Wednesday, 2 July 2008

Interview with Abe of 'Dirge For Today'


Hello Abe how are things with ‘Dirge for Today’?

Well so far so good. I just release a small ep called "The Harvest" and now I'm currently working on my first full length album. After that I'll do some local shows and kind of just play it by ear.

What meaning does the name ‘Dirge for Today’ have to you?

It's a somber song of grief for our world. Just watch the news or read the papers, they are full of stories about war, death, and suffering. The name reflects upon that. I feel that our everyday life is both tragic and yet beautiful all at once.

Could you give me a brief description of how you feel ‘DFT’ sound?

Well honestly I'm going through a transitional phase musically. At first the songs we kind of soft and acoustic with a trip-hop kind of vibe, kind of like Portishead or Massive Attack. Now the new material is a lot more aggressive and has more texture to it. I'm really happy with the way this new album is going and hopefully if will broaden my horizons a bit more.

How and when did ‘DFT’ form?

Dirge For Today formed about 3 months ago, LOL!!! It basically started as a project to do music on my own and try a different direction; I've been in bands for sometime now and got really tired of people's drama and c**p. So I left my last band and decided to go about it solo, thou I do have help from some friends.

Your music has the distinct sound of passion and emotion in it what other aspects do you wish to portray in your music? Do you feel the instrument and vocals are effective at capturing your ideal atmosphere?

Honestly I like the ep but I know I can do better musically and vocally. I want to create more of a mood and atmosphere with the new material, explore other areas and try some new things out. When the ep was written I had had a really bad year, father and 2 good friends had died and I was just overwhelmed by grief and depression and a lot of that showed in my ep. An honestly I still get depressed but rather write album after album after album of moody soft rock, I have decided to explore and kind of use my music as a tool to work through these ruff times and explore and open myself up more.

Count Darvious Noctem of ‘Days of our Decay’ is associated with ‘DFT’ could you describe his role and what influences he brings to ‘DFT’? How did you both come together?

Noctem really brings awesome keyboard work, by far his band "Days of Decay" are one of the best modern underground bands. And I am honored to have him lay keyboard work on my material. I came to meet him awhile back via myspace, we traded emails and keep in touch and we hit it off real well, he has a very unique way he looks at the world and his art reflects that. And I respect him for that, because he is an honest guy, no crap, no bs, just honestly. I told him about wanting to do Dirge For Today and he agreed to help me out in anyway he could.

You have an ‘ep’ out entitled ‘Harvest’ could you explain the impact the songs on this have had on you and provide me with some of the ideas you used to create it?

The ep is basically all the emotions that I felt within this past year. My father died back in November and we had an estranged relationship and it just left a really bad taste in my mouth, I felt hollow inside. If that didn't make matter worse a really good buddy of mine committed suicide and I was shocked, he had everything to live for, great girlfriend, great job, and a wonderful son. And one day he just decided to end it all for no reason. And I was just left wondering why, why would someone do this not only to themselves but to their loved ones. And "The Harvest" was in a way me harvesting those feeling that haunted me and trying to work through them rather than just covering them up. I guess it was my own way of therapy, LOL!!!

What are your views on the creation and birth of your songs? When writing do you have a particular order of which comes first, music or lyrics? Do you have a particular message/philosophy in which you feel your music portrays?

When it comes to writing songs usually the music come first, every now and then I'll write some lyrics and be like oh I've got this awesome riff that should go with that, but it can work either way. I don't really have a particular message per say, it's me just working through life and my experiences coming through that. I write depressing lyrics but I also try to leave a little hope within each song, kind of like a silver lining to each gray cloud or a darkest before the dawn type of mentality. I use to be a glass half empty kind of guy but lately I'm trying to look at the glass half full and that does affect the lyrics, but fear not I shall not be writing about puppies, rainbows and ponies, LOL!!!

You are now working on a new album at present, how do you feel your music has evolved from the ‘ep’ to this album? What ideas have you built on for this album?

The music is way heavier and more atmospheric than the ep. Instead of just writing songs I'm now creating chapters from the human emotion. Building a story that most can relate to and maybe even help them work out their own problems.

What types of audience does your music attract?

Humans, LOL!!! Honestly I have hardly talked to anyone who likes my music; I'm kind of a recluse. A very private type of person, I have a small group of friends that I keep up with, and it's that I don't like people, I just kind of keep to myself. Now if someone approaches me about my music I will be more than happy to talk to them and explain anything that needs to be explained.

At what point in your life did you realise you wished to develop your ideas to become a musician?

It was at age 15; I went to my first concert and was blown away!!! I was just mesmerized at how these people took the stage and shared their option on things and everyone just listens and had a great time, and that is something that I wanted to do as well. Play shows and let people come and have a good time and forget about their problem for awhile.

Do you have any particular feelings about how the metal scene is at present?

WOW!!! It really need some help, everyone is copying everyone, and why the hell are guys wearing girl jeans and doing their hair like some kind of discovery channel mating ritual!!! I see a lot of the same type of bands where I'm from and it sucks!!! Its metro sexual guys singing about girl problems and how they have broken hearts. And to me there is no substance in that type of crap, no passion, no emotion, and that is not art. Yet their are still some really good bands out their doing great work. Who knows what will happen to the metal scene.

Who are your musical influences?

Isole, Neurosis, Isis, Cult of Luna, The Ocean, Ahab, Tom Waits, a lot of classical music, My Dying Bride, Opeth, My Silent Wake,
November's Doom, Paramaecium, Buried at Sea, Nations, 80's pop (guilty pleasure), Portishead, Jethro Tull, Theater of Tragedy,
Sins of Thy Beloved, and honestly way too many to list.

Do you find myspace an effective media to promote your music?

Yes and no, it does help spread the word about your band, but so do live shows and zine/magazines.

What are your immediate and long term ambitions for ‘DFT’?

Finish this current album, tour, do another album, tour, etc...

There are song samples on 'Dirge For Today' myspace page,feel free to check them out
The link to 'Dirge For Today'

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