Infidel Interview #86 - Doomsday Virus

First off, just want to thank you for participating in this edition of Infidel Interviews. Could you start off by giving a little information about you to the audience? Whatever you feel comfortable with, but name, age, and where you live would be pretty standard?

N.Dru Virus: Sure thing. My stage name is, and always has been N.Dru Virus. My given name is "Andrew". See what I did there? It seemed so witty at 21, buuuuut I'm 38 now. We are based out of the capital of New York State, Albany, which is about 150 miles north of New York City.

Rahb Eleven: The stage name (Rahb Eleven) is pretty uncreative, I pilfered the idea from Kurt Cobain in the ’90s when he misspelled his name “Kurdt”. So I wrote Rahb (instead of Rob) on notebooks in high school. When I joined DV, it fit with the other stage names the members were using.

How do you enjoy where you live? Is there a vibrant music community where you are? Would you say you find that your local scene influences your attitude and/or creativity?

N: Albany is a small city, we often refer to it as "Smallbany", but it has all the things that a major city would have. Both positive and negative. Arts, culture, crime, corruption, fine dining... we've got it all! We also do have very well-established, thriving, goth/industrial community here. Our monthly club night, Exhuman, is always packed and is always off the chain! We book live bands from time to time too. Ego Likeness, Dismantled, Ayria, Angelspit, The Rain Within, The Gothsicles, Alter Der Ruine, Worms of the Earth, Wychdoktor, Inertia, and Venus in Aries have all played here recently. I personally have been involved in the promotion and technical side of things for over 10 years now and have seen plenty of shifts and changes along the way. It's been an evolution. These days though, I mostly just focus on running sound for live shows and picking up an occasional DJ spot. The great thing about our community, and the thing that really separates it from a lot of scenes that are struggling, is that everybody works together. We are an extremely close-knit crew who always have each other's backs and put the best interests of the scene first. I honestly love it here. Plus we're close enough to major cities like New York, Boston, Philadelphia, and Montreal that you can enjoy the perks of those cities without actually paying to live there!

R: In this genre and even outside of it, Albany is comfortably situated for mid-week shows that would otherwise be days the bands make no money that day. The talent the comes through is pretty remarkable, and all the venue owners, the promoters and fans, are really dedicated. The city’s skyline is most notable for and egg shaped building and a 30 foot tall RCA dog on a downtown warehouse. We’re not a destination, —some place you plan to go intentionally. It’s a weird place —we have to be friendly— and we are protective of the scene that’s here.

What does Doomsday Virus mean to you guys in 2017? And how does that compare to what the project meant to you guys when it was formed?

N: Man, things have changed a lot. I was a teenager when I started writing DV material, now I'm pushing 40. Life has changed. Doomsday Virus has changed with it. It's a huge part of my identity, a huge part of my story. Hell, it is my story. And like many stories it opens with hopeful optimism and closes with bitter regret.

R: I wasn’t around for the early days, I joined when Kool-Aid was in the demo stages. I was at a couple of NDru’s shows before I ever joined the band, and I remember they were the one band I was aware of in the area combining synths and guitars. Of course, I love both. joining DV was a real matter of finding kindred spirits and making the music I wanted to make. The experience has been trying, funny, —often frustrating. But it’s brought me around a lot of great artists and a community in this scene that I value.

If you could say there are underlying themes or messages that permeate throughout your discography, what would you say are the most important concepts and ideas you've tried to express throughout your artistic career, political, spiritual, or personal?

N: If there is any one central theme, I suppose it would be self-discovery and self-actualization through trial by fire. That fire being anything and everything life can throw at you. Whether it's personal, political, or otherwise. Again, Doomsday Virus is very much my life story, and it's a story about finding yourself, finding your place in the world and owning it, reveling in it. With that in mind, it's art. It's not always 100% about me. I try to keep my words ambiguous enough so that they are open to personal interpretation. I think that half the meaning of any form of artistic expression should come from the listener, from the viewer, from the person reading the story and translating it into their own experience.

What sort of processes do you go through when making music? Do you have a formula(s) that you follow, or do you feel it out as you go along? Or is it more of a mixture of the two?