Disturbed: Inspired To Create

In an exclusive chat with Metal Hammer ahead of the release of their forthcoming comeback album Immortalized, Disturbed frontman David Draiman has credited the band’s fanbase as the inspiration for their return after a four year long hiatus.

“Our confidence comes from our fans,” he says when asked if there were any nerves in the Disturbed camp on returning to an ever-changing metal landscape. “Can I say with one hundred per cent confidence this is going to work? No. I can say I’m going to die one day with that confidence, I can say that we put everything into this album with confidence. But ultimately we are living in hope, and the faith of our fans. That we have one hundred per cent confidence in. They will be the ones to decide.”

And, never one to leave things to chance, David feels he has the statistical evidence to back up the band’s confidence.

“What makes me have such belief in our fans?” Draiman says, repeating our question back as he ponders it for a second. “Well, here is a statistic for you, when we went on hiatus in 2011 our Facebook page had around seven million ‘likes’. And now four or five years later, without us putting out a record or doing anything at all, we have over ten million ‘likes’. That’s a pretty nice growth for doing absolutely nothing. And that says it all about our fanbase; that’s all natural, organic growth. And if that doesn’t give you hope then I don’t know what will.”

But even he admits that, in terms of the music world of 2015, this is a step into the unknown.

“Oh it’s changed so much,” the frontman sighs when asked about the changes he’s witnessed in the metal scene. “It would take me forever to go through them all. I mean a lot of our peers and colleagues aren’t around anymore, but this is a strong time for music nonetheless. And I’m intrigued, I’m interested to see how this is going to play out. Only time will tell I suppose.”

He also revealed that Disturbed got straight to work on new material the moment that their return was decided.

“It’s never been about looking back,” he says. “When we entered that room we immediately began to write and work on new ideas for music. That’s just always been our way. Those songs that we wrote before? They’re already written! We don’t need to go back to them. If we don’t know those songs that we were playing for ten years like the back of our hand by now then we should probably all have our instruments taken away! This was always part of the plan, we never said we were splitting up, just taking a break, and we’ve come back as strong and as ready as ever.”

And this level of creativity is not something the Disturbed mainman takes for granted.

“To leave a room with four or five new song ideas at the end of every day,” he begins, “it’s not easy for everyone. We’re very lucky that we complement each other so well and that we have found other songwriting partners that we can communicate like that with. Not everyone finds those people in their life, so we’re very blessed.”

Also, for a band that have achieved so much, David is still hungry to improve his band even this far down the line.

“Oh definitely!” is the response when asked if Disturbed have any goals left achieve. “I think there is untapped potential here and we still have many more directions in which we can grow. And hopefully this new record will see us doing that. Hopefully our fans will see what we’re attempting and enjoy it, and come on board. We hope that they carry this journey on with us and that this record makes them feel powerful.”

Whatever the landscape or trends in modern music, it’s clear that the bond between Disturbed and their hardcore fans is something that David and the rest of the band have never, and still do not, take for granted.

“Oh god, we’re very fortunate,” he sighs as he considers the impact his band have had on so many. “Our fans are everything to us, they’re the reason why we get to do all of this. It’s the greatest gift in the world. For us to be able to spend our lives creating something, writing, playing music is an incredible thing. And the tenacity and dedication of the Disturbed fanbase is the fuel that drives us and the reason that we could execute this hiatus properly. So we owe them everything.”

Immortalized is released on the 21st of August, via Reprise Records.

Disturbed: The Vengeful One broken down

Stephen Hill

Since blagging his way onto the Hammer team a decade ago, Stephen has written countless features and reviews for the magazine, usually specialising in punk, hardcore and 90s metal, and still holds out the faint hope of one day getting his beloved U2 into the pages of the mag. He also regularly spouts his opinions on the Metal Hammer Podcast.