Death Follows Daybreak
This interview was done with Matt and Dave from the Metallic-Hardcore band, Death Follows Daybreak on Nov.26, 2003. These guys provide an excellent, honest hardcore show with all the passion of the mega-shows of yesteryear and the creativity of pushing progression on and on. Do yourself a favor and get to their shows. You will find your time well spent.
When did DFD form? Have you always had this current lineup?
Well, we have only been under the title Death Follows Daybreak since July 03', when we recorded the last album, but our roots stem back to probably 1998 when we were known as prototype7. The lineup has changed since 1998, including a different bass player and an added guitarist.
So why did you guys change the name from Prototype7 to DFD?
Upon recording the last album this summer, we decided that, with a bit of a new sound and a better live show, it was time for a change. The name Death Follows Daybreak was just randomly picked by throwing darts at a dictionary three consecutive times.
All right, so is this album out now? Was it released independently or is there a label attached to it?
As it stands, the new album, The Serenity of a Shattered Spine, is only available as a promotional tour cd, which will be available during our upcoming tour. We have been in communication with a few record labels, but there is nothing definite as of now regarding a true release date. We hope to have it out in complete form soon after tour, either independently or on a label.
Awesome. When is the tour? Do you guys like being on the road?
The tour is going to be from December 12th through the 20th, and we will be hitting Ohio, Kentucky, Tennesse, Georgia, North Carolina, and Virginia. As far as liking being on the road... We'll get back to you. This is really our first time out.
Describe DFD sound in 5 words or less.
MEGA-TON COCK ROCK METALCORE DESTRUCTION
Oh shoot. Well then, what do you like to see happening at your shows? Is the crowds participation important to what is going on when you play?
Crowd participation (dancing, not NU-metal maggot-mosh!) is without a doubt the most important thing for us related to the live show. We like to see something along the lines of a prison riot each time we play. DFD feeds off of the crowds energy, which usually leaves at least one of us with an injury of some sort after a show.
Man, well good luck on tour then, I hope there are to many injuries. What is the wildest thing that has happened at one of your shows?
I would say one of the most memorable moments was as follows.... Upon playing the last song of our set, which happens to have a mega-ton breakdown at the end, Dave summoned the crowd to split into two sides and reenact the civil war. This then being a variation of the well-known, conventional "wall-of-death" technique. Or having the Pittsburgh Kill Team (PKT) dancing ever so violently for us in the basement of some guys house (that just so happened to have a 5 foot ceiling) in IUP.
That would be nuts! So what do you guys sing about? Is it political, spiritual, personal?
We believe that bands should sing about whatever they feel passionately about. We feel passionately about our religion, Christianity.... and why shouldn't we if we truly believe in what it is all about. So, as you can imagine, most of our songs lyrically reflect this, although a few are just about other "cuts of life" that effect us all every day.
So let me ask this. Does your lyrical content or the creative musical aspect of the band mean more and I can explain. There is this real tendency for polictical/spirtual bands to present themselves like this. "We are a Christian band, buy our album." Or we are a Vegan band, a Anarchist Band, a Straight-Edge band" Buy our Album. Then it just smells of the fact that these bands are selling an ideology and not their musical/artistic/creative production. And kids start getting it ingrained in their heads that, I'm a Vegan, therefore I have to like such and such a band. Or I'm a Christian. Therefore I need to buy such and such a band. (Wow...that was long winded sorry.)
While obviously our faith is more important to us than any music, any performance, or any amount of money, many people who will go to our shows will leave without knowing that we even have a message. The last thing that we want is to make people feel pressured by our beliefs. The content is there if the person wants it.... it's in our lyrics, and in our hearts if they care to speak with us about it. Our main objective, as a band, is to have fun at our shows, and to make sure that those who paid money to see us perform have just as much fun as us. Either way you look at it, it is probably better for your average teenager to go to a hardcore show on a Saturday night than to spend their time doing a lot of the things available to them these days.
Yeah, definitely, and I do need to clarify. Part of what makes a hardcore band what is, is that they will sing about what they passionately believe and not just what everyone is swallowing up in pop culture. So there has to be that balance.
