October 2008

Vampire Kisses has bitten into the necks of readers all over the world. Raven Madison, a 16-year old goth chick living in a town known as Dullsville, is constantly complaining that there is nothing to do in her town. At least until Alexander Sterling arrives to town little does she know his deep dark secret of being a real living everyday life Vampire of the night life. Raven falls head over heels for him and their chemistry explodes into an overflowing blood waterfall, with obstacles and chaos mixed in between. The entire series is told in Raven's point of view, as we witness her overcome some dangerous tasks running throughout the series, leading off into 4 other titles in this gothtastic series. The sequel Vampire Kisses 2 Kissing Coffins continues the tale where it was left off taking Raven into finding out about Alexander's relatives and what scams they have in store. Next we enter the world of Vampire Kisses: Vampireville where Raven rides into her aunt's domain and comes across a nightclub to her liking 100% known as The Coffin Club which she stumbles across that leads her down a path of destruction and worries for her beloved. The last two installments thus far, Vampire Kisses: Dance With a Vampire and The Coffin Club go hand in hand going into detail on what really happens when you mix Vampires with everyday Humans is not the best combination you can mix up. Ellen Schreiber has display a series of heart pulsing blood flowing energy of fun and excitement, and it continues in the mini series done by Tokypop expresses a more in depth detail showing the illustration's and creativity of what Raven and Alexander are really like in this new series of untold events. Hunting Beach's Barnes & Noble book store has had Ellen Schreiber in their presents and she did a Q&A and happily signed copies of her books, and took pictures with her beloved fans, including myself. Goths and fans alike lined up as they each waited and watched the amazement of their beloved series, come to life, being told by their idolized author. Vampire Kisses should leave some bite marks engraved on your neck, after you've read through this fangtastic series!

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1. Introduce yourself and talk about the sound of the new album.

My name is Dez and I'm the singer of DevilDriver, and the sound of the album is really heavy groove rock and roll metal.

2. What did you guys think when you went on The Invaluable Darkness Part I Tour?

Oh with Dimmu, great guys, really cool to tour with, the houses were packed every single night and the reception of DevilDriver was great and the vibe of the new songs was great. We loved touring with those guys, great time. Oh cool and that's a hometown venue and that's why I came out and The Wiltern is a great venue.

3. How was the tour with Lamb of God, Killswitch Engage and Soilwork back in December?

Those guys are all really killer, I love everyone one of them, and love all those bands as well and having a group of guys like that together, the tour is really fun, and the vibe is good all around, and we would love to go out on tour with them again, we also toured with Lamb of God over seas and they're really good friends of ours.

4. Can you tell me of the craziest moment you guys have had on tour?

There are so many of them I don't know where to start, honest to God think I don't know it would take us hours, I'd say almost the possession of weed I don't want to talk about (laughs).

5. Is there any particular theme to "The Last Kind Words," and what are some of your favorite tracks off the album?

The themes of that record is just pressure of getting yourself through, that’s what I think when I was a kid and what metal brought to me, and punk rock as well, and favorite tracks to play off that would be "Clouds Over California," I love playing that song, and "Horn of Betrayal," is a real good song as well.

6. What are your plans for after this tour?

We finish this tour in about 4 days we have less than 15 hours at home and then fly out to South Africa and we're doing 3 shows, and they're already sold out and we're gonna have a good time out there.

7. Is DevilDriver going to release a LIVE CD/DVD anytime soon?

We are going to release a "Making Of..." with the next record and then release a full DVD, which is going to be massive over 5 or 6 years of footage that we haven't even released, we want to take our time with it and we have a lot of live shows and backstage footage that should be cool.

8. If you weren't a musician what would you be?

I don't know I'm a father, I'm a lot of things I did a lot of different things, brick layer I did a lot of things, for me probably be music this whole time and not have to go back and have a normal job, where I wouldn't have to clock in would be great.

9. Do you have a favorite tour that you've done in the passed?

I do, I think touring the world with Black Sabbath and Pantera is probably the highlight of where I've been and what I've done, as so many Ozzfests, I can't even count and the only person that’s done it more than me is Ozzy Osbounre, doing a show with a mic in my hand having a 100 people having a good time, is all good.

10. How was the Listening Party that took place back in July?

That was great! We had food; we watched our video, hung out with the fans, friends, and good people and listen to the record, just a good time.

