"a nod to old new wave ‘n early 60s/ 70s underground dished up millennium style"
JP's Music Blog
"Reckless, Garage Rock..."
"Raw'n'rough rock'n'roll racket!"
"A totally kick-ass blast."¯
Nanobot Rock Reviews
"A pulsating Call to Arms to be true to yourself regardless of what everybody else thinks"
Rock Wired Magazine
"gritty pop rock gem"
"raw rock sound that incorporates psychedelic, blues and soulful elements"
"a balls-to-the-wall rock n roll band"¯
"Rife with Punk and Rock leanings"
"Stripped down and bare bones, The Diemakers allow the music to do the talking"¯
"Blues/Rock . . . with an edgy fringe"
"I like it."
"From start to finish Detroit Recordings by The Diemakers is an impressive musical teaser. It delvers rock solid songwriting that hits hard and delivers consistent musical experiences, each one possessing a unique personality, flair, and signature groove. The melodies and harmonies are well crafted, and the lyrical content is packed to the hilt with good old fashioned no holds barred Psychedelic-Indie-Rock fashion. The Diemakers should be a big hit this Summer"
Hot Indie News
"This band really captured the 'live' feel and weren't overproduced. . . . These songs blew me away!"
"This is good stuff"
"These guys do a great job of creating rough around the edges, no frill rock that has leanings towards both older and newer music. . . . if you like your rock raw and full of energy, this is definitely for you."
"The Diemakers bring a unique brand of gritty, soulful, energetic rock n' roll"
Dangerdog Music Reviews
"If you like your rock cast 40 years in the past, analog, raw, and unfettered by modern convention, The Diemakers's Detroit Recordings is for you."
"a nod to the underground 60s rock steady beat"
"low distortions that totally hit that acid groove"
Windy City Rock
"There's just something about this type of music that begs to be seen and heard in person"
"Cool heavy pop/rock with smart melodies and dark undercurrents."
"Turn this one up loud and feel your mind expand. Top pick."
New York Waste
"Power trio THE DIEMAKERS bring it on with Detroit Recordings – a nod to old new wave ‘n early 60s/ 70s underground dished up millennium style – simple chords served up with raw guitar jammin’ the top with no overcrowding the space continuum. If this is a taste of what’s to come, I’ll be looking forwards to hearing the development of these experimental times…"
- Starr Tucker, New York Waste
JP's Music Blog
Now The Diemakers come right out of the gate with the new wave punk of “Way” as the band gets their edge from the early days of punk like in the vocals of “Take It Away.” The tempo change in “All The Plans We Make” gives the song a chance to breathe as the band put their best efforts into this possible single. They return to the Ramones-style punk of “Things,” before closing with the reckless, garage rock of “Gotta Go.”
Crank it up loud baby, for this six song EP CD delivers a hot steaming heap of raw’n’rough rock’n’roll racket! Fiercely grinding hacksaw guitars spit and snarl out savage riffs while the brutal forward-ho drums steamroll over everything in their merciless path and the basslines provide a gutty undertow of pure spew. The vocals likewise shout and holler with appropriately unbridled aplomb. A totally kick-ass blast.
Nanobot Rock Reviews
There is apparently an unspoken rule in rock that if all else fails, or there is a bizarre gardening accident, or if someone explodes on stage, or if someone turns into a little green globule (maybe a stain – it’s debatable) then make your wife the drummer. Heck it seemed to work for Jack White.
But for Chicago based trio The Diemakers, the resulting sound is less “Hell Hole” and less noodley distorted, screeching rock guitar and more classic underground dirty, sweaty rock.
Dominic Harris, Jay Harnish and Sharon Harris incorporate a vintage beat-punk/rock style with Detroit Recordings that, at first, had me cringing at the sheer rawness and chaotic nature of their sound. But very soon I found myself jamming out to their style as if it were some dark, dank bar I stumbled into late at night looking for something hard to drink and finding more than I ever imagined.
