Last summer I was supposed to go to Canada and visit some family and visit Canada from coast to coast, but COVID-19 screwed it all up. Shortly after that I noticed a new artist from Canada. His first clip got me hooked and to lower the pain of not visiting Canada I decided to let at least the music come to me and ask some questions so that we all can get to know this Canadian artist a bit better: Daemon Grey!
Follow your Nightmares is your debut album. What did you do before and why this title for the album (due on 22/1/2021)?
Music has always been what matters to me most, and I’m lucky to have so much clarity that music is my true passion. I was also heavily into sports growing up and considered going the professional athlete route but knew that would take away from music.
As for “Follow Your Nightmares,” when it first came to my mind, I became obsessed. To me it really honestly sums of the purpose of life. Dreams are comfy. Dreams are safe. Dreams make you feel warm and fuzzy but hold little power. Fuck chasing dreams. I think our true passions are hidden underneath our deepest fears, not our dreams. To unleash our true potential, we need to tear down layers of insecurity with courage and strength. The process isn’t always comfortable or cushy… it’s hard work! Self-actualization of our soul identity I think is the reason we are alive. To grow and advance our soul, we dive headfirst into our fears, transcending the darkness and finding our deepest self. Fear is such a great teacher when we know how to use it… and what greater fear exists than our most twisted nightmares that hide in our deepest subconscious? Literally or metaphorically, when it comes to nightmares, I say, follow them. Love is the opposite of fear, and facing fear brings us to love.
How was it to work with great names on this very first album?
Working with Gavin Brown was definitely an incredible learning experience and opened the door to making friends and working with some really stellar producers and musicians. I’m very grateful that life connected me with individuals who could see the vision and work with me to execute on the music. I think making good music all comes down to mutual respect and trust in one another.
If you are the king of sins, what are your favourite sins and why?
I like to keep lyrics and meanings up to personal interpretation, but I might define sin as anything that’s raw, pleasurable, edgy, and not necessarily according to anyone else’s laws or religions. Sin could really be whatever is badass to you that might be considered unholy or abrasive to the status quo or conservative types. If it’s pleasurable and it’s not hurting anyone, then why wouldn’t we do it? My take on sin is somewhat influenced by Aleister Crowley’s philosophy of Thelema. Hell, not so long ago literally doing anything for your personal pleasure rather than for the sake of God was a sin!
Many would consider our pure, true state and natural urges sinful. We are wild, artistic, sexually charged animals a single lineage away from goddamn chimpanzees. We were not born to follow some arbitrary book of rules or mainstream societal norms that define how we should and should not behave. We are also not made to blindly take advice and direction from organizations trying to control the masses for their personal agendas.
Overall though, the song isn’t trying to solve the meaning of life… it’s about the joys of pleasure, rock, sex and evil (and it’s great for headbanging!) It’s a fun fucking track and it makes me wanna rage and party! I hope people enjoy it.
Is Whiskey Devil Girl a description of an ex or somebody you got in touch with?
I would say whiskey devil girl is definitely inspired by a couple girls that I have known in one way or another, but really the song is meant to represent and celebrate sexual energy with a darker, seductive twist. To me the song is about a union between a man with a wild, dark but loving feminine energy.
Stoned and Alone is not the happiest thing that can happen, how bad is your addiction? Isn’t weed forbidden in Canada?
I am not addicted to weed or any substance. Addiction is ultimately a weakness of the ego. I believe we are all responsible for maintaining our own self control and treating ourselves with love and kindness as best as we can. Stoned and Alone is a song made to celebrate the spiritual healing power of weed as a sacred plant. We has been instrumental in my life and helped me to further connect with my artistic passions and the reason I am alive. Weed is now legal in Canada too.
Are you ok with my description of this song and I quote from my review: The song mixes Seether & Depeche Mode with Nickelback (sound wise)?
Honestly I am totally fine with any references that anyone wants to make regarding my music. At the end of the day, the music stands for itself so any type of reference is just fine with me (= most of my personal influences are from more extreme metal and death metal mixed with 90s alternative and even 60s pop. Its a really fun experience to take all of my influences and create something original.
Might it be that XXX is one of your next singles as I really loved it and described it like this: XXX is an ode to the love of his life! The chorus is catchy and strong! It’s a hard hitting song with a cool guitar lick and the perfect tempo! This one should become a hit if pitched in the right way!
Yes we all love XXX! Its super fun to play and it’s a blast to sing. The song is basically meant to be a story of a girl out and about in the city looking for some fun. She’s wild and free letting her spirit guide her. She’s looking to get a little wild and maybe get into a little bit of trouble. It’s kind of meant to be just a fun, sexually driven song in the spirit of old school rock n’ roll.
Scream starts like a mix between techno and industrial and even gets a poppy feel, until the song gets shredded by some screams and grunts and it becomes a bit more a track that comes close to Sepultura and Marilyn Manson. Is that a good description for this song and how do I have to interpret the lyrics? What’s the message behind the song?
I love Sepultura! The original lineup of course (= That is ONE reference I will definitely take as a compliment! Yes the industrial feel more dynamic mix is ultimately because we got Mike Riley involved heavily and he really brought an awesome dimension to the song. He has worked with Marilyn Manson and actually wrote the post chorus riff on this song which is one of my very favourites.
