Sunday, January 17, 2016

An Interview with TEETH

California's TEETH are one of the more intriguing new bands I heard in 2015; I came across their debut Unremittance on Bandcamp, and marked them as ones to keep an eye on. Like recent releases by Gorguts and Ulcerate, they reshape death metal into a slower, more dissonant form, with sudden shifts in tempo and eerie melodies to keep the listener guessing. With a new split 7" about to be released, I felt it was a good time to reach out to them. I e-mailed some questions to the band, which vocalist/guitarist Justin Moore was quick to answer.

Dreams of Consciousness: Please introduce TEETH, and give a brief history of your band for anyone who doesn't know you yet - when did you form, and what were your goals? What were you doing before Teeth, and what would you be doing without it?

TEETH is a 4 piece from Los Angeles California. Vincent Nguyen on drums, Peter Krajavic on bass, Erol Ulug and Justin Moore on guitar and vocals. We formed in 2013 and our goal at that point was just to release music. Before TEETH we were all in various bands together. Without TEETH I believe all of us would still be playing music, as it is something we've all been doing together for upwards of 10-15 years.

DoC: Your music encompasses several different styles/genres. How would you describe it? Do you consider yourselves death, doom, sludge, some combination of the three, or none at all?

We are obviously eclectic in our approach; that was never purposeful it's just the way things came about. Realistically I believe every band within their genres are simply making music they would like to hear. We are not breaking any barriers and creating some new fringe genre so we are a combination of the three I would say. Though a lot more of a death metal influence can be heard throughout the material we've yet to release.

DoC: Along the same lines, since your music spans several different genres - who do you see as your peers?

Well we did a short tour with the guys in Fister and it was a great time so I would definitely consider those guys peers, and would love to hit the road with them again. As far as other bands, aside from the tour, we've only played local shows and with a variety of different bands. I can't say any of those shows have been shared with a band very similar to us. We've played with hardcore bands, doom bands, sludge bands, death metal bands but no one we've really become extraordinarily close with yet, though most of them were incredibly rad.

DoC: I really enjoy your debut Unremittance. Tell me more about it - when was it written and where was it recorded? Since this was your debut, what were your expectations, and how do you feel about it now?

Unremittance was written 2012- 2013 and recorded at Bright Light Studios by our guitarist Erol Ulug. At the time, our expectations were just to get music out. As a band we believed that producing material for people to hear was the first and most important step, shows are fun and make an impact, but they are far more impactful when people are familiar with your music. To be honest, the way the album was received I would say surpassed our expectations. We really didn't know what the reaction would be, it was something different for all of us involved. We were receiving praise in just about every review written up about it which was unexpected and new. All of our previous projects didn't really garner any attention with the exception of Peter being a member of Lake of Blood. Unremittance will always have a special place for us being that it's our first release.

DoC: What is your songwriting process like - do you have a primary songwriter, or do you write as a band/through jams, etc. What is your approach to song structure?

Our songwriting process is step by step. We write the guitars, rhythm section follows, lyrics and vocals last. This was and still isn't necessarily intentional, it has worked for us since the beginning and is what still produces our strongest material to date. As far as structure it is never really a thought, if an idea we like is presented we generally find a way to connect it to something else and keep moving the song forward. Some ideas may come back but most of our material is more linear than repetitive.

DoC: If you don't mind me asking, what gear do you use to get that low oppressive sound?

Erol plays out of a 6505+ half stack, Justin plays out of a Marshall JCM 2000 half stack , and Pete uses an MXR bass driver into an Ampeg SVT 2 and Ampeg 8x10.

DoC: You have a split with Fister coming out soon. What can you say about the new material?

The new material is definitely a step in the direction we want. Just like every other band will tell you, it's heavier and more aggressive than the last. There's even a bit more experimentation which is going to continue happening for what we have planned after the split. I will also mention that I've heard Fister's side, it's truly going to be a visceral release.

We've come to ruin lives.
Posted by TEETH on Friday, December 25, 2015

DoC: You're currently unsigned - do you prefer to be independent, or are you looking for a label?

We will consider anyone willing to help us promote and put out our music. Everyone we've spoken to about future releases, and plan on working with has been great. Peter at Broken Limbs Recordings has treated us extremely well and we look forward to the release.

DoC: If you had to name 5 albums without which TEETH wouldn't exist, what would they be?

Every member would have a different answer for this, but 5 that are obviously direct influences for TEETH alone would be:

Gorguts - From Wisdom to Hate
Ulcerate - Everything is Fire
Pig Destroyer - Natasha
Rotten Sound - Exit
Behemoth - Demigod

DoC: What's next for Teeth?

We are going to release the 7" split through Broken Limbs Recordings which will contain 2 new tracks from us. We also have another split we are working on that should be mentioned officially soon. Once we finish recording the second split we are going to play as many shows as possible, and set up a tour this year while also working on our next full length. Hopefully we can get on a few festivals here and there and travel more throughout the states.

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