Check out ‘Monsters’, the brand new video from The Damn Quails, which is full of good-humoured fun. Directed by Scotty Galaxy for Riverman Productions, the irreverent video intersperses footage from the studio, with Bryon White driving in front of impossible backgrounds, singing into an axe and setting a piano on fire. The striking visuals are a good match for an upbeat song that throws the listener immediately into its foot-tapping groove and rootsy folk-rock; indeed, Giovanni Carnuccio III pounds the drums so hard that his hat falls off. Meanwhile, the wild-eyed White’s voice dances around an infectious melody. Layers of keys, backing vocals and Kevin “Haystack” Foster’s warm bass add texture and create an absorbing overall sound.
Carnuccio III says of the video, which looks like it was great fun to produce: “Bryon found this decrepit old piano, well beyond saving, somewhere up in the thickets. It’s common (at least in the folk community around there) to give such great old instruments a proper Viking funeral. Bryon, an expert axe thrower, got a flash of inspiration that we should use the piano to film a music video and he should throw a flaming axe to set it ablaze. When we knew ‘Monsters’ would be the first single, the total destruction of this object we hold in such reverence seemed to be a very appropriate metaphor. We precariously loaded it onto a trailer and journeyed across the plains to Erok’s, barely making it up The Impossible Driveway, though at the end of the day we were most impressed that Bryon’s little sedan was able to make the climb. We eventually reached that clearing, dropped the piano, and set about figuring out how to properly pull off the feat, armed with a great many fire-making devices. Bryon steadied himself before going totally bonkers on the thing. The fire got so loud that he had a hard time hearing the track he was singing to, but somehow managed to pull it off. After the deed was done, we got into some very primal jamming in Erok’s studio, which led to thoroughly rocking out on ‘Monsters’ until Scotty Galaxy felt like there was enough footage to call it a day. Then we gorged ourselves on tacos.”
Although the video is good fun, the song’s lyrical subject matter is a little darker. White has experienced bouts of depression and addiction and songs such as this draw on those experiences. White adds: “I wrote this song about a recurring dream I have in which I am chased by villagers wielding torches. I wrote it from a place of desperation and disenchantment, but it manages to come across as somewhat hopeful. The big, banging intro/outro segment is one of the coolest things I’ve ever managed to make a reality with the help of John Calvin Abney and the rest of the band.”
This is the first single from forthcoming album ‘Clouding Up Your City’, which is due out on 17th July 2022. It’s the “Okie-folkie” band’s first new material since breaking up in 2016. Now, they are back together and and playing with urgency, as if to make up for lost time. The record was produced by former band-member John Calvin Abney, who has aimed for an authentic rocking sound, which benefits from having been tracked live in the room. Incredibly, it was all put together in just four days, which is surely a sign of the players’ talents and dynamism. ‘Monsters’ is an energetic way to start your day. Enjoy.
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