Del Judas is the new solo incarnation of Brooklyn musician Charlie Schmid, known for his work as a drummer in bands such as Vaura and Tombs. Under the Del Judas name, Schmid launches an entirely new persona: singer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist. On debut album Deity, Del Judas’ sound is dark, lush, and romantic, owning a space where ghostly Americana brushes up against post-punk.

Del Judas’ debut album Deity comes out July 13th on Primal Architecture, the label owned by Josh Strawn of Azar Swan, Vaura, Vain Warr, Blacklist. The record release show is on July 12th at Saint Vitus, Brooklyn, NY with Bootblacks.

We asked Charlie about the 3 records that have influenced him the most…

Gillian Welch – Hell Among the Yearlings

When I first heard this masterpiece of a record, I was just starting off at conservatory and was supposed to be focusing on composers like Beethoven, Cage, and Stravinsky but nothing else could satisfy my craving for this kind of music. I grew up in the Baptist community and always had a foot in the country/gospel school, but never on my terms. Gillian Welch and Dave Rawlings’ raw, unapologetic lyrics invoking southern folklore and mysticism captured my imagination. Who was she, why did she sing this way, and what was she REALLY singing about? I examined every lyric, every note, and came to the conclusion that Gillian Welch was from another place in time. I wanted to go there, I wanted to tell those stories, I had a connection with that time and place — only I was about to go on a 4-year journey through music as a science and not an art…

Chris Isaak – Silvertone

I was just 5 years old when this record came out, but I can recall one extremely fond memory of riding with my father in his Mac truck and hearing this (and Cosmos Factory; probably the only two tapes my father owned) playing on a Sony single speaker boombox hanging from the dash by a small piece of bailing string. The soft and kindly way Chris Isaak sings always took me by surprise, like an off-duty preacher that has another tale to tell, a lost testament of sorts. I can still feel the drums pounding through on ‘Voodoo’ and thinking, “Do people really perform rituals to get lovers back?” Later, my dad and I would sit around playing ‘Dancing’ and ‘Livin’ for your Lover’ — he on the guitar and me on the drums. We never had any money, and we never really needed any, just a few good tapes.

Queensrÿche – Rage For Order

What can I say about this record that hasn’t shone through in my drumming, phrasing, and even singing? Rage For Order got me through middle and high school, and it made me want to play in a band more than anything. The marriage of synths and hair metal guitar and vocals hurtle into other galaxies, but simultaneously manage to come across as if 4 goth kids went to Juilliard. I can’t get enough of these songs. Sexy, seductive, charismatic. I sometimes think that Vaura was a vehicle for some if not all of what this record represents (or at least that’s what I tell myself). I can list my fave songs off Rage For Order, but it wouldn’t do it justice. I prefer one listening straight through the album front to back, then repeat, then repeat.

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