Damon Orienti, best known by his speaker-crushing alter ego Trollphace, notoriously shot to center stage with a shout-out from none other than Skrillex during a 2014 Reddit AMA session. Quickly building off the sudden attention that came his way from artists, labels and talent bookers alike, Trollphace has become a familiar face for club and festival masses worldwide.
With all that said, it’s hard to believe it’s been three years since Trollphace hit us with a heavyweight release, but all that is about to change as he prepares to unleash his Everything is Terrible EP on Never Say Die: Black Label. Featuring a wide range of genres and influences while showcasing some of his best work to date, it’s safe to say that Trollphace is back with a vengeance and already preparing for the 2017 takeover.
To get the full details, Bassrush sat down for an in-depth chat with the man himself for a glimpse behind the inspiration of the project as well as what the future holds for bass music as a whole.
Let’s start from the beginning. Why bass music?
Because I don’t need five other douchebags in a band to make kids fuck each other up.
Why Never Say Die: Black Label for the new EP?
NSD: Black Label is just smashing shit and keeping it real. No flip-floppy bullshit, no flavors of the week, no crap. It’s just the perfect home for the brutal side of bass music.
It’s been a minute since we’ve had a release from you. Tell us how this one finally came to be.
The title “Everything is Terrible” started as a joke because of how much I was experimenting last year through this year, and how it wasn’t going well. (Laughs) I started this EP probably middle of 2015, and came to this crossroad of needing to be able to keep up with the artists that inspired me. At that point in time it was hybrid heavy trap stuff like Herobust, for example. But I wanted to put a bit of a Trolly-twist on it and make it even heavier so that’s when I started making what I called “death trap” at the time. My remix of SKisM x Trampa “Black Hole” is a good demo of that concept.
I wanted to dive so deep into this sound and ended up writing three or four tracks for an EP a long time ago, but then this happened and that happened and this and that and this and that and some of this and oh yeah, you guessed it, a little of that, and I scrapped everything and started over. Towards the end of writing it I came to the conclusion that you can’t hide from what you are, so I wrote the heavy track “The Boofage” and sealed it up.
“Stop, Drop & Glob” is straight up trap, which is different than what we’re used to hearing from you. What inspired you to venture off into the trap side of town?
Hip-hop vibes have always been a thing for me. I grew up on the West Coast and listened to West Coast rap before moving to Baltimore and experiencing the East Coast way of doing things for a few years before moving to Atlanta and getting all into dirty south. I started playing festivals and heard how trap stood out and loved it and gave it a whirl. While trap is super sick wicked dope sauce, let’s just say I won’t be quitting my day job in the heavy department of bass music any time soon.
That tune was also blessed with a remix by BadKlaat for a nice twist. How’d that come about?
I’ve always loved BadKlaat’s music and a few years ago me and my boy Rekoil did a remix for him for the song “Empire.” I thought this would be a cool way to bring things full circle, especially because I really miss the underground community vibes of 2011-2015.
I’ve been touring a lot lately and I’ve been running into too much BS from those molly-boofing fuckboys that like to ruin everything for the crowd, so I wrote 'Boofage' to kinda fuck with their vibe a bit.
What other bits are you excited to share with your fans from this EP?
“The Boofage” and “Optimal Flavor Zone” are my two favorites from the EP. I’ve been touring a lot lately and I’ve been running into too much BS from those molly-boofing fuckboys that like to ruin everything for the crowd, so I wrote “Boofage” to kinda fuck with their vibe a bit.
This EP seems to be pushing boundaries while also maintaining your unique sound. How do you see the EP as part of your evolution as an artist?
I got sick and tired of hearing half the kids whine about me using “the same sound” “over and over” and the other half whine every time I wrote something different than that wick-wonk-Donald–Duck-sounding bullshit, so I did everything in my power to remind people that there were like 80-something tracks I wrote before “Burial” and “Make it Bounce” that sound nothing like it, but hey, that just goes to show you how shallow people’s interests are in artists.
What’s your writing process look like?
Lots of dabs.
What else you got coming up?
I got a fat-ass tour coming up! No bullshit, just tear out. Got some spicy collabs in the works—I ain’t gonna tell ya with who—but they will definitely surprise people.
Any final words before we get out of here?
Huge shout out to my management team Industry Standard, NSD, and of course my amazing team at Circle Talent for keeping shit real. Big love to Subpac for blessing me with the tools to take my shit to the next level, and Mothership Glass/Dr. Dabber for the tools to keep me nice and stoned while we all deal with the ridiculous way things in this scene are changing.
Shouty-shout-shouts to my family for sticking through the tough times and the good times like they are one in the same. Thank you to my fan base for sticking it out while I figured out what direction I wanted to go in; it took a while but I think we finally got it. And of course, I leave you with the wise words of Nate Dogg: “Hey hey hey hey, smoke weed everyday.”