comes from every learned and gained experience.
As a lone creator, do you feel that sometimes inspiration ends? Did you ever think of adding more members in Drab Majesty?
Inspiration always comes and goes. I believe it’s very important to know when the current being channeled has come to a halt for the day, or perhaps myself, the vehicle has fatigued. Right now Drab Majesty will remain a 2 piece band.
Greece had a pretty strong post-punk/new wave scene in the 80’s, 90’s and a pretty strong revival is taking place right now, as well. You’re much expected I have to say. Is there any band from Greece that you may have listened to?
Chapter 24 and Synthetiki are 2 bands that I’ve always liked that I consciously known are Greek. I would love to know about more Greece’s rich history in Post Punk. Please offer some suggestions!
If I’m not mistaken Deb Demure is genderless, right? Is this a message to see people beyond genders and support the freedom of choice? Care to comment on the ongoing tragedy of LGBTQI people being transferred in concentration camps in Chechnya.
More than just genderless, Deb is a performative attempt at escaping the human frame and embodying something alien. It’s a message to just simply “experience some-thing”. Not someone, not somebody. I want viewers to ultimately get away from the gender discussion entirely because perception of an artful performance should never be colored by any genetic aspect particular to that individual. I believe all ideas come from a deep collective unconscious energy source that’s beyond all of us and what we’re using to channel these divine ideas is just a fleshy vehicle. The news I’ve read about the anti-lgbt demonstrations in Chechnya are atrocious. It’s very difficult to wrap my mind around any extrajudicial killings and sanctioning like that in this day and age. It’s surreal and very saddening.
What’s the story behind Deb Demure?
That might have to just reveal itself in time (;
Some beautiful remixes have been made for some of your songs from “The Demonstration” by important artists like Drew McDowall and Silent Servant. How do you feel listening to your music through other creators’ take on your sound?
It’s an extremely humbling experience knowing these incredible artists sat down and labored over a remix, listening to your unadulterated stems and found inspiration through that. Every artist that remixed for The Demonstration is a hero of mine in some capacity.
Thanks so much for your time. I’m looking forward for your gig in Athens. The epilogue is yours.
Thank You! We are very very excited!!