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Interview: God Forbid

God Forbid
Questions Answered By Dallas Coyle (Guitars) .
June 17th 2001
Interviewed by Brian Webb

Related Links:
Official Website
Mp3 Website
"Determination" Review

PRP: How's the tour been so far and how do the European audiences compare to the American ones?
Dallas: Big difference, the kids hear it differently here, they don't pre-judge so much. Every single show has been good.

PRP: Your latest effort, "Determination" has been garnering a lot of positive press around the board, allowing you to cross over into new areas of exposure. Have you noticed any changes in the type of crowd who show up at your guys gigs now?
Dallas: Some people know the words already and some people don't even know who we are. The press helps so much. It was weird seeing ourselves in Kerrang Magazine. Its really hard to compare the crowds because most of the people we play for have never seen us before. It really depends on what kind of show we are playing. What's different is that now we play for every single person in the room.

PRP: Were you at all taken aback by the response the album has received so far?
Dallas: Yeah, it's weird. I think people hear what we hear. But I still believe that we haven't reached our peak.

PRP: Signing with a label like Century Media must have been a dream of yours. How has your experience been with the label so far?
Dallas: It was the only label that we wanted to sign to so it was the only label that we sent our CD to. We sent them "Reject The Sickness" and they called us a week later and everything from there has been a dream. I got goose bumps when I found out. Our new album costs more money than we could ever afford. The only reason we are over here (U.K.) is because of Century Media so we thank god for this.

PRP: Although I'm sure you've been asked this to death, having black members in a heavy band is still pretty much a rarity these days, with only a few bands like Soul Brains, Sevendust and Candiria springing to mind. Do you guys still suffer from racism from audiences and such, even though your sound appeals to a more tight knit, less meat headed crowd?
Dallas: Not really, I mean its definitely there, I'm pretty sure at some shows there's somebody there who's racist but we've never been confronted about it. These days a lot of people think its too dangerous to say anything. We haven't seen nazis, they are mostly involved with punk. Anyone that listens to metal could like our band.

PRP: So far this year you guys have done dates with the likes of Amen, Shadows Fall, Diecast, Shutdown and more, how has the response to your material been from the crowds?
Dallas: We fit in with every band, we don't sell a great deal of merchandise and this may be due to the fact we look quite intimidating because of our singer, people don't want to get too close haha. We are seeing progress though, right now we are sound scanning close to 200 a week in the states and sold a total of 2400 in America.

PRP: Your label mates and friends, Candiria, have been getting a lot of mainstream press as of late, with Rolling Stone and MTV both praising them. Does the prospect of the mainstream media perhaps picking up more onto the current underground scene of metal excite you at all?
Dallas: I am excited because our next album is going to be even better than this one. We want to be one of the heavyweights of metal. We want to get to the top. Candiria is doing that, they are changing heavy music but its so good that even everyone else has to notice, even pop people.

PRP: The song "Network" seems to be a slight stab at organized religion, do you guys have any firm religious standpoint that you try to express in your music or was it more or less just an solitary statement?
Dallas: "Network" wasn't really about religion, its more about television. We don't really have a message other than to enjoy yourself. Once you start preaching about things you automatically turn off half your crowd. My opinions are my opinions, I cant tell anyone what to do, its hard enough to tell someone to take two steps forward. We go out there and show people a good band and an entertaining live show. On this tour at almost every show, I've had someone say that this was the best show they had been to and it makes me feel funny because I've been to shows like that.

PRP: With some steady road time under your belt now, do you have any tour horror stories you'd like to share?
Dallas: Yeah, I mean I don't know if I really want to talk about it but it has to do with other bands. So much bad shit can happen outside of shows as well. But to be honest it just makes us stronger, once they start getting easy then it stops becoming a challenge.

PRP: You guys have been tapped for the upcoming Cradle Of Filth / Nile tour and the crowds at these shows will most likely be a lot different from the shows which you guys have played earlier this year. Are you nervous about that or do you look forward to trying to convert new fans?
Dallas: A lot of people are gonna be angry that we are on the tour and say we don't suit it but I'm nervous about every tour. I think its all about hitting new crowds, I don't think crowds see a genre but just good bands. The Nevermore tour we did, if you think what kind of band we are a lot of people might not like us but some nights we were selling up to 40 CD's and doing just as well as everyone else.

PRP: Your music is without question some of the heaviest material released this year. So in contrast, what is the most un-metal thing you've ever done in your life?
Dallas: I do un-metal things every day but I am one of the most metal people in the world. It's hard to say. I might listen to Portishead but even metalheads listen to that. Queens Of The Stone Age!?

PRP: Since the "Out Of Misery" EP's release, you've become more and more dynamic. Was this a natural progression or did you deliberately set out to become more melodic and progressive?
Dallas: "Out Of Misery" is a demo really, but with our first album "Reject The Sickness" we were still learning. The first song on that album we sort of did dynamics with a lot of parts, but with the new album we wanted to make more mature songs. The next album will be more groove, heavier and we are gonna try and use more tunings, seven strings, d, d flat and e on the record. Its going to be everywhere and Byron is going to try some new vocal harmonies.

PRP: How do you guys feel about the state of heavy music today and are than any more, say commercial bands out there which you enjoy?
Dallas: I like a lot of commercial bands. I like Sevendust, Deftones, Red Hot Chili Peppers, I like hip-hop too. I like it all.

PRP: Did any of you cry when E.T. went home?
Dallas: No but he had a fucked up head. It was like a Frisbee.

PRP: New Jersey is a place renowned for its hardcore scene, did you find this to be a blessing to have such a healthy scene to establish yourself in or did you find it harder due to your more metallic sound?
Dallas: The way the east coast is, people look around and see what other people are doing when they watch bands. We got pretty big in the hardcore scene, before our new album came out we would draw 300 hardcore kids and that's pretty good without radio promotion and just flyers. We played with E.Town and they are huge, they sell out 1500 capacity venues and we played with them last April and all the kids went crazy for our set.

PRP: What can fans expect of your live show in comparison to the album?
Dallas: A lot of people say we are way better live. Much heavier. We don't get to hear ourselves, but this is what people say.

PRP: You've recently had some time off, have you guys been writing any new material yet or are you a band that prefers to write only when necessary?
Dallas: We have riffs and stuff, we used a bit of it in soundcheck the other day. Our record came out here almost 8 weeks ago but we are already writing our new album, we aren't going to slow down. With the next album we will be looking for a big producer, like Machine, Ross Robinson or GGGGarth. Those producers bring bands to the next level. That's what we needed when we first started off and Steve Evetts did this. I think it will be more punishing, but in a more accessible kind of way like "Vulgar Display Of Power" - Anyone can listen to it.

PRP: Any last words or shoutouts?
Dallas: Yeah, to all the bands that have helped us; Diecast, Opec, Nevermore, Shadows Fall, Amen, Stampin Ground, Decimate and check out our website at godforbid.com

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