Detonation interview (05/2004)
|With:||Otto Schimmelpenninck (Bass)|
1. The band was formed back in 1997, but An Epic Defiance, your first album, was released in 2003 only. What have you done in the meantime, a five-year long nap?
In 1997 Koen, Mike and Thomas formed the band (which was called Infernal Dream back then) as a side project. They all were busy in their main bands and since they had no bass player, they rehearsed only 11 times the first year of existence. When I joined august 1998, Detonation became more important to them and we started rehearsing on a weekly base. We did our first gig about two months later and also went to the studios to record 2 tracks for a compilation CD, which was to be released by a friend of ours.
In october 1999 we recorded a mini CD which was released in the beginning of 2000. Albeit we received good reviews, we didn't succeed in scoring a deal, so we decided to record a promo CD, which was released in 2001. Meanwhile we had been playing many gigs and our name was quite well established in the dutch underground.
Since again no record deal followed from the promo, we decided to record a full-lenght ourselves. We got several offers for deals but decided to go with Osmose in 2003.
2. Why did you choose to sign with Osmose, do you think a French label can bring you all that you need?
Of all offers we got, Osmose was definately the best. Furthermore Herve was really enthusiastic about our music. Time will tell whether they can bring us all we need. So far, they've proven to be a solid partner and we're satisfied with their efforts.
3. Can you talk about your Scandinavian influences on An Epic Defiance?
We're all big fans of bands like old In Flames, At the Gates, The Haunted and Dark Tranquillity, and although we're trying to create our own sound, influences of your favorite bands will always remain to be heard. Almost every great band in this scene is from Scandinavia, so there you go :-)
4. What do you think you need to improve to step up to the next level of recognition?
We should do more foreign gigs and keep improving our shows, and of course music. In the history of Detonation there's always been a clear line towards a very own sound, and we're still progressing. Just playing riffs that have been heard before very tight and well isn't enough nowadays, you need your own sound to get to the top.
5. I heard you are preparing to enter a studio to record a new album… Details please (where, when, with whom, name of some songs…)?
We have a large list of songs ready. Due to Osmose's planning and, more importantly, our drummer Thomas' arm injury, we won't be able to hit the studios before the end of the year, which puts us in the (mandatory) position to improve our songs. We would have liked to record this summer, but eventually this will only have a positive effect on the quality of the upcoming album. 'Loss of Motion Control' is one of the songs that will be on the album, we've already played it live a few times.. We will record in the Excess studios in Rotterdam with Hans Pieters again.
6. An Epic Defiance was acclaimed by the press and the fans… Do you fear the reactions over your upcoming album?
Well, not yet, but that will probably come when the album's finished!
7. Do you already have an idea of the musical direction of this new album? What do you want to change compared to An Epic Defiance?
As mentioned before, we're growing more and more towards our own sound, which will NOT mean we're entirely changing our sound! Expect more complex songs in the vein of 'Sword Carved Skin'.
8. Do you plan to work with Niklas Sundin again?
We really like his work and are hoping we can work with him again, because he's a pleasant person to work with. We are in contact with him about the artwork of the next CD, but nothing is definitive yet.
9. How has your European Tour gone? What were the places you enjoyed the most?
The tour was real fun, it was the first 'touring car' tour for us, so it was an entirely new experience. We also had a great time with the guys from Dimension Zero. Unfortunately promotion was lousy so we had some poorly visited gigs. Switzerland for instance was horrible, we saw about 15 people (in a 1500 capacity venue), but at the same time, we could drink and eat as much as we wanted, and the food was great, so that was an enjoyable gig after all. Austria and England were very cool, the only two gigs with over 100 people, reactions from the crowd were really good.
10. The Scandinavian melodeath scene is a bit overcrowded, do you think coming from the Netherlands could be an advantage, even if you play the same style?
That's hard to tell. I don't think so actually because it's mainly the scene itself that's crowded rather than the scene in specific countries. The Netherlands have a healthy underground scene however, gigs are visited quite well, that may be an advantage we have over Scandinavian bands.
11. Do you have any contact with other famous Dutch bands (Orphanage, Within Temptation, After Forever…)?
Well, Orphanage is from Utrecht as well, and we've played quite some gigs with them, so we know them quite well. Furthermore, our manager Sander also works in the road crew of Orphanage, and Within Temptation, and After Forever, Mike and Koen also do some crew work for those bands, so we know them as well.
12. Did you receive any death threats after your Aprils Fool joke (news of the band splitting up)? By the way how is Thomas's arm ?
I was actually surprised some people took the bait, but death threats: no . Thomas arm was obviously a joke as well, but he is indeed suffering from a injury at the moment, but it's going quite well, so we hope to do some gigs during the summer.
13. Feel free to express yourselves on any subject you like…
We can't stress enough how much we appreciate all positive reactions we're getting from all over the globe. It gives a kick when people from Brazil or Australia mail us that 'An Epic Defiance' is their favorite album of the year. That puts an enormous driving force behind the band. I'm really hoping we'll get the chance to do more foreign shows, hopefully even in other continents. We're ready to blast!
Thanks for the interview, and say hi to good ol' Marcel!
Otto on behalf of Detonation.
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