Anthony Toto of Pop-Break.com recently conducted an interview with THE DEVIL WEARS PRADA guitarist Jeremy DePoyster. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.
Pop-Break.com: "8:18" really pushes the band's sound into newer territories. This is your heaviest offering yet. What influenced the new direction on this album?
Jeremy DePoyster: It's really just the kind of stuff we're into. We like it dark and we like it heavy. That's the most fun live. We have some stuff that's a little more diverse like "Killmore", "8:18", and songs like that. Even those songs, I think they are darker if they are not heavier.
Pop-Break.com: From a guitar standpoint, the low tuned guitars are sometimes reminiscent of SLIPKNOT because they're complex yet filled with grooves. Your playing still maintains its melodic phrasing that is a signature part of your style.
Jeremy DePoyster: We toured with a lot of metal bands like SLIPKNOT, SLAYER, and the AS I LAY DYING guys. They really influence us as far as metal goes. I know for Chris [Rubey] especially, the majority of the stuff that he listens too is in the metal realm, so that's what he writes. I try to bring in some melody here and there just to give it a little variety to the sound. Chris is very talented and a lot of the riffs he writes are really awesome.
Pop-Break.com: Vocally, Mike [Hranica] and you experiment and incorporate different styles on this album. Your singing remains a highlight of the band. On "8:18" or any of the past material, how have you balanced your vocal approach with Mike?
Jeremy DePoyster: We just try and do it naturally, especially as time goes on. We tried to be very formulaic with it in the beginning. We would go, "Okay, this is going to be a verse and this is going to be the lead singing part." I think we look at it now where if the part feels like it needs singing on it, it's going to have singing. Sometimes we will even change it up from that. If it feels like it needs singing, we'll put screaming on there just to see what it sounds like. With Mike, he's finding his own voice more and more with a lot of variety. Even parts where we may have had to just sing, he could now do in different styles. The more voices the two of us come up with together, the more variety it gets on the record. It just doesn't become the same monotonous thing for 10 songs. [laughs]
Pop-Break.com: THE DEVIL WEARS PRADA came up during a time where metalcore became a massive sensation within the metal community. While your band incorporated elements of metalcore into your repertoire, I always felt the band separated itself from its contemporaries in the genre. Reflecting back, what do you think helped you stand out amongst the scene?
Jeremy DePoyster: I don't know; I think that we came up in a generation where we learned a lot from the bands that we toured with. We toured with a variety of all kinds of bands from SILVERSTEIN, CHIODOS, and bands that were nothing like us. We toured with SHADOWS FALL, CHIMAIRA and GWAR on the Sounds Of The Underground. We did the Warped Tour and even that had a lot of variety: punk bands like NOFX to the more metal stuff like KILLSWITCH ENGAGE. We really learned that it's not genre dependent, being a good band is just being a good band. You should be able to go see a reggae band, a pop band, and a metal band all one after the other. If the band is good, it should be a good show. We really took it to heart that being in a good band just means writing great songs, playing them well, and having a real fun and exciting show. That's always been the goal. I think that allows us to branch out of genres. "You know, maybe these guitars are a little too melodic here for metalcore?" We don't care; we'll do it anyway. "Maybe this thing is a little too this or that. Maybe there is a little too much keyboard here or something?" We don't care and we do whatever we want. We've been really lucky that people like it. [laughs] By now, it should've been over and nobody should care anymore but we're lucky that they still do.
Read the entire interview at Pop-Break.com.