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Interview: Dillinger Escape Plan

Dillinger Escape Plan
Questins Answered By Dimitrus (Vocals).
Interviewed by Brian Webb

Related Links:
Official Website

PRP: First off, lets start with the basic question, how did you guys get together?
Dimitrus: Basically it was compiled of all local bands that we individually were either in together or separately and somehow a member would fall here, a member would quit there and basically we cleaned house and formed Dillinger Escape Plan.

PRP: So it wasn't a case of knowing the members from school?
Dimitrus: I went to high school with Ben, and Chris he went to high school with our original bass player Adam and then Adam got into a car accident so we got a fill in bass player Jeff for about a year or two, and we got Liam now, he's from Philadelphia and we met him through friends and our other guitar player Brian he's from virgin new beach.

PRP: Any particular reasons behind Jeff's departure?
Dimitrus: Basically he was more of a live bass player, filling in you know, we paid him to play. The new bass player Liam, he's a part of the band you know. He's going to be on the recordings in the future.

PRP: So do you think he will imprint his own style into the music?
Dimitrus: Hopefully. We are always looking for newer sounds and trying new things. We don't want to sound monotonous and keep the same sound so if something fresh is coming into the band we are excited about it.

PRP: I heard that you guys were named after a bank robber? Could you elaborate on that at all?
Dimitrus: Yeah John Dillinger. Our friend was watching a channel in America called A&E that has a lot of biographies and they had a biography on John Dillinger who escaped jail a bunch of times. We couldn't think of a name for the band and he thought of the "Dillinger Escape Plan" because it was kind of witty and nice and long. We liked it and how it takes up a lot of room on a billboard or a poster or flyer. It has no meaning to the band. Its just name, we are more about the music.

PRP: Who would you list as your influences?
Dimitrus: Me personally. I grew up listening to Rush. The Beatles are a major influence of mine. Even watching the movie "Yellow Submarine". Faith No More, Mike Patton is a big influence on me. When I was 12 or 13, that's when they came around. Those 3 are my biggest influences.

PRP: What bands are you currently listening to?
Dimitrus: Radiohead definitely. The new album is amazing, all their albums I love. Also I'm a big Oasis fan, most people wouldn't think that. I just saw Oasis in New York in May. Travis is another band I like, and Bjork.

PRP: With the unpredictable nature of your songs how do you go about writing a DEP song?
Dimitrus: Most likely, Ben our guitar player comes up with a riff and then he works on it with Chris and they work out a rhythm for it and fine-tune it as much as possible. It's a tedious process.

PRP: Do the songs have any specific meanings or themes running through them?
Dimitrus: I write like 90% of the vocals. Lately my vocals have been about past relationships with human beings, like they deal with schoolyard bullies. I got picked on a lot when I was younger. Just basically the stupidity off the human race and how cruel they can be. I'm almost mocking that.

PRP: Your sound has been labeled as noise core, math metal and even hell core. How would you describe your sound?
Dimitrus: Hell core hehehe
PRP: I think I made that one up.
Dimitrus: I always tell people I'm in a rock n roll band and they automatically think Elvis.

PRP: Do you feel as though your part of any scene?
Dimitrus: If there's a hardcore scene we fit in with that, because that's where we came from. You wont see us selling our shirts for 30 American dollars we'll sell them for 10 dollars. But we totally fit into the heavy metal scene because of the label we are on and the new people that have discovered us and we even toured with Mr. Bungle, which is a totally different scene.

PRP: What's your opinion about the New Jersey scene?
Dimitrus: It's definitely hibernating right now. It used to be mid 90's where it was prospering but its since died down.

PRP: Any new New Jersey band you'd urge us to check out?
Dimitrus: A band called Burnt By The Sun. Not too many New Jersey bands out there. There's a band called Nora who we did a split with.

