We are canadian rock band Death From Above 1979. Our new album The Physical World comes out on 9.9.14 The new single 'Government Trash' came out today. Listen here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iBNxadj-25c&feature=youtu.be


Jesse - u/jfkmstrkrft

Sebastien - u/sebby_g1979

Proof: https://twitter.com/dfa1979/status/504282143988514818


Comments: 915 • Responses: 58  • Date: 

-eDgAR-269 karma

Thank you guys so much for doing this! I’ve been a huge fan since I saw you perform on Conan back in 2005. I’ve always wanted to know, was Max Weinberg taking over the drums planned or was it a spur of the moment thing?

jfkmstrkrft195 karma

hi. yes it was planned... it didnt go according to plan though. we had been on tour with this band called the panthers, and their drummer would jump in for the end of the song like max did. we talked to max about it that day and it seemed like it would go well. the jacket thing was great in hindsight, but when he looked at me while we were playing, i thought he would want to take it again or something.

bnut4160 karma

DFA1979! Head’s Up and You’re a Woman I’m a Machine are pretty much the only two albums I listen to while working out. Glad to be able to add another DFA album to the mix very soon.

A few questions:

I was always fascinated with the sound you can put out with one bass. What would you say is the most important piece of equipment that lets you put out that sick tone?

Have you ever thought of adding a touring band member so you can “do more?”

Is MSTRKRFT working on a third album?

See you guys at Voodoo. I’m fucking stoked.

jfkmstrkrft167 karma

i bought those amps in the 90s for a total of 250 bucks. no one wanted them and i couldnt afford anything else. i suppose i just crank the mid and low mid to try and fill in the gap where a guitar would go. solid state amps. no distortion pedals. PA speakers in the cabs.

yes mstrkrft has been workin on LP#3 since dec

shadyhawkins51 karma

What's the new MSTRKRFT sounding like? I've been in love with your and Al's stuff for years. We actually met outside an old Spaghetti Warehouse in Winnipeg that hand been reno'd into a club. You told me I should start djing and we took a very awkward photo. I'll post it if I can find it.

jfkmstrkrft124 karma

if i tell you to do anything, thats how you know im drunk.

new mstrkrft has been made so far without using a computer, apart from running it like a tape machine. hope that means something to you. if not, maybe itll make sense when you hear it.

MFreemans_Black_Hole11 karma

A big muff pedal will get you pretty close IMO

jfkmstrkrft92 karma

too slow, and wrong electronic concept. i wish al was here to explain the inverted diode shit. maybe someone here would get it. its more like a square wave thing than a distortion.

WillWhite134 karma

You guys are awesome, can't wait for the new album! I have 2 questions, first off, what happened to Jesse joining Queens of the Stone Age? That would've been badass!

Secondly, please tell me you guys plan on coming to Ireland sometime soon?

jfkmstrkrft188 karma

i tried being in QOTSA but i didnt think i would ever fit. im a songwriter i guess, and josh is such a song writing monster, there wasnt really room for me.

i will happily come to ireland anytime. may need to bring a spare liver though.

Naggins35 karma

Ya can share mine if ya buy me a pint ;)

jfkmstrkrft178 karma

in dublin, i once saw a drunk girl attempt to walk through a wall. was not pretty. never seen anyone that drunk but also still walking around. should have asked her to drive me home.

sebby_g1979121 karma

HEY! I'm here, Jesse should be here soon. Let me try and get through some of these questions. I've never really been on Reddit, wish me goodluck!

jfkmstrkrft130 karma

i am here. i am also clueless. i think we have to hit refresh occasionally. im also doing an ama on 4chan right now.

jfkmstrkrft115 karma

ok i gotta go too. now i have used reddit for the first time (not just for jailbreak advice etc), maybe i can come back more often. thanks for being cool. if we didnt answer your question, its probably because we just answered it for someone else. thanks again

IAmVi96 karma

Hey Jesse, was curious if you guys ever used that amp that I picked up for you guys in Florida a couple years back. I believe it was a vintage Peavey Super Festival Series. If so, was it used to record on the new album?

jfkmstrkrft111 karma

i havnt used it live yet. its actually the bones of what i want, but the version i had was hot rodded in a bizarre way. AL-P reverse engineered it, so we will make the changes to the one you found and bring it up to speed. thanks so much for doing that dude. when do i get to come play techno with you again?

cocomonkeh85 karma

I'm currently having trouble at my job. I don't get along with any of my co-workers and I don't make that great of money. However, the job market is a bit soft where I live and I can't move right now as I'm a bit underwater on my mortgage. I guess the heart of my question is how do they cram all that graham into every bite of Golden Graham cereal?

