|Interview by Burt Wolf with guitarist Sam, singer Mike & guitarist Sam of DAATH.
Interview done on May 9th, 2004.
COULD YOU PLEASE GIVE SOME OF THE BACKGROUND HISTORY OF DAATH?
Eyal: Mike & I started playing our current instruments at the same time. We've been working together on & off
for about 11 years. During one of our off periods between 1998 & 1999 I was living in Boston. In the winter of
2000 I decided to return to Atlanta for about 5 weeks. I called Mike Kameron & asked him if he wanted to write
a Techno Death Metal album to help pass the time. We got together for fun & started writing. The 5 weeks
turned into 10 months & we had 3 albums worth of material & the band name DIRT NAP that eventually got
changed to DAATH. I went back to Boston & realized that i had better cut off my ties there & get back to DIRT
NAP. I moved to Atlanta & we got serious with this band.
WHY WAS THE NAME DAATH CHOSEN FOR THE BANDS NAME & WHAT DOES IT MEAN?
Mike: The primary encouragement for naming our band DAATH arises out of our ambition to act as educators
as well as entertainers. If you are unfamiliar, DAATH is the hidden point on the Qabala's tree of life, which
reconciles knowledge with understanding. The Qabala is a Hebrew mystical text that acts as a guidepost to all
seeking mental clarity & evolution. Although we tolerate any & all forms of religious belief in DAATH, we are a
non-religious group with our roots more in metaphysical psychology rather than any institutionally based religion.
On the tree of life DAATH is the hidden point on the tree that connects & reconciles the tree with it's adverse
side. This is important because true evolution & growth only arises from a balanced force. Both Eyal & I have
both suffered for years with these unchecked & extreme sides of our personalities, therefore the reconciliatory
nature of DAATH provides a healthy way to contain these unchecked elements instead of repressing them. I
believe the need for this reconciliation has been the most important elements in building DAATH, not only as a
band, but also as a philosophy for our lives.
WHO OR WHAT HAS INFLUENCED YOU IN CREATING YOUR
STYLE & SOUND?
Eyal: My influences come from various different places. Musically
speaking I get on different kicks. Right now I'm mainly on a Metal
kick. I love a lot of the new things that are happening in extreme
music. The new level of technicality & complexity are mind blowing.
Some of my previous kicks have been a Classic Rock kick where all I
listened to was THE BEATLES, THE DOORS, LED ZEPELIN &
PINK FLOYD. I don't just mean listened, but I learned to play their
songs, analyzed their structures, analyzed their lyrics & figured out
was going on harmonically. THE BEATLES actually have all their
songs scored out. I spent a whole lot of time with that book. The same
all I listened to for about a year & a half & during that time I analyzed
everything that i could about the pieces I was listening to. I also draw
influences from non-musical elements. For instance military like
precision, natural disasters, catastrophes & events that cause humans
to emotionally short circuit from the intensity of the occurrence really
draws me in.
Mike: I'd say that there are many influences to choose from. I have
always been a big Metal fan & it wouldn't be fair not to mention some
of the bigger names like DEATH, MORBID ANGEL & CARCASS. I
also would like to mention APHEX TWINS for providing some of the
inspiration for the electronic influences in our music.
Sam: Everything began with the ELECTRIC LIGHT ORCHESTRA. I went through some Michael Jackson &
dimension, I think John Williams owns, but Koji Kondo snaps at his heels with tiny nipping jaws. I rip all those
YOU HAVE A LOT OF WORLDLY & MIDDLE EASTERN TYPE SOUNDS IN YOUR MUSIC. ARE YOU
HEAVILY INFLUENCED WITH THE MIDDLE EASTERN CULTURES?
Eyal: My dad is Israeli as well as a professional musician & my mom is Mexican. Their backgrounds alone make
for a diverse musical upbringing. Growing up I spent a lot of time traveling with them to concerts all over the
world & I've also spent a lot of time in Israel. World music & especially Middle Eastern type music are parts of
my upbringing & I guess they've embedded themselves into my musical style.
