In the electric universe of Johnny Dynamite, charisma is just the tip of the iceberg. Beyond the compelling face lies a poet with a penchant for the profound, a lyricist whose words dance in shadow and light. His voice, dripping with melancholy and raw angst, unveils the soul of a deep thinker, caught in the lingering glow of his musical musings.
Enter “Feeding The Nite”, the latest installment of Johnny Dynamite’s evocative series, The Tale of Tommy Gunn, set to hit shelves on September 8th via Born Losers Records. With his characteristic flair, Dynamite delves once more into a wry retelling of classic dream-chaser tales, punctuated with his trademark satirical zest.
Meet Tommy, a disillusioned New Yorker whose eyes are set on the bright lights and glittering promises of Nashville’s legendary music scene. But it’s not all guitars and stardust. The story gets a sultry twist when Valentine enters the frame. As a mystic wanderer with a purpose, she aligns herself with Tommy’s quest, finding solace together in a lakeside haven near the heart of country music.
Yet, in the ever-twisting plot, an offer too good to resist emerges. A local studio entices Tommy with a golden ticket, but as the ink dries, the shadows lengthen. Behind the studio’s inviting façade lurks a nefarious underworld operation, using artists like Tommy to launder their ill-gotten gains. The weight of debt and deception strains the newfound bond between Tommy and Valentine, climaxing in a haunting and heartrending departure.
Every compelling tale deserves its visual odyssey, and this one comes alive under the deft hand of director Jaxon Duron. Through Duron’s lens, we step into the shoes of Tommy Gunn, just as he wraps up his anthem, “Feeding the Nite.” But the glamour of the final note is short-lived, for Tommy’s pockets mirror a bleak ballad.
Drawn to the allure of Printer’s Alley, Tommy’s wandering is met with the jeers of cowboys and the sneers of nightlife regulars. Yet, amidst the haze of neon lights and echoing laughter, a more sinister presence looms. A shadow from the studio, a reminder of the gang’s lurking omnipresence, starts tailing Tommy, thickening the plot and heightening the tension in Duron’s cinematic portrayal.
With a certain abandon, Tommy whirls through the scenes, each step infused with memories of the elusive Valentine. Fate catches up in the shadowy embrace of a hidden alley. There, a determined gang member, cold steel in hand, confronts him. Without defiance, almost in surrender, Tommy strikes a pose reminiscent of a crucifix, absorbing the gunshot’s deafening echo before crumpling to the ground.
But death, it seems, isn’t the finale for Tommy. He awakens amid an enigmatic entourage – a motley crew adorned in black and shields of sunglasses. Dazed but undeterred, Tommy finds himself on Broadway’s pulsing heart. The circumstances of his resurrection, be it liminal space, celestial realm, or a mind’s construct during a coma, remain a mystery. It brings to mind the fantasy sequence of the classic BBC tale The Singing Detective, but with a Music City spin.
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Johnny Dynamite serves as the creative doppelgänger of John Morisi, a synth-centric singer, songwriter, and producer. With this expansive concept, Morisi draws upon the artistic legacy of his grandfather, acclaimed comic book artist Pete Morisi, adopting the moniker of one of his most celebrated characters—a rogue detective from the city’s underbelly. This alter ego is a poignant reflection of his narrative approach, as depicted in The Tale of Tommy Gunn. Besides, it’s just plain fun.
Emerging onto the music scene in the mid-2010s, Dynamite carved out his own distinct space within the bustling underground DIY music scene of New York, before ultimately finding his creative oasis amidst Brooklyn’s diverse cultural landscape after years on tour. His creativity is kindled within the secluded sanctuaries of bedroom studios dotted across the city, a space where he refines his self-recording prowess and jams with his band.
Drawing parallels with The Drums, Johnny Dynamite and the Bloodsuckers spin a magnetic fusion of synth and pop. But where The Drums ride the waves with their surf-rock flair, Johnny Dynamite steers the ship into post-punk territory, crafting a style reminiscent of yesteryears yet undeniably fresh. Echoes of Alex Cameron resonate, every word painting a vivid scene with a cast as vibrant as a neon-lit night. Instead of jesting at the quirks of the modern age, however, Johnny Dynamite invites us into a seedy world of noir-tinted fantasy.
Johnny Dynamite and the Bloodsuckers will be performing at Public Records in Brooklyn for their highly-anticipated record release show. Get tickets HERE.
The Tale of Tommy Gunn is out on vinyl on September 8, 2023, via Born Losers Records.
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