New Jersey-based “mathcore” act THE DILLINGER ESCAPE PLAN last fall entered the studio with producer Steve Evetts (EVERY TIME I DIE, POISON THE WELL, SUICIDE SILENCE, SEPULTURA) to begin recording its new album for a spring release through the group’s own imprint Party Smasher Inc. via a deal with Sumerian Records.
Speaking to Revolver magazine, THE DILLINGER ESCAPE PLAN vocalist Greg Puciato stated about the band’s forthcoming CD: “I hate to always be the person that’s like, ‘This is our best new album,’ because I think every time it’s the best one. I’m realizing that all you can try to do is take an honest snapshot of where everyone is at the moment and hope that that place happens to be good when you look back at it. When you’re in it, you’re too emotionally attached to it to really gain any kind of hindsight to it. Now that we’ve been around for a while, I can kind of be a little bit more objective and see what records were the ones where we made big leaps — the obvious ones, like ‘Calculating Infinity’, was a big jump, and I feel like ‘Miss Machine’ was a really big jump. I feel like our work on ‘Option Paralysis’ was like us refining ‘Miss Machine’. It wasn’t like we were making colossal jumps. This is the first one since ‘Miss Machine’ where I felt like, wow, all of us as individuals and collectively are moving into, like, some other phase of our career. I think we’ve all just gotten a lot better as individuals and we’ve already had our fucking growing pains and we’ve already fought our brains out. We went from being kids to adults together. We kind of all realized our strengths and how to leave one another alone and not have ego clashes. I think this record is the record where we’re like adults now. People have gotten married or we have serious girlfriends, like, really major shit has gone down in our lives, and it just seemed really… it seemed like less edge-of-our-pants, not knowing if we were gonna pull it together.”
Regarding the songwriting process and the musical direction of THE DILLINGER ESCAPE PLAN‘s new material, Puciato said: “We have 11 [songs that we are recording for the album]. Sometimes we go in and have everything 80 percent done and we’re trying to wing it as we go. This time, everything was really fixed. We really had most of the T’s crossed and the I’s dotted ahead of time. It feels really like confident as a band to be like, ‘Yeah, we’re gonna go fuck shit up.’ That’s a good feeling. We’ve actually never had a leftover song. We said, ‘Let’s not fuck around and spend all this time learning all these weird rhythms and trying to make everything faster, more aggressive, trickier, and all that stuff if we’re just gonna throw it out. Let’s figure out early on if it sucks and just get rid of it.”
He added: “We made a really conscious effort this time to try to do some different stuff. I feel like, as any band that’s put out a bunch of records, we have our patterns, even if our patterns are a little harder to decipher. We’ve made a really deliberate, conscious effort to be like, ‘The first song is gonna start differently than any DILLINGER record, because every DILLINGER record starts with like a train wreck and ‘Aaahhhh’ right away.’ We want to do it differently this time. Ya know, ‘Have we ever started a song with bass before? No? Well, let’s start a song with bass.’ ‘Have we ever started a song with just drums? No, we haven’t done that? Let’s do that.’ Just anything we can do to push ourselves into uncomfortable territory now because I think that’s necessary because no one else is gonna do it. We have to make effort to be like, ‘This is what we would normally do. Let’s deliberately not do that.’ It’s actually made everything a lot more interesting for us. Those little things make a difference. We push each other creatively.”
Asked about of THE DILLINGER ESCAPE PLAN‘s new deal with Sumerian Records, Greg said: “We’ve known Ash [Avildsen, Sumerian Records president] for a really long time, especially me being from Baltimore. He’s kind of always been in this weird, parallel trajectory to us as far as coming from a similar scene and having big aspirations of where he could go from where he started. It just made sense. That’s all I can really say about it. We had to mutually bring to the table for one another.
“It was just nice to talk to someone who wasn’t 60 that owned the record label. They didn’t have to unlearn things. A lot of record companies have to unlearn all of these things because the paradigm shifted and now they’re trying to adjust. Whereas that record label grew up in the collapse of the record industry, so they already understand the differences between the old way of doing things and the new way of doing things. It’s just also, for me, really killer to have the guy that owns the label live a 15-minute drive away from me. We can go talk about shit really easily instead of last time where Season Of Mist is in France and you have to send an email and they don’t quite understand you and there’s a language barrier. We can just go get food and be like, ‘This is what we’re thinking about for this video. I’m gonna bring my laptop and show you this guy’s videos.’ You bring a laptop and show me some guys that you think are cool instead of just being like sending links, typing lots of emails. Everything just feels like when you’re a kid and you’re all in the same room together and get it done really quickly.”
Read the entire interview from Revolver magazine.