The six track release reminds me of what an early George Thorogood would have sounded like if he were to lean retro punk as opposed to bluesy rock; it isn’t pretty, it isn’t clean and it is hardly consumable by mainstream – not enough bubblegum; not to mention the slurring blues presence (“Things” and “Gotta Go”). But through the attitude drenched lyrics, the driving basic but appropriate beats, strutting riffs and overall rebellious personality emerges a pulsating call to arms to be true to yourself regardless what everyone else thinks.
Oddly enough Detroit Recordings doesn’t feel like it should work nearly as well as it does. Superficially, there are quirks that stand a chance to rub you the wrong way. There are the ever-present beat change-ups, flirting with being very off, and there are the uncaring, almost half-hearted chorus’ (“All The Plans We Make”). And in the end, these are the things that elevate The Diemakers to the forefront of my mind when I consider really good modern punk rock influenced by The Beat Generation. Hell, Costello tends to be way off and still stands up to the test, I’m sure The Diemakers could too. Rebel against the flow of life and rebel against the norm and give Detroit Recordings a spin.
Rock Wired Magazine
At ROCKWIRED it 's looking like 2013 is the year of the power trio. Recently we have given it up for the bands HAZARD HEAD and WHITE SHAG. Now it's all about the band THE DIEMAKERS and just like the other bands that we had mentioned this threesome owes a little something to the motor city in more ways than one. Their latest release DETROIT RECORDINGS is a gritty pop rock gem produced by JIM DIAMOND of GHETTO RECORDERS and boasts a raw rock sound that incorporates psychedelic, blues and soulful elements. Despite all of these flourishes one should not forget that THE DIEMAKERS are quite simply a balls-to-the-wall rock n roll band in an age where they ain't making it like they used to.
Rife with Punk and Rock leanings, The Diemakers have released their new EP, Detroit Recordings with acclaimed engineer, Jim Diamond (White Stripes, The Sights). As of late the band has been in a state of flux with the addition of Sharon Harris, wife of founding member, Dominic Harris. Her presence brings a Punk vibe to the rhythm section and the whole of the songs, bolstering the Blues/Rock element with an edgy fringe.
Opening to "Way" the Blues-laden, Surf Rock electric stands out immediately, as do multiple time changes within the body of the melody. Staccato snare work and chug guitar usher the song in a Punk-tinged vein, spiked with intricate pick guitar fills. Slide electric opens "Gotta Go" before surrendering to the urgent, tin can vocal delivery. More chug guitar and staccato snare work play the fills on this one, while bent note slide work runs through the track. Weighing in at a mere 2:08, this track best illustrates the Punk leanings with its terse run time and urgent delivery. "Keep Running Around"¯ has a 60s Garage Rock feel with more effects-laden electric work resting just underneath the vocal delivery. "Nostalgic throwback"¯ and "Ed Sullivan-era British Invasion" is the feel on this one. "All The Plans We Make"¯ is the melodic retreat of the album. Jangle guitar leads the way on the track in what could easily have been a Pixies track. Definitely the farthest removed from the rest of the album but certainly has its place.
Stripped down and bare bones, The Diemakers allow the music to do the talking. The album isn't "cooked to death"¯ with postproduction work, lending a "what you see is what you get"¯ ethos to the album. Seems the lineup change has worked to their advantage. I like it and wondering what the full-length will sound like.
By Christopher West
The Diemakers are a Rock and Roll Band pure and simple. Emotive, Unpredictable, Heavy, Psychedelic, Bluesy, and Soulful. Combining classic influences and modern sounds into an original, gritty blend of Rock-N-Roll Freedom, Band members include: Dominic Harris- Vocals & Guitar | Jay Harnish- Bass & Vocals | Sharon Harris- Drums. Their latest release is called Detroit recordings and was released in 2013.
