Fresh from playing a blinder at Download, and riding high on a Best International Newcomer award at the Kerrang! Awards later this month, we at OneMetal were fortunate enough to be able to fire some questions across Dommin front man Kris’ bows.
OneMetal: Firstly, we at OneMetal would like to offer our congratulations for your nomination for Best International Newcomer in the Kerrang Awards. So what would it mean to you to win, and get your name alongside previous winners like Trivium, Linkin Park and The Gaslight Anthem?
Kris:Thank you! It’s certainly something to stop and be grateful for and to put into perspective how far we’ve come and how far we can go. It would mean more humble gratitude towards our fans who are out there rooting for us and spending the time out of their day to tell the world what Dommin means to them.
OneMetal: This is your chance to pitch for votes… why should our readers vote for you?
Kris:People should vote for us if they think that Dommin is a band that the world needs to hear. There is a certain recognition even with being nominated. There is a greater recognition if you win. So if people think Dommin’s music is worthy of notice, cast your vote! I can’t sit here and promise a better world of jellybeans and rainbows, people are sick and tired of that political malarchy and I want no part of it. If you’re tired of bullshit, vote Dommin.
OneMetal: The UK is lapping up Dommin, and your Download set has been seen as a real high point, how was it for you?
Kris:It was great just to be there and have experienced it. We enjoyed it as fans as well as performers.
OneMetal: You have been described as everything from Sisters Of Mercy crossed with Danzig to theatrical Goth, and compared to many (you must be getting sick of the HIM comparisons)… How would you describe yourselves to the uninitiated?
Kris:We are a band that plays rock with a dark edge. We play honestly and passionately in a way that will send chills down your spine and to the core of your bones. If you like music that moves you, you’ll like Dommin.
OneMetal: Considering there has been an outbreak of “that’s not metal” on a number of music forums, how do you see yourselves fitting into the “metal” category, or dont you fit in? … do you care?
Kris:I don’t. I’ve never wanted to nor tried to fit in. I’m trying to take my influences and do something new with that. It’s all rock ‘n’ roll to me. But people can call it whatever they want. It’s only a name. I enjoy having creative freedom. I refuse to be imprisoned in a genre distinction.
OneMetal: What are your feelings on the divisions within the alternative music scene?
Kris:Good music is good music no matter what want to call it. People shouldn’t give any weight to the names of things. If they like it, they like it. If they don’t, they don’t. Why bother with titles? It certainly seems ridiculous to like or dislike something based on a particular division in music.
OneMetal: Do you feel that with the likes of American Idol/X Factor and reality TV music shows, we are being spoon fed mediocrity, and sold a sob story? Do you watch those shows… is producing the likes of Daughtry, David Cook, and Adam Lambert a good thing?
Kris:I only watch the early auditions of American Idol because I guess I like to watch a good tragic crash as much as the next person. I like to laugh. People need to realize that those shows aren’t about who wins and who loses, the purpose of the show is the show itself. The show is making millions in advertising because they have the eyes and ears of millions of people watching. And they figure, hey, whoever gets the most votes will already have millions of people who know they exist and will buy the album. It’s a way to take the guesswork out of a record company’s job. People need to realize, the consumer holds the power. They hold power in their eyes, their ears and their wallets. I don’t spend my time getting angry about being “spoon fed.” Don’t pay attention if you don’t like it. If you don’t pay attention, it won’t exist. But why get angry at the 8 year old girl who wants to have a crush on someone who can sing. Let her have her crush, and let the rest of us search out good music.
OneMetal: With the emergence of the webzine and public journalism, do you take to heart all that is said and written about Dommin?
Kris:No, I don’t. Is the opinion of the person who started a webzine any more valid than the person who is a merely a music lover? Certainly not! I would care much more about what the person thinks that loves music than the person who is jaded and feels like they have something to say about music. One’s viewpoint is going to be much more pure. There will always be people who love you and hate you. Some people will judge you by the way you look before they even hear anything. Most people’s opinions are influenced the music universe they’ve been exposed to. I’ve had people with completely opposite viewpoints on Dommin. Neither person’s viewpoint is more valid than the other’s necessarily. So, people will talk. Either way, I don’t take any of it to heart. I’ve always made music for myself, not any one else. I’m just grateful that other people like it enough to allow me to continue doing it. If you let opinions sway you, you’ll lose yourself. I know exactly who I am.
OneMetal: Your music is exceptionally emotional with an almost theatrical tinge, how much of yourself/yourselves comes through in it?
Kris:The music is very autobiographical. I don’t know any other way to write than to tap into my most personal experiences. It makes it very easy to be honest and passionate. It’s probably pretty easy to get to know the person I am by listening to what I sing about and the way in which it is expressed.
OneMetal: You have had ten years of writing before your major label debut came out, were you truly happy with the album “Love Is Gone”, and if you could do anything differently now… would you?
Kris:Yes, I was very happy with Love Is Gone. We picked songs that would give the world the best first impression of Dommin and picked a good place to begin the story. The only thing I think we need to work harder at is capturing our live performance. We frequently still get told that people like us better live. We’re going to work very hard on capturing that on the next record.
OneMetal: A number of tracks from your independently released album “Mend Your Misery” also appear on “Love Is Gone”, will any of the others that didn’t appear surface on any future albums?
Kris:Yes, all those songs are my babies and tell an important part of the story. I would hate for those songs to live an obscure life on a very limited number of CDs. I want them to all reach their full potential. I plan on releasing them all.
OneMetal: I must ask you about the choice of ‘I Just Died In Your Arms Tonight’, what made you choose to cover that? Are there any plans for any other covers that may raise eyebrows?
Kris:It was originally the idea of my producer and friend Lucas Banker. It’s quite funny. Almost every 80′s song he hears, he thinks we should do a cover of it. But this one in particular matched the vibe and the content of this debut album. We love doing covers and putting our own spin on songs. I think you’ll hear a lot more coming out of us, but I’ll leave it a surprise.
OneMetal: All fans see is the onstage and on record persona, what would we see if we spent one of your days off with you?
Kris:I don’t really ever have a day off. They’d probably see me recording demos at home for future albums.
OneMetal: Your touring schedule is pretty manic, how do you kick back and relax?
Kris:Relax? What’s that? It may sound odd to hear me say, but I actually get a certain amount of relaxation from exercising. I’m a very habitual person and when I can continue my habits on the road, I feel a certain peace of mind. So when I can do my normal daily routines that I would do at home out on the road, I feel very relaxed.
OneMetal: Where do Dommin go from here, and what are your plans for the next year?
Kris:We are supporting Volbeat on a short tour in the US and following that we’ll be likely doing our own headlining tour of the US to close out the year. I know in early 2011, there are plans for us to play some festivals in Australia but that’s about as far ahead as I can see at the moment.
OneMetal: Any last words for our readers, anything that may surprise them about you?
Kris:Don’t limit yourself because of names and titles. Go out there and give things a chance. Seek out and live life to its fullest. You’d be surprised where you find inspiration.
OneMetal: We would like to wish you the best of luck for the Kerrang awards, and thank you for taking the time to answer our questions, and we hope to catch up with you soon.
Kris:Thank you! We’ll be keeping our fingers, arms, legs and eyes crossed.
You can check out Dommin at their MySpace here