Defeated Sanity (Jacob Schmidt)
Hi guys, so three years have passed since “Passage into Deformity”, an huge album that underlined your power inside brutal death metal scene. I let you introduce this new double effort with you own thoughts.
Hey. I think a lot about this has been written already so I’ll keep the introduction short. It’s a concept album, that splits up our most prominent influences into a purely Brutal Death Metal EP and a purely Progressive Oldschool Death Metal EP instead of combining them into the sort of jazzy prog Brutal Death style that we normally play.
What’s behind the meaning of these two titles and covers? Is there any kind of message of meaning behind?
As the music is split up into two opposite but complimenting realms we also did the same with the lyrics. “Disposal” representing the carnal aspects or burials and “Dharmata” diving deeper into the spiritual ideas and concepts of the after-life as found in Buddhist religion, which fascinated us and especially Lille who is responsible for the lyrics here. The two covers were mandatory because these things cannot be meshed up but need to be handled separately. Well it’s more two EPs, rather than one consistent album.
Two album, completely opposite one to the other, “Dharmata” has been created with Max Phleps on vocals, how did you choose him? Why didn’t you let Konstantin perform on Dharmata?
We wanted a different vocal style on Dharmata. Brutal gutturals wouldn’t fit the concept. So we went out looking for voices that we like and found a few favorites. Max was very interested and pulled it off extremely well as he is also a guitar player and therefore has an understanding of our complex arrangements.
Many old fans can’t understand this split so huge from one to the other records, can you explain us how Dharmata, came out? It can be considered ad avantgarde if compared to your won typical style.
Yes it’s an experiment. Our first album “Prelude to the Tragedy” was more in the vein of Oldschool Death Metal, that’s how Defeated Sanity started out. Then it became more brutal over time. We felt it was now the perfect time for doing something more experimental. I guess you can call it avant-garde.
Talking about Disposal of the Dead I can feel a progression, a sort of improvement of you your skills acquired through the years. The “jazzy style” is still on the base of your sound, but with the time this aspect is more hidden behind a wall of sound, a sort of balanced combination between your two souls; the brutal and the progressive one. Don’t you feel the same?
Yes we deliberately took it easy with the intricate stuff here. We love straight up gritty Brutal Death like Brodequin and Devourment so we took everything “jazzy” out of our writing process this time. It’s still Defeated Sanity I think, it is what we would sound like without all the licks and fills, changing time signatures etc. I guess it still has some progressive Character buried underneath… that’s just what we are haha
Also the production is more deep and clear, less sharpened letting your instruments coming out from an other world. can you talk abut the production and preproduction process, did you had and idea before records all the instruments?
Yes I did have very concrete ideas actually. I wanted “Disposal” to sound like a Brutal Death Metal demo from the later 1990s but of course with a “studio sound” upgrade. For Dharmata I just wanted a mix of old Morrisound recordings and a more clear 80s Watchtower type Prog sound. Of course it still has a large portion of Defeated Sanity sound in it that –fortunately- can’t be washed out.
You now are going to have a new vocalist, Konstantin left the band and Josh came in, what happened? how did you choose Josh?
Konni wanted to retire from more elaborate band activities like touring and being on a schedule with albums and such. He chose to step back from all of that which we respected. Josh has been getting our attention already with Autonomy and a cover he did of a song of ours.
Getting back to Phelps, what’s your plan for the next future about live appearance? Will he sing for Dharmata or is just to be considered as a guest for this new effort?
He is extremely busy with his other bands and projects but whenever we can get him, he will of course be our preferred choice. We will have alternative singers to perform Dharmata live too.
This will be your third record with Willowtip Records, which is getting bigger and bigger inside underground scene day by day. You are part of the family, how is your relationship?
It’s great! Our relationship is luckily very good, which is why we chose not to go for a bigger more “corporate” label. Everything is done in a fair and easy way, which we like. I guess we both profit from this relationship.
Don’t you feel that today most of the brutal death, technical death and classical death can be classified into a unique sound, where everybody wants to show their skill with the most amount of notes into a song, building up a meaningless mesh up. Defeated Sanity plays in a unique way without forcing the situation, what do you think about the modern scene?
Well I personally don’t care for a lot of weedly-wanky tech death that comes out nowadays. It’s not a flashy sensation anymore. It’s been overdone and everyone and their mother can record an album at home now and tweak it until it sounds like they’re shred-gods. To me it’s about tone and attitude and live energy. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE technical music. I just like to hear it’s played by musicians, humans, rather than robots… that shit was cool when Necrophagist first came out but it got old quick because there are no more edges to it, nothing to keep my interest. I’d like to think that people appreciate our opposing idea of Technical Death Metal and I sure hope we put an influence on others.
Which plansdo you have for the next future? Will you be on tour supporting this masterpiece somewhere in 2016 o it could happen in 2017?
We take it easy this year. We already played an extended US tour at the beginning of 2016 and recently also a few festivals in Europe. 2017 will be getting more crazy. Things will be announced soon as they are getting more concrete.
Thank you for this opportunity and talking about this great new double album. All the best!