Introducing: Dohny Jep

Kent-based four-piece Dohny Jep are making waves with their unique video concepts and mesh of pop synth melodies and rock guitars. Made up of Stuart James Day, Pete Herbert, Wayne Ambrose, and Rowan Tremain, the guys have just released their debut album ‘L.U.S.T’, so here’s the lowdown on the intriguingly named Dohny Jep.

What are the origins of the band, how long have you been playing together?

Dohny Jep is a band born from Stuart and Pete who wanted to start a project which had elements of modern rock and pop, after writing together for a year, Rowan and Wayne were asked to join the project as their musical visions were very similar. As a 4 piece, we have been writing for around 6 months.

How did you feel performing your first gig? And how was it?!

It was exciting to be back in the live music environment! Being stuck in lockdown and with the way that the currently socially distant world is, it has been tough on so many as we want to be able to get in front of an audience and express ourselves with the music we have spent so long creating and perfecting! The gig was a success and we had the best time, it was so much fun!

What should people expect when they check the band out? How would you describe yourself?

We bring in all the cool elements of modern rock, pop, electronic and chilled music and mix it all together to create the sound that is Dohny Jep. Expect to find yourself tapping your foot, rocking out, and generally finding it difficult to not get involved in the vibes.

The new music scene is bursting at the seams with fresh talent, in what ways do you feel that a band has to stand out from the others trying to build a name?

We think that to stand out you definitely need to have songs that stay in people’s heads. If you can get the audience singing along with you without their participation then that’s a good start. Also, the quality of the song production can really set bands from those that have spent no time making a track sound the best it can be.

Debut album ‘L.U.S.T’ has just been released, what was the gestation period of the album like? How long had the tracks been brewing for?

We started writing together in February 2019 and were changing bits and pieces about the songs for almost a year before we were completely satisfied that we were on to something great. Our producer Rhys May also helps to write parts of our songs by adding extra layers when in pre-production and is invaluable to our journey.

Is there any particular explanation for the way that the album title is spelled, all caps, using abbreviations? I’m trying really hard to work out what it might mean! Or is it just to keep punters guessing?

The title L.U.S.T stands for “Love, Urge, Sex, Truth” but we always just refer to it as Lust. I guess the creative side in us wanted to make one word more interesting and go a bit deeper, but yeah those 4 things are something that pretty much everyone experiences in their lives at one point or another so it’s really relatable subject matter.

‘Normal Reality’ is edging towards our favourite track on the album, what can you tell us about this one?

Normal Reality was the first track when working with Rhys, that was really electronic and it got us so pumped about the direction that the band was taking! It’s about how you get stuck in a rut in life, wanting things to change but not having the strength to make those changes, in some cases ending up using medication to help take the edge off of the depressing reality that life can sometimes be! That’s why we repeat the 1st verse exactly so that it gives you that ‘Groundhog Day’ feeling. Haha!

There is a great deal of variety on the album, for instance, opening track ‘Time On Reflection’ has a hard edge to it, then the title-track comes in with lashings of thumping electronica, where does the variety within the band come from?

We are inspired by so many different artists and styles, and on top of that Rhys’ input helps to shape the sound even further. We love bands like Don Broco, Bring Me The Horizon, The 1975, Twenty One Pilots, and I think that is noticeable in our music, not to the extent that we aren’t original though thankfully!

What band out there at the minute do you feel that you would be best suited to open for?

Its a tough one but we would definitely love to open for Bring Me the Horizon as we are all fans of the band and have followed their music since their beginning.

Who do you feel is the next band to break out?

Sleep Token is a band that a lot of people haven’t heard of but are absolutely amazing. We highly recommend listening to them if you haven’t done so already.

You must be sick of people asking about the band name…but, I still have to ask, where did the name spring out from?!

Stuart had come up with the band name Years ago when he was still at University, he held on to the name until he found the band that best suited it, we were trialing different names as we started writing and Dohny Jep just clicked perfectly!

