The name Jason Dunn (second from the right) might ring a bell when you’re familiair with the Christian rock scene. For many years he fronted the band Hawk Nelson. In 2012, Dunn decided to take a fresh look at his career and left Hawk Nelson. After some years working as a solo artist, Dunn started the band Lights Go Down (LGD). A band that, as they say, will keep poppunk alive.
For a lot of years you have been the frontman of Hawk Nelson, which you quit in 2012. What we’re those years without band like, and why did you decide to form a new one?
“Seasons change. I knew Hawk Nelson was expiring. We stopped growing as a band and none of us shared the same vision. Pop punk has always been a major part of my life, as well as a major part of my career. I could feel a shift in our band. It was a shift that I didn’t particularly agree with. So I decided to keep my vision in tact and continue making pop punk music.”
It seems like that one of the main goals of LGD is bringing pop punk back to life. Why is poppunk so important for the music scene? And why did it ever die?
“Pop punk was the reason I started creating music in the first place. Every band I grew up listening to are somehow still in the roots of the songs I write. There was a (very) short transition period where I tried following the crowd and made a pop rock record like everybody else. Thankfully I’m not a crowd-follower and quickly jumped back into making the music I was born to make.”
Lights Go Down recently released their first music video for the single West Coast Calling:
Your first EP We Kept It Alive will be dropping later this year, thanks to a succesfull crowdfunding. Was it challenging to show in just a couple of tracks that you are really trying to make something happen in the punk scene?
“Not at all. We took the “less is more” approach. We wanted to leave our fans wanting more. I think we did a nice job at that.”
You have a history as a Christian musician. Will LGD also be focussing on that or won’t be a part of this band’s identity?
“My faith is a very important part of my life. I take it with me everywhere I go. Sadly “Christianity” has become it’s own genre. A genre in which I have no desire to be a part of. If that’s what I wanted, then I’d still be singing in Hawk Nelson.”
These months the band is really taking off, with live shows etc. How are the first reactions/experiences live?
“I was very nervous the first couple shows. People have expectations. I never want to disappoint. I always want to make sure we bring our “A” game. We worked very hard to make our show as good as it possibly could be and I think we succeeded! People have responded very kindly to us and that’s very encouraging. It makes me excited to get back out on the road and play more shows with my band.”