Catching Up With Dion Lunadon
Noise-Garage musician Dion Lunadon will be playing one of the first shows with a live band since the end of the lockdown at Gramps this Saturday. The ex-bassist of A Place to Bury Strangers will bring his frenetic guitar riffs to South Florida in support of his recently released EP SCHREIEN [HOWL].
The New Zealand-born / New York-based musician will be sharing the stage with locals Mold!, the Ruffans, and Laika, for a night full of loud, sharp, and tight sounds. We got the chance to talk to Dion a few days before the show, and discussed the making of his new songs, the creative process behind this new solo phase, and what can people expect (or not) to experience this Saturday.
Many people are familiar with your music because of A Place to Bury Strangers and The D4, but what’s your favorite part of playing (and composing) solo?
I like pushing myself to come up with all the ideas for songs, art, videos and for the shows. It pushes me to be creative and to creatively keep pushing forward with new ideas that reflect who I am and what I like with no compromise. It teaches me about who I truly am as a person and to reflect that. But it also makes me look outside of myself for things that might spark an idea. I can’t be lazy and rely on anyone else. Most projects I’ve been in have been myself and one other working creatively together as a partnership which I like but this is the one project that is me.
Your most recent release, SCHREIEN [HOWL], was unveiled during very hard times, with New York just starting to reopen. How was the process of composing and putting that collection of songs out?
It was great! I wrote and recorded pretty much everyday during 2020. My friend Egi has a label called Discofridge in Switzerland and he wanted to put out a record with one of my songs recorded in German. I re-recorded the vocals for “Howl” from my first record and “Schreien” was born. I record a lot so the other 3 songs were a collection of past songs I thought worked well together.
How did it feel when you played your new songs live for the first time?
Was really good. A bit nerve-racking but that helped me dig deep I think. I’m really stoked to be playing these songs live with the group of people I have. Originally I never wanted to play these songs live as that kind of takes it away from being a solo project and I actually would have to deal with other people which is a whole new kettle of fish! But really, this was always meant to be played live.
Your live shows are known for being high-energy and unpredictable. What do you want to transmit to people when watching you live?
I want to transmit that there is nothing else happening except the show. When I was younger the best shows were the ones where the people on stage were willing to die for the cause and the audience were with them in the throws of every moment.
When you record your songs you also think about alternate versions or things that could work better live than on the actual record?
No. I don’t generally think about how they would work in a live setting. More about how they would work in an album setting. Although that might change now I have a band playing live. I just try to write and record what sounds most exciting to me. I never think, “I couldn’t do that live so I won’t do it on record”. There’s always a way or you just change things to make it work. Both mediums have advantages and disadvantages and I’m down to use either to the fullest extent.
Are you currently working on any new music or collaborations?
Always working on new music but mostly for this project. I’ve been collaborating here and there. I did some guitar and vocals for my friend Pete from The Dandy Warhols for his project “Pete International Airport” and some stuff with my friend Jeremy in a project called “Womb Dudes” that we have. And a couple of other things here and there.
What can people expect from your upcoming show at Gramps?
Movies are always better when you’ve not seen the trailer. You can expect a real, rock n roll show. No smoke and mirrors.
Any final thoughts or projects you would like to share?
Go support your favorite small artist. Buy their merch and music from sites like Bandcamp or at the show where they actually get to see some money.
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