Today’s Feature, December 21st-22nd: Ransack

December 21, 2007 at 10:15 pm (Today's Feature)


If you’re in a band, you gotta have chemistry. Individual talent is essential, but if you share the stage with two or three other guys, you better be able to bring it all together. When you think about it, being part of any band means to take on some aspect of selflessness. Everyone has to do their part, regardless of who stands out. Perhaps that’s why Ransack is able to stand out in a crowd of so many – being best friends since childhood, the group knows they can rely on each other on the way to musical triumph.

The band echoes the fact they can stick out on the scene, “There is a lot of mainstream crap out today to say the least; I think we stand out from the rest. Our formula is simple, pop, catchy melodies with some edge.” They also second the idea that their background strengthens their musical performance, “Amazingly, the chemistry was what made the show exciting. We are all best friends who grew up together, putting our experiences, emotions, and souls out to people for the first time.”

Right now, the band is heading into the studio to pull something together that accurately represents what they stand for – Heavy yet catchy tunes, with a fair share of “cricking and crackling,” as they put it. If you happen to catch a live show, you’ll bear witness to “Ransucking,” again, in their own words. Jump into their XXQ’s.

XXQs: Ransack

Pen’s Eye View (PEV): How and when did you first get involved in music?

Damon: We were all kids who grew up together who wanted to emulate Nirvana. With our boredom, we decided to pick up some instruments and play in a band. I think at the very early stages Jordan (the drummer) wanted to play bass, Brandon (our old singer) wanted to play drums, or something like that. Matt and I were undecided because we were so wrapped up in playing baseball. Eventually Jordan went to play drums, with the worst looking crap kit in the world, I picked up guitar so I could catch up with everyone else, and matt picked up bass (although he wouldn’t play until the next few years, basically until we kicked out the other bassist.) The band had many different revolving members through the years, but the heart always remained.

PEV: Was there a certain point in your life when you told yourself that music was going to be a career rather than a hobby?

Damon: Wow, ok, when we were kids and teenagers, we had this us against the world attitude, that we wanted to be the biggest band in the world. Many others would laugh at us (high school was awesome!) all the time, so it was never taken seriously by us. It was just fun and a way to escape everything. After we took the hiatus a few years ago, I started reflecting and thinking constantly upon starting the band again. We all just started not caring. Why not us? Why can’t we live our lives to the fullest? Fuck, these jobs we have now are only temporary. Positive thinking.

Jordan: When life started to suck with crappy jobs.

PEV: Growing up, what kind of music were you listening to? Do you remember the first album you ever purchased and concert you attended?

Damon: Growing up we all listed to an eclectic variety of stuff. Of course, we became inspired by bands such as Green Day, Offspring, Nirvana, silverchair, Weezer, the Bealtes, blah blah blah. We were all in 6th grade so this music just spoke to us. The first album I purchased was Weezer’s first album. We also listened to horror movie music, soundtracks, oldies, classic rock, transitioning later to heavier stuff. First concert, Boston.

Jordan: Boston

Matt: Embarrassingly Creed, Fuel, Jimmy’s Chicken Shack.

PEV: Tell us about the first time you performed live. What was going through your heads?

Damon: The First time we played live was at a community picnic in the neighborhood I think, but we never consider that one. Everyone just yelled at us to turn it down. Ughh. So we like to say our first “real” show was at a friends party in 9 th grade. We played mostly Nirvana songs and were more focused on breaking things and talking to girls. But it was fucking exciting.

PEV: What can people expect from a live Ransack performance?

Damon: Fun, sing-alongs, contemplation. It’s just a fun show with rocking songs that you can sing along to as well. I encourage moshing.

Jordan: Ransucking.

PEV: You plan to go back into the studio to record. What will fans get from that performance?

Damon: With what many we have, we hope to make a quality 3-4 song demo that will represent us to the fullest. Heavy songs with catchy melodies. Heavy pop, cricking and crackling.

Jordan: A badass demo with wailing drums.

Matt: Jams for the new millennium.

PEV: How is the sound of Ransack different than other music out today?

Damon: Good Question. There is a lot of mainstream crap out today to say the least; I think we stand out from the rest. Our formula is simple, pop, catchy melodies with some edge, what not. I really don’t care, I think we do sound like some other stuff out there, who doesn’t. Yet when people ask us whom we sound like, we can’t think of anyone. Maybe you can help us out with that.

PEV: Who is currently in your CD player right now?

