Hi Doug! Finally we managed to have this small talk. Thank you so much for that, well how are you man? Whats new? This is a big week for us! We are launching our trailer and poster today as well as announcing our World Premiere at the Calgary Underground Film Festival on April 21st. Expect daily festival appearance announcements throughout the rest of the week. – Let`s begin from the start, when did you have the idea of creating a Grind documentary visit your head? Why is this genre so special to you? When I was finishing up Never Enough, my last documentary, I knew I wanted to tackle a subject that had never been done before. Never Enough was on compulsive collectors, and since all I was doing was spending my spare money on rare grindcore records, it seemed fitting. I appreciate all styles of music, though music on the fringe of society has always interested me. It doesn’t get much more fringe than grindcore. The intensity of grindcore is unparalleled and I really felt like the world needed to learn about what excites me most.
As some people know, and some people dont, you are a teacher. What subject do you teach? The majority of my schedule is running a film studies program that focusses on production, but I also teach Drama and Philosophy. Nothing is better than teaching what you are also involved in creatively outside of work. You are a teacher, a family man and also have a strong passion in video creating. But that was not enough for you and a year ago you started your own label “Death By Digital”. Please tell us a little it about that. We’d especially love to hear any future plans you’d be willing to share. Death By Digital is a project of mine that I am using to release music that I am digging, films that I am working on, and potentially other artistic endeavours down the line. Though it is currently known in the grind world as a record label (and it certainly is), I plan on using this name as a platform for future film endeavours as it branches into a production company. Future Plans: Releasing Slave To The Grind!
Also you’re doubling your tape releases by yourself in your basement. What kind of equipment do you use? Is it hard to do that by yourself? The only hard thing about doing things myself is time. I find it very rewarding. I love the tactile nature of making things; so the hand dubbing, folding of covers, cutting inserts-I love it all. I use Tascam 202 Reference Decks. I have several of them daisy chained together so I can do real time duplication – It sounds amazing if I can brag!
Who was the most sincere band member whom you interviewed and why? Too many. Honestly, I was very taken with how kind and inviting everyone has been. Do you have a top 10 list of Grindcore bands that keep you constantly returning to the genre? Napalm Death Terrorizer Brutal Truth Agathocles Repulsion Nasum Unholy Grave Carcass Fuck The Facts Warsore And a million others…
We all know you’re a family man. Has it been hard to balance home life with filming/on the road life for this film? Incredibly hard. It is also the main reason this has taken me 4 years to get off the ground. I love my wife and kids, though I will be the first to admit that going on the road to film, and the mental stress of taking on something of this magnitude must have been challenging on them all. The only saving grace is that I am organized and do my best to plan for the worst off the bat. This is the fourth feature length film I have worked on since my wife and I started dating, so she is somewhat used to the insanity I bring to our relationship. Well its almost the end of this long, hard road and the movie is almost ready. As I know, you want to show it everywhere in the world and you are looking for some movie festivals to show the film. Could you tell us about that? On April 21st we are premiering at the Calgary Underground Film Festival. It is a wonderful fest that celebrates film that might not be on conventional topics, or might be done in an unconventional manner. I am proud to be apart of that festival, and can not wait to show the world. Each day this week we will be making more announcements about festival appearances. Stay tuned and check back to the page for more details!
Also you are a huge Metallica fan. You have the biggest collection in Canada and apeared in an interview for a music news piece as a die hard fan. Well how big is your collection and have you met them in person? I love Metallica. I know this is a strange statement coming from someone directing a film on Grindcore, but Metallica are the first band I ever liked. Being a compulsive person, I collect a lot of music from a lot of bands, though since Metallica was the first band I collected, I went hog wild trying to get everything. I currently have over 800 Metallica Vinyl, Cassettes, and CD variations, and likely 1000 pieces of memorabilia. And I have never met them!
Being a director I’m sure you’re a film buff. What movie genre is your favorite? Do you have a favourite producer? My big goal is to direct a high concept Science Fiction film. I am a huge fan of the Alien franchise, and I believe that Blade Runner is the greatest Sci-Fi ever made. My favourite filmmakers would have to be Ridley Scott, Stanley Kubrick, Paul Thomas Anderson, Wes Anderson, and I am currently loving Denis Villeneuve
What is the absolute most insane live set you’ve ever seen? Which band out ranks all others you’ve watched live? Agoraphobic Nosebleed – 2015 at Maryland Death Fest. There was just something special about that day. We had just filming the live portions of the Music Video for How The Years Condemn the night before with Napalm Death. We had to wake incredibly early to film a sound check for ANB at 8:30 AM (No Joke. It was a 2 hour sound check at 8:30 AM). There was so much anticipation for how they would pull it off live, that the audience was buzzing with an energy that I have never felt. Getting to watch this set from on stage was amazing. The result of that day is one of my favourite parts of the film. You’ve hosted 2 festivals in the name of Slave to the Grind, with loads of amazing bands. Will you be bringing the festival back for a third year? Stay Tuned!
If there is any one Grind musician or band you wish you could have sat down to interview for your film, who would it have been? And why? There is. I won’t say, because people will be like ‘oh, you didn’t get HIM! Come on!’. It’s a film on a massive genre of music that is 30 years old, and has prominent musicians in every continent. It was impossible to get it all. We did manage to conduct 74 interviews, most ranging from 45 minutes to three hours.
It must be interesting being the one in the hot seat for once. Has this been the first magazine interview you’ve done since the launch of Slave to the Grind? I am fortunate to have done a few interviews early on, but to be honest I have been turning down press for the past full year as we have been finishing this sucker. Well, it is done! So you are my first in nearly 18 months. I truly love talking about my passion projects, so thank you for the opportunity. Thank you for taking the time to sit down and talk with us Doug, it’s been a pleasure to have you!