PRP: Is the band now a full time concern or do you still have side jobs?
Dimitrus: We try and make it as full time as possible. None of us are in school. We all work but we work around the band. I work full time, I'm a graphic artist. So whenever I'm not touring I'm working.
PRP: So do you foresee the band becoming a full time proposition?
Dimitrus: Oh yeah definitely, its slowly becoming that. The past year, we've only toured 2 months out of the year, but this year alone we've already toured 3 and a half months.

PRP: What was it like to tour with Mr. Bungle as opposed to Candiria?
Dimitrus: Obviously the crowds.
PRP: Was the Bungle crowd receptive to you?
Dimitrus: Yes and no. You've got to figure that out of 2000 people that have never heard of you a good percentage wont like you. We've heard boos before but it just bounces off us. We don't really mind. We come from the same background as Candiria, the same world. As for Mr. Bungle they are a major label band, we are going into their world.

PRP: Having just toured with Candiria can you tell us about their label problems?
Dimitrus: They are close to signing to a label. Last time I talked to them they didn't want to tell me in fear of jinxing anything.

PRP: How did the Warped Tour crowd take to you?
Dimitrus: Warped Tour was very receptive. Other than me falling off stage and nearly breaking my ankle it was a really fun time. (shows his swollen ankle)
PRP: Did you get to hang out with Green Day?
Dimitrus:Yeah I bumped into Billy Joe by accident. Now that I think of it I should have done it on purpose but I elbowed him. I'm 6"3 and he comes up to my elbows.

PRP: What would be a dream tour for you?
Dimitrus: I've already toured with the Misfits and Mr. Bungle so... If it was possible it would be cool to tour with Rush. I don't really have dream tours; I'm just waiting to see what's next.

PRP: What should fans coming to your shows expect?
Dimitrus: A hard performance. All of our energy, all of our sweat, all of our blood is poured out when we play. We try and make our music as diverse as possible, but when we play that's our opportunity to release all that music and energy. If two people want to go to the show or a thousand, we still play the same way.

PRP: Are you at all surprised about your following in Europe?
Dimitrus: We get a lot of letters from Europe. Its weird. I'm in London, England right now and there's a packed house. Even when I see Japanese bands coming to America and packing it out. Its good to see.

PRP: How do you feel about the whole mp3 situation and is it healthy for a band of your size?
Dimitrus: My friend had never heard of The Pixies, he heard of them and was just curious to see so he went on Napster, downloaded a couple of mp3's really liked it and bought the record, but then you get the people who are downloading every song and burning the CD's. It's like a double-edged sword.

PRP: Could you inform us as to how (original bass player) Adam is doing right now?
Dimitrus: Adam's doing good. Like I said he got in a car accident, he's paralyzed from the chest down, he's trying to finish his degree. The accident will be 3 years this August and he was close to graduating then, but he had to go through rehabilitation surgery. He's close to graduating finally. Mentally he's strong.

PRP: So is now the permanent bass player?
Dimitrus: He knows himself. He said if Adam ever comes back he will gladly step aside. If Adam ever does comeback it won't be for a while. Everyone's pulling for him but if not, he's going to try and open up his own recording studio.

PRP: What's next as far as releases?
Dimitrus: Yeah we are doing a 7" to be released in Europe on Chrome Saint Magnus and in the U.S. on Escape Artist. We are trying to get 2 or 3 new songs with an Apex Twin cover and after that we are going to work on a new record.
PRP: What kind of time frame are we talking about?
Dimitrus: New 7' hopefully out in summertime. Next record maybe out next winter or even summer. Don't e-mail us complaining.

PRP: Ben and Tommy gate-crashed the MTV Music Awards. Can you tell us a little bit about that?
Dimitrus: Ben said three words. "Act as if". Act as if you know what your doing. If you act like your supposed to be there nobody will bother you.

PRP: That's about it, any shoutouts or shameless self-promotion?
Dimitrus: Shameless self-promotion. Zero shoutouts. And always wear a seat belt in a car.

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