Rant: Domenic Romeo (Integrity)

Rant: Domenic Romeo (Integrity)

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What’s your earliest musical memory?
My earliest musical memory would be listening to my grandparent’s collection of italian 45’s by artists such as Claudio Villa, Adriano Celentano, Bobby Solo etc.
It definitely helped shape my ear and made me a lifelong fan of weird and foreign 50s/60s music.  From there, my uncle got me into The Beatles White Album and 
I just became 
obsessed with them.  It was such an amazing collection of songs totally different from each other but still sounded like the same band.  It’s still my 
favorite album of all time. 
Looking back, I really wish I had the foresight to treat my grandparents record collection with care back then, I’ve been slowly trying to 
re-collect all that stuff.


What was the first record you got/bought?

Kinda blurry but I think the first record I got was either The Beatles ‘Reel Music’ which was a compilation of various movie songs, and Elvis Presley ‘I Was The One’ 
which was a compilation of his early songs.  I was also super excited to obtain Prince ‘Purple Rain’ but got ‘1999’ instead by accident since they both had purple-ish 

album covers.  Of course Van Halen ‘1984’ which my mom tried to bait / switch me with Lionel Ritchie ‘Can’t Slow Down’. I was always way more excited about 
records than toys / whatever the other kids were into.  I loved GOWAN’s Strange Animal album too.  Canadian legend!

What is your favourite listening medium and why?

I’m a vinyl guy, I love the whole ritual of putting on the record and sitting down / picking apart the cover artwork / layout / details while listening.  Digital mediums are 
great and very convenient but I prefer the interaction of sitting down with an record and just absorbing it all.


One album you’d like to hear re-recorded/mixed/mastered/done differently?

BLOODLET ‘The Seraphim Fall’.  It’s such a dark and creative record but I think the muddy production takes away from the impact of the songs. I spent some time 
trying to track down the reels which apparently were last seen with a former Neurosis roadie decades ago, but had no luck.  If said roadie sees this interview, i’d 
love to get my hands on those reels!  


How much do you listen to your own records?

Not too often.  If it’s new I’ll listen to it a bunch and bond with it before filing it away.  I recently revisited the PULLING TEETH albums as they were remixed / repressed 
and it was a fun trip down memory lane.   It’s amazing what memories surface when listening to old stuff you recorded.  Nowadays I find myself listening to a lot of 
gospel and soul.  I really like NAOMI SHELTON and this group called the COMO MAMAS.  Their latest album ‘Move Upstairs’ rules.

Is there a genre/thing that you wish would see a second coming? Is there a combination of sounds/styles you’d  like to hear that hasn’t been done yet?

I think if you look hard enough, you will find what you seek.  If you don’t, then create what you would like to hear. A 
unique combination of sounds just sort of happens 
organically from listening to a wide variety of stuff.  With INTEGRITY we approach writing with ‘no filter’, meaning we make up whatever songs we want to hear and 
and don’t follow any sort of template / rule.  I’m grateful that no one is bugging us to make ‘Humanity Is The Devil II: Return Of The Devil’ and just letting us create
whatever we want.

How do you feel about the current state of music production/music business? 

I’m not in the ‘music business’ to have a career, so I may not be the best barometer of how to gauge things in the music business..  I’m here because I enjoy creating things,

and like having a normal life to balance out the weirdness.  I’ve been in bands / ran labels for most of my life and am probably the worst ‘industry’ dude ever haha.  Ultimately  
if it’s my own projects  
or stuff I release on A389, I just let the music do the talking and keep moving forward.

What do you think will be the listening medium/environment in let’s say 10 years from now? Do you think digital will reign supreme or do you think there’ll be a physical medium that will catch up?

I think the general public is going to decide vinyl is a big clunky inconvenience again, and I’ll be able to vulture my way through a lot of clearance items to fill some gaps in my collection.. 
 Digital is definitely 
the way of the future though.  It’s inevitable.

Any hot new bands out there we should check out?

FULL OF HELL are always pushing the boundaries and becoming more and more extreme.  The level of brutality they deliver is second to none.  They are unbelievable.  
My wife has a riotgrrl punk band called HONEY WHITLOCK that I watched from their inception and I often find myself singing their songs to myself.  COMO MAMAS for 
sure.  Kinda late to the party but after watching that documentary on Cambodian Psychedelic Music (Don’t Think I’ve Forgotten) I’ve become obsessed with PEN RAN.  

There’s never a shortage of cool stuff to listen to, you just gotta know where to find it.


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