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April 5, 2011 / rocksandgravel

Disco Bloodbath- A Quick Chat with Damon Martin

Disco Bloodbath began life as an irregular speakeasy party in the basement of Passion, an old Caribbean restaurant with a 150 maximum capacity, in East London (the dodgy end). By word of mouth promotion their parties have outgrown various venues and seem to be packed to the rafters time and time again. They’ve remixed for the likes of Franz Ferdinand, Little Boots and Monarchy among others on an extensive list, and they’ve taken the Bloodbath sound to some of the UK’s most discerning dancefloors, including Fabric and Bugged Out; this summer even saw them holding the El Salon in Space Ibiza. They’ve gained notoriety for their unique blend of raw disco, spaced-out Italo, vintage house and proto-techno, and played an essential part in the Italo disco renaissance that seems to be catching on among discerning party-goers seeking the kind of unpretentious and carefree atmosphere that their nights endorse.

It’s all too tempting to sit here making analogies associated with the word ‘disco’ – such as images of pointing hand dance movements and men with hairy chests wearing white suits (Ok really I’m just describing John Travolta here) so when I spoke to Damon, I had to initiate by asking him what attracted them to start a night based on disco, rather than going in the direction of, say, house or techno. “We enjoy the eclecticism it offers. One thing that attracted me to the idea of disco is, rather than the genre, it was the approach to music, and the type of music you can play in the club. I suppose dance music can be seen to take itself a bit seriously sometimes, whereas disco has more of a sense of humour. It’s generally more positive and upbeat”.

How would he describe a Disco Bloodbath set? “It’s a fairly broad sound, that changes throughout the night… at the beginning, it’s more music to listen rather than dance to; then throughout the night the tempo increases. It can be high energy Italo, early Chicago house; then as it gets to the early hours of the morning, more spacey and weird.” As a clubbing writer, the word “eclectic” can be grossly over-used when in want of a better word, but in this case, it does seem most appropriate. With regards to the guests who join them they “just let people do what they want to do, meaning we get an eclectic range of sounds each night, which is great”.

As part of a new music initiative by Bacardi to help pioneering new music acts in the UK, the guys recently travelled to Puerto Rico. Here, under the guidance of legend of the game Norman Jay, they created a track incorporating the traditional Latin American rumba and placing their own style and influence onto it.

Damon gushes about Norman Jay. “For somebody who’s been DJing for such a long time, and is pretty much as high status as you can get in this business, he is so down to earth.” So did he offer them any sound pieces of advice? “Mainly about dealing with requests and difficult punters.” And, Damon continues, “he has a broad palate for music, and really appreciates and understands different types – the other two guys on the project were dubstep producers. He’s a really cool guy.”

Disco Bloodbath will be continuing their parties throughout the winter, and have a few other things in the pipeline that they’re keeping under wraps.

The track they recorded in Puerto Rico, entitled ‘El Morro’ is now available for an exclusive free download at


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