Hello Danny Blu and thanks for joining us on Brutal Resonance! Let’s start with a warm-up question. What are three of your favorite albums of all time and why?
Danny Blu: Thank you for having me on BR! I was a scene kid back in the day and my friends and I called literally everything brutal... well, actually: Br00tal. Three of my favorites are: Orgy's "Candyass", Lady Gaga's "Born This Way", and Rob Zombie's "Hellbilly Deluxe". I listened to these three albums during three very important and formative periods of my life and they helped to shape my love of the strange, alternative, and dark.
Your music has been described as either dark-pop or industrial-pop, both of which have mixed reception within the dark electronic scene. Has it been tough getting your music heard?
Danny Blu: It absolutely used to be. I started putting out music back in 2011 and I described it using those same terms back then as well. But it feels like the electronic, industrial and dark pop worlds have really expanded and begun overlapping. Sort of a perk of the streaming world and playlist culture. The edges are blurring and listeners are discovering new artists at a rapid pace. It’s become less about labeling my work with a specific genre and more about just focusing on the inspirations for a particular body of work. Whatever people call it, they call it.
You are the frontman of Echo Black. What made you want to create your own solo project?
Danny Blu: Echo Black was born out of the early Danny Blu project. I released two albums under my name and after my then-hired-guns and I got back from our first tour, we decided to make it official and call it a band. We were all writing the music together and it felt wrong to keep it under my name. We launched Echo Black with the idea that I always had “Danny Blu” available as a solo side project if I ever wanted to use it. When the band writes, it’s a group effort and all four voices are meant to meld together to create our sound. Releasing music on my own allows me a different level of creative freedom. In both the audio and the visual. Danny Blu is definitely more aggressively queer than Echo Black.
And let’s talk about “The Pale Horse” for a moment. The cover art shows you standing in front with a demon-like shadow behind you. What was this meant to represent?
I’m so glad you asked about this because I didn’t get to talk about it nearly enough and I LOVE that photo! So, the entire album was released as an Armageddon concept. The cover art for the four singles we released, 'Bubble', 'Burn', 'White (K)night', and 'Sanctuary' represented the four horsemen of the apocalypse. The EP cover art, released next, was the Antichrist: the metaphorical ending of the world as we know it.
What was your main goal when releasing “The Pale Horse”? Did you want to get your name spread as far as possible or was it more of a personal project?
Danny Blu: To be honest: both. And I think that’s why I loved this first little solo era of mine. It was truly meant to be a one time EP thing, I hadn’t planned on doing more. And then people started to dig it. And it actually did wind up spreading the name around a bit. The music is honest and that was the only goal. And I’m happy that it resonates with listeners.
“The Pale Horse” is being expanded even further in 2021. You have a bunch of remixes coming out alongside the original songs. Previously mentioned Mr.Kitty and KANGA are on board as well as Black Nail Cabaret, Grendel, Ashbury Heights, and more. Was it tough gathering these remixes together?
Danny Blu: For this, I have to thank my manager Victor at Shvdow MGMT. This remix album was a large undertaking and I absolutely didn’t do it alone. The remixers we tapped are a mixed bag: some are artists I’m a fan of, others are artists I wanted to align myself with (sort of like digital touring) and some are both. The goal here was to really push the limits of the songs and match them with the remixer suited best for them. There are a few that I listen to more than their corresponding original at this point.
You decided to release these remixes as both an expanded edition of “The Pale Horse”, as well as on their own in “The Pale Horse, Pandemonium”. Why is that?
Danny Blu: I said earlier that this was just the first era of Danny Blu. I’m a dedicated and studied student of the pop world I have always intended for my work to evolve through different periods depending upon what inspirations were speaking louder. “The Pale Horse Era” began with the release of “Bubble” in 2019. And it is ending with the release of “Pandemonium.” I wanted to give people the chance to experience the entire body of work as a whole. But it also only seemed right to release Pandemonium on its own as it stands by itself as a solid collection of music.
Though we are just ending the third quarter of 2021, do you have anything else planned for the year that you can tell us about? Any new singles, EPs, remixes, or the like?
Danny Blu: Well, the beauty of the internet meant that we didn’t have to stop creating and releasing during the pandemic. I hope every artist out there found a way to express themselves through this absolute insanity even though those of us that are performers were largely unable to perform. I’ve been busy. And there’s actually a great deal planned for this year! I did a couple features on songs I am honored to be a part of, and I have been back in the studio working on the next body of work for a couple of months now. The team we are putting together for this next record is pretty extraordinary. I can’t wait to bring it to life.
Lastly, I would like to thank you for your time. You are free to use the space below to mention anything else. Cheers!
Danny Blu: Thank you for having me! "Listen to The Pale Horse: Pandemonium" and tag me in your stories and posts! Black Trans Lives Matter. Do What Thou Wilt.
This interview was commissioned through our Ko-fi page.
Apr 17 2021
I've been writing for Brutal Resonance since November of 2012 and now serve as the editor-in-chief. I love the dark electronic underground and usually have too much to listen to at once but I love it. I am also an editor at Aggressive Deprivation, a digital/physical magazine since March of 2016. I support the scene as much as I can from my humble laptop.
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