Ohio 6-piece The Devil Wears Prada have been creating their own brand of metalcore for the last six years, and their most recent release, Dead Throne, is no different. Since it’s release (or maybe it’s leak) the album has been turning heads for all the right reasons. As the band prepare to take over Australian stages on the Dead Throne tour later this month, drummer Daniel took some time out to have a chat with Kill Your Stereo.
Hello, thanks for chatting with Kill Your Stereo.
Hi, how’s it going?
Im really good thanks, how are you?
I am great, just doing some interviews (laughs).
To help our readers out could you start off by introducing yourself and what you do in The Devil Wears Prada and your favourite album at the moment?
Sure, my name is Daniel and I play drums for The Devil Wears Prada. And, let’s see, my favourite album. At the moment I’d probably have to go with The Drums and the album is called, I actually don’t even know how to say it, it’s weird, it starts with a P (laughs). It’s like Portland and Sacramento mixed together is what I think the idea behind the name of it is, but I can’t pronounce it. (Ed: Portamento for anyone that was wondering!)
Your band recently released your fourth full length, Dead Throne, what was the build up like for you guys?
Well (laughs), we kind of had this idea originally that we were going to do this countdown for the record and thirteen days before we were going to do this massive countdown, hype up the record and everything, and three weeks before the record actually came out it leaked online, and we were like “Well, we don’t know what to do, so we are just going to give the record out for free to everybody” so we decided to stream it for free online. And the response was awesome, we are super excited and it seems everybody else is super stoked too. Then the album came out and it ended up being number 10 on the Billboard top 200 in the States so we are very happy with that.
The album has been met with a heap of positive feedback. Did you guys expect that kind of reception?
To be honest, not at all. I thought people were going to be like “You guys sound like a different band, I don’t like this anymore” you know, whatever, but surprisingly I think the music is standing up for itself and people are definitely into it, so I can be happier.
The album is a lot heavier and deeper than your previous releases, was that something you had planned to do as a band or did it just evolve that way?
I think originally, it was definitely the intent to make the record heavier. We had written the Zombie EP and the idea behind that was to be heavy, fast, relentless and in your face, and the response to that record was basically the best we had gotten from any record so we were like “Well if people like heavier Prada maybe we should do heavier Prada,” but, you know, at the same it we are not going to write exactly what everybody wants or exactly what everybody wants to hear so we didn’t do that, we wrote the record we wanted to write, it definitely just happened to be heavier but at the same time the original intent was just to mix maybe some of the elements of Zombie with some of the melody of With Roots Above and it was definitely that and now we have Dead Throne.
What was the writing and recording process like this time around? Was it any different to before or have you guys found a good routine?
The process was definitely different. Originally we would all just get into a room and write the songs together, and then that kind of progressed to being on tour more often and having less time to write and this time we actually had a lot more time to write so this time it was even more different then all the other times. This time we actually went to two different studios originally, we went to a place in Kansas and then we went to Chicago, and there is a song written on the record that are named after each of those- Chicago and Kansas- and we originally demoed out all of the songs for the record in those two places and then we recorded the full album in Massachusetts.
What were you guys listening to, reading and such while writing the album?
Personally I was listening to a ton of The Bled, which originally I would say The Bled and Underoath are my two biggest influences as far as drumming go, and yeah I think I was just to a lot of The Bled again which is bringing me back to my roots I guess. As far as lyrics and vocals and stuff go, I know that Mike was listening to Defeater and La Dispute, Joy Division, I won’t speak for him but I know he definitely has a lot of different influences than I do. I actually think everybody in the band has completely different influences which I think has a lot to do with why The Devil Wears Prada kind of sounds a little bit different to your average metalcore bands. We don’t all listen to other metalcore bands, we all listen to our own kind of things.
How has The Devil Wears Prada changed and evolved in the two years since With Roots Above, or even the year since Dead Throne?
I think the main thing is just music wise our band kind of fits together a little bit better than we used to. When we all started the band we were between the ages of 17 and 20, so I think we were all just young kids that were into music that was in your face then eventually we started trying to create art, so it’s kind of different. I think we just look at it different now then we used to and we take it a little bit more serious and enjoy it a little more even.
You headed into the studio with Adam Dutkiewicz from Killswitch Engage. What sparked that decision and what was it like working with him?
He was, first of all, he was awesome to work with, he is in my opinion a musical genius, he has his bachelors in music direction and all that good stuff so pretty much every idea he would bring to us we would just be like “Woah, that is such a good idea we should definitely do that”. I mean, not all the time, there were definitely times when he wanted to take a certain part out and we were like “No, we really like that part, we are going to do it like this” but for the most part he would give us great ideas and we really worked well together with him. I know Mike in particular, got a long with him really, really well and I think you can tell with the vocals that they are definitely very passionate, much different than our old records as well.
You mentioned before that the album leaked early, was the decision to stream the album made because of the leak?
No, we were going to stream the album regardless, but we had to stream it a couple of days earlier than we intended because of it. It was going to happen, we were going to stream it regardless, because I think it is important for people to be able to try music before you buy it, I guess. A lot of people will pick up the record, and you know there are a ton of records you can just download online for free so we thought it’s be better to just give everyone a chance to listen to it and then decide whether they want to support the band from that point or not.
Next month you guys will be heading down here to Australia. How are you guys feeling about the tour and the other bands you are playing with?
We are super excited, I have never seen Dream On Dreamer but we just did an entire with We Came As Romans as they are awesome dudes so I am super stoked to hang out with them, and they are a great band so it will be fun to watch live every night as well. And who doesn’t love Australia? Your country is awesome.
For anyone who hasn’t seen you play before, what can be expected of a live The Devil Wears Prada set?
Probably a lot of yelling, a lot of loud music, maybe a couple of people getting hurt…but not on purpose (laughs), probably a lot of sweat. I don’t know, I think the show will be pretty intense especially with the new songs, we are going to be able to incorporate a lot of the new songs off the record which I think is definitely going to give the set a huge dynamic and we will see if everybody enjoys it.
Will we still be seeing songs off your old releases?
(laughs) Ooohhh I can’t tell you all my secrets, we will definitely play some stuff from everything but maybe not so much from out original releases.
Being on the road so much, what are the albums, or bands, that get the most play in The Devil Wears Prada’s tour bus?
I would probably go with, I’m not sure, I hear a lot of Touche Amore and I hear, I’m not sure, I hear a lot of different bands on our bus actually, a lot of Underoath. I mean we always play our friends like August Burns Red and stuff like that.
What does the next year or so hold for The Devil Wears Prada?
The next year is going to include lots of touring, we are doing the Australian Dead Throne tour then the American Dead Throne tour, I can’t exactly say all of our tour plans yet because they are kind of on the down low, but yeah, trust me lots and lots of touring, we just released a new video online for Born To Lose so we will probably have another video or two for the record so you should keep your eyes peeled.
What goes into choosing someone to work with on a video?
We kind of had a general idea of what we wanted and what we wanted it to look like and we kind of shot out an email and said we are looking for someone to direct this and every body gave us their treatments and we went with the one that we thought was the best and matched our vision, which actually happened to be one of our good friends Drew Russ so that was really cool.
Before we go, is there anything else you wanted to say to the fans?
Of course, thanks for supporting us and thanks to everybody that picked up Dead Throne and I know that last time we were in Australia we had a lot of props with us on stage (laughs), and I don’t know if that is going to happen again but if you come out to the shows it is definitely going to be a good time.
See you then, thanks for having a chat.
Awesome, thank you.