Dead Conspiracy is back with a brand new awesome death metal release and here is an interview with band member Eric and Chris and Mike. I am not going to go through the whole band history as if they want to read all about that they can go read an interview I did with them a few years back at www.metalcorefanzine.com/dc.html
So looking back how do you view your Gore Drenched Legacy compilation that came out in 2006? Is it still for sale?
Eric D.: This was a very cool thing for us. Primarily because it was the idea of Don/Nunslaughter. He made that happen. HHR did a limited run with it and it has been sold out for years. You can find copies on the internet though. Overall, I wasn’t happy with the mix though. We later found the original recording of the 87 demo and released it mastered for vinyl on Side B of the Abomination Underground LP.
Now in 2013 you released an Ep called “Abomination Underground” followed by a full length by the same name later on that same year. Why did you release an Ep first and then a full length? Are there any different songs on the Ep that aren’t on the full length?
Eric: The EP was our first recording after getting back together. We were super happy with the writing process so we ran right into the studio. The EP had a re-recording of an old tune called Carnage. That tune didn’t go on the LP. The LP did have another new tune called Rites Of The Ululatus. As I mentioned earlier, Side B has the full 1987 demo mastered for vinyl.
Now how did the coming all together of the songs for this above release come together? Was it easy to write songs? Do you have to be in a certain mood to write songs?
Chris: Well, the first songs I wrote for the album were “Crawling Dread” and “Cruelty Though Ripping Tortue”. Both were pretty much written on the spot at band practice. I had the slow intro riff to “Vultures Feeding” just waiting for a few years. I think I drove the band fucking crazy writing that one! hahaha! Some songs, we collaborate, which is always best in my opinion, more fun, one doesn’t feel like such a dictator. Eric A brought “Blood Everywhere” and “Paralyzed With Terror” when he joined. We had a band called Religious War in the late ‘90’s, he wrote some great songs then too. Songwriting overall can be a long process (good mood) or right in the moment (bad mood). I got to say, our vocalist on this album, Mike Abominator, did a helluva job, man. His words, song titles and voice delivery are terrifying!
(note: the answer was actually regarding the newest LP)
How was the response to this release now that it has been out a few years now? Looking back are you pretty much happy with it? Do you have any idea how many copies it sold?
Eric D. We are happy with the LP for sure. Not sure of total numbers with combination of digital and physical sales. I wish people bought more physical LP’s like they did in the old days but so be it.
Now in 2015 you released a single called “Cruelty Through Ripping Torture”. Why just a single or was this a 7”? How was the response to this single and how quickly did the songs for this single come together?
Chris: Well now that you mention it, “Cruelty…” was written a few years ago. We had just replaced our vocalist, Brian Chainey, with Marco Destructor. We had some music from the session we recorded “Rites Of The Ululatus’” on, with no vocals. I came up with the title and Marco wrote the lyrics. We put it out there in the stratosphere just for the hell of it.
Is it pretty much easy for you to go into the studio and record nowadays?
Eric D. Yeah, the studio is super comfortable for us these days. We have been recording with DC and other bands since 86 so it’s like a second home.
Now how much time is spent doing band related stuff? Do you practice much in any given week?
Eric A: Right now, a lot of time is spent doing band related stuff. Promoting the new LP, on the bands own label, Necromantic Press. The cassette tape release on Exile Musick. The Brazilian cd release is next... As far as rehearsals? Dead Conspiracy gather in the rock dungeon as often as possible. I can't tell you which days we meet, otherwise I would have to kill you;}
Now you recently released a self-titled release called “Dead Conspiracy”. How did this release come together and why did you not title this release?
Eric A: This is Dead Conspiracy's first full length LP release with all new material, that is why it is self titled. The first full length LP, "Abomination Underground" 2014 Necromantic press, featured four brand new slabs of metal on side A, and, five tracks from the '87 demo on side B. We thought of many possible titles for this new LP, "Dead Conspiracy/Dead Conspiracy", made the most sense.
Why did you release this on your own and not on a label? Did you even shop it?
Eric D. In the 80’s I had a fanzine called Necromantic Press. I decided to take the name and form my own label. Outside of music, sales and marketing are what I do for a living so it made sense to go that route.
So how do you plan on promoting this release? Did you print up many actual copies of the CD?
Eric D. We have the masters at Clawhammer PR on our side for promotion! For this release 500 copies were printed on vinyl by Necromantic Press, 100 hand numbered cassettes were released by Exile Musick and 1000 copies are currently in production at Funeral Rites Records in Brazil. We will have some of these available in the states by early 2017. Other than that, a lot of the sales are digital via bandcamp, amazon, itunes etc.
How different is it for you with the way things work as people or underground fans and just music people in general don’t want to pay for music. How would you feel if you say your whole album uploaded on You Tube?
