My Darkest Days Biography
Last updated: 07/02/2011 11:00:00 AM
Matt Walst: Vocals/rhythm guitars
Brendan McMillan: Bass/backing vocals
Doug Oliver: Drums/backing vocals
Sal Coz Costa: Lead guitar/backing vocals
In 2010, Norwood, Ontario band My Darkest Days became legends throughout the exotic world of g-strings 'n' pasties thanks to the song "Porn Star Dancing," the #1 charting strip club anthem from their first album.
The band's second album, Sick And Twisted Affair, means to bring the listeners along for the band's ride through arenas, bars and gentlemen's clubs. Heavier, faster, and darker, the new album captures the soaring highs and uncomfortable lows that come with being a hard-touring, hard-living rock band.
The first immediate benefit to creating a hit that ranks up there with Motley Crue's "Girls Girls Girls" is expressed in "Casual Sex," the spirited first single from Sick And Twisted Affair.
"I feel that song is pretty self-explanatory," says lead singer Matt Walst. "In relationships sometimes it gets to a point where the sex isn't there anymore, and with casual sex it can keep that flame alive -- make your blood boil in that certain kind of way. I know I sound like a whore but it's true. We're not just looking at this from the male perspective either. We've had enough conversations with our female fans and friends to know many women have the same feelings about the topic. And I think it's more empowering for women, even more than for men".
The video for "Casual Sex" certainly keeps those flames alive. Particularly with the help of cast mates like former AVN Award winner for "Best Threeway Sex Scene," Jenny Hendrix, Hustler cover star Sabrina Maree and the hedgehog himself, Ron Jeremy.
"It's pretty much Matt walking into a room and finding all the band members in pretty weird casual sex situations," says guitarist Sal Costa, describing the video. "For example I'm getting dominated by a bunch of girls and Ron Jeremy. Our keyboard player Reid [Henry] has a scene where him, Ron Jeremy and a girl are all sharing each other. There's a goat. There's a strip poker scene where Matt and [bassist] Brendan [McMillan] are going at it with two naked girls. It's a little different when you watch it because it's fun, it's light-hearted. It's pretty damn cool."
The nine song album was produced by Joey Moi (Hinder, Daughtry, Santana) and recorded at Mountain View Studios (Nickelback, Faber Drive, Dallas Smith) in Abbotsford, B.C. Guitarist John 5 (Marilyn Manson, Rob Zombie), and Three Days Grace members Barry Stock and Neil Sanderson contributed guest spots on the musical end, while Sixx:A.M. lead singer James Michael and star writer Ted Bruner co-wrote various songs with the band.
Those songs aren't all about carefree humping, though. The band makes it clear there's a flipside to living life like you're David Lee Roth in 1984. Like in the song "Love Crime."
"I think 'Love Crime' is about just kind of screwing around on people," says Walst. "And just being in a relationship where you're kind of breaking the other person's heart and you know you are. And we kind of consider that in 'Love Crime.'"
Another song with a dark side is the thumping title track.
"The song 'Sick And Twisted Affair' is just about a screwed up romance. It's just a dark romance between two people," says Walst. "I was always a big fan of industrial music like Nine Inch Nails and Stabbing Westward. I was always a fan of the mix between keyboards and rock and like I always wanted to do that. And I think on songs like this we got the chance to do more of that. It's just heavier, I find."
Adds Costa, "It's dark. There's like a sinister vibe to it in a way."
That sinister vibe also creeps out in songs like "Nature of the Beast."
"It's about like just letting go of yourself," says Walst , "just giving in to your darker side. It's kind of it's telling you to let go and have some fun because some people are too uptight and they need to come out of their shell.
"It's weird because it's kind of hidden. It sounds like its kind of aggressive — it is aggressive, but the song matter in that song is debauchery and having fun with sex in a dark way."
So why are these good Canadian boys getting all dark and dirty in the first place? Getting kicks under the sheets has something to do with it, but being more badass on stage was also part of the plan. My Darkest Days have done shows with the likes of Sick Puppies, Papa Roach, Buckcherry, Seether, Stone Sour, Alice Cooper, System Of A Down and Linkin Park and wanted to hit it harder and louder in front of audiences.
"I think the last record there was a lot of emotionally heavy songs," says Costa. "Not there isn't on this album too, but I think stylistically overall, they're more musically heavy. They're songs people are gonna want to drink beer to and rock out to a little bit more. I remember being on tour with bands like Avenged Sevenfold and with bands like Sevendust and thinking ' How can we make the songs we have heavier?' I think it's just a natural occurrence that we moved more into this direction."
The band's five members are also working hard to appeal to a different type of audience — the online one. My Darkest Days are extremely plugged in with their quarter million Facebook and Twitter fans. Each band member makes a point to check in with their people regularly."
"Generally we all like get on the page at some point during the day and say something," Costa explains. "Whether it's responding to a few fans, or posting a funny video or picture, or posting our 'fan of the day,' we're just really active. It changes all the time what we do but we stay in touch with our fans as much as possible via our pages.
"It's funny because you almost start to recognize fans because you're on the pages so much that you recognize who posts. It's cool that we've created, like, a community."
Don't be surprised if that community grows even larger in the coming weeks and months. With the undeniable good times of "Casual Sex," a slot on the biggest tour of the spring with Nickelback, Bush and Seether, as well as a March headlining tour of their own, My Darkest Days will be both playing for, and maybe with, lots and lots of appreciative hard rock fans.