Drab Majesty

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Drab Majesty
Drab-Majesty-2018-01-23 23-29-2.jpg
Drab Majesty performing live in Warsaw, 2018
Background information
OriginLos Angeles, California, US
GenresDarkwave, Dreampop, Shoegaze
Years active2011–present
LabelsDais Records
Associated actsMarriages, Black Mare, VR Sex
WebsiteDrabMajesty.bandcamp.com
MembersDeb Demure
Mona D

Drab Majesty is an American, Los Angeles-based musical project, founded by musician Deb Demure (Andrew Clinco) while working as the drummer for the band Marriages, in 2011.[1] The project's first record was the 2012 EP Unarian Dances, first self-released and then re-released in 2014 on Lolipop Records.[2] Since signing to Dais Records, Drab Majesty has released three albums - Careless (2015)[3],The Demonstration (2017),[4][5][6] and Modern Mirror (2019).[7]

Drab Majesty combine androgynous aesthetics and commanding vocals with futuristic and occult lyrics, a style Demure refers to as, "tragic wave." To create his imposing stage presence, Demure employs costumes, makeup and props to accompany his lush, '80s-influenced soundscapes. Since 2016, when performing live, Demure is joined onstage by keyboardist and vocalist Mona D (Alex Nicolaou). [8]

History[edit]

The idea for Drab Majesty had come to Andrew Clinco in 2011 while drumming for the Los Angeles-based group Marriages. Interested in creating music where he performed all of the instruments himself, Clinco wrote and recorded several songs alone in his bedroom. Clinco stated that he felt some sense of alarm while playing back the music he had recorded, claiming that it was as if another person had made it. "Listening back I just didn’t feel like I was listening to myself [...] It sounded like someone else". This experience provided the inspiration for Clinco to create his alter ego, Deb Demure.[9]

Drab Majesty's first effort, the EP Unarian Dances, was self-released in 2012. Initially limited to 100 cassette copies, the EP was later picked up and released by Lollipop Records.[10] The record's title was inspired by the Unarian Academy, a UFO cult whose appearances on public-access television Demure described as being "intoxicating".[9] The EP, which features some contributions from Emma Ruth Rundle, was described as a "space-age pastiche" and likened to the work of bands such as Slowdive.[2]

A photo of Deb Demure of Drab Majesty
Deb Demure performing live in Brooklyn, 2016

Drab Majesty signed with Dais Records in Spring of 2015[11] and shortly thereafter released the single "Unknown to the I", which had been described as a "lo-fi take on the 80s".[12] Careless, Drab Majesty's first full-length album, was released later that year. Recorded at Demure's home studio over the course of 2 years,[11] Careless was inspired by a song a close friend of Demure's had written. "It [the song] affected me really deeply, so I wanted to make a record that was a nod to [my friend]".[9] The album features what was described by Tiny Mix Tapes writer Grant Purdum as "mechanical beats, isolated ruminations, and stimulating guitar arpeggios that equate to more than the sum of their parts".[13] Drab Majesty toured with Dais cohorts King Dude later that year. Westword contributor Tom Murphy described Drab Majesty's stage show as "more than just a rock show" and likened Demure to an "unconventional religious figure".[14]

In 2016, Drab Majesty expanded into a duo with the addition of keyboardist Mona D.[15] The son of horror director Ted Nicolaou, Mona D helped to enhance the group's theatrics while touring North America and Europe in 2016.[4] The Demonstration, Drab Majesty's second studio album, was released in January 2017 to favorable reviews. Zaina Abujebarah of SLUG Magazine called The Demonstration a "perfect" album that "transcends the glamour of nightlife and illustrates the complexities of feeling blue".[16] Susana Meza of Spill Magazine gave the album a 9 out of 10, saying that the album was "a phenomenal record by exceptional performers and quite the proper introduction to Drab Majesty for the uninitiated".[17] CVLT Nation said that the album was "more than everything you dreamed it would be" and called it "a blend of postpunk vocals, sophisticated lyrics, ethereal synth sound, and shoegaze influence". The duo toured North America with Dais counterparts Cold Cave, and later toured Europe alongside King Dude, with whom they collaborated on the single "Who Taught You How to Love?" the year before.[18]

In late 2017, the duo released a 7-inch single, titled "Oakwood", for the 10th anniversary celebration of Dais Records.[19] The song was written in honor of Cash Askew, co-founder of the band Them Are Us Too, who died in the 2016 Oakland warehouse fire.[20] The title "Oakwood", according to Demure, is a direct translation of Askew's name.[21] The single featured a B-side called "Egress", an instrumental guitar piece.[22] The duo embarked on their North American Fall From the Sky tour in September;[23] the tour included a stop at the 2017 Cold Waves Festival in Chicago.[24] They extended their tour to Europe in Winter of 2018.[25]

Members[edit]

