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Interview: Vision of Disorder

Vision Of Disorder
Interview with Matt Baumbach (Guitars)
04/18/01

Related Links:
Official Vision Of Disorder Website

PRP: The bands past has been covered quite a bit, so lets start around the fallout with your past label Roadrunner. What was the mind state during that period as far as the band continuing on?
Matt: We don't really consider it to of been a "falling out". We just felt that they were not the right label to put out our music anymore. We knew we needed a new home.

PRP: With "For The Bleeders" you guys put out a lot of demo tracks that fans had wanted to get their hands on for sometime along with a few new songs. Looking back, were you troubled by the fact that "For The Bleeders" was left to tide the fans over for so long, considering it is basically a collection of older material?
Matt: We looked at it as something special to do for the fans cause a lot of them never got to hear those songs. Plus it kept our name out while we were going through the changes. I do wish that the gap between records was smaller though just cause I love doing this shit.

PRP: Aside from playing a few local shows and the occasional out of state trek, you guys have kept a fairly low profile for awhile. Do you fear that your fan base may have moved on or that you've possibly missed your opportunity?
Matt: We have always felt that a V.O.D. fan is a fan for life. We have the benefit of being a band whose fans either completely love us or completely hate us. In my opinion those are the best bands like Faith No More, Slayer, etc..

PRP: Since "Imprint" there have been a lot of changes with the band from switching labels and management to the loss of close family members and more. Do you think these adverse conditions have directly influenced the sound of the upcoming new album?
Matt: I think that everything affects everything. From just switching labels and management it gave us a new environment which allowed us to do whatever we wanted. That freedom definitely sits in the back of your head so I would say it had a very positive effect.

PRP: Over time a lot more melody has been incorporated into the bands material, has this been a conscious effort or a part of your evolution as songwriters?
Matt: We are always going to be a band that evolves. The best bands always do, if you don't allow yourself to be open and grow you get stuck in one genre and your music gets boring. We will always try to stretch the norm whether people are down or not, we play this music for the love of making it. The song writing also changed because we started listening more intently to classic songwriters like Sabbath, Soundgarden, Beatles, all of it.

PRP: Originally you guys were rumored to be planning to call the new album "Sunshine", which seemed a bit of a cheery name for a heavier group like yourselves, was there every any truth to the rumor?
Matt: That is a song on the new record that at the time seemed to sum up what the record was about as a whole. Then From Bliss came along and really explained it so we decided to make the change. It is one of the heaviest, scariest songs we have ever created.

PRP: The new title "From Bliss To Devastation" is actually pretty powerful sounding, is there an analogy or story behind it?
Matt: It came from a poem that Tim penned a few years ago. We always liked the title but it took that song to actually make it a reality. Hell yeah its powerful for a powerful song and record.

PRP: Whose your favorite Care bear?
Matt: YOU WOOKUBUS YOU.

PRP: Did hooking up with producer Machine come about from you guys sharing the same management as (hed)p.e., considering they worked with him on their latest effort?
Matt: It was just very convenient to use him at first but then it turned out that he was the perfect guy for the job. He is very versatile and isn't tied down to one style of music. That came out to be a bonus on the record.

PRP: On what I believe is the first demo ("On The Table", "Itchin' To Bleed", "Regurgitate") you guys did with Machine, there's a definitely more modernized and perhaps dynamic sound shown. Did you guys have a focused direction with which you hoped to go with the new material or did it more or less just happen?
Matt: Well we definitely wanted to groove more and thought that we needed to. It helps the dynamics a lot and also gives the music more feeling. It sort of just started happening and becoming more and more natural as time went on.

PRP: If I'm not mistaken, You guys also tracked a cover of Twisted Sister's "Don't Let Me Down" during the initial sessions with Machine for the upcoming "Twisted And Strange" tribute. How did this come about and would you say Twisted Sister was a direct influence on the band?
Matt: We looked at it as something that like "For The Bleeders" kept our name out. The version we did I hear is Dee's favorite plus who doesn't like "The Sister"

PRP: The publics first taste of these sessions came through an mp3 of the track "On The Table" which was uploaded to the Farmclub site. How do you feel about the whole mp3 situation in general and with such a long gap in between recordings, did you notice a lot of fan response from the song?
Matt: I think mp3s are great because they are the most real advertising you can get. Instead of words you get music. The response was incredible, we uploaded that song and within 2 weeks hundreds of kids were singing along at the shows. Plus we got tons of emails saying how everyone wanted a copy. Plus, it was put up on Napster after only 18 hours of being uploaded! That's scary shit.

PRP: It wasn't long after the track was uploaded that you guys signed to TVT, are you happy with the way you've been treated at the label so far?
Matt: We are psyched at how well things have been going at TVT. They seem to really understand what the band wants and how a band should be treated. They have really worked hard for us so far. Its cool when everyone makes you feel at home.

PRP: Do you avoid the Noid?
Matt: NO.

