I caught up with heavyweight drummer Dave Witte, currently on a European tour with Municipal Waste, to talk about his latest off-shoot project, Argonauts.
How is the Municipal Waste tour going?
Very well, lots of summer festivals this time around. After a year off to write a record it feels great to be back in the saddle again. We get to see a lot of great bands at these festivals as well. I saw Godflesh in Belgium, they were crushing.
How do you maintain your stamina on big tours like the one you are on now?
Sleep and water are the two most important things. Eating well is very important as well, but you really need your rest, as it will only be a matter of time until you burn out. We've been trying to play a little frisbee during the day to keep the blood flowing. It’s a fun way to get some exercise.
How is the food over there? (And why haven’t we seen more from your excellent blog, “Food Hopping?”)
The food is good and better in some spots than others. I love Italy – the food is always great no matter how simple it is. I'm a big fan of rest area food in EU. The Schnitzel I had in Austria is my favorite meal so far on this trip. Pounded and breaded fried veal with lemon. Perfect. Cool that you know about “Food Hopping,” thanks. I recently moved it over to Sick Drummer Magazine after a hibernation.
When will you be getting back to Argonauts?
Hoping to practice with gang as soon as I get back at the end of August. Brett leaves with Revocation in Sept for EU and I'm back out with MW In Oct/Nov. so our time is limited this year. MW has a big year with the new record and all, so that's my priority.
No clue honestly, we still have to write more and become more of a band together. Writing and working the songs out live to see how they mature or change.
Looking ahead, what would your ideal plan be for Argonauts?
Basically, become more of a band, writing more, playing more shows, etc. Really figuring out what our true sound is and where we want to take it. We of course have our identity from our past bands and some of that has carried over to our sound, but I feel like we haven't really explored the darkest depths that we’re capable of. That will require time and it's stretched thin currently. Labels and releases are not at the top of the list, but down the road I'm sure that will come into play.
Anything new coming up for Argonauts?
We did demo a song that we keep threatening to put up, haha. I'm sure that will happen sooner or later.
You have said Argonauts was like a “yin yang” balancing out for you — how does it balance out the other music and bands you play with?
MW & Argonauts are the perfect balance for me. MW is mostly fast paced, light hearted, aggressive and tunes to E. Argonauts is super dark and mostly mid paced/slower while tuning to C. MW is where I get to have tons of energy with lots of spots for quick drum rolls, etc. and Argonauts, while having some technical edge drumming wise, also allows me to be more creative with writing beats while hitting like a caveman, thus releasing any issues I've been having — haha.
I'm totally happy with both outlets, it's very healthy.
Any plans to be playing in NYC any time soon?
Hopefully this winter, I'm sure we'll make it up there before year’s end. Be sure to say hello.