Forget Sharknado, there’s a rock and roll cyclone on the horizon and Toronto’s Diemonds are bringing the thunder.
I’ve always wondered why 80s spirited hard rock hasn’t made it back, I mean all the way back. I know it didn’t end well in the late 80s, but we can’t discount the amazing rock records that came from that time. I also know there are a lot of bands in the past 10 years or so effectively unleashing the sleaze, fists in the air, grind of 80s hard rock – The Darkness, Crashdiet, Steel Panther (jokes aside), Wildstreet, and Backyard Babies (new album soon!) to name a few. Yet the movement never seems to gain momentum.
Well this summer could change all that. Atlanta rock and roll tearaways the Biters are releasing their first full-length in July and now Toronto’s Diemonds third shot “Never Wanna Die” is due in August. This could be the summer to raise your fist in the air and let it all go. Hell, there’s even a new BulletBoys record out.
Diemonds, the self-proclaimed street rats, take me back to the sexually charged hard rock of the 80s when Anvil was pounding the stage singing songs like Jackhammer and Motormount, W.A.S.P. was boasting about fucking like a beast, Mötley Crüe had looks that kill, and Guns N’ Roses declared anything goes. You can hear the influence of all three in Diemonds’ sound. Sure 80s hard rock is often much maligned in the media, but we shouldn’t hold Warrant and Poison against a whole genre. After all rock in the 80s was all about putting fun in music, Diemonds gets that and they deliver, big time.
Diemonds are led by Priya Panda, a front woman not seen in these parts for some time. Blessed with a Doro-like voice and well, looks that kill, Priya is a perfect fit for the giant rock riffs, huge hooky choruses, and working for the weekend attitude that fuels the band. They’ve released an EP, In The Rough (2008, Independent), a full-length, The Bad Pack (2012, Underground Operations) and have played with acts such as Slash, Sebastian Bach, and KISS.
Apart from the 80s metal influence there’s also a load of 70s classic rock here as well, and perhaps that’s why Diemonds works so well. Overboard is a revved up Foghat rocker, the awesome Get The F&$k Outta Here is a heavy glam T. Rex ride, and Start Over could slide right onto Toys in the Attic. It’s authentic, and they are not just imitating an era, but playing the music they love. And you can tell they love what they are doing.
As the Joker once asked: “why so serious?”
Party rock is back! It’s only rock and roll kids, so just give’r!
Diemonds! Priya, Dekay, CC, Aiden, & Adam! I’m Dekay and I play guitar.
People say we sound like….
A hard rockin’ freight train barreling down the tracks at a million miles an hour to a town near you
We are originally from…..
How did you become Diemonds?
We were mutated by radioactive sludge in a sewer and raised by a mutated super smart master ninja rat. We also like pizza.
What music has had an influence on your sound?
Anything that rocks hard. We like it fast, heavy, & louder than hell.
Tell us about the metal/hard rock scene in Toronto or in general these days…
It’s lively and very tight-knit. We all go to each-others shows and hang out with one another at the bar. There’s a ton of rad bands coming out of Toronto right now, be sure to check out Midnight Malice, Mokomokai, Public Animal, Skull Fist, & Heart Attack Kids.
Tell us about your live show…
It’s essentially heart stopping. We give it everything we’ve got and leave everything on the stage. Be ready…
How does the city’s musical history, or landscape influence your sound?
We’re fortunate to live in such an amazing city full of rich musical history. I think what really drives our sound though is the not so aesthetically pleasing parts of town…that’s where I find most of the dark lyrical and riff content comes from in our band – whether consciously or not…it’s there.
What influences the band lyrically?
Life. It’s full of ups and downs. Birth and death. Inanition and gluttony. We write lyrics that pertain to our situations and we hope they connect with you too.
Our most memorable gig ever was….
Playing on a boat in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean with our heroes KISS
If you could pick any time to travel back to for music, where would you go and what year would it be….
October 5th 1989 – Hollywood, CA – The Whisky A Go Go – Mötley Crüe warm up show for their Dr. Feelgood tour (also the day that the Kickstart My Heart music video was shot)
Growing up, at home we listened to…..
Classic Rock mostly. I had to discover the heavier stuff on my own.
What tunes are on heavy rotation for you…
Royal Blood – s/t
Witches Of God – The Blood of Others
Dead Lord – Goodbye Repentance
Teethmarks – Survival
If you could open for any band right now who would that be and why?
Alice Cooper because he is still the fucking king and can’t be touched. We’re Not Worthy.
If you could only bring ONE record (you can all answer if you like) in the tour van what would it be?
KISS – Revenge
When you’re not playing and have some time off, where could we find you…
Eating all the food, drinking all the booze, & playing pinball at a bar near you!
The one thing we want you to remember while you’re listening to our music….
Stay in school.
What’s up for 2015/2016?
We’ve got a new record coming out on August 14th via Underground Operations/eOne entitled “Never Wanna Die”. We’re gonna be touring that pretty heavy for the coming year so make sure to check us out online and keep in touch to see when we’ll be destroying a stage in your town!