We would also like to make clear that we have all of the respect in the world for Christian bands who choose to vocalize their message when they are on stage. The world needs bands with the courage to do this. While we feel this is great, we understand that it is just not the part that our band plays in the scene.
Cool...What do you think is the biggest misconception people have of DFD?
Awesome question, really, but the only thing that we can really think of is that many people still consider us prototype7, which is a taboo among the band members... haha.
Ok. Fair enough. Let's talk about you two personally a little. How did you guys first get involved in Hardcore?
(Dave speaking) - My first show was a Blindside show at the Days Inn in Butler. The first real hardcore band that I saw that night was actually Chapter. That night was really the first time that I had ever experienced the intensity of a live hardcore show. As I attended more and more shows, I was really drawn in by the feeling of communtiy that could be found there.
(Matt speaking) Really Dave is mostly responsible for my listening to this type of music. Back in high school, he was able to pull me away from the Beastie Boys long enough to get me to come to a few local shows. I then proceeded to spend four years of my life in Erie, PA (the Hardcore capital of PA) where I cultivated my taste for heavy music by going to shows almost every weekend.
Ok...Well it is well know that every band member brings their own influences into a band so what/who influenced you two towards the sound you've created in DFD. You know, musically.
Our earlier stuff was what you could consider a more straight-up hardcore sound influenced heavily by band such as xDisciplex and Snapcase. Over the last couple of years, however, our sound has morphed a bit. Due to certain members of the band concentrating their music listening heavily upon the sounds of the greater Scandinavian area of the world, we have added a bit of a euro death metal feel into the mix. We are, however, very adamant about retaining the destructive heaviness that we have always had. Current musical influences include anything from In Flames and Children of Bodom to Norma Jean and Every Time I Die.
Outside of the band? What do you guys do? Do you have jobs? Married?
Dave.... married, full-time job as assistant golf professional and golf shop manager at Treesdale Country Club Matt.... single looking to mingle, graduate school at Pitt for Mechanical Engineering, soon-to-be full time job at Ansys, Inc. John.... single looking to mingle, student at La Roche college, best online gamer / pizza delivery boy in the nation Steve... taken, student at La Roche college, marketing major Jeff.... taken, student at Robert Morris University, unsure of actual major
So all college age and plus. Now, bear with me...but what age would you say the average kid at your shows are?
Approximately 17.9342 years old.... according to our calculations.
Yeah, I'd probably agree. Why do you think there is that drastic drop off once Hardcore/Punk Rock kids hit that college age?
Probably for a couple of reasons.... First of all, when kids attend college, they often get caught up in a lot of things that could potentially leave hardcore out of the picture. Classes, jobs, and even serious relationships with girlfriends (or marriages) can have the potential to overtake the persons urge to regularly attend shows, but for some, the few, the proud.... hardcore is at a higher priority on their list, it is a way of life, not just a style of music. I don't think you'll ever completely get rid of these people.
Haha...yeah yeah...The few, the proud...so true, and I think you are right. I don't know if hardcore will get rid of those people, because they love hardcore for what it is. Not just a fashion trend or to walk up that social ladder of acceptance. So do you ever have a disconnected feeling when you are playing for kids in High School or is that what you feed off of. It is obvious there is a youthful idealism and I'll acknowledge that, but there is something just true and real about youth movements. Do you associate with that or what is it that keeps you involved?
I wouldn't say that any feelings of disconnection between us and the crowd we play for stem from their age. If there is such a feeling, it may be because a certain crowd might not be getting into the music (sometimes we do shows out of our genre which can result in this). What keeps us involved is our sheer love for hardcore, performing live, and meeting new friends. We would like to welcome anyone at any show we play to talk with us about anything, we would love to continue making friends with those we have played for/with.
Well said. Listen, I've eaten up a lot of your time this evening. You guys are an awesome band. I can't wait to really listen to the new CD. Umm...do you guys have anything you want to leave us with?
First we'd like to thank you, Neil, for giving us this opportunity. You have been a great friend of the band, and have proved to be a terrific interviewer as well. The best of luck to your zine. If anyone would like to contact us for any reason, we can be reached for booking or general comment at firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, if you have a few minutes, come check us out on the web at www.deathfollowsdaybreak.com. God bless and keep rock'n out.
All right guys. God Bless!