Casey Cuff of Nova Doll told us about her band’s upcoming album and her musical background. In a fun interview, spiced with Casey’s witty personality, she told us more about herself and her new Doom Rock project, Nova Doll. Enjoy reading this interview with Casey Cuff.
Hello Casey! I am very happy to talk with you. How are you doing these days?
Very grateful for the chat also, thank you. I’m busy as hell, as always, but thankfully have no mammoth complaints about life. Hoping life is treating you well too!
You will be releasing your new album “Denaturing” in a few months. How excited are you about this release?
It’s quite surreal. This is the first stoner/doom/rock album I’ve written (I usually write and play in punk bands) so it’s both exciting and frightening. This album is a side of me that many people have not seen so, again, it’s exciting to finally have this opus in existence and to share it, but it’s a vulnerable work as well.
Sounds amazing indeed! You’ve recently released a new single from the upcoming album named “California Sunshine”. How are you feeling about the way it was received by your fans?
So far so good! I’m stoked that all the feedback has been positive but even if it wasn’t, I dig it, and I’m happy it’s out there – haha!
What musicians would you say have inspired your style and approach to music?
Because I grew up listening to more punk than anything else, a lot of my influence stems from that genre. And some of that will creep up in my vocal delivery on Denaturing. Bands like L7, New Bomb Turks, Dead Moon, Zeke, and Black Flag. Just fast and aggressive hooks for daaaays.
Suzie Garner and Donita Sparks of L7 have always been inspiring (the whole band, really); the way they write, their attitude towards patriarchy, their fundraising and activism (Rock for Choice). Musical activism isn’t how I’ve chosen to display my art but I appreciate artists who can make a statement for the greater good and do it via a killer riff. And just being able to get up and perform as an equal and not have to be labelled “all-female band” to have your music stand out. While I love seeing more women and feminine energy in music and scenes dedicating themselves to female performers. I also admire the attitude of, “I’m a musician”, not a female-fronted band, just a great fucking band. That’s an inspiring attitude and mentality to me.
Denaturing really draws on my love for the downtuned, fuzzy guitar sounds coupled with groovy basslines, comparable to Kyuss and early Queens of the Stone Age. The drumming is heavily influenced by Melvins and that sort of experimental sludge. Vocally, I went with a punked-up Chelsea Wolfe for a bit of a haunting vibe. I can’t say my voice is as ear-pleasing as hers though – ha!
Brilliantly put. Thank you for the detailed answer!
Let’s play a game! I will set a scenario in an alternate universe with new rules and see how you’d react to the different situations. Ready?
Does a cat lick its own butt?
🤣🤣🤣 In a universe where money does not exist, but instead, people pay for things by making other people laugh, how rich would you be considered?
Middle to upper-class.
Based on our recent interaction, definitely upper 🤣 In a universe where the senses of taste and hearing are mixed together, what food would you imagine your music would taste like?
An extra spiced mulled wine in a stone goblet.
In a universe where a sitcom-style theme song plays whenever you wake up announcing the start of your day, what would your song be?
September by Earth, Wind & Fire. It’s uplifting, makes me dance, and fall is my favourite time of year.
In a universe where you are an evil overlord, what object would you bind yourself with so you would never die?
In a universe that is a post-apocalyptic world flooded by zombies, would you be hiding in a safe house, on the run fighting zombies, or a zombie?
I truly hope I’d be fighting the zombies but I fear my poor eyesight and compassion would get the best of me.
In a universe where you can only communicate through emojis, what would your answer to the previous question be?
Thank you for playing! I hope you enjoyed this game.
🤣 Do you remember the first time you performed live on stage? What was your experience like?
Yes, it was only 6 years ago. I started my first band in my early 30’s! It was at a pub in Newmarket, ON Canada. We played to a packed room, with people moshing, smiling, and cheering us on. It was super fun but it took a couple of songs to shake the nerves. I’m still friends with many of the people in that room today.
Lovely! Have you ever experienced any sexism in your professional life? What advice would you give our young readers who might experience any kind of discrimination?
Nothing major, thankfully. There have been a few cases in which the sound guy or whoever introduces themselves to all the male members and skips me entirely. I just butt in and introduce myself. If there has been anything else, it wasn’t to my face. In my career, most of my managers or higher-ups have been women so there have been a lot of strong, female role models in my life. The punk/metal/hardcore scene, in my experience, has been a very safe and inclusive place thus far. I know it’s not like that for everyone and every scene is different. I’ve heard one too many stories.
As stressful as it might be in those situations, don’t be afraid to be assertive and confident in what you’re doing. The people that matter will support you. The people that discriminate (against any community – women, gay, trans, POC, poor, etc) aren’t worth worrying about. Their opinions or actions may hurt in the moment but they are not worth the energy and fewer people are willing to put up with it these days. I’m inspired every day by younger artists and go-getters – being weird, creating something unique, and starting businesses. Do your thing, find your people, support each other, and let the shitty people fall into a sinkhole.
Thank you for your time, Casey. Always a pleasure chatting with you. Is there anything you’d like to add to take this interview home?
I really appreciate you taking the time to chat with me, Reuel, and allowing me to tell my tale. Fans can pre-order Denaturing on vinyl via Tarantula Tapes (CA) and Black Throne Productions (CA). The cassette version will be coming out courtesy of Tarantula Tapes and Doomshire Cassette Kult (UK). All my links can be found here: https://linktr.ee/nova_doll. My album release show will be Friday, Sept 29th in Barrie, ON Canada.
Being a feminist has been normalized as an irregularity through our patriarchal society, so I'd rather be called a "decent human" than a "feminist man". I breathe Metal and Rock and have a screwed-up sense of humour.