11. Do you have to be in love to write a love song or sad to write a depressing song?

I think you should try and go with it, and you're not feeling it, then the people won’t feel it. Whatever it has to feel, rather it goes with depression or anger and how you feel it. The way you come out with a track you better make sure it comes out because if it comes out on the song and people sense it, then you're not going to get it the right way. Make sure I'm really connected with it, going with first base and such and really connected with it.

12. Have any plans for Halloween, are you fan of the movie?

I'm not a slasher guy, I'm a horror guy more of a monster guy and science fiction guy, like Dracula and the Mummy, Godzilla, not a big slasher guy so eh Halloween film not really, not a big fan of Jason, to have a guy wearing a mask running around killing isn't scary to me. Having the mummy coming out of his crypt is real horror for me. And for Halloween we're going to be heading to South Africa so for Halloween we'll be in the air!

13. Do you ever get tired of performing the same songs over and over?

No and if we do, we change the set, that was one of the things my drummer always says that same thing I wonder if Slayer ever gets tired of playing "Reign Of Blood," but if we see the kids having a good time then probably not. We're going to have the singer of Coal Chamber, come out and play with DevilDriver, so we never do this but should be really fun. Have you ever toured with Slayer or have you done this already? We have done a few festivals with them, and we would want to tour with them for sure. Getting along with all those guys, knowing Kerry King, has always been one of those guys that would shake my hand, and be really down to earth, like Tom Araya, is like myself a family man has kids, the one guy I really don't know is Jeff. You guys should go out with Slayer in 09 and set something up. Go and talk to everyone to go the message boards and tell them to light it up!

14. What DevilDriver song do you think is a perfect song for a mosh pit or circle pit?

"Meet The Wrench," we close everything with that we'll be ending it 10 years from now, because there's a reason because when you get into that groove you get into it. Either stand back at the bar or get in the pit and be aware of what happens when you come into our pits/shows. It's pretty intense all around the world for DevilDriver, ever since releasing our first record, we've been building our fan base giving people what they want, making heavy metal for ourselves and for our fans we've never gonna have that 1 hit radio song, and then if we do have that one song, then so be it. Having these bands that sound heavy and then goes to the chorus and then sounds like fucking Evanesce and then I laugh and then consider themselves metal, when dude you're shit sucks!

15. Do you have anything you'd like to say to the fans of DevilDriver?

I'm still extremely proud of still doing this for over 13-14 years and this next record we have coming in June of next year is going to be so blistering and there’s not one band around that's not going to take a look and take a listen and say what rare they missing and what they're missing is they’re not us so fuck them!


An interview with Dave Haley:

Could you please tell us more about the history of the band, how things started?

Joe and myself were playing in a band that wasn't really doing what we wanted to do musically so we started jamming on new material. Once we had enough songs we asked Cam to play on bass and Matthew to sing for us. Pretty much a normal beginning for a band. We just kept writing material and once we had enough we started to play shows and all that stuff, then the albums started to come. The first few years were very slow for us until we changed members, replacing Matthew on vocals with Jason. This was when we started to tour and pushed the band more.

What's your opinion on your previous albums "The Isle Of Disenchantment", "The Scepter Of The Ancients", and "Symbols Of Failure" nowadays?

Each album when we have done has been the best we could do at that point in terms of songwriting, production, artwork and all of that... They all have fun songs to play live, and we are proud of what we did on them, but the new album is definitely our strongest and my favorite album that we've done. I personally never really listen to albums I have done to be honest, as it would kill the songs live for me.

Your killer album "Ob(Servant)", where did you record it, who produced it? How was the process of recording?

We recorded it in a local Tasmanian studio and also in Joe, our guitarist's home studio. This way works best for us as Joe knows all the songs and the material, so he as well record it. We got Logan Mader to mix and master it in the US. Technically speaking, Joe produced it as he wrote the music and recorded it. It was a very smooth process and a relaxing album to actually make.

Who writes the lyrics, what are they about? Is there any concept in them? Are the lyrics an important aspect of the band or are they just there to guide the music?

I write the lyrics, and they just explore a wide range of dark themes surrounding humanity and the evolution/devolution of the species. Each set is a stand alone story that is inspired by things I'm interested in, but they are written in such a way that the reader can give them his own meaning. The lyrics are important, but the music is first and foremost. We don't have a message - they are just to complete the music.

How did you get in contact with Nuclear Blast? For how many albums have you signed to them? Are you satisfied with their work?

