Aymen Trouble – Vocals / Guitar
Miguel Ceja – Lead Guitar
Ryan Casstevens – Drums
Jared Casstevens – Bass / Vocals
In late 2000 San Francisco’s Dexter Danger hit the ground running with a D.I.Y. ethic unmatched by bands in the Bay Area local music scene. Self-booked and self-managed, Dexter Danger kickstarted their career utilizing creative Internet networking techniques to gather a vast local fan base, while leading a barrage of guerrilla promotion around the Bay Area. The band’s dedicated efforts led to sold out concerts at all ages venues and youth centers across northern California. Averaging over 100 shows a year in the Bay Area and across the United States between 2000 and 2006, and gaining an ever-growing loyal fanbase, Dexter Danger became a force in the underground pop punk scene.
Dexter Danger’s live performances gained an honorable reputation among prominent promoters in the Bay Area, and soon after they were invited to perform at prominent San Francisco Bay Area clubs and venues such as Slim’s, The Great American Music Hall, 924 Gilman Street, and Bottom of the Hill.
As word of mouth about Dexter Danger spread across not only the Bay Area, but also around the United States, Drive-Thru Records (New Found Glory, Fenix TX, Something Corporate) invited Dexter Danger to perform on the Drive-Thru Records stage on the Vans Warped Tour in 2002. Drive-Thru’s admiration for the band also led Dexter Danger to appear on various Drive-Thru compilation CDs and DVDs.
Throughout the group’s career, they have proven to be relentless about playing shows and touring. Dexter Danger has regularly shared the stage with top acts in the pop punk genre including The Aquabats, Yellowcard, Rx Bandits, Tsunami Bomb, Home Grown, The Suicide Machines, and Audio Karate; and since their formation, the band toured the United States on eight separate occasions, leaving a trail of fire behind every mile driven, and every show played – all the while keeping their D.I.Y. mentality in full swing.
The group’s fiery D.I.Y. spirit is captured earliest by Dexter Danger’s first two albums – an EP entitled “It’s Not Pretty Being Easy,” and their debut full length album “Forever Broken,” which were both produced by Andy Ernst (Green Day, Rancid, AFI). As the band’s buzz was ringing loudly, the tracks “Access Denied,” “Lose It All,” and “The Second I Asked For,” were making their way onto local as well as national radio.
The buzz was noticed by Bay Area-based independent label, Orange Peal Records, and the group eventually signed a recording contract with the label in March 2003. Orange Peal was eager to set jet packs on Dexter Danger as the group’s popularity and momentum was rising quickly.
In May of 2003, the band worked with Zack Ohren at Castle Ultimate Studios in Oakland, California to record their debut EP for the label. In June and July, Dexter Danger set off on a self-booked west coast tour then made a brief appearance on the 2003 Vans Warped Tour.
The band released the EP “Written In Blood” in September and embarked on their first national tour with label-mates The Berlin Project in October of that same year. Near the end of 2003, the Written In Blood EP was subsequently released in Japan and over one thousand copies of the EP were sold in the first week of its release.
In February of 2004, the band hit the road with Audio Karate (Kung Fu Records) and toured the western and central United States. In April and May, the band joined various artists, including Steel Train (Drive Thru Records), on the Blossoming Media Tour, and played over 60 shows in two months of touring through major cities across the the United States. Dexter Danger received national media attention through various regional publications and were also featured on the True Music series for HDNet programming.
After two major national tours in 2004, the band focused on developing, “Hellafornia,” their second full-length album.
They went back into the studio in January of 2005 to record the new release at Popsmear Studios in San Rafael, CA. The album was recorded by Scott Llamas, produced by Dexter Danger, and mastered by Dominick Maita (Fall Out Boy, Hawthorne Heights, Less Than Jake).
The band took a different approach to their music prior to recording, taking in a variety of influences not particularly familiar to them. As Aymen puts it, “It laid a groundwork for powerful dynamics, energy, and melody that clearly shows throughout Hellafornia. From the time spent writing each song, to bringing the songs to life in the studio, we feel that our time and efforts in creating this album represented Hellafornia better than we ever imagined.” The result was a maturely crafted rock-influenced punk album that will reach out to new fans while keeping the current fans ecstatic.
Immediately after recording, the band went on a spring national tour covering over 30 major cities to warm up for more touring to support the album later in the year. The album was released in June and the group began to hit the road with similar month long stints across the U.S. to support “Hellafornia.” By the end of 2005, although the band had reached an apex in popularity and impact, they were humbled by the response and support of their fans, they felt it was time to let go and focus on family and other personal interests.
The band played a small number of shows before they announced they would have their “last show” at Bottom of the Hill in San Francisco on December 30, 2006. At this point, Dexter Danger would go on hiatus for several years.
Between 2007 and 2010 Aymen and Miguel wrote music and performed as an acoustic duo under the pseudonym Hey Sunshine. They played a series of semi-secret shows at small clubs in the San Francisco Bay Area and their sets consisted of several new songs and occasional covers of Nirvana and The Beatles. According to Aymen, Hey Sunshine gave Dexter Danger’s primary songwriters “an opportunity to work on and perform new material in front of a live audience, stripped-down, in its rawest and purest form.”
Dexter Danger announced their return via their Facebook page on January 25, 2015 and held their 15th anniversary show on May 30, 2015 at Brick & Mortar Music Hall in San Francisco. On September 1, 2015, itcher magazine (UK) named Dexter Danger as one of the top five underrated pop punk bands from the United States.
In the spring of 2016, the group joined engineer Zack Ohren (Written In Blood EP) at Sharkbite Studios in Oakland to record their first musical recordings in over 11 years. Two tracks, “Lucky Strike” and “Hey Sunshine,” were produced and released exclusively via the band’s Bandcamp page on July 27. The group also announced its Sweet Sixteen Anniversary show to be held at Brick & Mortar Music Hall in San Francisco on September 24.