Interview with Daemon

Daemon, Rec Riddles and Supreme Sol are St. Louis-based crew ROTN, presenting "Inertia", their new single produced by Prince Da Prophet. "Inertia" continues a string of releases from Daemon this year, including "Credit Check" (Youtube), "Elevation" (Youtube) and "Vader" (Youtube). Daemon marries a golden-era hiphop pedigree with a trailblazing spirit, routinely weaving genres as disparate as EDM, trap and grunge into the mix. Daemon has collaborated with artists like Killer Mike, DJ Shadow and Trackstar The DJ of Run The Jewels. Daemon's work has been featured on Netflix (“Inventing Anna,” “Daybreak,” and “Work It”), FOX (“Ghosted”), Starz (“Power”), ads for Mini Cooper and Sephora, and TBS (on the Jordan Peele produced “The Last O.G.”). His track “Turn the World Around" was featured in Xbox exclusive Forza Horizon 5. "ROTN makes revenge music for those who feel like they never fit in - the nerds, the weirdos, the outcasts," Daemon says. "We're here to give energy to the folks who need it most!" "Inertia" is out now on BLK BREAKFAST.

TurnMeLoud: How did you and the other members of ROTN come together, and what does the future hold?

Daemon: ROTN started as a joke. All three of us are lone wolf types, but we were backstage commiserating about a mutual enemy. You know how one person can bring a group of people together because of their kindness, selflessness, honesty, and all-around good nature? Well, imagine the exact opposite. We were all pretty much fed up with hearing/reading about this person’s particular brand of bullying bullshit and thought it would be hilarious if we started a group in the same spirit as those old Revenge of the Nerds movies. It wasn’t until after we finished our first EP, Type Beats, that we felt like we had something special. Now we’re locked in on a new EP, Dystopia, with plans for weekend road warrior-type tour dates from March through May 2024.

TurnMeLoud: You can do many styles of rap with equal ease. What do you think is the secret to being able to pull that off?

Daemon: I don’t think it’s a secret, but there are two fundamental keys to developing a range of styles, IMO. Number one, you have to have a genuine respect for the art in all its forms. You’re never going to write a catchy chorus or a dope autotune melody if you think it’s easier than being “lyrical.” In the same spirit, you’re not going to have any bars if you assume it’s lame or outdated to focus on pure lyricism. I love so many different styles and sub-genres of Hip Hop/Rap music, and I hope that appreciation shows in the work. Number two, don’t force it. I had to learn this lesson the hard way. Sometimes, a track is calling for simplicity. Sometimes, it needs you to dig deeper. Listen closely to the music and let it guide you.

TurnMeLoud: What's the biggest lesson you can share for other indie artists trying to make it?

Daemon: What does it mean to make it? Start there. You need to have a clearly defined goal in order to develop the plan to get there. Otherwise, you’ll probably find yourself aimlessly spinning your wheels. If you feel like you don’t quite know exactly what you want, that’s okay too! Start with some basic stuff, a number of followers on social media, performing at a venue you love, completing a creative project. I have a small list, six major goals, that inform every single move I make.

TurnMeLoud: As we approach the end of the year, what would you say are the most important things you’ve learned?

Daemon: It’s corny and cliche and more than a bit annoying, but that doesn’t make it any less true:

We are the ones we’ve been waiting for.
(I think I just threw up in my mouth a little…)

Feeling like the algorithm is kicking your ass on social media? Okay…but a lot of us aren’t bothering to interact with each other anyway. Most folks use the algorithm as an excuse - something to hide behind so we don’t have to admit (to ourselves and to others) that we’ve all grown so self-absorbed that we don’t have the time or energy to give to anyone else. “My bad, bro. I didn’t see your post about your new album/show/ham sandwich appreciation contest!”


“Nobody’s coming to my shows!” Word? How many shows are YOU going to? Exactly.

“Nobody’s listening to my music!” You starting to see the pattern?

If everybody is special, then nobody is. We’re in this thing together, and the sooner we embrace that cringy truth, the better.

TurnMeLoud: You seem very focused on singles right now. Do you still believe in the concept of an album? How would you update it, or plan to?

Daemon: I absolutely believe in the album. Matter of fact, I have an album, and all of this work, the singles, the music videos, etc., is hopefully putting me in a position to release it. It’s called - Euphonic - and it’s everything to me. I don’t know if the idea of an album needs to be updated or changed, but I will share a little of my vision with you. First, you need an engaged community. Not just a random fan or ten, but a real dedicated group of listeners - artists, musicians, foodies, travelers, dancers, poets, executives, and YES YES FANS ON FANS ON FANS. People willing to go on a journey with you. Then, and only then, do you give them the call to adventure. I believe this album will be just that, but there’s work to be done yet.
Interview with Daemon Interview with Daemon Reviewed by Albert Miller on 24.11.23 Rating: 5

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