PLEASE DESCRIBE A LITTLE BIT OF THE CREATIVE PROCESS IN CREATING YOUR MUSIC?
Mike: There are various methods that Eyal & I use in writing. Some of these techniques cannot be discussed in
great length in this interview, but I will briefly summarize some of the methods we use when writing. Eyal & I
used to compose using conventional methods of piece writing, starting with the vocals or a guitar riff or what
have you. More recently Eyal & I have explored various methods attaining the sound we desire by agreeing on
the best sound for the song, instead of who has the most time in the limelight. This open minded approach has
expanded our group action & has relaxed to rigid boundaries of more conventional forms of writing. In addition,
DAATH explores deriving new sounds using custom made modular & granula synths with which we hope to
expand our listening audience's aural array.
YOUR MUSIC IS A BIT DIFFERENT FROM A LOT OF MUSIC I GET & REALLY HAS STOOD OUT
FOR ME. HOW WOULD YOU BEST DESCRIBE YOUR STYLE & SOUND?
Eyal: Techno Death Metal.
I HEAR LOTS OF INFLUENCES OF TRADITIONAL METAL, DEATH METAL, HARDCORE & MORE
WITH IN YOUR MUSIC. WHAT TYPE OF BANDS DO YOU FEEL DAATH BEST FITS IN WITH?
Eyal: If you look at my CD collection you'll find everything from Gore/Grind to Pop to Orchestral to Ambient
Electronic. I don't limit myself in what I listen to and I know the same goes for Mike. By that same token, we try
not to limit ourselves when we write. I really think that the wide range of our influences comes out in DAATH's
music & therefore I don't think that we fit with any one genre. Our music is too diverse for any single scene to
completely embrace us. Our audience comes from multiple scenes.
YOUR CD "FUTILITY" HAS BEEN OUT FOR A LITTLE BIT NOW. HOW WELL IS IT DOING IN THE
Eyal: Which underground scene? The purist elements in most of the underground scenes tend to hate us. Not
Death Metal enough for Death Metal, not Industrial enough for Industrial, etc. On the other hand we're doing
extremely well with the more open-minded people who inhabit the Metal underground. It seems as though people
either love us or hate us & there's very little in between. I have noticed though that a good number of our
detractors tend to be converted when they see us live.
Sam: The CD seems to be doing well enough now that I have a hard time giving samplers to anyone. They
always say, "I already have it."
COULD YOU EXPLAIN A LITTLE BIT ABOUT THE COVER
ART, THE MEANING BEHIND IT & WHO DID IT?
Eyal: The imagery on the cover is directly related to our album title
"FUTILITY". The cover depicts two conjoined twins trying to
separate. This is futile because if the separate they die, but if they
remain together it is a hell of an entirely different nature. Humans are
always trying to divide their multifaceted selves into oppositional forces
when in fact the best way, in my opinion, to go through life is as an
integrated whole rather than a fractured person. The painting was
created by Amber Boardman. You can see more of her work at
THERE IS A ALOT OF SYMBOLS USED THROUGH OUT
YOUR CD ARTWORK. CAN YOU EXPLAIN WHAT SOME ARE
& WHY YOU CHOSE TO USE THEM?
Mike: DAATH traditionally uses it's own Sigil & Glyphs using a
mathematical process called, strange attractors. We feel that since
much of the work we are here exploring is in many cases unique to the
meaning behind the music, only an original design would best fit it's
COULD YOU TELL A LITTLE SOME OF YOUR LYRICAL
Mike: Our lyrics are mostly derived in trance like states with the desired Qlippoth firmly in mind. After analyzing
& transcribing the lyrics, they are further adjusted to the context of the songs. The content is considered a direct
mystical reflection of the adverse Sephira & should be analyzed & interpreted to represent a negative
HAS THERE BEEN ANY LABEL INTERESTS IN DAATH? IF SO, WHO? I KNOW I WOULD SNAG
YOU GUYS UP IN A SECOND IF BEOWOLF PRODUCTIONS WAS A RECORD LABEL!