We had been in touch with Gerardo from the US office for a while, and we knew he was a fan of the band. We talked back and forth about the possibility of signing to the label and he basically said he had to convince the European head office before a decision could be made. Well, a few people put for us good words including Maurizio from Kataklysm, and so the German office sent us an offer. We are signed to them for a few albums, which is great as they are a killer label. Thus far they have been nothing but great to us - just really cool people doing a great job in the metal realm. We are very happy to be on the label.

When it comes down to writing a new song or an album what's the process like?

Each song is different when it comes to writing which is a good way to make sure you don't repeat yourself. For this album Joe pretty much wrote all the material and gave us completed songs to learn which we had never done in the past. It was a great way to work, as we got a very different sounding album which is what we like to do.

Have you played live a lot? What tours have you done in the past?

Yeah, we have toured quite a lot - 4 European tours and 1 US tour. We have plans to get back to Europe with The Black Dahlia Murder and Cephalic Carnage in early 2009, then back to the US. We usually go out as support to a bigger band in Europe and the US, and we go out as headliners in Australia.

Tell some of your experiences playing live.

Of all the shows we have played I would say the shows on the US tour were the best we have done. We have done a lot of shows, and every show we do is important to us. We try to put on the best possible performance for those who have come out to see us.

What are your expectations for Psycroptic in the future?

We just want to tour as much as possible to as many different places as possible. It's great to be able to travel around the world by playing music. We just want to push things as far as we can go - you only get one shot at things in life, so there is no point doing things in half measures. In more defined terms, we hope to do a couple of European and US tours in 2009 as well as to continue to write new and interesting music.

What do you guys do when you're not out on the road? Do you guys work or school?

We all have to work while we are not on the road. Cam and Jason are tradesmen, I'm a drum teacher and Joe records bands and teaches guitar. We are quite busy at home getting bills paid so we can continue to tour. We don't make much money from the band at all, as it goes back into more touring and recording costs. It's very expensive to run a touring band. There are a lot of costs people don't realise.

Are there any cool touring/recording experiences or other bizarre stories you would like to share with us?

We have had a lot of crazy and cool times on the road as well as some bad times - but that's just life really. I can't really single out one story as there are so many but it's always really cool to meet some of the people you grew up listening to and admire which has happened a few times. Each day on tour is a new adventure with a story of its own.

What's your favorite place to tour/play?

Each place we play is really cool as it's a honour not a right to be able to do this. Of course some shows are better than others - that's just the way it is. We really like touring the US as the crowds there were really cool and supportive for us. I can't wait to go back. Touring Europe is great to as there are a lot of countries there I like to explore. Each place has its own unique and special charm.

What do you know and think of Romania?

I know I want to visit there! To be honest I don't know too much, but to visit there would be excellent, as I really love exploring new places. It seems like a very interesting and cultured place with a long history. I know Romania has a very bloody and brutal history, and the people of the country are proud and strong. I really hope we get there one day.

What's Tasmania for you? What is the metal scene like there?

Tasmania is a great place, it's quite small population wise which is good and the nature there is very beautiful. It's not how most people would expect. It looks very European, but with a ruggered edge. I would encourage anyone who is going to visit Australia to make a journey down to the island of Tasmania. The metal scene here is small, but it's very supportive of Psycroptic and we really appreciate the local people. There are some cool bands down here that people should check out, such are Ruins and Zero Degrees Freedom.

How did you come up with the band name?

It was actually coined by someone who we knew years ago. We couldn't come up with a name, and he just came out with it one day. It sounded cool so we used it. None of us have seen him for years though - the last time I heard of him he was in a mental institution.

Currently all over the news is the out-raging gas prices, what are your thoughts on that issue?

Well, it's our own fault really. There are abundant alternatives to gas, but we haven't implemented them yet, so we have no one to blame but ourselves. Humans are naturally greedy - the oil industry is the most greedy of all of them. They have us all hooked on gas like pathetic drug addicts, and they can do anything they like with the prices. Sure there are a lot of other factors that influence prices, but we should be using other alternatives to save money and nature itself.

Is MySpace the great Satan of the 21st Century?

Haha, yeah probably. It seems like it's a necessary evil for bands these days, people using it to check out bands, keep in contact with people and all that stuff. I'm a sucker for it as it helps promo the band and it's an easy way for people to keep in touch. I just don't like the fact that it takes so much of my time!