Damon: Him, the Fray, Incubus, Robert Johnson, 69 eyes, Law of Attraction, Johnny Cash, As I Lay Dying.

Jordan: Coldplay, Slipknot, eighties classics, dying fetus.

Matt: Pete Yorn, Turbonegro, Gorgoroth, Phil Collins, Halloween theme.

PEV: What up and coming artist do you think we should all be listening to now?

Damon: I’m just concerned with some local bands. Oddzar, Werewolves, our friends in American Diary, The Captains (awesome band from Tokyo), Trash Camp.

Jordan: Am. Diary.

Matt: Turbonegro.

PEV: If you could collaborate with one artist, who would it be? Why?

Damon: HIM, Incubus because they mean a lot to me and my sanity. Can this be dead or alive? Because if it was someone dead it would have to be Kurt Cobain, or Jimi Hendrix, Robert Johnson.

Jordan: Dave Grohl.

Matt: Nightwish.

PEV: What was it like the first time you performed together live?

Damon: Amazingly, the chemistry was what made it exciting. We are all best friends who grew up together, putting our experiences, emotions, and souls out to people for the first time. Fuck yeah it was incredible.

PEV: Finish this sentence, “The most embarrassing time for the band was when…” Damon: The most embarrassing time for the band was when we played an all night hoola-hoop churcy show back in the day. All I can say is that if you put crap on a white expensive carpet, that’s what it was. We were so out of place. We just have to talk about this one. We had to endure a weird time slot, at like 2 in the morning, while also promised we could play as long as we want. We were 15 and we were going to play a full awesome set. When we got there, we walked in to the room and all the kids were hoola-hooping and dancing to Backstreet Boys. They just stared. Some woman took one look at us, found out what type of band we were, and secretly called our parents to pick us up early. We had no idea that this was the intention. When we played, the tools just laughed, threw shit at us and made fun of us. I think save for the one cool girl who watched us, no one gave one lick. Eventually we were fed up as they kept telling us to stop, so we broke our equipment and their floors. Cops came, kicked us out, and our parents were outside waiting for us laughing. No one tells us anything. Our former friend Danny set us up with the show. He’s awesome.

PEV: In all your travels, which city do you think offers the best appreciation for music?

Damon: Difficult to answer because we haven’t played too far from the realms of Maryland because of circumstances. This will soon all change. But for music appreciation, really depends on the area. Maryland kind of sucks. Annapolis likes its cover bands. Baltimore has a real loyal hardcore scene, which is cool. There are definitely much better areas for music than around here.

PEV: What’s been your favorite place to play so far and which venue do you want to play that you haven’t?

Damon: Our favorite places to play were the ones we set up ourselves with other bands. Places such as the Knights of Columbus were awesome because we could rent it out, invite gazillions of people who cared about us, played for as long as we wanted and didn’t have supervision. That’s when everything usually would get damaged, but it was cool.

Jordan: I really want to play reading festival in England

Matt: Redrock

Damon: Anywhere, Europe.

PEV: When you are not performing, what can we find you doing in your spare time? Damon: Working (to live), dreaming, kayaking, surfing, exploring, writing, drinking, sleazing.

Jordan: working, drumming, drinking.

Matt: Masturbating, drinking.

PEV: What’s one thing, people would be surprised to hear about the guys of Ransack?

Damon: We are so weird nothing surprises anyone. Two members completed college. We are die-hard horror movie fans. Not sure.

PEV: When you sit down two write music, what kind of environment do you surround yourselves in?

Damon: Really Depends, most of the songs so far are ones I have written on my own, inspired by my moods and feelings which come out almost randomly, like they were imprinted in my mind. The ocean inspires me most. Then I take my stuff and play it for the band and we jam on them for a while, adding their own flair to them. We surround ourselves with that goose bump feeling, chills of excitement, hope, passion…

PEV: What one word, best describes Ransack?

Damon: Hmmm, Ransack. Nah, Matt said friendship, so we’ll stick with that. It really is the basis for all this.

PEV: Where do you hope to be in 20 years?

Damon: I hope, no, I will be living quietly on an awesome beach, right by the water, celebrating life, our many multi-platinum albums, and cherishing life. Having friends, health, family, financial freedom. I dream a lot

Matt: I hope to be in a happy place… masturbating

Jordan: Mostly I would like to be living on a beach as well, living an exciting and thrilling life.

PEV: So, what is next for Ransack?

Damon: Record, play, market, conquer.

For more information on Ransack, check out


1 Comment

  1. Brandon said,

    Thanks for the AD shout out 🙂

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