Dance Gavin Dance has been the talk of the scene in 2020. With new record Afterburner being released digitally in April and physically as of the 10th, the band also recently played a digital show to ring in the physical release, to much acclaim. Today, I got the chance to interview drummer Matt Mingus, a member who’s been with the band from the start.
The New Fury: First of all, congratulations on the wild success of the physical release of Afterburner! How does it feel to see so many #1s on the Billboard?
Matthew Mingus: Dude, it’s crazy! Honestly, I totally forgot you could chart twice and wasn’t expecting to chart a second time! I didn’t expect it to do so well because people don’t buy CDs anymore, so it was neat to see that, and yet again see how much our fans love collecting our stuff. Couldn’t be more happy!
TNF: Your virtual concert was a rousing success, as well. What is it like playing to a crowd of thousands that aren’t really there?
Matt: It was weird and nerve-wracking, but in a different way. I love playing live, we feed off of the energy of the audience, so to not have that in front of me was different, but we could focus more on our instruments and parts, so that helped. It was our first time doing something like that, we learned some things and have some changes to make for next time. Next one we wanna do an actual venue instead of the warehouse where we usually rehearse. Playing a show is different than recording in there! We have a couple ideas so we’ll see what we choose to go with.
TNF: Afterburner‘s “Calentamiento Global” was the band’s first foray into Latin, and I think you guys nailed it. How does it feel to get out of your comfort zone?
Matt: I love it! I was in concert band and jazz band so we played tons of Latin pieces. I’ve incorporated little things here and there in older DGD, but to go full-blown and do it for most of the song was fun! I was stoked when Will was jamming on it all stoned and when we actually listened to the demo it came out great! It made a really unique song and Tilian singing in Spanish was like, “why not”?
TNF: You’re one of two members to be a part of the band for the entirety of its 15 years. What’s it like to be central to the band’s legacy?
Matt: I gotta be honest, I feel like everyone that’s been a part of DGD is part of it. Everything happens for a reason and they all brought their own thing to the table,
so honestly it’s more than the two concrete members, but Will and I have written music together so specially and we’ve always put the drama aside. The way we can imagine things compliments each other well. I feel like we’re ALL crucial and just as important as each other.
TNF: Dance Gavin Dance’s B-sides are phenomenal. How do you guys narrow down what makes the cut for the album and what doesn’t?
Matt: It’s always tough, sometimes it’ll be one small thing and someone can’t get it. Someone’s feelings always gets hurt. I spent hours recording that shit and some of these songs make it through the instrumentals being recorded so it sucks! I truly hope that one day we’d love to release a B-sided CD with a bunch of songs that people haven’t heard that we have recorded. I guess as long as the creativity keeps flowing, we have no reason to revisit those old songs.
TNF: What are your current dream bands to tour with?
Matt: Ooooh! I’ve said this a lot, but Deftones would be awesome for several reasons. We’re both from the Sac-town and they’ve been a huge influence over the years.
Another band we would really like to tour with is Coheed and Cambria. Those two bands, we’d compliment nicely. Blink 182 would be insane, unlikely but you never
know in 2020!
Thanks to Matt for taking the time to talk to us today. It’s a dream come true for this writer as Dance Gavin Dance is his favorite band. Thanks as well to Cosa Nostra PR for setting this up. You can stream Afterburner below!