Thanks so much for taking the time to do this interview, any thoughts or comments?

Thank you very much for the questions, hope to see you very soon on tour!


A Skylit Drive Set list:
Wires (and the Concept of Breathing)
Eris and Dysnomia
I’m Not a Thief, I’m a Treasure Hunter
Knights of the Round
All It Takes for Your Dreams to Come True

Alesana Set list:
This is Usually the Part Where People Scream
A Most Profound Quiet
All Night Dance Parties in the Underground Palace
Obsession is Such an Ugly Word

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Escape The Fate Set list:
The Flood
Reverse This Curse
There's No Sympathy for the Dead
Not Good Enough For Truth In Cliche
On To The Next One
The Guillotine

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Sliverstein Set list:
Smile in Your Sleep
My Heroine
Call it Karma (acoustic)
Giving Up
Hear me Out
The Weak & The Wounded
Fist Wrapped in Blood
Discovering the Waterfront
Defend You
Already Dead
Three Hours Back
Smashed Into Pieces
Bleeds No More

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Chiodos Set list: (Not Original Order):
Hathaway Lane
All Nereids Beware
Baby, You Wouldn’t Last A Minute on the Creek
The Words 'Best Friend' Become Redefined
There's No Penguins in Alaska
To Trixie and Reptile, Thanks for Everything
Is It Progression If a Cannibal Uses a Fork?
Lexington (Joey Pea-Pot with a Monkey Face)
Bulls Make Money, Bears Make Money, Pigs Get Slaughtered
A Letter from Janelle
Teeth the Size of Piano Keys
If I Cut My Hair, Hawaii Will Sink
The Undertaker's Thirst for Revenge Is Unquenchable (The Final Battle)
Two Birds Stoned at Once
Smitten for the Mitten

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The Wiltern LG was filled to the maximum on the night of October 23rd. Lining the venue all the way around were scene kids and emo kids with a tab of metal heads in between dressed in tight skinny jeans with multiple colored t-shirts with pure black hair if not covering one eyelid then multi-colored hair-do's either spiked or off to one side with a rainbow of shades. As the doors opened at 5:45PM the crowd made their way into the venue running over to the merch booth grabbing a spot to purchase their favorite idol's t-shirt. When the show began at 6:30PM openers A Skylit Drive took the stage presenting themselves to the crowd that was slowly forming in the venue to witness what they were all about. A Skylit Driver put on a good solid set list getting the crowd hyped up and highly entertained. Soon after came forth Alesana who came out in their white attire rocking out the stage getting the pit more mixed up than the music. Alesana jumped and screamed all around the stage singing both old and new hits ranging from "This is the Part Where Ppl Scream," "Underground Dance Parties," and "Ambrosia," really got the crowd moving. Next up came Escape The Fate who made their presents known as their new vocalist Craig Mabbitt was already well known for his former act blessthefall we shall see what happens during this set and things turn out well. Drummer Robert Ortiz walked first onto the stage hailing in his hands his digital camera as the fans cheered and shouted as he took his seat behind his drum set and the rest of the band followed. Opening up with their newest single "The Flood," got the crowd chanting and singing right along as Craig jumped and screamed his heart onto the stage as they broke way into "Reverse This Curse," leading into "There's No Sympathy for the Dead," "Not Good Enough For Truth In Cliche," going off into "On To The Next One," wrapping up altogether with "The Guillotine," and "Situations." Escape The Fate's still bring on the heat and flames when performing live and we won't forget them for it. After the beginner acts were down and out for the evening the first headliner was set and ready for the audience's pleasure which was Sliverstein, who danced and jumped more times than I can count, singing "Smashed Into Pieces," "My Heroine," "If You Could See Into My Soul," "Sound of the Sun," "Smile in Your Sleep," along with "Discovering the Waterfront," among many other tunes that got the crowd jumping as much as the band was.... Ending the entire gig was Chiodos, who opened up with "The Undertaker’s Thirst For Revenge is Unquenchable," "Two Birds Stoned at Once," "Smitten for the Mitten," going into "Baby, You Wouldn’t Last A Minute on the Creek," going off to "Lexington (Joey Pea-Pot with a Monkey Face)," among many other hits that got the crowd screaming and jumping everywhere possible. All in all this tour line-up was intensity to the extreme and the acts were hyped and excited to come out and entertain the audiences of Los Angeles!