Most of the artists I relate to the most couldn’t make careers out of their art…as far as music, I tend to champion the best underground stuff from the best music towns like New Orleans, Memphis, Austin, New York, Chicago, Cleveland, Columbus, San Fran,and LA because its not a good idea to suck in those cities, even if you’re just passing through. I’m sure there are wonderful people all over the map, but I find myself returning to these places again and again, usually because of the artists that live there, and in most cases, those artists occupy the underground.
Tell me about your bands Obnox and Puffy Areolas. Elijah Vazquez, who plays with you in Obnox seems to have a very different disposition than the guys in Puffy Areolas. Having spent a few evenings with you guys over the past couple months, I have to say, you enchanting. Everyone has their own magic, intelligence and insanity.
Obnox came to be in order to make a 7″ while the TMIBH guys got their bearings as new fathers, but after playing around the house for a little while, I had more material than I anticipated, so then I thought to make an ep. Hey why not a 12″ ep? How bout some improv and a couple of my favorite Howland tunes. Just little things I’d always wanted to do…and who would argue with me if I tracked everything myself? I could do whatever I want which most drummers have no idea what that’s like. Once people started to dig it a lil, I decided to find a drummer that had a similar style as mine or would be willing to imitate it and that’s when I reached out to Elijah. He’s super talented…he’s always trying to learn more even though he’s a music educator. He’s got his own solo agenda, makes hip hop beats and is way into punk as well, so we get along great. Cleveland is the type of place where a small cache of black artists can function right along side say hardcore bands and metal bands. Its the kind of place that has more brothas at shows than just about anywhere.
I joined Puffy Areolas as a fill in for a couple of gigs and we’ve been rocking ever since…its really Damon’s thing. I just rehearse and record and try to make it hot. I’m only as good as the guys I play with and these dudes are swell. And it feels good to rock with yet another bruh, not unlike hanging with Rafeeq Washington, Larry Caswell, or Elijah. Lots of hip hop cats are parallel to us as well as some new young black rock cats like Chubbs and Retro. What I like about Dame though is he’s interested in putting real raw and wild sounds out in the streets. I wasn’t hearing that distorted abandon that’s a part of my favorite garage and punk records…everyone wanted to sound like they had it all together whereas he fucking lets it all hang out to the point of near absurdity and/or injury which is perfect for a guy like me whose into really gnarly and fucked up music. Not just making noise, but a very rhythmical noise that’s peppered with soul, improvisation, and psychedelia. That’s why he’s right on time and we ride deeper than Atlantis…it also helps that the boy chain smokes weed too, which kinda keeps us locked into the groove, innately, like second nature!
You all were about the only saving graces of sxsw. That was my first and last experience with sxsw… how did you feel about the experience?
I think being a father may be one of your proudest accomplishments. Do you hope to have more children? What are your thoughts on love?
Where does ‘Bim’ come from?