Diecast's Jon Kita Discusses The Band's Upcoming 2012 Plans
Boston metalcore act Diecast has been relatively quiet since the release of 2006's "Internal Revolution," but that's just the calm before the storm as the band gears up for what may just be its biggest year yet.
With new material in the works and more tour dates being lined up, the band is excited to be headed back into the scene in a big way, and as details are still being finalized I got the chance to chat with guitarist Jon Kita.
Jon shared the history of the band, from the highs of touring with nationally known acts to the lows of dropping off the Century Media roster, and also filled me in on the band's upcoming output that will ensure 2012 will be the year of Diecast.
xFiruath: How was Christmas for Diecast?
Jon: It was crazy, it was absolutely crazy actually. Everybody got a chance to get home and be with family and all that stuff. It was a nice time and everybody got time off. It’s strange, the band has evolved into something kind of new and different, being on tour months out of the year, it’s changed a bit because the landscape of where everyone is located. Not everyone is in Boston any longer. We try to make the best of it around the holidays.
xFiruath: How long has Diecast been together and what has the band accomplished so far?
Jon: The band started in 1996 as a four piece, and then we added a fifth member and put out a demo. Then we put out an EP on Samson Records, which got a little bit more attention. It was played around and we did some local shows. We were able to put out a full-length on Now or Never Records and did a couple of tours. We toured with Alice Cooper and Slayer and Hatebreed, which was absolutely amazing. Then our singer and principal song writer from back in the day left the band to pursue life at large. We replaced him with Paul, our current singer. Our label at the time went under and we wound up having Century Media Records putting out “Tearing Down Your Blue Skies” in 2004 and “Internal Revolution” in 2006. For both of those albums we were able to get overseas, once with Napalm Death, and then toured the U.S. as well. The thing is that we always have a little bit too much time between record cycles and unfortunately we’ve never been able to get the opportunities we’ve always hoped for. We’ve been sitting on an album looking for someone to put it out for the past three, now going on four years. We made a sampler to sell at shows, and it’s said “New album Fall 2009” or “Spring 2010” and it always gets pushed back. It’s more difficult nowadays because the industry has kind of changed.
xFiruath: So the band is no longer with Century Media?
Jon: No, they had a tough time kind of placing us. When “Internal Revolution” came out they kept saying “We don’t know what to do with you.” We said, keep us on tour, please, put our albums in stores and put us on tour. They had a tough time getting us on the tours so it came time for us to part ways. In that time when they were drafting up all that paperwork they had gotten us on that tour with Sevendust, which did some really good things for us. At that time when we were signing our termination papers with them, they kind of looked at us like “Geeze, had we known touring was your thing or that you’d be halfway successful on a Sevendust tour we would have done this way sooner.” We’re still playing three to five shows every month and if it comes down to having to put it out on our own that’s something we’ll consider. We’ve entertained some offers but haven’t found the best home for us yet.
xFiruath: You’ve had this new album ready for awhile, when did you actually write the songs for this release?
Jon: When we got home from Sevendust in 2007 we just sat down and started writing. We did a demo when there was a label kind of interested, but it didn’t seem to work out so we got back to what we do. We wrote some heavy stuff with screamed vocal lines, and we probably got through about 20 or 25 songs and concentrated on the strongest songs. We’ve been working with this material since 2007 and have been trying to put together an album that has something for everybody but it is still what people are expecting from us. Things took a change, there are a lot of heavier bands out there. We looked at that and we’re glad that people still want to hear heavy. We’ve never been one of those bands that’s been like, “Paul, don’t sing, people just want to hear screaming.” We want to maintain a little bit of what people want to hear, but we also want to be happy as players as well, so there’s a fine line between that. The stuff over the last two years has had a heavier spin on it.
xFiruath: Do you have anything concrete planned yet for the coming year as far as touring or releasing material?
Jon: A couple of our buddies have been very adamant about getting us out on tour and helping us out, but we don’t have any concrete touring plans right now. We realized we’re kind of spinning our wheels by going out on tour with really nothing to promote. We’ve been touring, but we haven’t been touring with a release and we don’t have anything new except maybe a new shirt design. So right now we’re focusing on getting into the studio and getting material recorded, with or without a label.
xFiruath: What’s happening in your local metal scene?
Jon: It’s tough, Boston has really changed. We’ve have a couple of places, like old standbys, but it’s been difficult. Your metal shows at Boston are pretty much at the House of Blues, or you have a tour that comes through and everything is a little bit more commercialized, so it’s harder to get a show for a band that’s just coming out. It’s increasingly difficult and frustrating for bands trying to get a name for themselves that can’t get on a large tour unless they have a connection for it. The Internet helps, but the bottom line is that there aren’t as many venues to play.
xFiruath: Have you seen any good shows lately?
Jon: Unfortunately I haven’t. The extent of me being able to go to shows is the shows we play. One great thing about that is you get the opportunity to see different band at different places. The talent that is coming out of kids today is ridiculous. I’m not sure what it is, maybe people just have a newfound respect for playing and sitting in your room practicing for hours a day, but it’s absolutely amazing. Kids that are 16 or 17 years old are coming out with some pretty impressive music. The industry hasn’t changed the creative output. As far as going to shows, I work two jobs and I’m back at school now too so my time is limited. I think the last time I got to go to a festival or something was Mayhem fest, I randomly got a call from a buddy asking me to go out. It’s a much different situation than going to Strawberries music and buying your ticket a month ahead of time to see Pantera and Anthrax. That doesn’t change that it’s still so much fun to go to a show. Talking about it makes me want to go to a show, I’m probably going to look online now and see who is coming through town. The magic is still there.
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