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An Interview With Dustin Boltjes of Demiricous

As cliched as it sounds, Demiricous really seemed like they’d be the next big thing in the mid-2000s metal world. In addition to being the face of the Indianapolis metal scene for those on the outside, their take on revivalist death/thrash saw two studio albums distributed by Metal Blade and shows with plenty of monumental acts, including the time this writer saw them open for Slayer and Unearth at the Murat in 2007. After an extended hiatus, seventeen-year-old me would be pleased to see Demiricous set to perform at the Vogue Theater on July 15th with fellow Indy veterans Anapparatus and the more recently formed Photian Schism. Indy Metal Shows caught up with Demiricous drummer Dustin Boltjes, also of Skeletonwitch, Sacred Leather, and Iron Diamond, to talk about the band’s past, present, and possible future.

Indy Metal Shows: What were the circumstances that led to Demiricous getting back together for your upcoming show?

Dustin Boltjes: This is something that we’ve been going back and forth about for the last year or so. Finally, I had an extended break with Skeletonwitch, so I rounded the dudes up, we decided on a date, and the rest is history!

Demiricous-TwoPovertyIMS: You played on the Two (Poverty) album in 2007. How did you join the band and what are your memories from that time?

DB: At the time, Demiricous was having a hard time with drummers. We had mutual friends, so I auditioned for them, while still on the touring cycle for One (Hellbound), and everything immediately felt great. We finished that touring cycle, and wasted no time writing Two (Poverty).

And those times are a bit blurry. Lots of partying! Haha! One of my fondest memories is when we hosted this show on XM Radio called “Hostile Takeover.” They let us come in to the station at like 10am, and immediately started feeding us booze. We were hammered before noon, and they gave us full control of what we wanted to play. It was so much fun, but then we had to go play a show. Which wasn’t that much fun, when 3/4 of the band, myself included, we’re so drunk, we could barely stand. Interesting show, to say the least.

IMS: What are your favorite songs from either of Demiricous’s albums?

DB: “Repentagram,” “Cheat the Leader,” “Matador,” “Leprosaic Belief,” “Engineer,” “And it Drives the Heathen.” I could really go on and on… and I think I just gave away part of the setlist for Friday’s show. Whoops…

IMS: Why did the band become less active? Do you think it could’ve accomplished more back in the day?

DB: Well, we unfortunately put too much control into the hands of people who weren’t actually in the band, which led to some very bad business decisions and ultimately going bankrupt. It’s a tough business, and there are a lot of snakes within the business who don’t give a fuck about your art. They solely are there to make money off of you. We eventually did pick up the pieces and got back on track, but by the time things really started moving forward again, I joined Skeletonwitch. So my priorities changed, and it unfortunately just kinda fizzled out.

107717_artistIMS: Demiricous released a demo in 2011. What were the intentions of recording it at that time?

DB: We had been working on newer material with two new guitar players (Mike Morgan & Scott Bronner), and decided it was time to release some thing on our own. No labels, no contracts, no bullshit. Something we could be proud of. Like, “This is us now. We don’t have Kerry King on our dicks, we don’t have Metal Blade Records shoving it up everyone’s ass. This is us, stripped down, raw, and uncompromising.” We had zero intentions other than just putting something out on our own terms.

IMS: Most of the band’s members, yourself included, are active in multiple projects. How do you find the time to do so?

DB: It’s just what we do. You make time, because for all of us, it’s all we know. None of us have college degrees, crazy careers, etc. But we all equally have a passion for creating what we love, and I would assume that most of us will always continue to play in multiple bands for the rest of our lives. It’s what we live for.

IMS: Are there any further goals with Demiricous in the near future?

DB: At this time, no. We’ve got our show in a few days, and after that, who knows? I would never rule out doing something else in the future. I suppose it’s just a matter of whether the stars align again or not.

IMS: How do you feel that the Indy Music Scene has changed since Demiricous’s heyday?

DB: In those times, it just felt more like a community. Everything is so segregated now. It’s unfortunate, but these are the times, and in a small city like Indianapolis, our scene is always gonna have its highs and lows.

IMS: What local bands are you enjoying right now and what are some from the past that you believe deserve more credit?

DB: I can name several past and present that definitely deserve more attention. As far as the past, Angelville, Harakiri (who happen to be doing a reunion show the night after ours), and The Gates of Slumber to name a few.

As far as the present, Summon the Destroyer, Drude, Kvlthammer, Wretch. These bands are definitely ones to keep an ear to the ground for. And all vary significantly different from each other. That’s one thing I’ll always love about the Indianapolis Metal Scene. Diversity.

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