Coming off a four-year hiatus, heavy metal quartet Disturbed blazed back into their fans' lives earlier last year with a new album titled "Immortalized." Lead singer David Draiman told Billboard the break wasn't a breakup, but rather time for the band to compartmentalize their lives so "it didn't feel like it was just a machine to [them] of write, record, tour, do the same festival over and over." The band re-grouped in late June, announcing their return with a series of videos featuring their grim reaper-esque mascot, The Guy, and a new single, "The Vengeful One."
Currently, the band is on a world tour in conjunction with "Immortalized," and guitarist Dan Donegan, calls in from Texas, where the band had shows in Dallas and Houston.
You’re all living in different areas of the country now, but were still able to come together to write “Immortalized." How did that work, especially since coming off a hiatus?
Technology is amazing. You can live in different countries if you want to. We’ve done that over the years and it’s been a helpful tool, but you lose that human element. As we started writing [for this album], we realized that we needed to spend more time in in a room together. I can send David [Draiman] files to get the ball rolling, but there’s nothing better than us being together, feeding off each other’s energy, improvising and getting reactions instantaneously. It’s not sending files, and then waiting for a response. That can get quite sterile. Once we realized we had to [be in the same room], I’d go to Austin to [David’s] house or he’d come to mine in Chicago. We didn’t put any time frame on it.
What was it like coming back from hiatus? Was it easy to get back into the grove of creating together?
I’m aging myself now, but this will be our 20th year together in August and within the majority of that time we’ve spent very little time away from each other. Even though there’s a strong bond of brotherhood there, it’s like having three other roommates for 20 years. It’s nice to step away and miss each other a bit and it’s given us the opportunity to return to our families and kids. It’s been been a tricky balancing act as we get older and we have responsibilities as fathers and husbands and we wanted to see the special milestones in our kids lives.