KravenDanger73 karma

Just wanted to tell you guys that you're the reason I picked up a bass in the first place and even though I'm playing ambient shit now, my roots are in chugging along to you two thrashin'.

That being said, what made you two guys toss your differences aside and reform the band?

And Jesse, how do you get that gnarly fucking crunch? I've heard it's straight from your amp but it's never a sound I've been able to grasp.

jfkmstrkrft149 karma

time and space makes all things better. the shit around us is what broke up the band. none of that stuff is there anymore.

just look at some old shitty amp that has a "distortion" knob.. see how it sounds cranked to 10. then turn all the other knobs to 10 and see if that works. i wish i had a better answer but thats essentially what i did.

Eggspectations72 karma

What did you guys think of the riot that started for your first reunion show in SXSW? Were you pissed that you had to stop the show early? For those of you who didn't see it link.

jfkmstrkrft219 karma

the weirdest part for me was hearing the sound of people being tasered between songs.

CoffeeCameraAction62 karma

If you play Conan's show again will you please make sure Max Weinberg comes by to cameo again? That was badass.

Congrats on the new record and looking forward to seeing you guys on tour again soon.

jfkmstrkrft164 karma

that would be rad. max has the softest, fattest hand ive ever touched. id do it again just for the handshake.

we_all_had_ponies41 karma

What bands are you guys currently listening to?

You have such a unique sound, do you think a cover band could ever do you guys justice?

jfkmstrkrft75 karma

hmm. i am trapped in the 90s still. i listened to infest this morning and crossed out/mitb split. whatever im listening to in the morning, i generally try to find on youtube and tweet it.

sure a cover band could do it, but i think it would be better to spend that energy making new music.

Untedletepbum24 karma

Fucking LOVE powerviolence, high-five. Do you like Iron Lung? They're a powerviolence duo with a singing drummer.

jfkmstrkrft37 karma

i havent heard of them... link please. yes power violence. how could you not love it.

Untedletepbum25 karma

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YntQGkOfPrg Their albums are great, but you must witness the spectacle. While I have your attention, will we ever hear Femme Fatale 4? The last EP is my favorite EP ever, no exaggeration. It is fucking perfect and I wish there was more stuff like that.

jfkmstrkrft22 karma

glad you like it. i like it too, maybe too much.. and thats why i havnt made another one yet.

FightThePixies37 karma

Did you guys actually get sick of girls coming to you in the clubs with cocaine?

jfkmstrkrft77 karma

id say "i thought we were having a good time" or my other go to line "i didnt realize i was boring you".

Croctane36 karma

You guys said 2pm damn it, i wasnt prepared. Alright what were your biggest influences when developing your own special blend of musical style?

jfkmstrkrft56 karma

really, just deep purple. in terms of direct influence, all that unison riff stuff between the organ and bass and guitar. 'heads up' was a name we made as a joke while looking at the cover of 'in rock'.

BrushGoodDar35 karma

Look! Look at the moon! Do you remember yelling that to the crowd in Chicago at the Pichfork Festival in maybe 2010? I was so high.

jfkmstrkrft60 karma

not high enough to forget that apparently

smaug8832 karma

First I would like to say DFA1979 is one of my best bands and I'm glad you re-united. Your show in Quebec City at the summer festival was pure awesomeness, with the thunderstorm and all. My question would be: are you friends with Crystal Castles? I suppose so, but once with my friend we argued about the song Untrust us and Dead Womb and we were pretty confused about where it came, from you or them. Thanks!

jfkmstrkrft62 karma

they sampled us. they are friendly. they are nice.

ericplaysbass30 karma

Hey guys, dorky bassist who covers your songs and many others on YouTube here! Thanks for doing this AMA.

At this point, many people equate the creation of the new album with pressure from fans to make another one. Creatively speaking, do you think the new album suffered at all from that pressure from your fans to release a new album or do you feel you were able to safely circumvent that pressure and make music that you guys wanted to make?

For Jesse specifically, what do you get out of the Dan Armstrong Ampeg bass that you didn't get with the Rickenbacker? Or, simply, what made you make the switch? I'm guessing something to do with more midrange?

For Sebastien specifically, what's your practice routine like for playing drums and singing at the same time? Also, do you go into the studio and lay down each track separately, or do you try to record both drums and vocals at the same time? I'm guessing the former, but the latter would give it more of a live sound I suppose.

