Video Premiere: Alex Dezen (Damnwells) – “Elephant”

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Multifaceted artist tucks into a fresh solo recording, due next month, with sparkling results. Meanwhile, that’s one helluva outfit the dude is sportin’ in the video!

By Blurt Staff

Do you dig Brooklyn’s Damnwells? Damn right, ya do! So you no doubt will dig our latest exclusive video premiere: it’s from the band’s frontman and main songwriter Alex Dezen, who on Feb. 12 will release his first solo album, titled appropriately enough Alex Dezen. Check out the video for the very cool track “Elephant”:

Commenting on the song, Dezen notes, “’Elephant’ was the first song I wrote for my solo record. The idea came to me during New Year’s with my girlfriend in Ohio. I saw an elephant on Facebook playing around in the ocean, as the opening lyrics will attest, and let the stream of consciousness go from there. Each verse starts with a seemingly innocuous event (looking at Facebook, taking a plane from Cleveland to LA, playing a show in the basement of an old church) and drives that narrative to some kind of personal truth or realization. It was the first experiment that informed the rest of the writing for this record.

“The concept for the video, also shot and edited by me and my girlfriend, Amber Bollinger, came from us brainstorming about silly video ideas. The first two videos we made were kind of serious, and I wanted to make something a little more playful. And my neighbor down the hall just happened to have an elephant costume, so it seemed like providence. We were both super happy about how it turned out. It’s incredible what you can DIY these days. There’s almost no excuse for an artist to not have any content beyond the album. Sure, it’s a major pain in the ass to have to have to record your own albums, make a video for every song, and maintain and update your multitude of social media and all that, but I think it’s worth it. Not only is it exciting and engaging for the fans, but also informing and exciting for me as an artist to move through different realms of creation.”

On the album, longtime fans of Dezen’s band will no doubt find some commonalities—the group got back together in March 2015 following a seven-year split, issuing an eponymous album, their fifth—but there’s also plenty of moments where other sensibilities come to the surface. In fact, over the years he’s written for other artists and even found himself working with the likes of Dave Grohl, The Dixie Chicks, Justin Bieber and Kelly Clarkson. In 2014 he released four solo Eps, and more recently he collaborated with the American dance company Pilobolus Dance Theater, composing the music for the dance piece “Wednesday Morning, 11:45 (2015),” which was performed at the Skirball Center for the Performing Arts in New York City.

Of Alex Dezen, the musician says, “The recording for this whole record was very fast and easy, mostly because I played and produced and engineered the whole thing and didn’t have to deal with anyone else (other than my girlfriend and a few friends, whose opinions were invaluable). It was recorded in the corner of my small apartment in LA, a tiny place in the world I have designated Sally Studios.”

Go to Dezen’s official website, www.alexdezen.com, for more info and for upcoming tour dates.

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