new wave quartet dameht kick off residency at the pyramid club #soundcheck

August 1, 2014

New Wave quartet Dameht begin their residency at the Pyramid Club tonight (August 1st). The band gained attention for their collaboration with legendary counterculture provocateur and now NYC ex-pat Clayton Patterson. $16 Burger was a celebration of the changing of the guard in New York. Patterson’s NYC is long gone. Dameht, while indebted to ’80s post-punk swagger and aesthetics, is a face of the new.

By Nathan Leigh, AFROPUNK Contributor  

Their single “The Greek” b/w “I Love You Too” highlights the conflict between pop song craft and punk rawness at their core. “The Greek” is a straight up New Wave pop gem. A giant anthemic hook sitting on top of an undeniable minimalist dance beat. But just beneath the surface of glitz and ’80s retro synth flourishes are hints of danger. 

Those jagged edges take center stage on “I Love You Too,” which takes a page out of The Damned’s early playbook with an inexplicably off-putting love song. Frontman Rivington Starchild whispers come ons over a tom beat before the song explodes. Chants of “hey” checker the background while Starchild busts out a story of obsession-at-first sight. Though there’s nothing to suggest anything darker than simply falling in love way too fast going on in the lyrics, the nervous anxiety of the interplay between the trumpet and guitar and the aggressive shouts of “I love you too” give the song a strangely compelling menace. It’s a trick that The Damned and The Buzzcocks perfected back when the Lower East Side was full of Clayton Pattersons. Patterson may have fled to The Alps, but thankfully Dameht are still here to show that beneath the luxury condos and boutiques the ghost of the old LES is still making noise.

DAMEHT RESIDENCY Friday Nights in The East Village @ The Pyramid Club 101 Avenue A, New York, NY 10009 Doors at 7pm | Show at 9pm | 21+ August 1st, 8th, and 15th