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An Interview with

Dion Lunadon


at Rockeklubben I Porsgrunn, Norway.


Having released his second solo LP, the wonderfully noisy and adventurous “Beyond Everything” (June 2022), the charismatic Dion Lunadon started a relentless tour in the US and then in Europe. And, finally, our turn has come, Athens is ready to welcome the New Zealander musician, D4 guitarist and vocalist, ex A Place To Bury Strangers bassist. Tonight (16/2) at Death Disco (tickets on viva.gr). 

A few days earlier, Dion talked to The Basement and here’s the cool chat we had.

See you all tonight at Death Disco - an unmissable gig…


Beyond Everything (released June 10 via In The Red Records)
 

 

The Basement: Hi Dion! In a few days we are about to welcome you in Athens, Greece, but in the meantime, you are unstoppably touring Europe… How’s it going so far?

Tour is going great! Each tour is getting better. Nice to be back on the road. 
 

The Basement: It won’t be the first time you are visiting Greece I guess, you’ve been here before with A Place To Bury Strangers, isn’’t it? What are your memories with the gigs and your time in general in our country?

I think the first visit to Greece was very memorable. Probably one of the most memorable APTBS shows. We really fucked shot up that night. Promoters and people were so nice and we always got excited about going to Greece after that. 

 
The Basement: You’d been in the line-up of APTBS for a whole decade… How would you evaluate the whole experience. Could you share with us some striking and big moments of yours and of the band during this decade? 

When I joined the band in 2010 is was the right time for me to be a part of something where I didn’t have to drive the bus. I was very grateful for that. There were a lot of ups and downs for sure. Having Lia in the band took the band to a very special place. 3 individual entities that came together to create some powerful moments that were beyond the 3 of us. 
 

The Basement: Was it an easy decision to leave the band? What were the reasons behind your departure?

Maybe not an easy decision but clearly the right one. I left because I no longer wanted to be involved in a project where the members were taken for granted and treated so poorly. It was a clear sign that the time was right for me to drive my own bus again. 


The Basement: Focusing on your sophomore solo album, “Beyond Everything”, we defintely have to congratulate you! Such a cool album! What’s the story behind its creation?

Thank you! These songs were written between 2017 and 2020. I wrote a lot of music in this period and chose my favorites that worked best together as an album. Henry Rollins helped me find a label and it was released by one of my favorite labels, In The Red Records.  


The Basement: Where was the album recorded? Could you share with us some info about the recording process?

Most of it was recorded in my home studio just like the self-titled album. I recorded drums at a studio. I write and record the music all at the same time. No demos or anything like that. I pretty much just press record and go just refining parts as I go. I try to do it quickly to keep it organic in the hope of stumbling across some magic that I couldn’t plan. 


The Basement: One of our favourite tracks is the outstanding “Elastic Diagnostic”. What’s the story of its making and inspiration?

That’s a good example of coming up with something quickly. The only pre conceived idea for that song was I wanted a “hum” that sounded like life coursing through your veins which you can hear the guitars do. The bass was really feel driven and not overworked. 


The Basement: Are you working on new songs or is it too soon for new music?

I’m always working on new music when I’m not touring. I treat it like a job. I get up and get to work. The next album is finished and will be out this year. 


The Basement: What are the differences between working within a band and making music solo? What works best for you?

I like both ways. It’s good to do both as both ways expand creativity in different ways. When you find the right partner its great bouncing ideas back and forth and creating some sort of synergy. I feel like doing it solo is more of a self-discovery thing. If you are stuck you need to dig deep and find a way through. Coming up with the different parts one by one and not simultaneously like you would with a group of people can be time consuming. 


The Basement: Your home country is New Zealand - what about pop/rock music scene in your country? We mainly know -and deeply admire- Unknown Mortal Orchestra…
 
Yes, they are a great band. I’ve known Ruban for a very long song. Since back when he formed his first band The Mint Chicks. It’s been a long time since I’ve lived there so I’m not too in touch with what’s going on. It’s small and isolated in NZ. I wanted to be in the thick of it which is why I moved to NY. There’s no way I could do what I do from NZ. 


The Basement: When did you start playing music at first and when did you realize that this was what you wanted to in your life?

I started to play piano when I was about 7. Then I took up guitar around 12. I formed my first band at 15 and that was that. I knew what I wanted to do. From that moment I’ve sacrificed everything to achieve that goal. Never have I had a back up plan. 


The Basement: Which artists and bands would you consider as your main influences?

Blues, 50’s and 60’s rock n roll, proto-punk, late 70’s punk, rhythm and blues, soul music and anything weirdo. Real, non-capitalist music. 


The Basement: What shoud we expect at Death Disco on Thursday?

Expect little, get more.
 
The Basement: Dion, thank you so much! Looking forward for your coming!!!

Can’t wait to play and see you then!!



 

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