The EP kicks gets off the ground nicely with Way a rocking psychedelic intro piece that serves up classic Alternative Rock groove meshed against thought provoking lyrical content and effective vocals/harmonies from Harris and company. Track 2 “Keep Running” keeps things moving in the right direction with hard hitting intro against steady flowing rhythm, rocked-out guitar against a hooky chorus making for an impressive follow-up statement. Track 3 “Take it Away” is another impressive groove that dishes out driving rock rhythm, impressive hard hitting vocal feel and thought provoking lyrical content throughout that flows and ebbs its way through to motional fruition. The EP makes a great first impression dashing out 3 amazing songs in a row. The musicianship of everyone involved is raw and nitty gritty. I would classify this music as classic Indie Rock, Punk with brief touches of Alternative Rock to Psychedelic Rock of the 70’s. Music is reminiscent of The Clash, The Violent Femmes, and The White Stripes. Along the way you will notice besides the the 4 piece standard things like impressive rhythm guitar, bluesy riffs, impressive solo guitar, harmonies and a thick as a brick rhythm section. What I like the most about this band is how well they seem to groove together, testament to hundreds of hours of writing and rehearsal time no doubt. Now turning our attention over to Harris - as for his vocal abilities well he’s quite marketable. His voice goes down raw but manages to fill the space peacefully and unobtrusively with a timber that hits hard. I might add he takes some impressive vocal risks indicating to me a confident vocal ability. All songs are a bit trippy giving one rare access into the tormented soul of a quintessential artist. This song EP from The Diemakers delivers 6 solid tracks all providing musical enjoyment filled with strong musical variety and diversity. From heartfelt “All the Plans we Made” to rock steady “Things” this EP has something for just about everyone. The CD ends with Track 6 “Gotta Go” the perfect finale statement for a CD like this.
I typically deduct 1 star for EP releases. The full length release is a better format to judge an artist by. A few songs feel like shot and incomplete musical statements to me. I even detected a few minor timing errors on a few tracks.
From start to finish Detroit Recordings by The Diemakers is an impressive musical teaser. It delvers rock solid songwriting that hits hard and delivers consistent musical experiences, each one possessing a unique personality, flair, and signature groove. The melodies and harmonies are well crafted, and the lyrical content is packed to the hilt with good old fashioned no holds barred Psychedelic-Indie-Rock fashion. The Diemakers should be a big hit this Summer.
By Cyrus Rhodes
Hot Indie News
Chicago’s The Diemakers make Windy City music have a slight bite when it hits your ears in the six-track album, Detroit Recordings.
“Way” is full of hyper guitars and falls somewhere between The Strokes fused to Franz Ferdinand. At first the song feels disjointed and not fluid; it’s almost as if the song needs a full minute and half to get into its groove. The chorus is wildly repeated, but the raw energy feels primal!
“Gotta Go” struck me as rockabilly meets 60s (Woodstock!) rock. Think Ten Years After and Golden Earring. After “Way”, which felt like a shaky start, The Diemakers seem to have it down. You can almost hear the motorcycle revving it up on this track.
The guitar show continues with “Keep Running Around.” The guitar bridge goes from a da-da-ah (an almost gallop alongside the percussions and vocals) and this bright, harmonious keynote. Dominic Harris (vocals and guitar) has this voice that isn’t too gritty but sweaty enough to have to shake things out while listening.
At times during “Gotta Go” and “Take it Away” I felt a bit of a George Thorogood (a bit) but mostly felt like Harris’ vocals were unique and broad enough to fit into blues, punk or rock.
“Things” and “All the Plans We Make” round out the album. Minus “Way” (this song even after a few listens to me, just didn’t stand out like “Keep Running Around” or “Things”) these tracks were all very tight and extremely polished. This band really captured the ‘live’ feel and weren’t overproduced. While you don’t hear an audience, you can feel the energy through the speakers.
It’s nice to hear the break of the guitar neck, and the overlapping bass thump.
These songs blew me away!
By Melissa Kucirek
This EP from Chicago band The Diemakers fits well into the modern DIY movement of bands like the White Stripes. The thing is, it’s almost more like older music like the Yardbirds and MC-5, too. One might make out some Ramones, too. This is good stuff, if raw and a little pedestrian at times. Of course, it’s obvious that the pedestrian nature is by design. This trio seems to choose passion over technical skill. Yet, there are moments where the technical skill shines, too.
