Their Indie Rock music has been described as stunning, superby conceived and wonderfully crafted. From Austrailia, Damn The Maps exploded on to the international scene in 2008 with their debut album “Input Output”.
There are three band members in Damn The Maps; Martin Green (singer and bass player), Nick Riley (guitarist) and Mark Coats (drummer). Martin started the project in New Zealand under the name Nervous Wreck. They went through several line-up changes as people left to pursue other careers and then Martin moved to Australia with his drummer. That lasted about a year and then Martin met Nick and Mark via an Australian Musician’s website called Melband. Says Martin, “We all hit it off immediately and were playing shows and recording very quickly. That was about 5 years ago now and we’ve been together ever since. Nick and Mark are two of the most genuinely talented people I can think of. The three of us get on like a house on fire”.[youtube Bv-9u11FVIg nolink]
Who were your musical influences?
When we met, Nick leaned towards the british bands like Radiohead, Elbow, Muse and Beatles. Mark was more towards metal acts like Deftones, Korn, Pantera and I was somewhere in the middle with Zeppelin, Chili Peppers, Pumpkins. However we all had several bands in common. We all liked Muse, Pumpkins, Chilis and over the last five years we’ve spent so much time in tour vans playing each other’s music that we’ve all managed to find this kind of massive middle ground between all of our tastes which helps a lot when you’re trying to explain something musical that you may want in a song. It’s nice to be able to say “you know how Abe Cunningham does that flam at the start of blah blah”.
Where did the name Damn the Maps come from?
It came from a movie and I’m not telling you which one. Basically the guy is searching for something, gets into a huge argument with his team who are trying to convince him to quit trying as the maps suggest that what he is looking for can’t possibly be in that area. His reply is “Damn the maps! We’re close and I will find it.” That represents the way we feel about our direction. We want to go our own way.
Who writes the lyrics and the music for the band?
I do. (Martin) Usually I take a demo to the band of the general idea of the song and they help tidy it up and make it sound like a Damn The Maps song.
What do you want your listeners to get from your music?
Most of Damn The Maps music points out the hilarity of the modern age. It’s about a general awakening that is happening as society slowly realizes that it has had the wool pulled over its eyes now for decades. It outlines how quickly technology is being put into place which is leaving us no choice but to head in one pre-determined direction and Damn The Maps is there to scream at you “wake up and look around. Its all happening right in front of your eyes!!” We write about Botox, being stuck in office cubicles, the over use of security cameras and monitoring, social networking, the endless cycle of travelling to and fro via overcrowded public transport networks, over reliance and dependence on money, excessive repetition on mainstream radio, the abundance of television and computer screens and how much time we spend fixated on them at home, in bars, hairdressers, trains, billboards etc and also about love, as one day mankind will finally realize that we are all connected in many more ways that we think we are and that by hurting and exploiting each other, we are damaging ourselves.
Damn The Maps will begin recording their second album towards the end of 2010. They currently tour mainly in Australia and New Zealand. They hope to head to the Northern hemisphere after their new cd is released.
By: Diana Olson – firstname.lastname@example.org