Deadly Avenger: Cinematic scene tripping with the demon of the decks
It was in the latter half of last year that I was first introduced to the master of cinematic climaxes and party-thumping DJ delight, known to most as Deadly Avenger. He’s a man capable of bringing a heart-felt tear to your eye during the week when you listen to his studio work, while on the weekend he’ll tear you a new set of ear holes as he rips it up like a demon on the decks.
The June will see Mr Damon Baxter making his highly anticipated live return to our humble Aussie shores. ITM’s Semone Maksimovic managed to catch up with the dance floor force himself, in the lead-up to his June arrival. As he busily chips away at the final details of his forthcoming sophomore effort ‘Blossoms and Blood’, qhich is set to cement Baxter’s position as one of the most truly unique artists on the scene today. Exploring the heart-fluttering highs, powerfully gloomy lows, and all of the sounds that weave between the two emotional opposites.
As my phone connects with Baxter’s at the end of a long and cold day, I find him welcoming a new morning. As he watches the local sheep from his back window, as they wander into his paddock to graze, the sun has just finished coming up, bringing with it a delightfully warm UK summer temperature. “The sheep don’t belong to me.” he quickly explains, “they just find their way into my yard every morning. And no, I don’t get up to any funny business with them,” he adds cheekily.
His immediately adaptable and humorous nature is something evident early in conversation, it’s part of Baxter’s charm and he knows it. In the space of five minutes he can lift the spirits of an otherwise bland week, with his ability to talk about anything and everything from music (of course) through to films, TV shows (his other passion besides music) and his growing appreciation for Chuck Norris’ work. He’ll happily enlighten you on the best fighting scenes and pure gore thrillers around at the moment, without too much persuasion.
Since he last touched base on our humble shores, he’s been busy mixing it about and turning it out, working on scores for King Arthur, Fox, Sky and CSI. As well as working hard on his forthcoming studio album, which after 18 long months in the studio is almost finished. “It’s sounding really good so far, I have another studio session booked in London before I leave for Australia,” he explains, “then I’ll complete the final session on my return.”
He’s been busily filling in his weeks working away on it from his large home studio and heading into London to complete work with session musicians for the score. “I have to record the strings and guitar parts with musicians in London,” he explains. “At the moment the strings are sounding strong, I’m working with them half real and half synthesised,” a technique that Baxter has been busily perfecting on his days between shows, with breath-taking and melancholic results.
A headspace not even touched upon, Baxter puts on his DJing hat each weekend and keeps the floor jumping and the party pumping for club revellers around the globe. “It’s like a completely separate headspace. Once I hit the decks, it’s just party time and I like to feel like I’m out on the dance floor with everyone else, making sure that they have as much fun as I am,” he reasons. His recorded work is more for the consumption of after-club hours, as his heart and soul pour through the speakers. “It’s always good to come home and get back into that calmer headspace again during the week, especially after a big weekend, consisting of very little sleep.”
Another one of Baxter’s favourite pass-times to help unwind from a nasty weekend on the decks, is to stock up on viewing pleasure at the movies and local video shop. It’s little wonder he finds himself preoccupied with one film or another throughout his writing week. At this moment a Russian film by the name of ‘Nightwatch’ has his full-attention, with it’s mystic surroundings and darker themes. “It’s focussed mainly on demons, witches and angels and that never ending battle between good and evil. There’s an amazing scene on the bridge as they’re attempting to make a truce and one of the demons pulls out his own spine. It’s good, the way an older style horror themed film would get into your head, without so much focus on the blondes and breasts.”
As he heads back down under, he’ll have his finest mixing assets on show. He’s preparing for an upcoming mix album, which he’s set to complete upon his return. Then he’s looking forward to getting away on a much needed ‘lad’s holiday’ his friends have been planning for. “I have no idea what exactly they have planned, all I know is it’s males only and we’ll be going back to the wilderness, so anything could happen really, it could be troublesome,” he smirks.
Expect Deadly Avenger back at his hard-partying best, lighting up the room at the following venues in June:
Sun Jun 4 – Ministry of Sound, Perth
Fri Jun 9 – Fractured, Melbourne
Sat Jun 10 – Empire, Brisbane
Sun Jun 11 – We Love Sounds, Sydney