Matt Good, guitarist and background vocalist to the hardcore rock band Destroy Rebuild Until God Shows, also known by the abbreviation D.R.U.G.S., sat down to talk to The Vine in a half-hour interview.
The band, who formed in early 2010 and just started out in the rock scene, is on the Alternative Press Spring 2011 Tour with four other bands: Conditions, VersaEmerge, I See Stars and Black Veil Brides. They recently played at Toad’s Place in New Haven, Conn.
*Interview and music videos attached use coarse language. Be advised.*
The Vine: How’s the tour going along? What states have you guys been to so far?
Matt Good: It’s awesome so far. We’ve been through Texas and the Southwest, up west coast and through the Midwest. Now we’re doing the east.
How was the band formed?
The singer Craig is from Detroit, and he had formed the band. We are all from different places across America.
It was a long process. It took [Craig] probably near a year to form the band. It was definitely something he wanted to let happen and have it feel right. So he found our drummer through management, I believe. Aaron (drummer) was suggested to Craig. Nick, the guitar player, was a friend of Craig’s.
I had known Craig and toured with him. I’ve known him since 2003. I went on Twitter, and I was like, “Hey do you guys need a guitar player?” and he was like, “Yeah.”
With Adam, we went to studio and met him that way.
So, you’re relatively new, formed in 2010. What is your reaction so far to reception that the band has received in that short period of time?
I’m very blown away by it; also very humble. It’s cool to see that we can go ahead and form a new project and be received so well. Honestly, the record hasn’t even been out two months, and it’s sold pretty well. People are extremely excited and singing along at the shows.
This whole thing…it’s one of those things where you’re just like, “I knew this would work, but I didn’t know it’d be this great.”
You guys were all from separate bands before forming this one. How have your previous experiences helped in this band?
Well, we definitely have better heads on our shoulders now then we did when we were little punk-ass kids. (Laughs.) We didn’t actually understand what [forming a band] would be, but now we all understand… it helps us all a lot because there’s all kinds of mistakes that we made and now we don’t need to make any more. You learn things the best when you learn them the hard way. All that experience, all of our collective experiences, brought us to make much smarter decisions the second time around.
How were the bands chosen? Did their managers set them up?
Generally that’s how it is, but on this particular tour, Alternative Press actually hand-chose the bands.
And what they were looking for [in the bands]?
I feel like AP wanted the bands to be near labels with each other. They chose bands that are relevant and current to hard rock. We all fit in a niche– not too specific but close enough to where it makes sense.
What’s the purpose of the band? What messages do you want to give?
We want to reach as many people as possible. I don’t really feel that there’s any purpose of putting boundaries on what you do. I feel that art should be available for anyone to experience; I don’t want to exclude anyone. That’s pretentious, to be honest, and I don’t want anything to do with pretentiousness at all.
So what do you think of the artists right now? Like Lady Gaga and so on?
I mean there’s a broad range. Lady Gaga, I have a lot of respect for her because I feel like she plays by her own rules and she has achieved massive mainstream success by being herself and that’s very admirable. She’s creative and very eccentric and people embrace that. She shows that it’s possible to be yourself.
I love certain mainstream artists; basically if you’re making music of substance, and not like Rebecca Black. Like I don’t feel like I’m a very good judge of character, but with [Black] she’s almost making a bastardization of music.
It’s funny because in general society right now, I feel like stupidity is the most marketable thing in our mainstream media culture. And it’s really sad; I still can’t wrap my mind around it.
Do you think this is only in America or other countries as well?
It’s mostly in America; in other countries, [stupidity] is not prevalent.
Like Jersey Shore… that show is hilarious but only because those people are so stupid. What are they giving us any way? They’re getting drunk.
Are you thinking of collaborating with other artists out there?
I mean that’s always a possibility. We definitely enjoy collaborations, and one thing that the rock world doesn’t do enough is collaborations.
There’s no real reason not to. It’s just there’s a lot of ego in the rock world for some reason. It’s funny because when you look at rap you think of ‘ego.’ But at the same time with tracks, they’d help each other out with each other’s careers. I never really understood why this happens, but I can only assume that it’s because of competition. Rock music is probably the hardest thing to break into and be continually successful.
Are you guys producing another album? Working on anything right now?
As of right now, we’re casually writing. We kind of just like writing and being creative. But as far as really cracking down and making the next record, I would assume it’s going to be a bit of time right now. One, because our album just came out and two, because there’s so much touring planned. We always write on the road.
Do you guys write the songs together?
A lot of the songs are all from different sources. There’s a couple of songs written before I was even part of the band. There is a song that I gave to the band to show them what I was doing, and they ended up liking and using it. Some are done together, some on computer. Whenever there’s a source of inspiration, it’ll just happen, we run with it, and then at the end of the day, if the song lives up to the caliber we’d like to achieve, then we use it or just put it off on the side.
Ever thought of using other instruments in the band?
We do have a large variety of instruments on the record. Unfortunately, we can’t replicate them live with actual players, that’d mean we need to travel with like 15 more people.
It would be cool; I would love to add more stuff. But a lot of people give bands crap for doing live track sampling.
At the end of the day, given our means, we don’t have the space or financial capability to bring onto board all of these extra people and instruments. If we get to that level where we can do that, it would honestly be the coolest thing ever and we’d love to do that. We’ll continue to use as many instruments as possible.
I really am bored of drums, bass and guitar, to be honest. That’s why on the record, almost every single songs have strings or synthesizers or rhythm instruments. I want [our music] more colorful, flavorful.
What bands do you admire?
I really admire Radiohead. With their career, they have really done whatever they wanted, and people have respected them always– that’s incredible and near impossible to achieve. They are the epitome of what I feel writing music should be all about. They just write what they want.
Muse is another band. Matthew Bellamy. I love his music, I think he is a musical god and a ridiculous players of many instruments. He blows me away, I can’t even fucking believe that he’s a real person some times. I’ve never seen a dude who can rip a piano like that–like Beethoven–and then say, “whatever,” and goes over to play guitar and then sings in perfect pitch (laughs).
What is your favorite thing about music in general?
My favorite thing about music is…man, that’s a tough question! (Laughs).
I love how much music can do for people. It’s almost therapeutic in a sense. People look to it– maybe without even realizing it a bunch of times– just to feel something good or to relate to the moment.
There’s so much emotional connection that people get through music. Whether it be a blond girl in Beverly Hills that’s waking everyday and grabbing her little Chihuahua to jump in her pink fucking convertible and blasting her pop music and saying, “Yay, I’m happy”–
–down to the kid who just broke up with his girlfriend and is listening to the sad songs…
Music is a really relatable art form, and people get a lot out of it personally.
“If You Think This Song is About You…”
“Mr. Owl Ate My Metal Worm”