Dez Fafara: I Think Coal Chamber Are ‘Done Forever’
"When I left Coal Chamber, I thought it was done forever. Thirteen years later, we did a record. Right now, it's done, and I think it's done forever. That's my take on things," vocalist Dez Fafara recently told Kaaos TV in Finland.
Fafara confirmed what he believes to be the end for the band that gave him his first and only gold-certified album with their 1997 debut. Coal Chamber existed for ten years before disbanding in 2003 to pursue other musical projects. They briefly reunited in 2011 for touring purposes, but it wasn't until 2014 that the group began work on a new studio album of original material, 2015's critically acclaimed Rivals. Several months of touring activity followed before Fafara returned to Devildriver to make a new record, 2016's Trust No One.
Before a recent festival performance Kauhajoki, Finland, Farfara said about Coal Chamber, "I waited thirteen years for the band that I started to get back together. And after releasing a record that was critically acclaimed and touring around the world and having fantastic shows, it was obvious to me that I don't wanna do that with those people. I don't wanna say any personal stuff about them, but it's just not working. I wish it did — for the fans, for myself, for the music — but there's some things that need to be worked on. And it needs to be a hundred and ten percent, or I'm not gonna take it out on the road."
Fafara was asked if his busy schedule with Devildriver was partly to blame for his unwillingness to devote more time and energy to Coal Chamber. "That has nothing to do with it — nothing to do with it at all,” he insisted. “If everything is fine in that other camp, with Coal Chamber, if they are all good and it's a hundred and ten percent, they can call me. If they get stuck on the side of the freeway at three in the morning, they can call me; I will come. But with the music, it has to be a hundred and ten percent with any band that I am with. And in the end, with those tours, it was not a hundred and ten percent. And I don't wanna take it on tour unless it's a hundred and ten percent."
Fafara had also stated in previous interviews that Coal Chamber's original split happened because, "I did not want to be around the band's hard drug use and I realized that going onstage every night that the money was feeding their habit, so I walked to save my friends." He added that his Coal Chamber bandmates were "clean" as of 2012, which made him realize that "it was the right thing to walk [away from the group back in 2003]."
Devildriver are currently working on an outlaw country covers album, Outlaws Till the End, tentatively due out in early 2018. The disc will contain thirteen "insanely heavy, swinging badass outlaw tracks by some of the best outlaw country artists," including Willie Nelson, Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings and Johnny Paycheck, according to Fafara. They are currently on tour, with a show next weekend in Chicago, as well as a European stint in the fall.
10 Unforgettable Onstage Reunions