interview with Ex Dementia

Mina intervjuer / Permalink / 0
What made you call the band "Ex Dementia"? Our first working-name was "Horrified" (in tribute to the classic Repulsion record). But then within a whole 2 minutes of Googling, we saw that there was already a band called "Horrified". Jon, our original vocalist and co-founding member, had really just came up with "Ex Dementia" on the spot. It was almost a blessing, because we didn't want to be looked at as a Repulsion cover band. We love Repulsion with all our rotting guts, but we're NOT a Repulsion cover band.
How was the band formed? I swear, there were about 5 "bands" that we formed prior to Ex Dementia. Most of which never made it past the drawing of a logo (hence why I quoted "bands"). But I would say Ex Dementia spawned from a band Jon had formed before I was in the picture, and they were called Bleeding Flatulence. I joined that band and it lasted for a while, but then it kind of fell apart, and we formed "Ex Dementia".
Where are all band members from?/Who does what in the band? The band, as it stands now, is just 2 members. We are currently in a transitional state. Our guitarist started a new career and is not really able to continue with EXD. Which is unforuntate, but we wish him luck. Even though... A career is temporary, DEATH IS FOREVER.
What was the ambitions of the band when you started? There are so many ambitions with forming a band. With us (or me, at least), it's a 50/50 type deal. And by that, I mean I do this 50% for me and 50% for other people. And I say "other people" because when you start a band, you have ZERO fans. Once you gain those fans, I think the percentage skews a bit. You try to appease them a little more due to the feedback you've received. Either that, or free beer.
Where was your first gig? Our first gig was at The Khyber in Philadelphia. Honestly, you couldn't have asked for a better first fucking gig. We played with 4 GREAT bands. Rue, Graves At Sea, Splatterhouse and Machetazo! I was 15 at the time and got some drink tickets. As long as there was a tip on the bar, the beer kept flowing. On top of all of that, the place was packed.
Where was the latest gig? Our last gig was at Saint Vitus Bar in New York about a year and a half ago. It's a bar/venue that is gaining a lot of traction lately, and deservedly so. They're fucking rad. Great atmosphere, a nice intiment setting, and... A framed King Diamond backpatch at the bar.
Who writes your songs?/Who writes the music who writes lyrics? It's typically a group effort. I know a lot of bands have one brain and 2 or 3 bodies who just play the instruments. Not with us. Our previous guitarist Chris would typically write most of the riffs, but even that process is collabrative. Sometimes I hear a riff in my head, and since Im not a guitarist, I would hum it to him and he would translate it to guitar. As far as lyrics go, our old vocalist Jon usually took care of them. But since he left, I wrote the lyrics on the past two releases.
Who has the best since of humor in the band? We're all on the same level, really. I mean, we all equally find I Am Sam funny.
Have you made any albums?/If yes what are they? We have 3 releases. 2 Albums and 1 EP. We have a long-gestating EP in the works called "Crack the Coffin". Everything but the recording is complete. Hell, even the cover art has been finished and released! We just hit a snag in the road with our guitarist exiting the band. I suppose we should get off our fucking asses and record it, huh?
Do you have any clips on YouTube? Of course we have clips on PubeTube! Oh wait, YouTube? We have clips on there too. We even have a channel on there (howabout that?!).
How old are you?/What got you started in music? I am 24. And I believe KISS got me listening to bands. As a child I didnt listen to many bands. Mostly movie scores. But when KISS was exposed to me, I was obsessed. It wasn't until I found out about Alice Cooper, that I really appreciated real music. And by the time I accepted Alice Cooper over KISS, that's when I felt the urge to become musically active, in terms of playing an instrument.
At what age did you start playing? However old you are in 7th or 8th grade is when I started playing. Im honestly too drunk and lazy to do the math at the moment.
What year was the band started? The band (under the Ex Dementia moniker) was formed in 2005.