Lastly, what would you guys recommend to a bassist who wants to do music for a living? I can't seem to find anyone serious enough where I'm from and don't have the money to move away to a place where I might find like-minded people.

Again, thanks for making this AMA happen. Hope to get to meet you guys when I see you in Detroit come this November! Hell, get me on stage and we can do a song together.

jfkmstrkrft74 karma

the dan armstrong makes playing fast very very easy. also, having 24 frets satisfies something in my brain that no other bass has. its also insanely loud. i actually have a pedal in my chain now to drop the gain -10.

i recommend not doing music for a living. just make music and if people decide to pay you for it, then you can make that decision. we got lucky.

Maccas7525 karma


jfkmstrkrft37 karma

i do love the horseshoe, but i wish it looked like it did in the 70s with the wagon wheels etc. still great though.

katsayskill24 karma

That melody at the end of "Blood on our Hands" is so nice. Is there more to it? I've always wished it was it's own song, haha.

jfkmstrkrft23 karma

that was al and i playing rhodes and drums around 4am in montreal, at the end of a vocal session for that album. i doubt there is much more to it than that.

LordvonHelmut21 karma

Are you still in it for the hand jobs? Regardless I love your stuff, you guys are absolutely amazing and I'm glad I made it to your Sasquatch performance a few years back. I literally went with a friend just so we could see you both perform.

jfkmstrkrft40 karma

i was never in it for the hand jobs. that sounds horrible and would make for a painful tour.

kgunderson20 karma

I love Metric's version of Black History Month almost as much as the original. Did you know Emily was working on a cover of it? If you had to cover one of her songs which would it be?

Also, any hope of you returning to Saskatoon sometime?

jfkmstrkrft16 karma

saskatoon = yes

burnholio20 karma

Is the elephant trunk something you were born with or did you have to go through plastic surgery to get it?

jfkmstrkrft60 karma

painful surgery. having it removed afterwards was worse.


katsayskill20 karma

I think You're A Woman, I'm a Machine is the sexiest album I've ever heard. I've never been able to see you live, so I COULD NOT be more excited to celebrate my 27th birthday at your show in Atlanta, Nov. 3! Because it's actually factually my birthday, my questions are:

1) Would you sing Happy Birthday one time? Because then I can die, and it wouldn't be no thang.

2) Help me smuggle in my own bottle of whiskey? Because it only seems right, and I would totally let you have some.

:) xoxo I love you always, even if all this fails.

jfkmstrkrft42 karma

smuggling in your alcohol is up to you. its like the pain while being tattooed. it wont mean as much if its too easy.

if you get pat down and still make it in, the whiskey actually turns into solid gold.

if youre gonna die when we sing happy birthday, then def no singing it. you need to live to smuggle more whiskey.

Frajer19 karma

What's your favorite food at Tim Hortons ?

jfkmstrkrft44 karma

used to be boston cream. then it was apple fritter. now its honey cruller. is that how you spell that?

disbeLEAF42 karma

and now its a whopper

jfkmstrkrft62 karma

YES best reply possible. i hope BK does an alberta beef burger with peameal bacon and oka cheese, with an apple fritter bun.

shadyhawkins16 karma

Hey guys I'm a huge fan, and I'm super stoked for The Physical World to release. My question is why aren't you doing a proper Canadian tour? I live in Regina and typically expect to get skipped over, but no where except riot fest and Montreal? C'mon dudes, throw a bone to your homegrown fans and at least hit the commodore in Vancouver. Please?

jfkmstrkrft73 karma

yeah we are not playing regina. not after this question. no way.

mrgoober133713 karma

What advice would you give to starting out musicians?

jfkmstrkrft43 karma

dont think about doing it as a job. thats a quick way to start hating it. just make what you like and do it for you. better to not ruin your creative outlet by monetizing it.

cary_anne_says12 karma

Hey guys! I started listening to you guys via a mix cd shortly after you two stopped playing together, so I’m really excited to see you working together in real time! Your music opened me up to lots of new genres, I discovered Test Icicles through some “similar artist” browsing and I loved listening to MSTRKRFT in high school. My question would be, what made you two want to come together and make more music?

sebby_g197959 karma

We started talking again in 2010 and discovered that we were both still weird. Weird people have to stick together.

jfkmstrkrft51 karma

this could be the answer to most of these questions

thedjally11 karma

I miss MSTRKRFT. Are they evercoming back?!?!

jfkmstrkrft17 karma


canticoli11 karma

Can you give me the codes to Mike Tyson's Punch-Out? I've been stuck on Bald Bull for years. I tried Left-Left-Up-B-dodge-uppercut, but it still knocks me out.

Also, often times my household's sponges accumulate an awful amount of buildup. What can I do to prevent this?

jfkmstrkrft16 karma

007 373 5963

CallMeJefe11 karma

Hey Guys! Thanks for getting back together!! Your edgefest set in TO a few summers back was all-time. And Jesse, you rocked the shit out of that fire truck tent afterwards. Especially while all the other suckas were watching Billy Talent on the main stage. Any chance you guys can come back to Call The Office in London, ON??

jfkmstrkrft14 karma

as long as they replace the couches upstairs, ill come back to call the office

Swedernish10 karma

You guys are awesome. 2 questions,

  1. What's your favourite song to play live?

  2. JFK, do you have any mixing tips or tricks that you'd like to share? :P

jfkmstrkrft19 karma

i like playing all of them really. they are all hard in some way, and i like to be challenged. i make up parts i cant really play yet, and then practice them to the point where i feel comfortable playing it for seb. more fun that way.

know your tracks and dont get elaborate if youre tone deaf. thats about it.

GayPatTabler9 karma

Jesse - did you play the guitar extensively before playing bass or did you start playing bass?

jfkmstrkrft18 karma

i started playing guitar in 1989, bass in 2001 when i wrote the first 3 DFA79 songs. so yes, extensive guitar playing lol

HonorableJudgeIto8 karma

Who is the 2nd best 2 member band? White Stripes, Local H, Eurythmics, someone else?

jfkmstrkrft23 karma

steely dan

HenryHenderson8 karma

What are your thoughts on the Burger King and Tim Hortons merger deal?

jfkmstrkrft13 karma

it makes me happy for some reason. i hope they start using alberta beef. i guess i used to eat BK on tour a lot... the chicken sandwich was the only reliable road food for under 5 bucks. dont eat it so often anymore though.

lokitok8 karma

Massive fan of you guys! What bands/artists are your biggest influences? And any new bands you've taken an interest in? Similarly, have you guys heard of Royal Blood from the UK (another bass and drums only band who just released their 1st album)? Oh and why did you decide to go with bass rather than a normal electric guitar? Okay that's it. Cheers guys!

jfkmstrkrft19 karma

no real reason for using a bass. just happened that way. i didnt own a bass when we made heads up. there was one in the house that someone had left there.

just heard about royal blood recently. i think they are great. different feel musically, but really proving what we had been saying in the past. bass drums and vocals are all you really need if its done right. i like them.

lesgrandes7 karma

Hey guys, i worked with you at the troubadour show. It was great talking and hearing all the stories. Did anything bad happen this time around that will lead to another song? (like romantic rights from the last troubadour show?)

jfkmstrkrft10 karma

THANKFULLY NO. when i said that, i thought fuck i just cursed tomorrow. tomorrow ended up being awesome though.

beuzy247 karma

This is directed at Jesse mostly, How does a MSTRKRFT remix of DFA1979 songs come about, seeming you would be involved in a mix of both?

jfkmstrkrft12 karma

well i guess i have the fastest access to the multitrack recording of anyone, so maybe that. we were asked in the past and did it. we have been asked this time but we said no. rather make our own music first.

WolfofAnarchy6 karma

For how long are you planning to stay together as a band?

jfkmstrkrft43 karma

isnt it more fun not knowing?

czaqur6 karma

Do you guys have other hobbies than music?

jfkmstrkrft33 karma


Untedletepbum5 karma

Hey, I just want to say first of all that you guys have provided what will inevitably be remembered as the soundtrack to my adolescence, and the two most exhilarating concert experiences I've had by a long shot. 1) Jesse, I'm a huge fan of the Femme Fatale EP's (they trump the whole hardcore genre for me) and I once saw you mention an LP titled '4'. Will we ever hear that? I kind of need it. 2) Did you guys make any conscious decision to play slower and groovier upon reuniting? It really changed up the live thing. I like it better. 3) Sebastien, would you mind telling us a bit about the process of learning to be a singing drummer, how you maintain that skill, and the major challenges you face (aside from the seemingly herculean nature of the task itself.) 4) Does the Physical World feature any synth songs in the vein of Going Steady and Go Home, Get Down? I love that sound, man. 5)Do you still have the trunk I tossed onstage after YAWIAM in Hamilton?

jfkmstrkrft4 karma

1) if and when i have time. i want to do it. 2) i think we recorded them all much faster, but the computer clock was set wrong. oh well. worked out. 4) no, i didnt want to repeat myself in that way. using synth for the sake of doing it again didnt make sense. if i make something up that works like that, then sure. not this time though. 5) probably, and i think we hung it on the mic stand every night of that tour. i think i still have it actually.

modestcouch5 karma

if you guys could wipe one band off the face of the earth - no questions asked...who would it be?

jfkmstrkrft20 karma

bands have a way of wiping themselves off the face of the earth, you just have to give them time.

bneiluj835 karma

I saw you in Quebec City when you tried some new songs (2012 I think). Do the vast majority of the new songs you played on this tour will be on the new album? Is there a lot of leftover/b-sides left?

jfkmstrkrft8 karma

i think we were playing 7 of the new ones on that tour. one didnt go on this album, but itll be recorded eventually.

koriki5 karma

I've listened to you guys since forever ago... I am also in LOVE with MSTRKRFT. (fan-boy blah blah.)

More of a question for JFK... But I played the guitar first then the bass then started making electronic music myself. What was it like for you to go from DFA1979 to MSTRKRFT?

The scenes are very different. I just wanted to know what made you decided to switch to electronic and will you go back to it? (Also what is your opinion on current electronic music scene... you don't seem like the guy who would be to into it hahhaa.)

jfkmstrkrft22 karma

i used to DJ before DFA79 happened. lost my gigs cause we were going on tour. to me it felt pretty normal to go back to it.

and no, im not into the mainstream of what electronic music has become. there is incredible stuff being made though, you just have to look for it. ps its all techno.

mil_phickelson5 karma

Hey guys, thanks for doing this. Do you have plans to incorporate more instruments into your live shows on this upcoming tour? Trainwreck 1979 had more instrumentation than some of your previous stuff, and I'm assuming the new album is similar in that way. Seems like you would have to have a bigger stage setup.

Either way I'm excited, I've always wanted to see you guys live. I wish y'all the best.

jfkmstrkrft16 karma

when you see it played live, itll make more sense.

ive always wondered why no one asked us about the conga breakdown in romantic rights. there has to be 6 tracks of latin percussion in that song, but no one has ever asked us why we didnt do it live.

MelechRic5 karma

Saw you guys at The Troubadour a little over a week ago and loved the show. I was wondering if small venues are your preferred format or if you like a bit more space? Also, did you guys pick Big Black Delta as the opening act or was that something that your label or The Troubadour did? (I'm asking the last question mainly because they're musically very different from your sound.)

Also, thanks for your music. It got me through some very rough patches in life.

jfkmstrkrft11 karma

i love big black delta. he is awesome. i chose him from day 1.

small venues are cool. big are cool. every space ends up just being a stage and some gear. its really up to the people there to make it awesome. we do our best every time.

gabby_m5 karma

hello! jfk, does your daughter have a musical inclination like you? does she like your work or does she think you're a big nerd?

jfkmstrkrft22 karma

both my daughters are into music. the big one likes pop music, which i try to curb but cant seem to. little one loves metal and can do a pretty good metal voice. sometimes we have 'mosh morning' in the living room. i dont want to pressure them into anything though.... but shit if she wants to make metal, i will always help in any way i can. pop, theyre on their own.

smac795 karma

I notice JFK wears black and SG wears white. Is that because one is evil and one is good? Kinda like a yin yang thang?

jfkmstrkrft16 karma

its because i dont own any white clothes. also black doesnt stain as horribly. i did try to wear white once, not for this band, but just in general. i cant do it. im a slob.

steve76ers5 karma

What inspired you as musicians?

jfkmstrkrft15 karma

in general? i dont remember learning how to play drums. i was too young. the first real 'i want to make music' moment for me was in the back of my parents 70s volvo station wagon. laying down in the back, listening to 'shake and fingerpop' by junior walker and the all stars. i heard that song and i wanted to play saxophone.

orangesarepeopletoo4 karma

What is your favourite thing about the UK?

jfkmstrkrft8 karma

the weather

mrgoober13374 karma

What are your favorite movies?

jfkmstrkrft6 karma


ChuckMcChip3 karma

Thanks for stopping by guys, huge fan. What "new music" have you guys been listening to since your last album came out? Also, are you guys going to be in Jersey anytime soon, and if so can we hang out

jfkmstrkrft13 karma

big black delta's s/t LP. the new doomsday student and new converge records. thats about it for newer stuff really.

i may already have plans in jersey, but maybe, yes