The first six-song EP, which heralds the sound of DOWN going back to its roots, with influences from BLACK SABBATH, SAINT VITUS and WITCHFINDER GENERAL, is described by Anselmo as "a very pure doom metal record."
The track listing for the effort is as follows (in no particular order):
- The Misfortune Teller
- The Curse Is A Lie
- Open Coffins
- This Work Is Timeless
The members of DOWN were interviewed for a cover story in the latest issue of U.K.'s Metal Hammer magazine. A few excerpts from the chat follow below.
On DOWN's plan to record a series of four EPs over the next few years:
Pepper Keenan: "I had a conversation with Jerry Cantrell [ALICE IN CHAINS guitarist], and I saw a little bit of envy in his eye. Bands know it's a good idea, with the industry like it is these days. But it was more of a thing to allow us to have freedom and not be so stuck to one damn record. If we want to do some mellow shit, it's always like song number nine has to be the mellow song, all that bullshit. It was just something Phil and I were throwing around. And me being the artwork guy, I thought it would be an awesome thing to have a series of images connected together."
Philip Anselmo: "To me, an EP is less stress for us. We have an incredible relationship in DOWN, but when we're locked up for a month or two or three, pounding out 12 to 15 songs, it's very taxing. Very emotionally taxing. So one, it's easier on us, and two, it gives the music to the people quicker. You know, five years ago, we promised people, 'It won't take us five years to get this thing done!' [Laughing] Riiiight."
On the first of the four EPs:
Kirk Windstein: "This is kind of a heavy-sounding record for DOWN. These six tracks are not loaded with a lot of dynamics like we have in some of our other material."
On the new song "Witchtripper":
Pepper Keenan: "We were down in Spain, in this little village, and I noticed that every house had these stones on the corner of the roof. And everywhere I looked, there were images of witches in people's windows. Of course, Phil and I being like we are, we started envisioning what these stones were. We figured they were probably witchtrippers — you got witches on the roof, and they trip her up when she's coming down. We had to have the correct song to match the coolness of the word. When I had the riff, I knew it was one that would be 'Witchtripper'."
On the lyrical themes covered on the first EP:
Philip Anselmo: "Interesting. Before I say anything, I will say this. On this — and in the past — I write to basically give an outline and let the listener garner for themselves how they want to apply their own rules and regulations to the track. For me, I find one of the biggest realities of life is that no two men, no two cultures, no two belief systems are really the same. There's a lot lyrically where I'm kind of at odds with mankind's relationship with mankind. . . I guess it's more simple to say than ever doing it, such is history, but these days instead of ruffling feathers, I much prefer… put it this way, I'd rather have friends than enemies, any day. It's easy to make an enemy. It's easy to be negative. It's very easy to slip into that, but it's very tough to come with love. All you have to do is open up a newspaper and you can see for yourself, man. Right here in my own city, people are killed every day. Me, as a person, there's no way I could sleep at night if I'd done any of those things. It makes me wonder: what the fuck are those people thinking? There is this thug worship that has led a lot of promising youngsters down a terrible path, a sometimes-irreverisble path. You take somebody's life, as an adult, you're 16 years old and you're fucked. I guess when I sat down to write this record, that's where my head was at."
On the recording process:
Kirk Windstein: "To be truthful, there are times when there's a lot of tension in the room. I guess because everyone is a heavy hitter, as Pepper likes to call it. Everyone has a strong personality. At the same time, you come back a couple of hours later and everybody's smiling from ear to ear and jamming their fucking asses off. You gotta go through hell to get to heaven."
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