New crusty d-beat hardcore punk band from Providence, Rhode Island, DISAVOW (members of WEAK TEETH and THE HURT ENSAMBLE), have recently unveiled their debut record ‘Suffer. Slave. Expire.’, taking on various aspects build around depression and substance abuse. Sonically, these tracks show a well-fitted passionately executed edge, and they serve a worthy addition to the canon of dirty ‘drop-A’ d-beat sounds prefered by dark hardcore bands in the vein of DISFEAR, TRAGEDY, VICTIMS or HIS HERO IS GONE. Actually, DISAVOW’s approach naturally invokes comparison to predecessors, but these cats are distilling a strong feel of their own. Play it loud and scroll down to read our brief interview conducted in early November.
Aye aye, buddies! Thanks so much for sharing some time with us. How are you? How’s Providence? Is it already freezing cold up there? :)
Hey Karol, thanks for the opportunity! Michael and Jon here! Providence is fine. Abnormally warm for the beginning of November but it will be a frozen wasteland in no time so enjoying this last bit of warmth.
Is Autumn a good time for local hardcore scene? Do you usually get a lot of shows in this season?
It’s definitely better than winter. No one wants to leave their house when it’s cold, so booking and playing shows can be frustrating.
Do you guys play live in your neighbourhood often?
Often enough, I guess. We try to play once a month here just because Providence is so small it’s very easy to saturate the scene, so we try to be aware of that.
Alright, so let’s learn something about this band. Please give me a background history on DISAVOW, your previous projects and your influences. Also, who does what in the band?
DISAVOW has been a band since Spring 2016. Chris plays guitar, Dylan plays drums, Michael does vocals, and Jon plays bass. We’ve all played in multiple bands with one another over the years. Chris and Jon play in WEAK TEETH, Dylan plays in THE HURT ENSEMBLE, and Michael, Jon and, Dylan all played together in a band called LYRA. I think all of those other projects peek through stylistically in DISAVOW’s songs. Our main influences are bands like HIS HERO IS GONE and TRAGEDY which is probably pretty obvious but the technical bits can probably be attached to bands like TRAP THEM or CONVERGE.
Your debut offering is a crushing, relentless onslaught of crusty d-beat hardcore. Was it obvious you’ll be hitting this particular stylistic direction? How do you go about translating your thoughts, moods and ideas into a certain sound?
We definitely knew what we wanted to accomplish when we started the band. We tuned our guitars to Drop A-Sharp and decided on the band name because we knew if we were going to be a d-beat band the name had to have “dis” in it. Bands like DISFEAR, DISNIHIL, and DISCHARGE taught us that move haha. If we’re writing a song and we hit a wall or something feels forced, we don’t come back to it, we usually scrap it. In a sense, writing music that you don’t think about in a technical or musical way feels more organic.
How would you define DISAVOW’s lyrical sphere? What messages and stories does the band convey?
With the demo, there was definitely a theme. Michael says he’s a fairly selfish lyricist, in the sense that he write about the things that happen in his life. At the time we wrote Suffer. Slave. Expire.
He was working 2 jobs between 60-80 hours a week and the record talks about the difficulties of sustaining that lifestyle. That sort of regiment very quickly takes a toll on you, leading to depression and substance abuse and as a result, those are two of the central themes on the record.
Speaking of good inspirations for hardcore punk lyrics, what is it like witnessing the US presidential election? How do you see this epic farce from the inside?
Well, by the time this interview is posted, we’ll know whether or not we’ll still be an American band haha. But honestly, it’s embarrassing. To know that we have the choice between a xenophobic, bigoted, piece of human garbage and a corporate lapdog who will perpetuate American imperialism, it’s pretty dismal. Luckily, we live in a part of the country that’s largely forward-thinking and progressive but not everyone is that fortunate. Michael is from Texas, which is notoriously a Republican voting state. So, growing up he witnessed a lot of bigotry during the Bush and Obama administrations that we in the Northeast were lucky enough not to suffer.
Alright, back to the band, you’ve played a couple of gigs in October. How were they? Any cool venues, people or moments you’d like to recall?
We only played one show in October, it was at an art space called AS220 in Providence. We played with EYELET from Baltimore (who are killer, if you haven’t heard them) and THE HURT ENSEMBLE. We haven’t played much this fall because we’re preparing for our first tour at the end of November.
How about your next steps when it comes to playing shows?
So, that tour we’re going on is from 11/25 -12/2 and we’ll be out with Dylan’s other band, The Hurt Ensemble. Here are the dates and cities:
11/25-Lowell, MA. 11/26-Providence, RI. 11/27-Montclair, NJ.
11/28-Baltimore, MD. 11/30-Richmond, VA. 12/1-Philadelphia, PA.
12/2-Worcester, MA. We’re very excited to be on the road with this band. We’ve very proud of the songs and mostly enjoy spending time together haha.
And recording-wise? When can we expect the next release from DISAVOW?
Ummm, that’s a good question. We wrote another song? I don’t know, we’re always writing. At the moment we don’t have anything slated for release. That being said, if someone reading this wants to put out our new record: GET AT ME!
Alright. Thanks a lot for the quick chat guys. All the best and be sure to drop me a line if you have something worthy to share. The last words are yours. Feel free to be turgid and hugely inspiring ;)
Thank you so much for talking to us, this has been awesome! As far as turgid goes: WE ARE THE BEST FUCKING BAND THAT HAS EVER EXISTED IN THE HISTORY OF TIME (just kidding). As far as serious and inspiring goes: Take care of yourselves. If you feel lost or alone, know that you have resources at your disposal. Punktalks.org and the National Suicide Prevention Hotline, being two of them. See y’all soon!