An electronic rock duo formed in Berlin, Germany, consisting of members Jon Courtney (Pure Reason Revolution) and Sammi Doll (IAMX). The band has since relocated the live element to Los Angeles to spread the name throughout America. Dark Beauty spoke with Sammi to find out more…
Interview Meikee Magnetic
Where were you born and where are you now?
I was born in Northampton, England. I grew up in the states and have moved to and from Europe 3 times in my life. I just spent 5 years living in Berlin, but recently relocated back to Los Angeles about 4 months ago.
Describe your style of music:
Electronic Rock. We would venue to draw influences from Depeche Mode, Fleetwood Mac, Gary Numan, Stabbing Westward and Muse.
How was this project born and what musical roles do each of you play?
This band was the brainchild of Jon Courtney (ex-Pure Reason Revolution). We met on Halloween in 2013 through mutual friends. He asked me to come into the studio and lay down some vocals for a project he was working on and it was birthed from there on. It transformed into a different direction that day forward, we ran with what it had become. I became a part of the entire album and we decided to put the album out together as a Duo. Jon and I take dual lead vocal responsibilities, he plays guitar and I take all the dirty synth and piano roles.
Who are the other members?
Since relocating to the states, Jon has stayed in Europe with other commitments – I gathered a group of musicians I have known from different parts of my life and amalgamated us together. Evan Rodaniche – taking on Jon’s vocal parts and guitar, Dante Phoenix taking rhythm guitar, Bryan Stage on bass and Nick Rossi on drums. Each one of them brings something unique and special to the performance, it’s an honor and privilege to play with them.
Tell us about the new album and what topics you touch on lyrically:
No Atonement’ tells a mutli-perspective journey that highlights the feelings surrounding an abusive relationship not necessarily with a spouse, but with a substance, friendship, relationships, religion, social expectation… there’s many layers to it. I enjoy that it’s specific yet vague enough to be relevant to any situation.
You made your US debut in Hollywood at Bar Sinister, tell us more?
We actually made our US debut opening for Stabbing Westward at the Regent Theater on 10.13.18. Stabbing Westward has always been an influential band for me so when we were offered the direct support as our first show in the US, it was a personal achievement for me. Bar Sinister on Halloween was the best, they had the entire stage decked out with dismembered limbs, hanging heads and massive spider webs. It was a lot of fun to play with during the set. Bar Sinister is great, the music is highly curated by the bookers. there’s already a built in crowd of people who enjoy such music so you know you’re going to reach new fans.
Your involved in other music projects such as IAMX?
Yes, I’m coming up on my 6th year playing with IAMX as their live keyboardist. Chris Corner is such a talented individual, I’m so inspired by his execution of perfection. It’s a privilege to play with him. It’s been an amazing personal evolution of performance since I joined, I really needed that experience to be able to be the front person that Bullet Height needs. I juggle both bands between each bands touring schedule. I’m a bit of a masochist.
What clothing designers do you work with?
At this moment, Bullet Height is working with Los Angeles based designers: Ritual Fashion – the designer, Jillian, is responsible for creating the amazing harness cage dresses and under garments I’ve been wearing in our promotion photos and live. She’s got such an innovative vision, I’m so happy to represent her and her creations. Ghost Circus – by Eli James is responsible for making the live line up of the band look amazing. He’s got a lot of long cut shirts and thin, flowy material. He’s got something for every personality in our band. Finally Charla Tedrick shoes – I shot with them last week. The heels and wedges are so high I’m surprised I haven’t snapped my ankle off, the designs are next level. We are super excited to be working with these designers, they have been so amazing to us and we love supporting independent artists. it’s a really great thing we all have going on.
November and December we are hoping to finish a few new songs to have some ammunition in the spring for touring. We want to bring Bullet Height across the US to as many places that will have us. We have been so well received thus far and I can’t wait to see what happens next.
What does Dark Beauty mean to you?
Dark Beauty to me is a lifestyle, we can’t help what we are drawn to, we embrace what comes naturally. That in itself is beautiful – all elements, especially the dark.