Eyal: There has been, but I don't think I should be mentioning whom. Nothing has really materialized yet. You
will definitely find out if something positive happens.
DOES DAATH PLAY OUT A LOT? WHERE ARE SOME OF THE PLACES YOU'VE PLAYED & WHO
ARE SOME OF THE BANDS YOU'VE SHARED THE STAGE WITH?
Eyal: We are going to be playing out a whole lot over the summer & fall. Right now we're working on getting
opening slots on a few different tours, so we'll see what comes of that. I guess the most notable bands that
we've shared the stage with so far have been ARSIS & ION DISSONANCE. Both those bands combine
unmatched technicality with some really brilliant song writing. Have you ever seen them? The shit that Jim from
ARSIS can play while he's singing is intimidating as hell & Van Dyne is just a wall of power on the drums. I'm
also convinced that the guys from ION are cyborgs. Go watch them play & you'll understand why I think so.
WHAT IS A DAATH SHOW LIKE? ANY INTERESTING TOUR STORIES YOU COULD SHARE?
Eyal: We haven't toured yet, but I know that next time you interview us I'll be able to answer this question in
ARE YOU INTO ANY OTHER STYLES OF MUSIC BESIDES WHAT YOU PLAY? WHO ARE SOME
OF THE BANDS YOUR CURRENTLY INTO?
Eyal: Right now I'm on a Metal kick. The new ARSIS CD blows my mind. I haven't really been able to get that
out of my CD player.
WHAT DO THE MEMBERS OF DAATH DO WHEN NOT DOING ANY WORK FOR THE BAND?
Eyal: I run a recording studio, produce bands, and compose all different types of music. I could write a book
based on what Sam (guitar) does when he's not playing with us, but instead I'll just direct you over to his
website: http://groups.msn.com/sammisshredd. Cory practices drums & builds things.
Mike: I personally have an interest in anything having to do with mysticism, hermeticism, Gnostic studies,
linguistically studies & anything having to do with ancient history & myth. I'm also a graphic designer & love to
work on anything 3D or 2D.
Sam: I contribute to the sum misery of humanity. I also like sushi.
IF YOU WEREN'T PLAYING IN DAATH, WHAT DO YOU THINK YOU WOULD BE DOING?
Eyal: I would be doing everything that I do when I'm not in DAATH, plus I would do what I do in DAATH, but
in another band.
Mike: I would most likely be working in post production fixing up graphics & making 3D animations.
Sam: Auditioning for DAATH.
WHAT TYPE OF MOVIES & TV SHOWS ARE YOU INTO?
Eyal: I don't watch TV & I'm currently not really into movies either.
The idea of people pretending to do things that everyone else wishes
they were doing is kind of rubbing me the wrong way these days.
Mike: My favorite movie is JACOB'S LADDER & anything horror
related, or sci-fiction related. I don't like watching TV, but when I do
I usually watch something educational on Discovery Channel.
Sam: The pinnacle of cinematic achievement thus far is FINDING
NEMO, which I have seen in the theater sixteen times. That's one
hundred & twelve dollars; incidentally, not counting the twenty I
eventually coughed up for the DVD. I understand that beauty is in the
eye of the beholder, but I'm afraid that if you haven't yet committed
this film to memory, you are a jerk. Television is something of a
mystery to me as that there is nowhere in my house to plug one in.
My understanding is that all actors have fallen to misfortune or
something, right? Camera crews just migrate about recording the
mundane antics of nobodies & such. Well, I can see that without
IF DAATH WERE A MOVIE, WHAT TYPE OF MOVIE WOULD
IT BE & WHAT WOULD THE STORY BE LIKE?
Revealing the horrors that are right beneath the surface waiting to reveal themselves into waking reality. I would
like to show the bleed through of these Qlippothic forces in our everyday life & how they disguise themselves as
the mundane accepted norm, all the while wreaking havoc on an unsuspecting humanity. I believe the atmosphere
would be best fitted to something out of an H.R. Geiger painting.
Sam: Claymation Porn!
