PLAYING ATLANTA: Sexbruise? Parties Like It’s 1983

Fluorescent colors and shoulder pads? Check. DJ Khaled screaming his own name at the beginning of the first track? Check. The greatest music video of our generation? Well, if you ask Sexbruise?, the answer is a resounding yes. 

Sexbruise? hardly needs an introduction, but if you’re not yet familiar with the internationally famous eletronica-erotica-EDM quartet who is almost bigger than the Rolling Stones, today is your lucky day. Larger than life and more than a little out of this world, Sexbruise? – made up of  Julie “J-Dollar-Sign” Slonecki, John “Bitcoin” Pope, Stratton “DJ Strap-On” Moore, and Will “Evan Williams” Evans – splits time between Atlanta, Charleston, South Carolina, and wherever their yacht takes them along their journey to conquer the world and bring the party to the people (including three in Brazil).

With a tracklist that will keep you dancing like it’s 1989 and live antics that include pancakes made from the stage (to fuel the dancing, of course), Sexbruise? offers something that all of us are looking for: a chance to escape the world we’re living in and return to the simpler days of Walkmans, hairspray, parachute pants, and yacht parties. Read on for your ticket out of here.

AF: I’ve already had the chance to catch up with Julie (aka J-Dollar-Sign) but would love to get the inside scoop on the band that “Donald Trump” described as a “plague on our country, an incredibly sexy plague that must be stopped.” How did the rest of you fall down the rabbit hole into the rad electronic-erotic-EDM world of Sexbruise?

Well, once we had the name, we were pretty much instantly famous. We actually won electronic band of the year in our home town with only one show under our belts, largely due to us claiming that we won days before the voting closed. I think we were all longing to be part of something bigger than ourselves, some would say bigger than the Rolling Stones.

AF: How did the four of you meet, and how did you come up with the idea of Sexbruise? 

Every member of Sexbruise? claims the band was their idea. But Stratton “Strap-on” Moore is largely credited with the fever dream state that resulted in our name. In the early days, we were so hopped up on pancakes and Sudafed it’s all kind of a blur, but I think we all met individually in the missed connections section of craigslist.

AF: Who do you consider your greatest influences? Greatest music guilty pleasures? 

Greatest influence: Sexbruise?

Guiltiest music pleasure: listening to DJ Khaled while cat-fishing senior citizens on Facebook

AF: Do you ever find it hard not to take yourself too seriously in the studio? What’s the best remedy when you’re feeling creatively stuck? 

Since all of our songs are platinum hits, it’s pretty easy to get in the studio and just think about how rich they are going to make us. We also like to think our lyrics really touch the hearts of tens of people all over the world, including three in Brazil.

We usually manage to write 99% of each song in under five minutes and then spend weeks finalizing the last 1%. Recording is a process that can make anyone sick of their own songs, but it’s even worse when all of your lyrics are incredibly good/stupid.

AF: You’ve got a brand new video that dropped September 8th called “Party in the 80’s.” Can you tell us a bit about the production process? Did you have an idea of what you wanted the video to look like, or did you just roll with it?

We collaborated with our good friends at Seamless Productions to make what some people are calling “The Greatest Video of Our Generation.” We had a general concept in mind – us being on a yacht, looking super dope, etc. – but Barret and Kyle at Seamless productions really took it to another level. It looks more dope than we could ever have imagined. Shooting Will “Evan Williams” 80’s guitar solo on the yacht using leaf blowers was so funny that we struggled to not pee ourselves behind the cameras. Bottom line, it’s worth the 4:20 to watch it.

AF: Julie, you recently released a single called “88,” and you sing about wishing it was ’83 in “Party in the 80’s.” Is it purely coincidental, or is there some serious nostalgia going on? If you could go back to the ’80s, would you?

I think most people these days wish we could time travel, between the Amazon burning and the large child in the White House. So maybe the ’80s wouldn’t be too bad of a place; there was cocaine everywhere, and no one seemed to have an issue with it. Simpler times. But I do think people are trying to reach back to recall times where the impending apocalyptic doom seemed further off.

AF: You’re based between Atlanta, GA and Charleston, SC. What’s it like to be in a band that’s split between two cities? Do you find one city more conducive to a creative environment?

With J-Dolla-Sign being in Atlanta, it can make writing hits a longer process (almost 6 minutes), but thanks to the internet, we are able to have “Virtual Conference Calls” every week or so to make sure we stay on track. We also have THE most lit text group/conversation anyone has witnessed, where we toss out ideas, make fun of each other, and tell each other how much we love one another (D’aawwwww). The ‘Bruise? can generate hits in any city, whether it’s Atlanta, Charleston, or North Korea. Even though more travel is involved due to the band being in two cities at the moment, we are actually on a roll – DJ Khaled just screamed his name at the beginning of one of the tracks on “Real Gold,” which is impressive.

AF: You market yourself as a “fake” band despite having thousands of followers. You’ve made pancakes on stage (yum), brought out dancers in animal costumes, and hired fake demonstrators to protest your shows. I love it! It’s so gutsy. Do you guys ever come up with an idea and say, “No way, that’s too far”? 

Look, we are real, and we have real likes, okay. We push the limits, and no idea is too far. That’s the whole premise of the band. “Guys, what if we made piña coladas on stage while we played a terrible cover of “Escape (The Piña Colada Song)”?” The answer is YES. “What if we made mayonnaise sexy?” YES.

The fact is, John “Bitcoin” Pope wanted to have a recording of DJ Khaled yelling his own name at the beginning of every song on our new album. He got talked down to just one (“The Weather Channel”).

We also started writing a song called “fuck your festival” after being turned down from a venue for not being family-friendly enough. That one may never see daylight… but you never know.

AF: What do you hope your audience takes away from a Sexbruise? show? 

We want to immerse people in a musical experience where they can hopefully lose their own inhibitions and insecurities by watching a bunch of lunatics dance around and throw snacks. Essentially we just want to have a giant party where people are entertained 100% of the time, and we think we are achieving it. Our fans are awesome and a big reason we keep doing this.

AF: Now, for the question everyone is dying to know the answer to. When is Sexbruise? playing a show in Atlanta? And will there be pancakes? 

We’ve actually played a number of secret shows in Atlanta, but we are working with some very famous promoters to put together something open to the public. We have literally tens of fans in Atlanta, and we have to give them what they are asking for. While pancakes are fun, we’ve been trying to move towards a “braised short rib and scalloped potatoes” direction lately.

If any Atlanta bands are down with the ‘Bruise? they should hit us up and we’ll put something together. Send inquiries to sexbruisemusic@gmail.com plz.

Keep up with the world’s greatest future band on Facebook, and stream their brand new EP, Real Gold, on Spotify now.