  • Deb Demure - Vocals, Guitar, percussion (2011–present)
  • Mona D - Keyboards, vocals (2016–present)

Discography[edit]

Studio albums[edit]

  • Careless (2015)
  • The Demonstration (2017)
  • Modern Mirror (2019)

Singles & EPs[edit]

  • Unarian Dances (2012)
  • "Unknown to the I" (2015)
  • "The Heiress/The Demon" (2016)
  • "Oak Wood" (2017)
  • "Ellipsis" (2019)
  • "Long Division" (2019)
  • "Oxytocin" (2019)
  • "Out of Sequence" (2019)

Compilations[edit]

  • Completely Careless [2012-2015] (2016)

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Drab Majesty's Deb Demure Wants to Whisk You Off to an Icy Dreamland Where Gender Doesn't Matter". Noisey.vice.com. 23 June 2015.
  2. ^ a b Tavana, Art (3 October 2014). "Drab Majesty Is L.A.'s Most Glamorous Freak". Laweekly.com.
  3. ^ "stream Drab Majesty's new album 'The Demonstration'". Brooklynvegan.com.
  4. ^ a b Johnson, Dan. "The End Is Here: The Rise of L.A.'s Drab Majesty". Los Angeles Downtown News.
  5. ^ "The 101 Best Songs of 2017". Spin.com. 20 December 2017.
  6. ^ "Drab Majesty: The Demonstration". Kjnk.org. March 14, 2017.
  7. ^ "Modern Mirror, by DRAB MAJESTY". Drabmajesty.bandcamp.com. Retrieved August 14, 2019.
  8. ^ "This is what Drab Majesty would play at their funeral". Interviewmagazine.com. November 3, 2017.
  9. ^ a b c Bennett, J. "Drab Majesty's Deb Demure Wants to Whisk You Off to an Icy Dreamland Where Gender Doesn't Matter (23 June 2015)". Vice. Retrieved 20 February 2018.
  10. ^ "Drab Majesty". Dais Records. Dais Records. Retrieved 20 February 2018.
  11. ^ a b "Drab Majesty - Careless LP". Dais Records. Dais Records. Retrieved 20 February 2018.
  12. ^ Purdum, Grant. "Drab Majesty - Unknown to the I [Cassingle; Dais] (4 August 2015)". Tiny Mix Tapes. Tiny Mix Tapes. Retrieved 20 February 2018.
  13. ^ Purdum, Grant. "Drab Majesty - Careless [LP; Dais] (10 December 2015)". Tiny Mix Tapes. Tiny Mix Tapes. Retrieved 20 February 2018.
  14. ^ Murphy, Tom. "Deb Demure of Drab Majesty Opens Ears and Minds at Larimer Lounge (27 October 2015)". Westword. Voice Media Group. Retrieved 20 February 2018.
  15. ^ "Drab Majesty - The Demonstration". Dais Records. Dais Records. Retrieved 20 February 2018.
  16. ^ Abujebarah, Zaina. "'Drab Majesty - The Demonstration' review (31 January 2017)". SLUG Magazine. SLUG Magazine. Retrieved 20 February 2018.
  17. ^ Meza, Susana. "Spill Album Review: Drab Majesty - The Demonstration". Spill Magazine. Spill Magazine. Retrieved 20 February 2018.
  18. ^ "Drab Majesty's Highly Anticipated Sophomore LP "The Demonstration" Review (16 January 2017)". CVLT Nation. CVLT Nation. Retrieved 20 February 2018.
  19. ^ "Drab Majesty Honors the Memory of Cash Askew in New Song 'Oak Wood' (1 September 2017)". Post-punk.com. Retrieved 20 February 2018.
  20. ^ "Them Are Us Too Co-Founder Cash Askew Among Dead in Oakland Warehouse Fire (4 December 2016)". Billboard. Billboard. Retrieved 20 February 2018.
  21. ^ "Drab Majesty Releases 'Oak Wood'; Embarks on Expansive North American Tour (1 September 2017)". BroardwayWorld. Wisdom Digital Media. Retrieved 20 February 2018.
  22. ^ Chandler, Anna. "Drab Majesty, Boy Harsher, Pyramid Club @The Jinx (13 September 2017)". Connect Savannah. Connect Savannah. Retrieved 20 February 2018.
  23. ^ Marotta, Michael. "Live Demonstration: Drab Majesty Announce North American Tour (23 June 2017)". Vanyaland. Vanyaland. Retrieved 20 February 2018.
  24. ^ Pettigrew, Jason. "Cold Waves Festival Jumpstarts the Fury of Industrial-Rock (8 November 2017)". Alternative Press. Alternative Press. Retrieved 20 February 2018.
  25. ^ "Drab Majesty perform 'Dot In The Sky' and 'Not Just A Name' live at the Museum of Surgical Science (8 December 2017)". Post-punk.com. Retrieved 20 February 2018.