School may have taught us a bit about reading, writing, socializing and calculating the laws of physics but, for one, it still lacks a concentration for music’s evolving sub-genres [sigh]. However, students affected by this insufficiency have tended to find answers on their own terms, as did Virginia Tech’s Tommy Davidson – otherwise known as Dream Cop. Tommy is one of the latest scholars to acquire presence in the independent music scene and it seems that he’s been moving along particularly well considering his coverage throughout the web this year. He contributes a shoegaze taste alongside bands like Memory Cassette and Washed Out, but adds his own sense of subtle beats and teasing vocals in the wavy atmosphere.
I got a chance to virtually sit down with Mr. Davidson and get a grasp on his view on his upcoming releases and where it has taken him so far:
SJ: You have two EP’s releasing in less than 2 months – “Mango” just later this month… excited much!?
TD: cloud 9 for sure! it is just a huge relief to finally have these tracks finalized and ready to formally release. most of the tracks on these releases have been scattered throughout blogs the past couple months. it will be nice to have them neatly placed onto EP form
SJ: I bet. You’ve been spotted by dozens of bloggers and listeners just this year, the feedback you’ve gotten already should surely give you confidence on the EP’s. The recently released remix by Teen Daze and now another by MillionYoung is giving you an impressive jump-start as a young artist, seems like you have a lot of support behind you already.
TD: haha yeah, really has been a surreal experience. in March i remember creating a promotional video for a music festival i was co hosting in blacksburg. i remember using Millionyoung’s “Soft Denial” as the backing track for the video, since I was thoroughly fixed on that song for a month straight. now for it to come full circle and have him remix my track “Warm Thrash” in the same year. very crazy. ultimately, all the bands and labels i have been working with lately have just been awesome in helping me get my music out there. i am very appreciative to be surrounded by artists and labels that i respect and love
SJ: Great song, one of my favorites from them! Do you know MillionYoung personally? How’d you approach them about making the “Warm Thrash” remix?
TD: i actually approached him via the internets about doing a remix back in April. Some of my tracks were getting online coverage and Bernard Farley of Outputmessage contacted me about putting out an EP. I figured it would be a good time to ask and fortuantely he replied…a few months later I had a stellar remix in my hands! I thanked him in person at a DC9 show in June and hopefully will be be seeing him again in the near future at CMJ next week in NYC !
SJ: Nice! Are you performing at CMJ?
TD: Spectating this time around. As of now I am journeying up to see some friends play. Initially there was talk about getting on some showcases with Millionyoung and Teen Daze but I am still prepping a band to play with live. Hopefully in the upcoming months you can expect to see some tour dates!
SJ: Gotcha, I’ll be looking forward to those announcements. I know you went to Virginia Tech with members of Wild Nothing and it seems like these other up-in-coming artists are almost family to you too, how does it feel to grow your music talent alongside them?
TD: Jack and the guys from Wild Nothing are all really great dudes. It has truly been an exciting time watching them grow from a great local band into a great internationally known band. Definitely inspiring to see them gaining this recognition as a Blacksburg band…surreal really. Cos most of the time the music media, whether independent or not, concentrates on larger LA – NYC scenes; it always felt far removed, but to now see Blacksburg in the limelight is really a thing of beauty.
SJ: I love to see small town artists going big, in other words… I love surprises and musical ones are even better. You’re still studying hard at VT right? What are your plans after graduation?
TD: Correct. Hopefully I can finish my engineering degree next spring, but honestly, post graduation, I would love to do something completely unrelated haha…ideally, something that revolves around making music. Initially, I was under the impression that making music might get in the way of academics. Throughout the course of the past few months, I am starting to think the opposite. I would say that a balancing act is constantly in play when it comes to these kind of things…
SJ: Well it’s good to see you’re still in for the degree. I can’t even imagine how you’re able to dedicate yourself to two huge responsibilities at this time – it’s a big turning point in your life. I’m glad to see you’re looking forward to making more music and I hope everything turns out well for you in the future. Any last words for the crowd, maybe a joke or magic trick? Advice for other small town artists?
TD: Well did you tell them about how this interview is Scratch-n-Sniff ? ( ****SCRATCH-HERE****) ahhhhhhh, strawberries. haha, but really, just get involved. whether talking to other bands online or locally, it will make a world of difference. Just follow the rule or IST —> INTERCONNECTIVITY,SYNERGY,TI-VI-TI-VI-TY ! thanks for having me Stephen
SJ: Thanks Tommy for your time and for putting up with my terrible internet connection!
This past week marked the release of MillionYoung’s remix of Dream Cop’s “Warm Thrash”, a track on his EP titled “Basement Tapes” which is schedule for release this December by DC’s very own Output Noise Records. MillionYoung gives a slightly more up-beat version of the track while also fitting in an epically-echoed guitar solo. Enjoy.
Dream Cop – Warm Thrash (MillionYoung remix) (download)