“Way” opens this set. It starts off like some old-school psychedelia merged with stoner metal. As it continues into the song proper, though, it feels a bit more like The Ramones. Then, mid-track it shifts towards hardcore punk. The thing just keeps changing. It’s an unusual blend of sounds and somehow manages to work. The timing shifts are almost progressive rock, but this is raw and edgy stuff, not prog by any means.
“Gotta Go” starts with a bit of blues slide guitar. Then it powers out into a raw rocker that’s definitely in line with The Ramones, but with some rockabilly in the mix. It’s another cool tune and gets more of that slide guitar in the mix for some variety.
“Keep Running Around” has the sort of early hard rock edge of bands like The Yardbirds. There’s plenty of MC-5 and some punk in the mix, too. It’s definitely another raw tune, but it really feels quite retro. They throw a stoner metal jam in for a short time before it bursts out into something rather like The Amboy Dukes. The thing about this band is, if you don’t like where the sound is, just wait. It’s bound to change. Still, the overall effect is of a late 1960s garage band.
Things definitely change on “All the Plans We Make.” The cut is a melodic ballad. It’s still on electric guitar, but clean guitar. That 1960s garage band element is still in place. The vocals at times remind me a bit of The Rolling Stones or The Kinks, but the overall concept here is psychedelic garage music. They energize it later into a faster paced jam that’s still melodic, but a bit more aggressive.
There is definitely more of a punk edge to “Take It Away.” The cut definitely has that Yardbirds and MC-5 vibe, too, though. All in all, it’s not a big change, but it’s an effective tune. There’s a killer hard edged psychedelic jam near the end of this that’s extended nicely.
A cool rock drone opens “Things.” That punky vibe is heard on the vocals. The cut works through some changes in another rough around the edges, but passionate arrangement. They throw some melodic music in the middle of the track. This really feels a bit thrown together at times, seeming like the most random kind of thing here. Still, the guitar solo is powerful and passionate.
Personally, I think this kind of music gets a little old, so it’s a good thing this is a short EP. These guys do a great job of creating rough around the edges, no frill rock that has leanings towards both older and newer music. This isn’t exactly for everyone. The timing changes and other shifts, might throw some listeners off. Still, if you like your rock raw and full of energy, this is definitely for you.
Our latest set of XXQs comes to us from a band that puts on the kind of live performance PEV can certainly get behind – Chicago’s own (by way of Detroit) The Diemakers (Dominic and Sharon Harris, Jay Harnish) says “We won’t just be playing exact arrangements of our recordings at our shows —the songs live and breathe on stage. Dom’s gonna wail on guitar, Jay is going to hit you with a gigantic wall of fuzz bass groove, and Sharon will get you moving with her punk rock, cool drum beats.” These Diemakers first brought us their unique brand of gritty, soulful, energetic rock n’ roll on their debut collection, Assault All Your Senses…but we’re here to talk about their latest record, Detroit Recordings.
They told us “We basically recorded live with all three of us in the same room facing each other laying down complete takes to 2-inch tape—the old-fashioned method of making analog recordings…We feel the album does an excellent job of representing our influences, yet retains that original gritty sound that is The Diemakers. You can expect to hear Garage Rock bite, sixties psychedelia, bluesy soaring guitar, and cool pounding rhythms. While the title of the EP reflects the fact that we recorded in Detroit, Detroit means more to us than just a location. Dominic was born and raised in Detroit and the sounds of the city are in his DNA…We hope the title brings some attention to one of the greatest Rock and Roll cities in the world.” The trio will be busy on the road supporting Detroit Recordings, so click to http://thediemakers.com to stay up to date on their tour schedule and sample some tunes. There’s still much to learn, so keep reading for all the answers to the XXQs below.
XXQs: The Diemakers
PensEyeView.com (PEV): How would you describe your sound?
The Diemakers (TD): Real Rock and Roll. Gritty, soulful, energetic music.