What are your first musical memories? And what was the lightbulb moment that made you go “I want to do that”?

Pete – Seeing Queen perform Live Aid on TV, I was born in May 1985 and it happened in July so obviously, I was too young to have watched it when it happened but I remember my parents watching it on TV a few years after and watching Queen’s performance was so exciting it planted a seed of wanting to chase the rockstar dream!

Rowan – I enjoyed listening and dancing along as a kid to Wham and Michael Jackson. Then when I was about 10, a drummer that had played for a bunch of well-known artists came into my school who gave a talk and played some tracks, it really cool! Soon after I had drum lessons and that really put me onto my musical path.

Wayne – I remember being on holiday as a kid in Devon singing along to Aerosmith with my family, and it was the first time I’d stopped to think the music I was singing along too, that’s where a love for music began for me. The band that actually made me want to play guitar was The Darkness when I was about 12 as they made it look so fun and exciting to play guitar.

Stuart – For me, I was about 11 years old and my school put on yearly rock concerts, so after going to that and seeing some of the older kids ‘Rocking out’ on stage with their friends, it was instantly something that I had to get involved with, so that week I pestered my parents for guitar lessons and the rest is sort of history.

The dual vocals within the band work really well, very rare to hear a band with two main vocalists that don’t go down the harsh/clean path, how does it work between Pete and Stuart when it comes to vocals?

We work closely together when writing vocals. Pete generally writes the majority of the lyrics, mainly from past experience as a lead vocalist in a previous project, but we both share the direction that the lyrics and vocals take because we have to both understand the meaning of the song and the direction that we want it to go. Most of the time we finish demo’s and keep going back to them to make sure that we can’t improve on them anymore and that they ooze with catchy vibes!

Bring Me The Horizon are sited as an influence, what was your view on the different path that the band went down with ‘Amo’? Although they did lose some fans, they still seemed to have retained most of their core audience as well as gaining new fans.

What we love about BMTH is that they aren’t afraid to change up their musical approach. They write to grow creatively and to better their knowledge of music. Yeah so a lot of people didn’t like the electronic approach, that it was too pop, they had ‘sold out’ and all that BS, but we were all fans of the album and thought it was great, it has some really deep stuff in it and was very creative!

What was the last gig that you attended as a fan?

Pete – Papa Roach, I photographed the event for a publication and was lucky enough to be able to watch the whole show after.

Rowan – Last gig I attended was to see Sylosis in London for their return show after a number of years of being quiet which was absolutely fantastic having been a fan since about 17.

Wayne – It was the same Sylosis gig for me too, they’ve been a huge inspiration for over the years, and it was so good to see them come back to form after a few years off.

Stuart – The last gig I saw was Periphery I think, I rarely get to see too many gigs as just a fan any more due to (at least last year) I had a pretty busy touring schedule, but I am lucky enough to see a bunch of great up and coming bands all the time while on tour.

What current issue are you particularly passionate about?

Due to COVID the music industry has been hit hard with a lot of people being affected, out of work, and bands that would be touring have had to stop. We are all passionate about supporting local venues and the industry as a whole. We really hope that it is able to recover and come back stronger than before, though it will take a while.

The album that you have in your album collection/Spotify playlist that would surprise most people?

Pete – Between Somewhere – Token.

Rowan – Somewhere in Between by VERITE.

Wayne – Ambient 1/Music for Airports by Brian Eno.

Stuart – Not so much an album, but I have been listening to a lot of KSHMR, who is a great EDM producer and DJ, and they tend to put out a bunch of singles rather than albums.

What are your plans for the remainder of 2020?

We have pretty much written our second album, so we are aiming to have that finished and in a place where we can start releasing singles and doing more music videos.

How active are you on social media and where can people connect with you?

We love to chat and engage with fans, albeit mostly our families and friends at the moment, though people can find us on Facebook by searching Dohny Jep, or also on twitter @Dohnyjepuk and Instagram @Dohny_jep

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