Eric A: The metal underground will never say die, industry trends will come and go. You can find all nine tracks of ,"Dead Conspiracy/Dead Conspiracy", fully uploaded to You Tube, via Cd Baby.
So what lyric subjects do you like to write about and where do you get your ideas from?
Mike A. : For this Dead Conspiracy album, I dug deep into my archives of terror to scribe the rantings that ended up being the lyrics to these songs. This band slays some ancient thrashing death metal, so the topics needed to be of a dark and evil nature . The music was all set by the time I did my part down here in Los Angeles. So I let the songs guide me as far as where I took the lyrics. For the most part, I just used my imagination and wrote down what came out once I had certain thoughts in my head. Some of the songs were just random things that appeared in my mind, imagining myself going through something, as with songs like "Paralyzed with Terror" or "Blood Everywhere". But I also might have a specific subject in mind to write about, like with "In the Wake of the Butcher" which is about the old Cleveland "Torso Murders" of the 1930s. But over all, again, this is death metal, so it's not fancy poetry. I like to keep the tradition of death, doom and destruction going as far as topics go. There are always plenty of areas of those topics to cover as well!
So how is the underground music scene these days where the band is based out of?
Chris: Portland? Fuck, there are a lot of great bands- Raptor, Uada, Long Knife, Sarcologos, Panzergod, Rotting Slab, Reactor….plus, we have great underground labels such as Exile Musick, Headsplit Records and Black Water Records! We’ll be co-headlining Famine Fest 4 here with Nasty Savage!
How would you compare your early stuff to the stuff you’re releasing these days?
Chris: Our ‘87 demo was recorded on a 8-track reel-to-reel, a shoestring budget and some crappy gear. I always crack up during the part of the film “Until the Light Takes Us” where Varg is talking about recording the first Burzum album and getting that “Necro-sound.” You know, because people ask us, “how did you get that cold, grim sound?” I was playing a BC Rich NJ Series Mockingbird through a totally crappy Crate 2 x 12 combo-amp with a DOD Distortion pedal! Now that’s necro. Jason Neikes, our other guitar player at the time, had a nice Crate half-stack and some kind of Kramer guitar, I always loved his sound on the intro to “Cessations” just complete, cosmic distortion, man. Anyways, that ‘87 demo is what defines our past. Anything we did from 88-90 was interesting, yes?, but not great. Now, we have returned and I think the songs we write now hold up. We are older dudes, so your gonna get that old school delivery. Death Metal in its rawest form! Overdriven Rock’n’Roll.
Does it in some ways amaze you that the band is still alive after 30 years even though you had a big break in between?
Chris: Big break? Bahaha! I never stopped rockin’, man. When DC ended, I went back to playing PUNK! All through the ‘90’s and 2000’s. Let’s see, I was in few bands with Eric A; Defiance and Religious War. I have been the bassist of Poison Idea for a while now. I have recorded with original Dead Conspiracy vocalist Mark Murphy (aka Frankie Delmane) in a band called the Injections. A few of those songs are in some indie-horror films from 531 Productions out of Eugene, Oregon. One is called ‘Melvin’ and the other is “Killing Me”. They are awesome movies and the soundtracks ROCK! 30 years ago, we would make our own home movies with Gary Shaw’s cam-corder. Haha! So yeah, it’s really fuckin’ cool to be able to play those old songs again. We were just kids back then.
Do you feel there is way too many bands and labels these days?
Mike A. : Yes. But I really don't care or let it effect me one way or another. I try and pay attention to what I like and also keep my circle of friends and support on the "same page" so to speak. Trying to get wrapped up in what's going on out there in "the scene", it will just drive you crazy. I have no control over what people follow, listen to, support. Everything is over hyped and the underground has been over saturated with bands and labels for years now. The "big guy" labels still put out garbage for the most part, with some rare exceptions of course. This hasn't changed much in the last few years. The REAL stuff will always stand the test of time and rise to the top. Those with the heart and conviction will last, as doing this isn't as easy as some people think it is. In the end, Joe Blow from Titainic Shit Records might think that his roster of bands is the best thing since sliced bread and that he is a genius and making the world a better place by sharing his label with everyone. I might think Joe is an idiot and his bands suck ass. But who cares. People will do their own thing regardless of what I think. ALSO I might add that there are PLENTY of totally KILLER new bands and labels popping up! So it's all a matter of taste. OF COURSE the old days are the best! But the new days that are here have some killer aspects about them too. Not just negative. I still love finding new bands and labels to listen to and support. So there is the good and the bad with this topic.
Please plug any websites you have.
Facebook, Bandcamp, Ash Music Management/booking
Horns up for doing this interview, any last words to wrap this up?
Eric D. Horns up Chris!! You have been part of the bedrock of the scene since the early days and Dead Conspiracy are honored to be in Pest webzine!! Keep it up man!!!!
Interview by Chris Forbes