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A few words with David 'Moose' Adamson



  • DMA
Word came down the pike in early February that Jookabox was no more, having broken up a couple months in advance of their final record, Eyes of the Fly, which released without a whole lot of fanfare in April on Asthmatic Kitty, for it is hard to drum up much attention without a release show. The band was always centered around David “Moose” Adamson, who started it as a (mostly) solo project as Grampall Jookabox, then expanded it by adding a drummer and, eventually, about two years prior to the breakup, a guitarist and bassist. But as Adamson explains in the following interview, Jookabox had become so much a full-fledged, full-band project that he couldn’t imagine playing the band’s songs on his own. And so he heads forward as a solo artist under another name, DMA, derived from his initials. His first album as DMA, Drem Beb, releases in a limited, cassette-only run this Friday on Joyful Noise Recordings, at a release party this Friday at the Earth House (7 p.m., $5) that will also feature the final performance by Jookabox. Think of it as a funeral and an, er, bris — or christening, or whatever secular version of a birth celebration you people are celebrating these days. Also on the bill: the irresistibly goofy emcee Oreo Jones and the elusive Bloomington folk dude Doog.

Hear: a full album stream of Drem Beb, via bandcamp:

NUVO: Why did Jookabox break up? Were you satisfied with the final record?

Moose: There were a lot of reasons, but basically "personal" reasons, not getting along and not agreeing about things, etc. It came down to a conversation between me and Ost where I was saying, "Let's find some new people or tour as a two-piece again," and he just didn't feel excited enough about some unknown version of the band to quit another job for tour. I did not want to play Jookabox songs with another drummer or solo.

I really love The Eyes of the Fly. It's a hard-fought record. It went through a lot of changes. It took about a year to get it to how it ended up sounding. We were playing way different versions of several of those songs at shows throughout the year. A lot of thought went into every part of it. I think it ended up really solid and fat because of that.

NUVO: Why have you started performing and recording as DMA? What should we look for recording-wise under that name?

Moose: I needed to make it known that a change was happening. We had a tour booked for Jookabox and I could've gone out and done it solo, but it would have been a depressing rip-off. We had done a lot of touring as a full band and I think that's what people would have been expecting. I was thinking about doing something new for a while, and DMA was the name I wanted to use for it. I just want to make honest, wild, free jams and have fun doing it. Something about writing for a full band and being in a full band is very restricting for me. DMA is looped crust-funk suitable for sassy dancing and mom dancing.

NUVO: And let's talk about a new song, "Riding Holiday," from your new record, Drem Beb. Were you inspired by any driving/riding/car songs when you put it together? What exactly is a riding holiday?

Moose: Duh, Scott, a riding holiday is riding or driving around for fun. Those words started out as just verbalizations. But I have always loved driving fast, wasting gas and playing music loudly. My first car was a 1970 Dodge Challenger.

NUVO, again: Check out the recently-released video to “Riding Holiday,” directed by Andy “Peecan” Young, which sees Moose piloting a non-descript white van while obscured by a baseball cap, bandanna and sunglasses, looking like a super-cool, friendly but potentially-violent meth dealer — and, after all, one can imagine plenty of deals taking place in the parking lots of the former Eastgate shopping center, from which Moose begins his trip around the streets of Indy.

Riding Holiday from DMA on Vimeo.


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