DAVE WITTE (Municipal Waste) – Timing is the real issue

DAVE WITTE (Municipal Waste) – Timing is the real issue

Etter å ha hatt gleden av å få oppleve MUNICIPAL WASTE live 2 dager på rad under fjorårets Hole in the Sky, fikk jeg ideen om å dra inn bandets trommeslager i vår The Blast Beast Series, for gutten kan uten tvil sine ting. DAVE WITTE begynte i MUNICIPAL WASTE først i 2004 og det viktigste egenskapen Dave mener en trommeslager må ha, er timing.


What is the force behind you being a drummer, that is, what keeps you going?

It is the love of music and my instrument. I've been addicted to both since a young age and both are constantly growing and changing. There are so many possibilities and ways to express yourself through music and your instrument.

You are playing in a genre where both technique and speed, together with groove, are important ingredients. What do you think is the most important of these?

They are both very important of course, but technique is what is going to make you stand out as an individual. Most importantly though is timing, timing is the real issue. Timing is what holds it all together, the drumming and the band. You can have good technique and killer speed, but if your timing is off, it all suffers.

Which drummer has inspired you the most throughout the years, and what would you have said to him/her if you had the chance to meet him/her in person? 

Brandon Thomas of Ripping Corpse is most likely my biggest influence and I'm great friends with him, we hang out and trade ideas, etc. The other key people in my life would probably be Dave Lombardo and Neil Peart.  I have a ton of respect for them. I would most likely say I am a fan and they were a huge influence, without putting my foot in my mouth and becoming fanboy. I'd try that, but it would most likely be different when I saw them, haha

Which is best while rehearsing alone: systematic progress or full improvisation?

Both, practice what you are having issues with and also have fun.  Having fun while playing leads to experimenting and experimenting leads to new discoveries, so it's a win, win situation in my opinion.


Do you have any "core rehearsal tips" that have given you a lot of progress in your drumming?  

I do lots of single stroke rolls when I warm up and growing up I played along with AC/DC records and developed great timing. Phil Rudd is the king.

What is important for you while rehearsing new songs/riffs with your band? Is there something in particular you do or listen for? 

When writing, I always put the beats in, in a way that will make the song stronger, kind of like a skeleton, I get comfortable with the song/arrangements and then start working away at all the fills and transition parts to make them unique within the song while adding strength.

What is, in your opinion, the biggest challenges for extreme drummers (or, generally speaking, drummers), and what can you do to work them out? 

When not to play.

So many guys out there are interested in doing as much as possible all the time and wind up over crowding the song and flow in general.  It's cool to express and challenge yourself of course, but it should be tasteful.

Wrists or fingers? Heel up or down? Why? 

For me, I play with my wrists and heels up. I feel there is more power for me his way

You must have rehearsed for an insane amount of hours to be as good a drummer as you are. Do you think it is worth it, and have you ever thought about quitting?

Thank you, There were times and point in my life where I wasn't interested or I was frustrated, but I know if I ever stopped, my life would feel empty without drumming.  I don't think I'll ever stop playing. It's worth it if you love it.


While playing at a concert: are you 100 % concentrated about what you are doing, or do you notice some of the mood and energy among the audience?

I'm always 100% dedicated when I hit the stage, sometimes I'm tired and have to give a little extra effort but I always try to play my best. The crowd does play a huge part in it of course, if the volley between crowd and band is strong, I tend to be more excited and have even more fun/become inspired by the watcher/listener. Sometimes I'll start improvising if I'm "in the zone" so to speak.

Is it expensive to become a drummer, and what does it take outside all that can be bought for money to become a clever and good drummer in extreme metal?

It's very expensive for sure. You have to be dedicated and passionate about drumming in order to progress. If it's forced, like anything else, it really isn't special to ones self.

And then some about your equipment:

Drums are Trick Drums (aluminum), Snare is Trick Drums (Brass), Pedal (Trick, Pro-1V), Cymbals: Paiste Alpha Series, Sticks: Vic Firth Rock N, Hardware: Tama Road Pro, Hihat stand: DW 2 leg.  Beaters: Danmar UFO Skate Beaterz.

Which snare drum and configuration do you like the best? 12", 13" or 14"? And which material? Wood, steel, brass or bronze? 

I'm a 14" man these days, I have a few 12 and 13 that I like, but 14 is the way to go for me these days.  I'm alternating between the Trick Drums 14" Stainless Steel and the Trick Drums 14" Brass.  Both are amazing.


What kind of pedal(s) do you use? And which "settings" fits your style the best?

I proudly play the Trick Pro-1V. I think it's the best pedal out there with infinite adjustability and killer engineering. 

I play with the beater pretty far back (I don't use triggers, so there has to be enough momentum behind the strike for it to sound powerful and defining) and have the "spring tension" set kinda in the middle of tight and loose.


As always, we are rounding off with you picking the next drummer in these series. Pick a drummer, and explain why he/she deserves (!) to be one of our Blast Beasts.

One of my favorite drummers who is a total beast is Will Scharf of Keelhaul. He's not a blaster, but he's sure one hell of a beast. Dynamic, speed, power, creativity, chops, he's got them all.  Check him out for sure. http://www.myspace.com/mykeelhaul