PEV: Calling Chicago your home, what kind of music were you all into growing up?
TD: We have some common influences; everyone in the band of course digs The Beatles and The Rolling Stones. Dominic has an encyclopedic knowledge of music and his favorites include Link Wray, Clapton, T-Rex, Television, Blues, Motown, and even jazz like Miles Davis and Ornette Coleman. Jay is a big fan of David Bowie and has been influenced by grunge bands, such as Nirvana and Alice in Chains, and one of his favorite bands right now is Secret Machines. Jay grew up to his Mom playing Motown and even disco, and his Dad was big on classic rock. Sharon is influenced by Band of Skulls, The Ramones, Joy Division, Garbage, Social Distortion, and enjoyed industrial music, such as NIN, back in the day.
PEV: What can fans expect from a live Diemakers show?
TD: A tight, energetic band playing real rock and roll. We won’t just be playing exact arrangements of our recordings—the songs live and breathe on stage. Dom’s gonna wail on guitar, Jay is going to hit you with a gigantic wall of fuzz bass groove, and Sharon will get you moving with her punk rock, cool drum beats.
PEV: How has playing in The Diemakers been different from working with other artists or projects in the past?
TD: Simply put, it is just more fun. The three of us have real chemistry that comes from all of us sharing the same passion for the songs and being friends. Dominic and Sharon will be celebrating their 10-year wedding anniversary this summer.
PEV: What is the underlining inspiration for your music? Where do get your best ideas for songs?
TD: The trials and tribulations of life. Inspiration can come from a good movie, book, or listening to my favorite artists. I get my best song ideas talking to and interacting with the people all around me.
PEV: What’s one thing we’d be surprised to hear about the members of The Diemakers?
TD: Many years ago, Dominic invited Jay, who played a little guitar at the time, to join a band he was in called Orson’s Well and taught Jay to play bass. A couple years ago while they were in search of a drummer, Sharon volunteered and Dominic taught her how to play drums.
PEV: Tell us about your latest release, Detroit Recordings. What can fans expect from this work? What is the story behind the title?
TD: Detroit Recordings was recorded like our first record at Ghetto Recorders in Detroit by Jim Diamond. We basically recorded live with all three of us in the same room facing each other laying down complete takes to 2-inch tape—the old-fashioned method of making analog recordings. The tracks were recorded live with only a couple overdubs for sweetening here and there. We feel the album does an excellent job of representing our influences, yet retains that original gritty sound that is The Diemakers. You can expect to hear Garage Rock bite, sixties psychedelia, bluesy soaring guitar, and cool pounding rhythms. While the title of the EP reflects the fact that we recorded in Detroit, Detroit means more to us than just a location. Dominic was born and raised in Detroit and the sounds of the city are in his DNA. The band loves Motown and for this album spent some time listening to Iggy and The Stooges, The Amboy Dukes, and The MC5. We hope the title brings some attention to one of the greatest Rock and Roll cities in the world.
PEV: What is the feeling you get after an album like this is complete and you can sit back and listen to it in full?
TD: Inspiration. We are proud of how the recording turned out, and are inspired to get working on the next album that will build on the foundation of Detroit Recordings. We feel that Detroit Recordings is an excellent progression from our first record, Assault All Your Senses.
PEV: How have all your friends and family reacted to your career? What’s it like when you get to play in your hometown?
TD: Our families are very supportive. Most of our friends are musicians or creative types, so they are rooting for us.
PEV: What can we find each of you doing in your spare time, aside from playing/writing music?
Sharon Harris: I spend my free time with our kids. Dominic and I have two kids, Keith and Holly. And Keith’s middle name is Richard, after a certain cool guitar player.
Dominic Harris: I am a big fan of watching NHL hockey and I help coach my son’s ice hockey team.
Jay Harnish: I enjoy road trips and like to watch and support my friends’ bands and other local artists. I also have driven across country just to watch the United State’s National Soccer team play.