PRP: Your last full length album "Imprint" was recorded in a relatively short period of time, were you guys given a more comfortable time frame for the new album?
Matt: We really had no choice on "Imprint" cause that was what the label could do. We looked at it as a challenge and went full on for it. That fit well with that record but this one is more structured and needed more time to create. All in all I think it took three months to make.

PRP: How was your experience working with Machine overall and would you say he captured a genuine representation of the band?
Matt: The best part of working with Machine was that he really understood what we wanted in the new material. I think a lot of this has to do with the fact that he's young and still has a lot of fresh ideas. He by far has captured the closest representation of V.O.D. yet.

PRP: The new material seems to be a bit more slower paced with large grooves akin to Pantera / Black Sabbath or maybe even a Clutch sound. What did the band hope to achieve with the new material and was their any band who directly influenced the sound of the new material?
Matt: We knew we wanted to make a different album, not just for us but also for what is going on in music today. We knew we could experiment more when we got off Roadrunner Records and that the whole theme of V.O.D. could be whatever we wanted to make it. This opened a lot of new ideas that makes for what we think is the heaviest and most mature Vision Of Disorder record to date. We definitely got into more of the classics like Sabbath, Beatles, Soundgarden. All three of those bands are heavier than anything I have ever heard, especially The Beatles.

PRP: Were there any songs recorded that won't make it on the final cut of the album?
Matt: Yeah there are two that will be on Soundtracks and Comps.

PRP: Has there been any decision made yet as far as a single goes?
Matt: We know we are gonna have a single but we aren't sure as to what song it will be yet. We're just psyched to have one. This record has to be heard.

PRP: What's more important to the survival of the human race, ham flavored tooth paste or edible crayons?
Matt: Neither, the answer is a scrambled egg blanket.

PRP: Tim has known to have been close with Phil Anselmo of Pantera over the years, is there any possibility of you guys touring with them sometime soon or perhaps another major tour this year like Tattoo The Earth, etc?
Matt: We would love to tour with them but schedules are always conflicting and shit. We would love to do any of those big tours, if we get one cool, if not, oh well we'll still be heard.

PRP: The band has had to pull out of overseas dates a few times in the past, is there any firm plans to tour out of the country in support of this album?
Matt: We are Definately going to go everywhere we can to support this record. I think as of right now the only overseas stuff we have is Japan in august. We will go everywhere though, no cancellation bullshit this time.

PRP: How do you feel about the current state of heavy music with the whole rap/rock thing being so huge?
Matt: I think that the heavy music scene needs a record like this one to kick it in the ass and give it its balls back. There seems to be to many of the same type of bands everywhere nowadays. From Bliss is strong enough to nail a spike right in the middle of all of it.

PRP: Are there any modern heavy bands out there whom you respect or admire?
Matt: I think that Slipknot are doing some real good shit, and we'll always love Pantera. we don't really listen to heavy music so its kinda hard to say. I like A Perfect Circle and all of Tool's albums. Real heaviness is in feeling not volume, just listen to "Helter Skelter", heaviest song ever.

PRP: If befriended by a talking hot dog, would you rather spend the day with him riding on a unicorn or cruising Harlem on a firetruck?
Matt: Neither I'd buy a pancake mattress to go with my scrambled egg blanket and say fuck em.

PRP: During your guys absence the general climate of heavy music has become more accepted, do you have anything against getting video play on MTV or being in the mainstream?
Matt: We don't feel that anything's wrong with people liking your music whether it be mainstream or not. Its when you personally change that shit gets fucked. We have our heads on straight and know no matter what happens we can deal with it.

PRP: A lot of the younger bands today from the Long Island area like Glassjaw or even Further whom the group have close ties with, tend to heavily look up to you guys, even though you've yet to achieve the commercial success of many of your peers. Do you ever feel like hometown heroes?
Matt: We feel that we have definitely paved the way for a lot of things in L.I., cause when we came out there was no big band. Now we actually try to take those bands and offer advice to them just cause we've been in the game a little longer and don't want them to make some mistakes that could hinder their careers. Sometimes they listen other times they don't so all in all I guess we sort of aren't hometown heroes but more like big brothers. That's funny considering Mike F.'s two OLDER brother are in Further. Ha.

PRP: If you were a Pokemon, would you call yourself Baumbachemon?
Matt: No, I'd call myself Renardemon

PRP: Are there any goals the band hope to achieve with the new record?
Matt: Just to devastate anyone who listens to it, there is no walking away from it.

PRP: What can we expect from the Vision Of Disorder in coming months?
Matt: We are lined up as main support on the Clutch tour which is awesome considering we are such big fans. That goes from April 27th all the way to June 10th so after that will be more touring followed by more touring, followed by more touring. Did I say that we were gonna be touring?

PRP: That's about it, any shoutouts or shameless self promotion?
Matt: Vision Of Disorder 2001 "From Bliss To Devastation" Like it or not your life will be affected by it.

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