New album featuring original band line-up due out in April 2015
Indie rock band The Damnwells have inked a deal with Rock Ridge Music and will be releasing a new, self-titled album featuring the original four band members in April 2015. This is the first album since 2006 to include the original band lineup. (The original members of The Damnwells are Alex Dezen [lead vocals, guitar, piano], David Chernis [lead guitar], Ted Hudson [bass], and Steven Terry [drums/percussion].)
Says Dezen about the label deal: “The Damnwells are super excited to be teaming up with Rock Ridge Music for this release—a label that has shown a clear, consistent, and genuine love of the music for the last decade. It feels like a homecoming."
Says Rock Ridge Music CEO Tom Derr about signing the band: “The Damnwells… damn right!”
Since 2006, Dezen continued to make Damnwells records with a cast of talented musicians to fill in the blanks. But for the forthcoming self-titled album, he and his former comrades decided to “get the band back together” for real and joined producer Salim Nourallah (Old 97s) in the studio to capture the magic. They recorded at the intimate Tree Fort Studios in Austin, TX, where they sought, as Dezen says, to “capture as much live as possible.”
“What this record represents is four guys, 15 years, a few defeats, and a ton of tiny victories,” says Dezen. “What this record means to me is more than what you hear carved into the wax. This is about coming together. It's about brotherhood. It's about making music together. We have never been more excited to share anything with the fans.” Dezen is also releasing four solo EPs via Bandcamp (https://thedamnwells.bandcamp.com) in 2014 to whet fans’ appetites for the forthcoming new Damnwells music.
Dezen and Hudson met at Bard College in 1996 and played in a string of college bands together before they both moved to Brooklyn in 2000. There they met Terry (who was fresh off a stint playing with Ryan Adams’ former band, Whiskeytown) and started jamming together. The trio began playing shows at now-defunct clubs throughout Brooklyn and the Lower East Side of Manhattan, sometimes with various guitar players and sometimes as a three-piece.
At the end of 2000, Chernis joined them and they christened themselves The Damnwells. The band released its first EP (PMR) in 2001, then signed to Epic Records and released Bastards of the Beat in 2003. The follow-up, Air Stereo (which was the last album featuring the original line-up), was recorded for release on Epic but was instead picked up and released by Rounder Records in 2006. “Golden Days,” the single from Air Stereo, was a top 20 Triple A charting song and was also the name of a documentary film about the band released in 2007. Over the years, The Damnwells toured relentlessly, sharing stages with The Fray, the Dixie Chicks, Old 97s, Cheap Trick, and Bob Dylan, to name a few.
The Damnwells’ next release, One Last Century (2009), featured Hudson and Dezen and was given away for free viaPaste magazine’s website. It was followed by the fan-funded record, No One Listens to the Band Anymore, which came out in 2011.