WHAT IS THE MUSIC SCENE LIKE IN GEORGIA? WHO DO YOU FEEL ARE SOME OF THE
BETTER BANDS, LABELS, ZINES, ETC... FROM GEORGIA?
Eyal: Without a doubt I have to say that the best zine & label in Georgia are DEATHGASM RECORDS. First of
all they have the only all Metal retail store in Atlanta. Second of all they've done more than anybody else to bring
underground acts to Atlanta. Third, their catalogue is quite extensive. Check it out at www.DEATHGASM.com.
Fourth, their CD manufacturing company, DGR-INC. has the best deals I've ever seen. You can reach them at
www.DGRINC.com, and fifth, Evan & Alex are super cool guys. I would have to say that the best underground
band that I've encountered here in recent was SIGNS OF DYING. They broke up recently & I think that
everyone agrees that it's a real shame. The state of the scene in Georgia is pretty typical in my opinion. Everyone
goes out for the big bands & it's often like pulling teeth to get people to local shows. It's too bad because we
actually have some good bands here like BURIAL RITES, THE SOULS UNREST & ENDER'S GAME among
WHAT ARE YOUR VIEWS ON THE WAR WE ARE FIGHTING AT THE MOMENT & THE STATE OF
Eyal: I believe that the wars we are fighting are justified & proper. I believe in preemptive strikes & I also believe
in dealing with people on terms that they understand. The people we are fighting don't respond to negotiations &
diplomacy. They understand force & that's what we're giving them, to good success I might add. There are
some good websites that cover what the mainstream press won't which can be very informative. One of the best
is www.strategypage.com. The state of this country is a whole other topic. The reason this is a confusing
issue is because the party that is waging the wars I agree with is also working to strip us of our civil liberties here
at home through methods like the patriot act. I don't know if you've read it, but it's a pretty frightening document.
The fact that any of us can be seized & held without trial & without legal representation based on suspicion of
terrorist involvement stinks of the communist inquisition that took place during the 1950's. That's not to say that
the Democratic party is any better. A Democrat is leading this current FCC fiasco, which is tightening the noose
of censorship on our airwaves. His name is Michael J. Copps & he was the former Chief of Staff to Democratic
Senator Ernest Hollings. These are just two parts of a very tough questions I need to answer for myself by
November. Both parties want to limit our freedoms; one party wants to keep the wars going. If you figure it out
with pure math then the choice is clear...
Mike: I try to stay out of politics, although I can say that there are always better alternatives to brute force.
Sam: It is all proceeding according to my sinister design; that is all you need to know.
WHAT CAN WE EXPECT TO SEE IN THE NEAR FUTURE FROM
Eyal: In the near future you can expect to see many shows, many
interviews, and a new album by the spring of 2005. Our goal is to be as
active as we can possibly be.
Mike: Since DAATH is systematically exploring the adverse counterpart
of the tree of life; each of our albums will be representative of a Qlippoth,
or a broken husk of the tree of life. In our first album we explored the
adverse Sephira of Kether, the crown of the tree, represented by the
conjoined twins who are forever separating & conjoining. Besides
representing the dueling aspects of humanities consciousness, the
conjoined twins mythos can be associated to the darker aspects of the
demi-urge, or part-creator. The next album will be entitled "THE
HINDERERS" & will explore the forces that keep us from ever attaining
free will & self awareness. I am planning on having DAATH encompass
all the adverse Sephira & their sub regions, making DAATH a 100 song
project. This does not how ever mean that Eyal & I will end here, as the
paths that connect the Sephira will also have to be described. This will
entail 220 more songs & will most likely be produced under the name
TUNNELS OF SET.
Sam: Beyond questions, older members.
I'M ALL OUT OF QUESTIONS. WOULD YOU LIKE TO ADD ANYTHING TO CLOSE OUT? THANX A
LOT FOR DOING THIS INTERVIEW!!!
Eyal: Thank you very much for the opportunity to spread our music & for the great review you gave
"FUTILITY". People reading this should go to www.DAATHmusic.com, listen to our music, sign up for our
mailing list, and then order our album.