PEV: Name one present and past artist or group that would be your dream collaboration. Why?
TD: Present – If we were dreaming out loud, it would have to be David Bowie and it would be cool if he brought along Earl Slick. Bowie’s new album (The Next Day) is fantastic, and the albums he produced for Iggy Pop are huge influences. David Bowie and The Diemakers would be crazy good.
For Past Artist – If we could go back in time and do anything we want, I think The Diemakers and John Lennon would be incredible. He was the pinnacle of real rock and roll.
PEV: So, what is next for The Diemakers?
TD: The Diemakers are going to play some live shows in Chicago and some other cities across the Midwest like Grand Rapids, MI and Detroit. We are writing new material and are planning on heading back to Ghetto Recorders soon to record a full-length album.
By Richie Frieman
Danger Dog Music Reviews
If you recall the mockumentary movie Spinal Tap, you may remember the scene were the band, in their early Brit rock days, played Gimme Some Money, complete with suits and mop top haircuts. If you remember the music of that song, you'll get some sense of what The Diemakers sound like, only grittier with more distortion.
The Detroit Recordings EP is their second effort, named so because the Chicago based power trio recorded the music at Detroit's Ghetto Recorders. They also recorded in strict analog fashion, which adds to it's roots rock charm. With the aforementioned allusion to Tap, we've probably hit the necessary high points of this disc. Roots rock, classic rock, even more so early Brit rock is style. Keep Running and Take It Away reach that Spinal Tap song. Overall, their sound is raw, unadulterated, and unpolished. Intentionally so, I suspect. It's also hard to listen to at times, especially with the ghastly background vocals as on All the Plans We Make or Way. Alternatively, distortion and all, guitarist Dominic Harris gets devilishly nasty on Keep Running, Take It Away and Gotta Go, with slide guitar. Essentially, if you like your rock cast 40 years in the past, analog, raw, and unfettered by modern convention, The Diemakers's Detroit Recordings is for you. Listen at their website.
By Craig Hartranft
"If The Diemakers were hoping to attract some attention with the CD title Assault All Your Senses, they succeeded, though even more alluring than the moniker is the music contained therein. Crossing classic rockers like Cream and The Who with bluesy indie favorites Kings Of Leon and Spoon results in a compellingly gritty collection, wrapped around the whipsmart production of Jim Diamond (The White Stripes, The Sights)."
- Andy Argyrakis, Illinois Entertainer, Around Hear Column (Aug 2011)
New York Waste
"THE DIEMAKERS – bring us Assault All Your Senses - a nod to the underground 60s rock steady beat. “Please Don’t Go” reaches low distortions that totally hit that acid groove. I’m gonna keep my eye on these rockers, I feel promise of things to come!"
- Starr Tucker, New York Waste
Windy City Rock
"[The Diemaker’s album, Assault All Your Senses,] is a very good debut from a band that I'm sure will sound even better live. There's just something about this type of music that begs to be seen and heard in person, and it is also very fitting that the band decided to release it on vinyl (which I highly recommend picking up if you can). Every song is worth a listen, and the Diemakers are certainly worth keeping an eye on whenever they play around town.”
- Christian Chiakulas, Windy City Rock (Jun 07, 2011)
"Cool heavy pop/rock with smart melodies and dark undercurrents. The guys in The Diemakers write and record loud pop that reminds us in many ways of babysue favorite Black Rebel Motorcycle Club. The songs on Assault All Your Senses are, for the most part, direct and instantly catchy...but there's a lot more power going on here than what you normally hear from modern pop/rock bands. The press release that accompanied this disc compared the band's music to Cream, The Who, Lou Reed, The Black Keys, and Kings of Leon...all of which hold true to some degree. Instead of playing noisy art trash, these guys keep their music accessible...opting for a more classic sound and feel. This short disc contains ten songs...and they all hit the target. Kickass hard pop cuts with plenty of attitude include "Get It (Love)," "Wildflowers," "Please Don't Go," and "Remember Exit 68." Turn this one up loud and feel your mind expand. Top pick."