Devil Wears Prada’s Jeremy DePoyster Discusses ‘Dead Throne,’ Touring + Zombies
After touring as one of the main acts on this year’s Warped Tour, the Devil Wears Prada are now in the midst of a headlining North American trek of their own. Along for the ride are Whitechapel, Enter Shikari and For Today. The jaunt wraps up Dec. 18 in TDWP’s home state of Ohio — for a full list of dates, go here.
Loudwire recently chatted with the Devil Wears Prada’s guitarist-singer Jeremy DePoyster, who told us about the video game ‘Zombie Slay’ in a story we recently published, as well as his thoughts on the new album, touring and his general love of zombies in the following Q&A:
Your new album ‘Dead Throne’ dropped this year. What’s been the reaction of fans to the disc so far?
It’s been pretty good. Fans and critics alike, it seems, really appreciate the maturity of the album, I hate to use that word, it’s so cliché, but I guess that’s the only way I can describe it. It’s an older sound and just more refined. Any time you try and progress as a band and not do the same thing, you run the risk of turning off people that have been with you since the beginning; but our fans have been really into it and have taken it on.
Tell us a little about the dichotomy between your clean vocals and frontman Mike Hranica’s gruff vocals. How do you work together on putting the vocal tracks together in the studio?
It kind of depends song to song. Usually the songs are just written, maybe with specific singing parts in mind at different parts, definitely more so in the past than now. You can kind of get a vibe especially almost all the choruses are usually clean vocals, with a couple of exceptions but even those are more intentional exceptions. Everything we really do in our band is almost like unspoken rules kind of thing, it’s just we know each other very well, we’ve been doing it for the last six years so it’s not like it’s a really strenuous thing at all.
You also recently released a video for first single ‘Born to Lose.’ Talk a little about that.
Yeah, we actually haven’t done a video in a long time; we didn’t even do one on [our last release] the ‘Zombie EP,’ but we had this idea through the whole album process for the promo inside of the records to be silhouetted just to keep the focus off of us, and you can see who everybody is but it’s about more than that so we kind of brought that concept into the music video. Mike developed all the concepts for it and we worked with Drew Russ; we’ve known him for a long time, just working with the A Day To Remember guys, so it was awesome.
Is there a leading contender for a second single off ‘Dead Throne’?
We have a couple ideas; I think we know what an obvious choice would probably be between a couple but we also rebel against that sometimes [laughs] and just put out what we want. It’s just the way we do things; we don’t really care about that kind of stuff. We’re not a massive single driven band anyways. I think that’s coming later down the line.
It seems like you guys have a thing for zombies, with the EP last year, the comic book and now the game. Have you always been interested in zombies; if so what sparked the interest?
I’ve always been pretty into it, I had a friend when I was in high school that was massively into it, to the point of where he slept with a machete and baseball bat next to his bed just in case. I know that Mike has said that he wasn’t even that interested before we came up with the idea and that sparked him to read a lot of zombie novels and watch movies and stuff and that really kind of fueled it from there.
Killswitch Engage’s Adam D. produced ‘Dead Throne.’ Talk about that experience, and are there any other producers you’d like to work with in the future?
As far as working with Adam, it’s always been something in back of our heads we just never really had the budget for that kind of thing or we weren’t as established and then we ended up doing a Killswitch tour and hit it off with Adam; he’s a rad dude. So we jokingly just kind of mentioned to him at the end that he should do our record and he was like, “Yeah I might take you up on that,” so later that year once we got really into writing and everything for it we seriously approached him and he was down to do it.
It’s harder for me to pick a producer when it comes to this genre because I don’t like 90 percent of the recordings out there that guys are doing, I don’t think they sound very good and Adam, whether it’s As I Lay Dying or Killswitch stuff or Parkway Drive and all that stuff just sounds great, so I think it was an obvious choice that we had to make happen. I think it’ll be hard to with anybody else than Adam next time.
What can fans expect if they are heading out to your headlining North American tour with opening acts Whitechapel, Enter Shikari, and For Today.
We’ve known Whitechapel for probably four years now, we did a tour with Enter Shikari in the U.K. that was really awesome and shared Warped Tour with them this summer and the For Today guys; Chris [Rubey], our guitar player, has known [For Today singer Mattie [Montgomery] for quite a while from that band, but we did a tour with those guys and really hit it off with them and they’re rad dudes. I guess the whole package made sense, it’s real eclectic, it’s all pretty heavy but still really different.
As far as what fans can expect, we haven’t done a proper headlining tour in probably three years now so we’re busting everything out, breaking the bank, bringing the big production and everything. We just hope it’s a show that people won’t forget, an experience that you can’t get just from the album itself. I like to think that, you know there’s a lot of bands out there that sound great on CD and sound great live and I don’t know if that’s the case with us or not; but I feel like there is something to our live show, an energy that you can’t get anywhere else.
You guys played Warped Tour earlier this year. What the biggest difference between playing touring festivals and headlining your own tour?
The big thing for us is control in the band. We’re super into control over everything and this is something that has really developed over the last year, all of the video updates I do myself; we take most of the photos ourselves and send them around, it’s really just controlling how people perceive you in the band because then you get to show them the vision you want, which is cool. I think that is a big part in some of the bands I like more than anything is that kind of vision.
When it comes to a live show if you’re out in the sunlight in the middle of the day and it’s a successful run, you can only do so much, there’s a lot of energy there but there’s not a lot of mood which is something that we really get to bring to the headline tour is the lighting and the song choices and being able to be diverse with that kinds of stuff. You really get an experience instead of just walking by and saying, “Oh this band is really cool,” you’re drawn in during that hour or hour and a half. I know I walk away from a good concert saying “I don’t want that to be over.” I want to experience that feeling forever.
Watch the Devil Wears Prada, ‘Born To Lose’ Video