Interview with Patrick Connor Klopf, guitarist and vocalist for Disharmonic Orchestra
Harm: The chops displayed on Ahead are above and beyond anything found on any previous Disharmonic Orchestra recording, although you had of course been moving toward a more technical sound on Not to Be Undimensional Conscious and then Pleasuredome. Clearly your eight years of retirement (that's about right, isn't it?) were not idle years, as your collective musical skills have, if anything, improved; what were each of you doing during those years off from recording?
PCK: Well, Herwig (bass) was and still is playing in a git/pop band called naked lunch and he is also running the fuzzroom, a recording studio. Our album was produced there.
Actually he has been the only one to do some music over all these years. I was running 2 techno and house labels and I had a recordstore and distribution for djs stuff. Martin was working as a cabdriver. Now me and Martin are working as webdesigners.
Harm: What made you decide to make a comeback with "Ahead"?
PCK: Basically we always wanted to play again together, but for some reasons it never happened until Nuclear Blast re-released as a classic series Expositionsprophylaxe, our first full length album in 2000. That was a kind of a major step forward getting our lame asses together and start again. It seemed like there are
still some guys around that know us and that like our music.
But then, everything went very fast. In october 2001 we actually started playing again and making new songs.
Harm: I haven't read much about your new album in the U.S., despite its almost
shockingly high quality... What has the reaction been like in Europe?
PCK: Unfortunately Nuclear Blast America decided not to take our album for a domestic release in the States. They thought, they wont sell any record. Too strange, too much underground, whatever. The reaction anywhere else was totally great. The people that didn't know us from earlier releases like the album alot, the ones that know just our first albums Expositionsprophylaxe and Not to Be Undimensional Conscious had a little problems, cuz they haved made our development with the Pleasuredome album, which showed a litte direction we are gonna take. The album didn't really sell alot so far, but I guess we are still too much labeled as a death metal band. And we are a bit more. Death metal is only one part of many others.
Harm: The band photo in the "Ahead" sleeve reminds me a great deal of a band
photo from Thought Industry's Songs for Insects album... As far as you
know, was there any intentional subtle allusion there? Your sound isn't
directly related to Thought Industry's, except that both bands have
had an avant-garde approach to heavy music (frankly, I prefer your
music, but that's neither here nor there!).
PCK: That photo was taken in a side room of the fuzzrom studio, which had a very cool mood. It wasn't on purpose to get such a kind of a pic, it just turned out to be
best for the album. Frankly, I have never heard of Thought Industry, but you made me wanna hear them. Yeah, it is true. We have an ambivalent approach to heavy music. We like it,
we wanna play it, but we don't really want to have such in our eyes very childish image of being hellslaughters of the dead, raping, bloodsheding and worshipping satan. And putting "scary" makeup on our faces.
Harm: Yeah, I think you'd like that one Thought Industry album, Songs for Insects. Everything else they've made sucks, unfortunately. Now, the Austrian metal scene has generally been known for its "black metal syndicate" and, more recently, female-fronted atmospheric bands like
Dreams of Sanity and Edenbridge. Disharmonic Orchestra doesn't fit into either category, but what other Austrian bands (if any) are you friends with, or do you stay in touch with?
PCK: I guess, you know more about the Austrian scene than me.
We are still friends with Pungent Stench, Disastrous Murmur. Then there is Hollenthon, the other band of Martin (Pungent Stench). We are friends with punk, Hc bands like Boys Club, Beat Brats, Springy Pinestix, Antimaniacs, Rotten Rooters.
Harm: It seems that most bands have some kind of creative description for the
style of music they play. It is, of course, difficult to label your
music, except to say that it is "progressive" in the broadest sense:
employing advanced, unusual structures and transgressing traditional
boundaries. But if you had to describe the "D.O." sound in a few words,
how would you do so?
PCK: Yeah, it is very hard to label our music. Cuz if we do, we stuck ourselves into boundaries. But basically I'd call our music weird metal with no limit.
Harm: Have you done any shows in support of the album, or do you plan to do any
PCK: Yep, we have done an Austrian and Holland tour and a show in Germany. Great reactions. It was total fun playing again. Next show is the huge mega metal fest "with full force" in july in Germany. We might be doing a tour in fall this year.
Harm: So can we expect new Disharmonic Orchestra albums in the future, this year
PCK: Well, we are working on new material right now. I hope that we can record this year and have an upcoming album by end of this, beginning of next year.
Harm: Lookin' forward to it!