This song is essentially about the power of raw aggressive release to overcome anxiety. The song itself I hope is a form of medicine for anyone that can relate to the lyrics and can use the song as a form of positive emotional release.
I Don’t Wanna Grow Up is the last song on the album and makes me ask: what do you hate giving up whilst growing up and why? With what did you play when you were a kid? Favourite TV moments?
I Don’t Wanna Grow up is a backlash to those who judge the intelligence, character or general merit about anyone due to their age, inspired by personal experience and real emotion as all my lyrics are! It’s a conviction to staying young forever. A lot of people consider growing up to be increasing intelligence and maturity, but in many cases, I think the opposite is true. People’s ego claim they have “grown up,” whereas really they have lost their inner child, their fearlessness, and their creative spirit. Many people get soft with age, and instead elect to judge younger people for still living and cherishing their wild side. “Years pass your logic starts to fade… afraid to fly like a bird in a cage…” The tunes holds a level of hatred against anyone who brings ageism and age related judgement into this world. Time is a non-linear illusion, and our soul is infinite and ageless. While the body may change, our mind and spirit are young forever if we so choose.
The kid I like to do superhero dress up probably like every other kid, but my main obsession was athletics and sports even from a super young age. As for TV moments growing up, I definitely got madly obsessed with Power Rangers.
Last summer I was supposed to visit family in Canada (we are from Belgium) and travel from coast to coast, but Covid-19 screwed it up for us, just as for you as I know you where looking forward to perform in Europe. How do you survive that (working on new tracks)?
Canada is typically pretty amazing, but lately it’s a very strange place with all the rapid changes that are being pushed upon the country by the powers that be. I definitely think we are in a pivotal moment in humanity and we all need to stand up for our rights and what we believe in. I’m still optimistic that truth will prevail and I’m just trying to do my part. I think the most important thing I can do is just continue to make music. Some of the songs on the next Daemon Grey record are definitely going to be heavily charged by what’s happening in the world today.
What kind of live shows can we expect from you? Fire spitting dildo’s, beautiful women or just you and the band?
Wow that’s really funny and it’s also a really good question. I like to think about the live show progression similar to what Pantera did. Pantera started really raw and pure without a lot of flash and the show really spoke for itself. My focus is always going to be on the music, the musicianship, and the portrayal of genuine emotion. As for theatrics, I’m gonna let those things develop organically as time goes on. With that said, I definitely like to get a women on stage and also play with my bag of props (= That is of course live music can survive what’s happening in the world today.
Are you a city guy (going out each night and living the life of a rock star) or rather a guy like Neil Young: a cabin in the wild nature, fishing and smoking some weed?
I am absolutely not a city guy and I’m not quite a cabin in the woods guy either, but I would lean closer to that! I’m definitely not your typical rocker vibe of heavy drinking and smoking and going out all the time… I find that to be very draining on the spirit. I’m into exercising, eating healthy, and treating myself and other people kindly as best as I can. I also am a certified male entertainer and dance at the strip club for ladies from time to time. I’m sensitive to the energetics frequencies we let off as human beings and I try to respect my essence as best as possible. I like to get wild and have fun but without damaging my mind or my body. I’m really into cold water therapy and I love diving an ice cold water and spending a ton of time in nature. I also love researching different aspects of spirituality and I’m writing a book called “The True Path” which is going to be about methods to cultivate inner strength. I don’t fit in with the main stream and I never have, so I’ve never really resonated just with your typical bar. Rather than going to a bar, I’m all about going to see live music! I also really like checking out comedy shows, plays, and orchestra… you know, things that are medicine for the soul.
In your clips it’s clear that you love to work out. If you could be part of any sport (team) what sports/team would you pick out and why?
My favourite sports are badminton, boxing, and rugby. If I could be part of any sports team, I would probably reincarnate into earth about 7 inches taller and be a professional beach volleyball player. I didn’t get the body for it in this life, but maybe next life things will be different. I also have always wanted to be a professional boxer however I know that’s not a good decision for my brain and I need my brain to make music.
If whilst touring (hence once it gets possible again) an artist would ask you to jump on stage and sing a song with him/her, who do you want it to be?
Oh that’s a really good question and there’s a million bands I would want to do that with. Honestly I would say if I was seeing “Philip H Anselmo and the Illegals” play live and they were doing a Pantera set, there would be nothing better than jumping on stage and singing some Pantera. I’m also a devout fan of a band called “Full Blown Chaos” and would absolutely love to get on stage and sing some of that aggressive, hard-core New York metal.
Any dreams for the near future? Wishes?
My focus really is just to be healthy, happy, and have the opportunity to keep creating. Right now, my focus is making the second Daemon Grey record and working towards completing a rough draft of my book. Beyond that, I’m really into making genuine connections with other creative people that are dedicated to truth, love, and fearlessness.
I wish you good luck and good health and maybe we’ll meet one day face to face!
Same to you Filip! Thank you very much for taking the time to map out this interview and please stay in touch!