Musicscan: Give our readers a short briefing about Death By Stereo, please. What are you guys doing right at the moment, and what has happened since you played your European tour with Agnostic Front?
Death By Stereo: Well, we just got home from Europe with A.F. and we went straight back out on a short U.S. run. We ended up doing 7 weeks for touring all together. We are now at home rehearsing and getting ready for the release of the new album. We are coming back toEurope this summer!
Musicscan: What has the feedback been like, and how do you remember this tour?
Death By Stereo: The feedback was amazing! We love Agnostic Front and they are family to us. Every day on that tour was great. Every show was 100% pure energy! I think that our bands work well together because we both blur he lines of Hardcore and Punk.
Musicscan: Speaking about the feeling of community: Do you feel that the sense of unity in hardcore/punk is still as strong as it was a decade ago? A lot of bands claim to not be interested in the scene as such anymore. Do you still stick to that scene?
Death By Stereo: We were just in Europe with Agnostic Front and the shows were all packed and positive! The scene looks good to me. I still feel it, I still believe! It feels strong. We don’t claim to be “scene” dudes”, nor do we subscribe to any labels whatsoever, but we still love, embrace, and feel the unity of the punk/HC scene every day of our lives. We still sing about what we believe in and stand up for it. We will until the day we die! DEATH FOR LIFE!
Musicscan: Hardcore/punk has always been an underground genre, but there has been a surge of more mainstream orientated bands and big success for some of them over the years. How would you classify the state of hardcore right now compared to its early days? Where do you think is it going? Do you feel hardcore/punk is losing its edge by having more and more bands with no real political or social stance these days?
Death By Stereo: There is a ton of bands with no stance out there just playing it safe. “Safe” bands have no place in hardcore. That shit is weak. Speak your mind! Stand up for those who can’t stand up for themselves! We have to use this music as a vehicle for self expression and to fight against a world that would so easily have us all destroyed. I don’t necessarily worry so much about the state of hardcore as I do the state of the world. I know that I have to use my voice to stand up. I don’t worry so much about all those bands, I just know what I have to do. We will all be here when they are gone and the trend is over. If you have no stance, then you have nothing to fight for, noting to live for…
Musicscan: Hardcore and punk rock are often told to be somehow youth orientated. Would you agree to this, and how do you make sure to stay young with what you are doing?
Death By Stereo: Well, it is a movement for the outcast youth. That’s how I got into it. We all get older though, but it has not stopped D.B.S. I think hardcore has kept us young! Playing shows every night and raging with our friends has kept us young. You know, even when I was younger I never knew about any of the cool shit and I didn’t care. So I guess not much has changed since then, still doing our own thing. Still don’t care. Hahah
Musicscan: Death By Stereo has always seemed to me to be an underdog band, always maintaining a high level of respect from their peers, though never quite attaining the “commercial success” that the band was due. Would you agree? Where do you see the reasons for it?
Death By Stereo: You know, there is no science to music. Sometimes things happen and sometimes they don’t. It would be amazing to be up there with some of the great bands but it doesn’t change a thing. We are still here, saying and doing what we love. That’s all we need. Some bands just catch a wave and ride it out. We have never been one of those bands, we just always do our own thing. I think it has kept us back a bit but at the same time kept our integrity. We would love for our ideas and our message to reach everyone in the world, sometimes it just takes a while. Hahaha
Musicscan: Are there any principles you would never give up to with Death By Stereo?
Death By Stereo: I will never be afraid to speak my mind and will never bend to the will of the world. We will always do this because we love it and live it. We will always try to speak out and stand up for what we believe in. We truly believe in what we do. What can be said about your attitude towards being a touring band, what fuel your anger? We love being a touring band and feel so lucky to be able to see the world and meet so many amazing people! What fuels our anger? Well, the state of the world and how people are just letting them selves be run over by the right wing. People are way too complacent. Injustice will always fuel our anger. We will fight it at all costs!
Musicscan: After so many years of playing with the band, after all these trends in hardcore, all these bands coming and going – are there still things left to say and worth singing of? What influenced the creation of your new album?
Death By Stereo: There is a lot left to say and a ton of people that need to hear it. We sing today for a better tomorrow. Look at how much has changed since the 80’s. Punk rock opened the eyes of the world. We need to keep this going and never let down! I will sing ‘till my dying breath.. The new album is a definite reaction to the state of the world right now and how not many people are saying enough about it.
Musicscan: Is Black Sheep of the American Dream a record you consider to be something special in your career or is it “just another” Death By Stereo album?
Death By Stereo: There is never “just another” DBS record. This record is very special to us because it saw us reunite with our original bass player and producer Paul Miner. He is great and it felt like the old days when we were all working together. I think we were able to return to our roots on this record while still forging a new sonic path into our future. This record is all about old friends working together for a new goal. I think we were able to do things we have never done on this album. Dan is in rare form and completely destroyed everyone with is insane guitar ability! Dan wrote some amazing songs and getting him together with Paul was just magic! JP came to the table with some crushing songs a well, so heavy! Mike just slammed the drums to bits! It was all an amazing experience!
Musicscan: What stands out in your mind about the chemistry of the recording of your new album? How did this contribute to the overall sound and feel of the album?
Death By Stereo: I think the chemistry was perfect, old friends having fun. Can’t get better than that! The sound and feel had a lot to do with that. Also, we recorded at Paul Miner’s “buzz bomb” studios so it was sonically on point! Buzz bomb is a great studio. It has everything you would need for a great record but it is comfortable like a house. And it comes with the most important part to making any record sound good, Paul Miner!
Musicscan: Thinking about the American Dream – How do you explain the idea of the “famous American Dream” to someone living over here in Europe? And what can be said about the Black Sheep in this regard?
Death By Stereo: Well, the American dream is a blurred vision that people are still holding on to from the 50’s. It is an illusion that does not exist. Even if you are “successful” in this country you will still always be a black sheep. I have said it before, you can drop a million dollars in someone’s lap and that does not change the color of their skin, it does not change where you come from, it does not change how they look at you. It does not change how they see you. It does not change how they hate you. It does not change how the right wing will never accept us and our way of life. We will always be the black sheep of this dream. That American dream that so may people chase, it is full of hatred and lies. My mother came to the US in search of that dream, because of her color and language she was often faced with pure disdain. What American dream is this?
Musicscan: What, in your opinion are the most exciting aspects about Black Sheep of the American Dream, when you sum it up?
Death By Stereo: I am excited to share our ideas and thoughts with the world! I am excited to get back on the road to see all of our friends! I am excited for everyone to hear this record! I am excited to play shows, get crazy, and rage with everyone! Fuck the American dream, let’s live our own lives and shake the world up together!
Musicscan: Last words?
Death By Stereo: Thank you so much for giving us a chance to speak our minds and for being so good to us! Thanks to everyone who has always supported us and to anyone that is hearing us for the first time, welcome! See you all on the road family! DEATH FOR LIFE!