Few questions to Mike Spreitzer, guitarist and founding member of Devildriver.
Hello and first of all, thank you very much for your time! Could you please introduce yourself and the band Devildriver without using the usual Metal “labels”?
Mike Spreitzer (guitar): Mike Spreitzer was the name they gave me and I play guitar for the very soothing and mind-nourishing band DevilDriver.
Dealing With Demons Vol. II, your tenth album, will be out soon, how do you feel about it? Do you already have some feedback?
Mike: At the time of this interview, the album has already been released. I have not had anyone tell me that it sucks…….yet.
How would you sum Dealing With Demons Vol. II up in only three words?
Mike: Demonic, voluptuous, and tortuous.
How did you deal with the composition process for this album? What are the main differences you noticed with Vol. I?
Mike: Writing one album is not easy. Writing two at the same time is an intimidating challenge. One of my biggest concerns was making sure all the songs sounded unique. Volume 1 and 2 were recorded at the same time. I don’t see them as separate albums. In this case, it’s two halves to create a whole.
About songs themselves, we feel more airy influences, have you also noticed this?
Mike: We made a conscious decision before we started writing to use slower tempos for a majority of the songs. Maybe that’s why it feels more “airy”
What are your main inspirations to create your songs? Do they evolve with time?
Mike: I listen to a wide variety of music. Industrial, Metal, EDM, Bluegrass, etc. Everything I listen to has an impact on my writing. I don’t write music like I did ten years ago. Back then, I relied heavily on my Melodic Metal influences. I’ve noticed that I’ve moved into a different direction over the years. I’m more into dissonance and “ugly” riffs these days.
I also noticed that a few songs are very explicit (This Relationship, Broken, Nothing Lasts Forever or I Have No Pity for example), how do you work with Dez to associate his message to your sounds?
Mike: That’s an interesting question because I’m usually not around when Dez records his vocals. Singing is very personal. If I were the singer of a band, I wouldn’t want anybody else around while I record other than our producer. Dez always does a great job. I trust his ability to pull the songs together with his voice. Sometimes having too many people in the studio is like having too many cooks in a kitchen.
Maybe you have a favorite song on this album? Or the one you just can’t wait to play on stage?
Mike: If we ever play Bloodbath live, the venue will look much different after we’re done.
Do you think you are still improving yourself as a musician?
Mike: Always. I spend most of my days on tour playing guitar in our dressing room before the show. When I’m at home I focus more on improving my skills in the studio. I bought a banjo recently. I absolutely love playing it but I’m not very good yet. But I will be!!
The last time I saw Devildriver on stage was at Motocultor 2018, what memories do you keep about this show?
Mike: The name of the venue sounds familiar but I don’t remember the show. It’s been 5 years. My memory is shit.
There was a tour planned for 2019 which was canceled, then the Covid madness began next year, but you were finally able to play a proper tour with Cradle of Filth a few weeks ago. How does it feel to tour again after so much time?
Mike: It felt like home. Dez and I were a little nervous that we had become too accustomed to our home life after not touring for over 3 years. As soon as we got on our bus, we knew we were going to be happy to be on tour again. It felt so good and I can’t wait for the next tour in October.
The band recently had to overhaul its lineup, recruiting former bassist Jon Miller, as well as two newcomers. How does it feel to play with Jon again, and to integrate new blood?
Mike: I didn’t know what to expect with the new members until we started rehearsing. I admit, I had my doubts. Miller lives on the other side of the country and I barely knew Alex and Davier. We did six days of rehearsal before the tour. The first two days were a little rough but by day three I knew we had a great lineup. I’m so happy to have my friend Jon Miller back in the band. I missed him terribly. We’ve been friends since we were 18 years old. He belongs in DevilDriver.
Are there any musicians or artists you would like to collaborate with? Whether it is for one song, or maybe more.
Mike: Danny Elfman and Trent Reznor.
With which bands would you love to tour with? I let you create a tour (or just a single show) with Devildriver and three other bands!
Mike: Carcass, The Birthday Massacre, and maybe we’ll let Gojira come along. 🙂
That was the last question for me, so thank you very much for your time and your music, last words are yours!
Mike: Jon Miller and I have already started writing the next DevilDriver album. It’s going to be a masterpiece.