|l-r: JD, Luke, Taylor, Jacob|
photo by Matt Day Photo, provided by DISMEMBERMENT
photo by James Garvin,
Have you guys always lived in the Laurelville area? I know things have changed a lot in recent years with a big shift to online exposure to music but as a rural Ohio native myself it was always difficult as a kid to be a metal fan - from availability of music in retail outlets to lack of radio exposure to outsider status in school. Any elements of your environment that you think have been particularly formative - or challenging?
Jacob - Yea, Luke and I have lived in Laurelville our whole lives pretty much. But discovering metal wasn't really a problem for us. Our dad was a huge Ozzy and Judas Priest fan. As early as I can remember he always had Dio, Priest, Ozzy, Kiss and stuff like that on the radio, so we basically grew up listening to that and it definitely was a big time influence on us, musically.
Luke - I pretty much listened to whatever Jacob was listening to and just checking out bands through friends at school or anywhere I could get my hands on new music.
JD - Basically, I got turned on to Pantera and Lamb Of God in junior high and kept discovering bands through the internet, live shows and through friends, mostly Taylor.
Taylor - Being from Circleville was pretty easy finding metal through friends and other metalheads. The internet also helped, it was really the easiest way to get exposed to new bands.
From my perspective it seems as if you guys are getting a lot of exposure and appear to be featured higher and higher on the bills with well-established acts. Aside from the obvious - the high quality of the music and the performance - what's been the secret or the strategy for this success?
Jacob - Countless and countless hours of getting in contact with various websites/blogs for review, contacting promoters and relentlessly trying to promote the band and get our music out there in many different avenues. We also have a strong DIY approach and I think that definitely helps.
Luke - We're not trying to one-up anyone or thinking we're a big success, we're grateful for the shows we get to play and all the killer support we've been getting. We don't take anything for granted and we don't look at it like it's a competition. We do it because we're fans of metal.
It's been fun to follow the progress on the upcoming EP on your Facebook site as well as the studio's blog. What's the very latest update? Got any titles, track lists, artwork you're ready and/or willing to share?
Luke - We're just gonna keep carving a path and getting our name out there, putting out out new music, getting out on the road and getting some shows outside of Ohio.
You have been on the bill with some stellar names - who have been your absolute favorites with whom you've shared the stage, both smaller local acts and the big, big names? Any noteworthy words of wisdom or guidance passed along by any of these peers?
Jacob - My favorite bands we've played with are definitely Skeletonwitch, Mayhem, Immolation, Jungle Rot, Havok, Kingsblood, hell, all of 'em really, ha ha. Definitely gotten some good advice from Chance Garnette and Mayhem kinda made us aware of the dark side of touring and it's not always fun and games and smooth sailing out on the road.
Luke - If I had to choose I'd say: Mayhem, Immolation, Skeletonwitch, Revocation, Skullbomb. But, yea, like Jake said, all the bands we've played with have been awesome. As far as advice, definitely Chance and Dave from Jungle Rot, "Keep fightin' the good fight." It's cool playing with these bands and some of them actually acknowledging our band.
JD - Definitely got a lot of good advice from Skeletonwitch and Mike Corns from Skullbomb, He's really helped us out a lot. It's nice to see bands acknowledge the music as well, it makes it worthwhile.
Elements of your influences come through in your sound and yet you definitely have a unique sound. Who are some of your absolute bedrock favorites that feed into the DISMEMBERMENT sound and, at the same time, what do you do differently from most others?
Jacob - Too many influences to name, there's so much good music out there its hard to not get inspired from all of it. As far as our approach, we really just play what comes out. We don't pre-plan anything, we never sit and say "let's make this thrash or let's make this death metal." We just get together and jam ideas and connect the dots from there. I definitely think the influence of Black Metal ideals of staying true to ourselves musically and always playing the music we want regardless of what the trends are at the time is what sets us apart.
Luke - A big influence on me was Death and Chuck Schuldiner. His songwriting definitely influenced my own writing. Not just trying to write brutal lyrics, but leaving something to be interpreted by the listener. Also building an atmosphere in the song to help it stand out and be memorable when you hear it. His vocals patterns combined with his guitar playing really opened my mind to singing and playing guitar at the same time.
Taylor - Bands like Cannibal Corpse, Slayer and Pantera really got me started in wanting to play more aggressive music and really made me want to search out all kinds of different music. I think that's one thing that sets us apart is that we have influences from all kinds of different of genres.
JD - Some of the bass players that really turned me on to aggressive style bass and shaped my tone was Lemmy Kilmister, Evan Linger from Skeletonwitch, Jeff Matz of High On Fire - and then as far as playing style, obviously David Ellefson showed me how to use layering and harmony to expand the music, shaping an actual bass line instead of just following the guitar. Steve DiGiorgio was another big influence on me as well.
Taylor - I use Tama drums, Sabian cymbals, Evans drum heads and Vater drum sticks. That's what I use live and in the studio. My wish list would be: a new Tama Bulbinga drum kit with all new cymbals and hardware.
Answer as quickly and honestly as possible:
If I could see any band, past or present, it would be:
Jacob - Pantera or Death
Luke - Death or Immortal
Taylor - Pantera
JD - Death
The first record I ever bought was:
JD - Led Zeppelin - Houses Of The Holy
Taylor - Rush - Retrospective II
Luke - Randy Rhoads Tribute Album
Jacob - Kiss - Destroyer
The last record I bought was:
JD - World Under Blood - Tactical
Taylor - King Diamond - Fatal Portrait
Luke- Cannabis Corpse - Beneath Grow Lights Thou Shalt Rise
Jacob - Prosanctus Inferi - Pandemonic Ululations of Vesperic Palpitations
The last book I read was:
Luke - Hell's Angels by Hunter S. Thompson
Taylor - A Clockwork Orange
JD - Bass Grimoire by Carl Fischer
Jacob - The Art Of War by Sun Tzu
The last movie I saw was:
Luke - Captain America
JD - Shutter Island
Taylor - The Sitter
Jacob - Commando
The first live show I ever saw was:
Luke - CKY
Taylor - Rush
JD - Muse
Jacob - Red Hot Chili Peppers in like '98
The last live show I saw as a fan was:
JD - Goatwhore/Havok/Skullbomb
Luke - Black Cobra/The Sword
Jacob - Black Cobra/The Sword
I refuse to be embarrassed that _____ is in my music collection.
Jacob - U2 - 'Sunday Bloody Sunday'
JD - Hatebeak
Luke - Caninus
Taylor - Elton John
If you started my car right now, ______ would be playing.
Jacob - Acheron - Lex Talionis
Taylor - "Baby Killer" by Devourment
JD - Arsis
Luke - Absu - ABZU
Many thanks again to Dismemberment for their time and generosity with their insights. I am looking forward to hearing the new record and checking them out live again soon. Anyone interested in metal should waste no time exploring Dismemberment's music - they're all over the web at the sites below: