“Deadguy never broke up,” drummer Dave Rosenberg tells Decibel. “We just lost interest.”
The New Jersey-based metallic hardcore act may have quietly ceased regular activity around 1997, but that hasn’t stopped a generation (or two, if we’re being honest) from taking influence from Deadguy’s groundbreaking work. Decibel inducted the band’s landmark sole LP, 1995’s Fixation on a Co-worker, into our Hall of Fame way back in 2006. And as that legendary record celebrates its 25th anniversary, it has inspired a new full-length documentary about Deadguy called Killing Music.
“In mid-2019, I met a guy named Bill Saunders, who is a producer/editor for a lot of cable shows and a big Deadguy fan,” recalls Rosenberg. “Somehow he remembered that we were coming up on the 25th anniversary of Fixation. He suggested a documentary might be interesting and we started doing interviews in the fall of 2019 where it was basically me trying to wrangle the other guys. It took me a few weeks to convince [guitarist Chris] “Crispy” [Corvino] but fortunately [vocalist] Tim Singer was on board immediately so that made it much easier to find [guitarist] Keith [Huckins]—he lives in waaay upstate New York—and Crispy knew where to find [bassist] Tim Naumann—teaching high school in New Jersey—and we had our first sit-down in 20+ years just a few months ago. In the meantime, we’ve been compiling photos, footage and interviews, which has been entertaining.”
“The doc will be out in the fall with at least one theater premier, festivals and SXSW as the high bar,” says director William Saunders of Fourth.Media. “I’m dying to do a limited edition VHS run with extras. Online will be last. As Dave has put it many times, it was like herding cats to get this doc together—still is!”
Such difficult shepherding extends to the very real possibility—should live events resume in the hopefully not-too-distant future—of performing live again (“We want to play a few shows in the U.S. and then get over to play in Japan”) and the recording and releasing of new Deadguy material. While you’re waiting on (cough) pins and needles (cough) for future announcements, Rosenberg sounds content with the present.
“Much like the start of the band itself, had there been something on TV that night we maybe would have never done this,” says the drummer. “But as we’ve gotten older, we’ve realized that a lot of the songs from the now 25-year-old Fixation on a Co-worker album meant a lot to people and were important to the world of heavy music. And we’re all actually happy to see each other and hang out! Who would have ever guessed?”
“I think the band is just as curious as anyone else as to how and why we did what we did — and why that seems to have had a lasting effect,” says vocalist Tim Singer. “We were really just a bunch of college age dorks who wanted to make loud music. I can safely say that when we formed, we weren’t all that interested in most of the music coming from the current “scene” (of course there were a few exceptions). As for what it meant/means to anyone else, I guess that’s why you need to watch the documentary.”