Week 40: Damn Right!
Welcome back, friends!
It’s a new week here on 4BB Weekly – Week 40 to be exact. And we thought this would be a good time to try something new…literally new – as in brand spanking current and right now!
We are really proud to present long-time friends and followers, Damn! and their 4BB exclusive “Headstone EP” – six damn fabulous tracks…five of them from their latest album “Let’s Zoom In” (their third or fourth album, depending one how you count) and one previously unreleased track, the unfinished outtake “I Wanna Know”!
I’ve been following this (surprisingly enough) Swedish funk outfit for at least 15 years – after having had the pleasure of experiencing the pre-Damn! band Agurk Players in a steamed up festival tent…which included like half of today’s line-up. Already back then, an hour into the concert everybody in the audience knew that these guys were gonna go places – or we all hoped so at least.
Fast forward to 2008, when I asked Svante (lead vocals, guitars and percussion) if Damn! couldn’t do something special for the 4BB Beat Competition…he promptly and politely replied that they would have loved to participate, but that they were kept busy alternately touring or recording in the studio – what later would become the “Let’s Zoom In” album. A week or so later, he sent me a demo of a track called “Headstone”…and I was blown away! Some seriously laid back, horn driven soulfunk…just the way we like it.
So why not pause right here, and let you all get acquainted with that Damn! sound. Here’s a short preview clip from the EP title cut – try it on for size:
Awesome, right?! Now, here’s some useful information taken from the label press release that came with the “Let’s Zoom In” album release:
Damn! was formed already back in 1995 – but really started out more as a club at the famous venue, Mejeriet in Lund – and at Fredmans in Malmö, Sweden.
Svante Lodén, Måns Block and Måns Mernsten took turns as DJs, along with their own instruments; drums, percussion, synths and rhodes. Not long after, Erik Hjärpe joined Damn! from hiphop group Poetized. Some nights they even called in the Hello Bobbadee horn section (Sven Andersson – saxophone, Petter Lindgård – trumpet, Jens Lindgård – trombone). As well as the bassist Gustav Lindroth (also from Poetized). These are the eight members of Damn! today.
The first album, “Natural Sounds” was made in the band’s own rehearsal room on an old analog 12-track, recording on video tapes. The album was printed in 500 copies and were given out to the audience at their clubs. The song “Stinky, Stinky Ashtray” reached a publisher in New York and placed the song in tv-series such as Sex And The City, Desperate Housewives and the cult film Dinner Rush. Second album “Youth Style” was recorded in their own studio in Lund and was released by DJ Mad Mats’ label Raw Fusion in 2004. The latin rock scented single “Got To Go” became a hit.
By this time, a collaboration with Swedish rapper Timbuktu had begun. When Swedish TV broadcasted the first big concert with Timbuktu & Damn!, it was the starting point of long bout of touring together. The same year, the “Kalas” tour kicked off, and since then Timbuktu & Damn! have toured all of Scandinavia as well as abroad together, establishing them as one of the best live bands in Europe.
The new album is the first in four years. The title “Let’s Zoom In” alludes to the time taken to get all musicians together for studio sessions to make the album. “Let’s Zoom In” gives you 13 tracks, with “I’m Not Going To Live Another Day Without You Girl” being the first single. The album is more linear, with more vocals than previous albums – all of it recorded in Damn!’s studio in Lund.
To sum it all up, we’ll leave you with a quote from Snoop Dogg’s uncle Junebug, who managed to catch Damn! performing live at Debaser, Stockholm in 2007:
“These motherfuckers are pretty tight – I’m getting ready to party!”
Yeah, Junebug – they sure are…and yep, me too!
The 4BB/Damn! collab EP is actually long overdue – it was originally planned to be launched much earlier this year (about the time of our 6 month hiatus)…so we’re all very pleased of finally getting it posted. All six tracks on “The Headstone EP” are winners in my book…but if you’d twist my arm, I’d name the super funky “Get Your Grown Man On”, the title cut “Headstone” and the beautiful “Another Language Died” as my personal favourites! Let us know yours – leave a comment, why don’t ya!
And to make the most out of it, we’ve talked Damn! into helping us with the upcoming “4BB Remix Competition 2009″ – which will kick-off already next week! So stay tuned, friends!
In the meantime, go visit the guys on their MySpace – or take a day off (or two) and try and locate a copy of Damn!’s new album! It’s actually damn hard to come by, since “Let’s Zoom In” is still awaiting a proper release here in the US…but it’s readily available on iTunes Music Store in Scandinavia. If we’re lucky, we’ll soon be able to cop a CD right here though! Or you can settle for second best and buy their previous album, “Youth Style”, here! (Well, or you could just enter our remix competition next week – all participants gets a free copy! :¬D)
UPDATE: After pulling some strings, Damn!’s “Let’s Zoom In” album is now available on CD over at Dustygroove! Wohoo! Go get it while it’s hot!
Big thanks to Universal Music and Pope Records for letting us have some fun…but first and foremost, mad props to Damn!; Svante, Måns, Erik, Måns, Petter, Jens, Sven & Gustav – thank you for the music!
See you all next week!
(No password needed this time around! Don’t forget to leave a comment on the post!)
(Ps. Still haven’t figured out what classic LP we’re paying homage to with “The Headstone EP” cover?! Oh, come on…you know this one! Or you could give up, and simply click here – but I’ll be checking the click statistics, just so you know!)