Artists

territory: Germany
agent: Jan Quiel
line-up: Dez Fafara (Vocals), Mike Spreitzer (Guitar), Neal Tiemann (Guitar), Chris Towning (Bass), Austin D'Amond (Drums)
homepage: www.devildriver.com
media: press download


Biography

Dez Fafara moved to Santa Barbara Fafara hosted several barbecues after moving from Orange County to Santa Barbara and would jam with musicians he met, which led to the formation of the band. "I met Evan we struck up a friendship and started jamming," said Fafara Guitarist Evan Pitts met Fafara in a restaurant and gave him his phone number for a jam session, while John Boecklin who originally played 2nd guitar then went to playing drums, met Fafara at a bar.
The band was originally known as Deathride, but later changed their name to DevilDriver because Fafara felt there were too many bands with that name; a band in Norfolk, Virginia, and a bicycle racing team. Another problem was that the band's label, Roadrunner Records were unable to secure copyright. The members compiled a list of roughly two hundred names to go for a more original approach. Fafara's wife had a book by Italian witchcraft author Raven Grimassi on Stregheria, and came across the term "devil driver". The term "devil driver" refers to bells Italian witches used to drive evil forces away. Fafara thought it was appropriate because it sounded "evil", and thought the term "suits his life". The band's logo is the Cross of Confusion, which has existed for thousands of years and refers to "question religion, question authority, question everything around you". Fafara was brought up to "question everything" and was exposed to Italian witchcraft through his grandparents.
DevilDriver's debut record was originally going to be called Thirteen, and then Straight to Hell. However, Fafara claims it was changed "for so many reasons that I can't even go into." The band's self-titled debut DevilDriver, was released on October 21, 2003 under Roadrunner Records, and entered the Top Heatseekers chart at number 17. Guitarist Pitts wrote roughly 90% of the music, according to Mike Spreitzer, who replaced Pitts after his departure from the band. Music critics response to the album was generally negative. Allmusic reviewer Johnny Loftus commented that elements in the songs "Die (And Die Now)" and "Swinging the Dead" redeem an otherwise disappointing album and hoped the band would focus less on the mainstream.