"I think the new record outshines any of our previous work", singer/screamer Joe Horvath starts about the band's grinding deathcore debut _The Genocide Machine_ [reviewed in this issue] for Deathvomit/Necropolis when compared to their independent releases. "This record is just so much stronger than what we have done. It turned out great. We're all excited."
When asked about the mindset and the structuring of the new album, he comments, "We don't really have a set plan when we go into to record material. Our drummer [Jonathan Miciolek] lives five hours away and we only practice every three or four months until he comes home in the summer when it becomes straight ahead, non-stop work for the band. We just bust our asses as a band to get material out. A lot of the songs that we recorded for this album were practiced probably only once or twice. Whatever we are feeling at the time is what comes out. I guess that is why all of our three recordings up to this point all sound so different."
"I think we definitely hit our goal with this record. We are totally satisfied with what we were able to do musically on _TGM_."
"We don't really improvise a lot in the studio", explains Horvath. "We kind of set a date when we want to go into the studio and whatever we got around that time in regards to music and ideas, we take them in and hammer them out onto the record. We have never really thrown out a song or changed things around because we don't really have the time to be like that. We just know that we have to take the full advantage of the time we have together."
And while Horvath may know (kind of) what he wants out of a recording, the listener is sent into the new disc trying to defend themselves from an abrasive onslaught of noises, aggression and insanity coming from all directions. I've likened the sound of CoDC to kind of like the calm before the storm. You just have to be ready to embrace the assault. Y'know? Batten down the hatch!
"Yeah, there is a lot going on", chuckles Horvath. "When we [the band is rounded by guitarists Jason Andrews and Jonathan Kubacka and bassist Alf Kooser] started the band a few years ago, we made a pact with one another to not recreate something that has already been done before. We wanted to break the cookie-cutter mold of this music scene. Everyone in the band had such a diverse background with music and we didn't want to throw any of that out of this band. We wanted to use every idea and just go full force with every song. If someone writes a part that is kind of non-traditional to this sound and style, what the hell, we'll use what we can get!"
He notes, "The whole idea of this band was to write music that wasn't boring. A lot of bands just focus on being so brutal and it just gets so tiring and monotonous after a while and we didn't want to do that. We don't want to bore people with our music. I love brutal music, I am a big fan, but 90% of the stuff I listen to I can't finish the record. There is just nothing to hold to hold your interest. It's like you can predict what is going to happen next. We just want to be unpredictable."
About their influences, which there are many, Horvath says, "Even though we don't really sound a lot like them, Assuck was a big influence for us musically, I think. I don't think you can really say this band influenced us or that band did. But if I had to pick a band that means a lot to me and inspired me to do this, I'd say Assuck."
While the band really grabs your attention with their blistering array of violent grinding noise concoctions, just make sure you take a gander at the -heavy- lyrics that accompany the music of CoDC. Are the lyrics socially or politically charged or are they just inspired by this world we live in? Horvath, the band's main songwriter, answers the question.
"There are a lot of things on my mind", Horvath says. "I just want people to read my lyrics. I want them to read them more than once because they aren't really written straightforward. Hopefully people read them and try to understand what they mean or even take the time to e-mail me and ask me about them. Be it political or social or whatever, I don't write lyrics to create a certain song or be a certain way. I write lyrics like once every three months and I just write down what is going on in my brain at that time. I just let the pen go. I don't set out to write a political song, a socially conscious song or a negative or positive song. I just write what comes out and I don't go back and change things. I let them stay as is. It is just a song."
Does Horvath find certain fans look past the intelligence of the lyrics for just the whole brutality of it all?
"A lot of people into this type of music don't really put a lot of focus on the lyrics. They are just there. I figure, why write the same type of gore or death lyrics over and over again? It just gets boring. If you are focusing on the music not being stereotypical, then why are the lyrics stereotypical? The thing that we have been fortunate with our music is that it has been able to cross over many different genres, into the death and grind as well as the crust punk stuff and hardcore scene. I think those scenes have picked up on the lyrics, while the death and grind scene has picked up on the brutality of what we do. I think it all works out so well."
He adds, "The last song of the record, "Ctrl-Alt-Delete", is a spoken word song that kind of wraps up the messages of what we were singing about on the album and hopefully those people who don't read the lyrics will be like, "Damn, that was deep. What was he talking about?", and they will go back and read the lyrics and try to understand what we are singing about."
"The feedback about the lyrics has been non-stop. I get kids e-mailing me and telling me how deep the lyrics are or how good they are and that makes me feel good. To be honest, I'd rather get complimented on the lyrics I write than the vocals. The lyrics mean a lot to me."
The topic turns to signing with Necropolis Records, on their subsidiary label Deathvomit Records. How did that all come about?
"Last August we started getting e-mails from labels who were interested in what we were doing. It was kind of blowing us away. We were excited about being on a label. Even if that meant putting out 200 copies of a 7" we'd be happy. So we thought about it for a few months, as we weren't really ready to jump to anybody yet, and we eventually went with Necropolis 'cause after some research we felt that this label was more in tune with what we wanted as a band. Right now, Deathvomit is where we want to be."
And while most newly signed bands feel the jitters of recording their debut album for a label, possibly worried about how it will be received, CoDC skipped all of those first record butterflies with _TGM_.
Reveals Horvath, "Actually this CD was recorded before we got signed and we were ready to put it out on a small independent label with a press run of 2000. We were in the recording process when the label approached us to sign, so yeah, it was written and just had to be recorded."
So there was no real pressure? "None whatsoever, and that was what was so cool about it."
I guess it'll be a different scenario next time out, eh?
"Yeah, we know that all too well", he ends. "The real test will be how things turn out for our first recording while on Deathvomit Records. But you know what? I don't think there will be pressure. We're a strong band. We're ready for it."