What has been the best/most promising gig so far? We've had our share of horrendous shows, and great shows. Some have been bitter-sweet (great turn-outs, awful shows and awful turn-outs, but fun times). I'll tell you who the best promoter to work with is, and that's Vinny from Signature Riff. He treats every band that he works with with immense respect and gives them great treatment. The only thing, you cant be a gang of shitheads. And if you are, you don't deserve that treatment. We've only played 2 of the shows he's put on, but each time he has treated us so fucking well.
What are the plans for the rest of the year? In terms of the rest of the year (the remaining 14 days), not a single fucking thing aside from laying naked in my bed with my officially licensed Braveheart sword that I bought on eBay. But in terms of the new year, we're going to go full-force with recruiting a new guitarist, releasing "Crack the Coffin" and hopefully doing a slew of live shows.
When do you usually play? Usually, we like to only play every couple months. That way, it keeps us hungry to play live. I can respect and appreciate bands that like to play every weekend, but when you have a 2 or 3-month interval, it just feels more fresh. And on top of that, you're not oversaturating the music scene.
Is it easier to get your inspiration from older bands or from bands more modern? A lot of both to be honest. Some of the first bands I actually got into were newer bands influenced by older bands. Two of which are Impaled and Engorged. The two of the bands, respectfully take elements of Carcass, Dismember, Anthrax, Megadeth, and a slew of other classic bands, but all the while managed to formulate their own sound. And Im happy to say members of those bands have become big brother-types to me. The kicker is that members of the bands who influenced us and influenced them have all been guests on our album "The Red Mass".
What's the first step when making a new song? A lot of the time, I'll write the lyrics first. And from there, we'll decipher where the song should go judging from either the subject matter or vocal pattern. And then sometimes we would jam out, sift out the best riffs of the hour and build around them. Most of the time, it's a very natural process. It's never meticulous.
How do you feel about the downloading of music instead of buying albums? I'll just copy/paste what I posted on our website a while back since it relates directly to this question: "Downloading. It's a blessing, and a curse. You download an album because you're curious. Okay. You download an album because you've been dying to hear it, and it leaked on the internet. Okay. You download an album because you were disappointed with the last release of said band. Okay. You download a CD because you just dont want to waste your money. Not okay. Think about it like this, you dont feel like wasting your money on a CD that you already downloaded and liked/loved. That's basically saying to the band that you love, "You guys are great and I love your music... Keep on spending the money to record tunes for me while I continue to refuse to give you a dime! METAL!". That is EXACTLY what is happening. Now Im going to clear a few things up so that I can cover all the bases of downloading. Some good, mostly bad. First off, the good. So cash is tight for everyone these days. And to be honest, I cant remember a time where it wasn't. Recession or not. And nothing is better than downloading an album, only to find out that it sucks. Wow, $10 saved. It's a good feeling. And I think it's perfectly fine to download something, find out it sucks, and not buy the CD. If you dont like it, then why should you? I mean, you dont support something because you feel obligated to. If you dont like it, dont support it. But what if it is good? And what if you want to hear more music from that band? How do you think bands write and record that music? There's something they call "currency". Cash is what makes it possible to write, record and release the tunes you oh so love! So why not support it financially? Okay, you're struggling to pay rent, car insurance, and live day by day. COMPLETELY understandable. But for a lot of people, music is a release. And if it's good enough (by your standards), you should buy it. Afterall, it might end up making a shitty day better. That translates to... Being worth it.
Now in case you're confused as to how the cycle works. Here you go again:
1. Band X invests $1000 into writing, recording and releasing. 2. 50% of the fans buy the CD and 50% of the "fans" download the CD. 3. Band X makes $500 in CD sales... Band X loses $500 from their pockets. 4. Band X breaks up. 5. 50% of the fans are upset they get no more releases from Band X. 6. 50% of the "fans" wonder why they get no more releases from Band X.
That's pretty simple, right? It should be. Because it is. What ISN'T simple is trying to convince lazy/selfish people that downloading and ONLY downloading pretty much cleans the artists pockets dry, when they're only trying create good music for people. Now whether it's good or not, that's a different story. But what matters here is that people are trying. And whether they suck or not, as long as they strive to make good music, they deserve some credit... As well as some of their money back. Almost 30 years ago, there was a little system called tape-trading. You've all heard of it. And through tape-trading came some of the best exposure you could ever get. One tape is sent to this state, then from that state to this country, so on and so forth. Before you knew it, your music was where it needed to be. In the ears of a true, full on metal head! And what's sad is that today, given the technology and networking we have available to us, bands should be making the money they deserve. But unfortunately, with technology and networking comes downloading. And downloading (90% of the time) is a blade to the throat of a band. If I were a betting man, I would bet that 60% of people would rather buy and shirt than a CD, due to them already downloading the CD. Now if you're buying a shirt, that means you must like the band enough to wear their colors, so to speak. But their shirts aren't what they spent 6 months to a year creating. It's their music they want you to buy. It's their music they're proud of. Yes, it's great to have radical shirts. And it's great that people buy shirts to support the band. But why do they buy the shirts?... Because they can't download them. And if they could, they would. And when I refer to "they", Im referring to people who have basically already decided, "Im never buying a CD again, thanks to the internet.". Very sad...
If you have read this far, you know what you should be doing. And no, I dont mean buy every CD from every local or underground band. No! If you think they suck, fuck 'em! But if you enjoy their music, I urge you, PLEASE support them with not only feedback, but financially. If every band can make their money back, great! But if every band can make a profit, it's even better. Because when you make a profit from something so creative as music, you want to invest that money into either more music, shirts, pins, stickers, ANYTHING that can keep your band thriving! And to speak personally. Having helped form this band, and currently working on our fourth release, we're hoping we can rebound from our last release. It got great reviews, great reception from all our fans, but since downloading is at such a high rate, it really hurt us financially. My sole reason for writing this wasn't because of our sales, but a slew of our other friend's bands. When I heard how bad shape some them were in, THAT'S when I decided to TRY and open people's eyes.
So please, save Rapdishare for the next Morbid Angel.
- Branden, Ex Dementia"
What would be your dreams for the band? I once watched an interview with Bobby Blitz from Overkill, and he basically said that he always wanted to be at a point in his musical career where he could be financially comfortable. And I would love to arrive at that point. To be Metallica? No. Just at the point of not having to worry about income. Do I think it will ever happen? Absolutely not.
Besides your own music, what genres and bands do you listen to? 80% of the time Im either listening to Alice Cooper, Megadeth or Manowar.
What do you hold most dear? It's a tie between my Rambo/Expendables knives and my Braveheart sword.
What would be your greatest fears for the future? Sharks.
When you are on stage, what do you fear most then? Obviously fucking up. But even then Im too drunk to care. I remember our first show, I thought I was going to be so nervous. And I was. All up until the end of the first song. I didn't fuck anything up. And from that point on, I never got nervous at a show again.
Have you been part of any other projects? No. Im one of those people where if Im reading a novel, I cant read another novel until Im finished with the first. And I look at being in a band the same way. Id much rather have one band being 100% than two bands being 50% each. Im not saying members withs multiple projects are all like that. That's just not how I operate.
What would you do if there was no music? Drink less, live longer and probably smoke crack.
How important are your fans? As far as ANY band is concerned, your fans ARE the band. Whatever little or big money you make is from them. To quote another legend in the music industry, Alice Cooper once said (and Im paraphrasing) that it's the fans that made you who you are. Do not deny them no matter how inconvenient the time may be. You owe them in a way.
What's the funniest/most memorable thing a fan has done for you? I remember at our first show, we had met this couple that were already fans of us. They picked up our demo at The Relapse Store (R.I.P.) in Philadelphia, came to the show, bought shirts and wanted autographs and pictures. Now keep in mind that I was 15, and they were mid-30's. And completely genuine, by the way. I still see the one guy every so often. Here is Q&A. And the promo photo is attached.
What do you feel is the best liveband you've seen? ALICE. COOPER.
Do you have any webpages?
Any pearls of wisdom for all other bands out there? Be as professional as possible.
Would you like to add anything else? A large fry and 2 apple pies.
Describe your show, visually and musically Blood, noise and more blood. And if you're lucky, some music.
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