Interview with Ray Miner (drums), Jerimy McNeil (bass & vocals) & Joe Mills (lead guitar & vocals)
Interview by: Beandog
Atlanta’s heavyweight volume merchants, DayGlo Mourning, are preparing to release their newest collection of doom-meets-stoner riffage in the form of Dead Star.
Metal Rules got in touch with the band to find out how things are going…
Gentlemen, thanks for taking some time out to speak to us – Lets start with a quick check in. What’s up?
We’ve been keeping busy this year getting things put together for the new album release which is in the pre-sale phase now. It’s scheduled to start shipping out next February. We also shot a video at the end of summer, so a lot of PR going on now obviously.
And for those of our readers who have not yet heard of DayGlo Mourning, can you give us a quick history of the band? Who are you guys and how did you come together?
Ray, Matt Rayborn (the original bassist) and Joe came together through a Craigslist ad to start up a Doom project. After the first year Matt decided he wanted to focus on some other things and moved on which lead to Jerimy joining us. Joe and Jerimy had met several months prior through Jerimy’s custom speaker cabinet business (Decibel Sound Implements). He had just left a Sabbath tribute band so the timing was providential!
Were you in bands before this one and if so, how is Dayglo Mourning different?
Joe was playing in a cheeky rock-n-roll band with some of his friends (still does actually). Ray’s previous band was a classic rock cover band, and Jerimy had just finished up with the Sabbath tribute as previously mentioned. The perfect mix to start up a big Doom band right…hahaha!
This band is as loud and fuzzy as most other Doom bands but we have an older groove that tends to stand apart from what most bands are doing today.
What would you say works particularly well with this project – the thing that keeps you making music together?
The best thing about us is our genuine friendship and commitment to each other as a priority. Everything else just seems to fall in place.
And on that note… You’ve just released your latest full length album, Dead Star. Can you tell us a bit about the creation of the record? How do you guys write and record. Is it a quick process for you?
We worked on the new songs for about a year ahead of the recording. The songs are typically written individually and brought to rehearsal for band feedback and final arrangements. Recording is usually a pretty quick event for us because the songs are fully developed and up to now we’ve recorded the songs like a live set at Ledbelly Sound Studio. Once the base tracks are laid down we’ll go back and do vocals and overdub some guitars and add any samples or effects.
In the end Dead Star was recorded, mixed and mastered in about 5 full work days!
How would you describe Dead Star to someone who had no idea what to expect?
Big, dark and deliberately paced, featuring obligatory fuzzy riffs and the occasional groovy breakdown.
Perfect! Haha! Did you achieve everything you set out to with this record?
We’re very happy how everything has turned out on this record. From the recordings to the artwork, the video single and PR effort, everything is being completed extremely well.
How does it differ to your earlier efforts?
The first recordings found on the debut EP and the split LP with Bludy Gyres were actually recorded as “demo” tracks to give to promoters and booking agents since no one understandably had ever heard of us. Fortunately they resonated in the ear of Tommy Stewart of Black Doomba Records and here we are!
Indeed! Can you tell us a bit more about how your relationship with Black Doombar began?
We played our 2nd show ever as a band along with Tommy Stewarts Dyerwulf. A few months later after the demo’s had been recorded and shared around, Tommy hit us up and asked if we would want to have them placed on the split LP with Bludy Gyres called Rope Enough for Two on BDR. That was the easiest call the band has ever had to make!
Let’s talk about music more generally. You are clearly influenced by big riffs and heavy guitar tones but I can detect an appreciation for jam bands of the late 60’s too. Tell us about your experience of that. When did you first experience the appeal of heavy music and the bands that drew you in?
We’re all pretty long in the tooth so the great bands you’re referring to were actually things we listened to growing up in our formative years of music appreciation. Ray and Jerimy in particular retain an incredible knowledge of music and metal knowledge. Joe is certainly inspired also by the old blues guys who inspired all of those great late 60’s early 70’s UK legends. But it wasn’t long before Black Sabbath took hold of us like so many others. They continue to inspire us today along with obvious inclusions like Sleep, Electric Wizard, Conan, etc….
Were you playing instruments before you discovered heavy music… or did the metal inspire you to pick up the guitars/drums/etc. How did you get into playing?
Joe is actually a hillbilly from West Virginia and was taught Folk and Bluegrass very young, but a Sears and Roebuck electric guitar intended as a gift to his mother changed all of that.
Ray’s older brother was a guitar player so he decided to start playing the drums and emulate Peter Criss.
Jerimy played trumpet and clarinet in school, but was inspired to pick up the guitar and eventually the bass by hanging out with one of his uncles who would constantly be playing ZZ Top, Hendrix, Sabbath and Deep Purple.
What can you tell us about your hometown scene. Are there bands we may not of have heard of that we should be checking out?
Atlanta has a strong local metal scene although some of the bigger bands tend to slip by Atlanta for some reason. There is certainly plenty of local talent to keep the venues occupied under normal circumstances. There are way too many to mention without leaving out some great bands but sticking to the Atlanta, Stoner/Doom category we’d mention Order of the Owl (local legend, and great guys who helped get us on the map), Stoneman-ATL and Hot Ram.
Getting back to DayGlo Mourning and thinking about the future – what is your ambition as a band? What would you like your legacy to be?
Initially all we wanted to do was make some of this music we love and to be able to play shows at our favorite venues. Three years later we’re releasing our second album and making our third appearance on a BDR production…who would’ve thought? In the end we would just hope to be remembered as a good bunch of guys who were part of the music scene they loved.
Do you have any imminent plans you can tell us about?
After the holidays we’re going to be releasing another single off the album in January. We may do another video of some kind to go with it and potentially a live stream early next year. The album “Dead Star” is scheduled to drop and start shipping on 12 Feb.
That sounds great! Looking forward to it. Finally, for fun, if you had to send our readers away to listen to the three heaviest riffs ever put down on tape, what would they be and where could we find them?
Joe – Dying Giant by Conan on Horseback Battle Hammer.
Ray – Planets Collide by Crowbar on Odd Fellows Rest.
Jerimy – Cornucopia by Black Sabbath on Vol. 4.
Oooof! That’s some heavyweights right there! Cheers, guys – Thanks for taking the time to speak to us. Best of luck with the new album… Stay heavy!
Readers can pre-order / buy Dead Star – HERE