Interview: Depswa

Well everyone, a little bit after 3 PM on March 14th, I had the privilege of interviewing Depswa, a new band signed to Geffen Records. I recently saw them on tour with Trust Company and The Chevelle (Pacifier was unable to attend) and they did a great job. Finally, here is the interview with Depswa. For more information, go to
I interviewed Jeremy Penick, the lead singer of Depswa.
Bear: Hey Jeremy, how’re you doin’ today?
Jeremy: Uhm, great.
Bear: OK, so right now, I believe you guys are n the Sensory Overload Tour with Trust Company and Blindeside. How’s that been going for ya?
Jeremy: Actually, right now, we’re with Mudvayne and In Flames. That’s been going good so far.
Bear: So why did you guys hop off the tour with Trust Company?
Jeremy: We jumped off because of the dates, better dates for us.
Bear: Alright. Well, as I might have said before, it was on the Sensory Overload Tour where I first heard of you guys. I was at Ziggy’s in February when you played with Chevelle. I mean, how did it feel sharing the stage with Chevelle and Trust Company?
Jeremy: It was great. The guys are awesome, they’re nice, and they’re a real good band. Trust Company was cool too. Chevelle is real hot right now though. We wish them the best.
Bear: Yea, I agree totally. They got a new video and single out right now. Alright, let me shift gears for a second and talk about Depswa’s past, because my audience isn’t too familiar with you guys.
Jeremy: That’s cool.
Bear: From my understanding, Depswa was originally a three piece set, and you guys were called Carcinogen. Since then, they were additions to the lineup and you guys were located at San Francisco at the time. Is that right? Like, different is Depswa compared from the beginning?
Jeremy: Actually, we were located in Turdock-
Bear: What was that?
Jeremy: Turdock, T-U-R-D-O-C-K, it’s near Canton and that area, there are huge differences since then. There were lineup changes and we were something we really weren’t. We were hardcore and we weren’t too different. Now, we are more into what we are now, we are more ourselves now.
Bear: I hear ya.
Jeremy: We were called Carcinogen, but like we said, we changed to Depswa. No one knows what a Depswa is.
Bear: I hear ya there, but let me ask you. How did you enjoy your time in that period? I mean, how different was that time compared to now? Like, when you reflect on those times, how much did you change? Better?
Jeremy: Yea, definitely better. Personally, I’m more comfortable (now), happier, we have more of a gratitude. We don’t really have many influences in our music, we are strictly ourselves.
Bear: A few years later, the band as a whole noticeably changed, in the respect of the name changing from Carcinogen to Depswa, a move to Los Angeles, changes in the lineup. What sparked this?
Jeremy: Well, I don’t think any one thing sparked this, I think it is something every band goes through. It was definitely a good growing period to get where we are now. I mean, new bands start out and try to play like who they admire, but as they get older, things keep on changing and they keep on working into their own mold. And, we’re continually changing, not just one day, but more like evolution, you know what I mean?
Bear: Yea.
Jeremy: Like, we have more guitar players. I enlisted with Dan (Noonan). We used to play together and then, when we moved to Los Angeles, I contacted him, and he really helped us out, with like a place to live, helped us get on our feet, and such. So, it has two parts.
Bear: Alright … there are lots of people, some including my site are wondering, just like anyone else � what does Depswa mean?
Jeremy: Depswa came from the movie, “Medicine Man”, Sean Connery was in it, and it took place in Venezuela. He is looking for a cure for cancer and he is working with these Venezuelan Rainforest people, and a Medicine Man, or healer in mind was called Depswa. So that’s where we got it, it has a certain stigma to it. No one knows what a Depswa is.
Bear: Alright. So you guys have been getting a following and eventually, signed to Geffen Records. How did this come about and what was the first thing you were thinking?
Jeremy: It was great. We are able to have a chance to have a chance, and we don’t take it for granted.
Bear: How did Geffen hear about you?
Jeremy: Well, we have been making demo recordings at our house, that’s where we do all our recordings. We pass out demos to people and someone passed our demo out to someone at Geffen’s A+R and they loved it. Also, a friend knew Slipknot, we met Cory, and we jammed for him. He really liked it and tried getting us to sign with their label, Maggot, but we went with Geffen. Cory understood and Maggot slipped.
Bear: Now that’s cool as hell man. I never knew that. Anyways, so you got signed and I believe you guys went into the studio around I’d say early spring 2002?
Jeremy: Uhm, yea.
Bear: You guys went in early spring 2002 to record Two Angels and a Dream. How do you guys feel about this album as a whole? How do you think the fans as a whole will respond to it, and are we expecting that out in May?
Jeremy: So far, it’s set for May. Yea, we were in the studio for three months, recording songs, and then, went back to record more songs and were done by October. We accomplished a lot and we’re very proud of it. We feel each song is individual, each song is an entity. I’m very proud and feel like a record hoping to make it. I’m just happy and fortunate. I’m not taking any of these for granted. As for the fan’s response, so far, a lotta people are connected with it. There have been kids who were impacted by it. I’m still stoked to listen to it. I’m stoked that the peeps are going to listen to it. Hopefully, everyone will just spread the joy.
Bear: I hear that. I know a lot of time and effort goes into the songs. When I attended the show at Ziggy’s, I don’t remember everything that happened, but I do remember hearing you say that one of your songs were about some aspect of Substance Abuse.
Jeremy: Yea, that was “Needles.”
Bear: Yea, this present my next question, what songs stand out the most in your mind? Is there a favorite?
Jeremy: Really, I have heard it a few times and, this is tough. Honestly, I can’t say I have one favorite songs. Every song is special. I love just listening to all the songs on “Two Angels and a Dream.”
Bear: Totally understandable. So, what will be the first single off “Two Angels and a Dream?” Can we expect a music video?
Jeremy: Well, we shot a video and we just did the video shoot for “This Time,” which is coming for a show called, “Adrenaline X,” so there are two we can pick from. “Adrenaline X” will be cool, it’s all like motocross, where all these pros live in a contest situation, and they have aerial jumps against each other. We even get to see the insight of the riders. When they did the last jump of the last day, we played underneath the event. It was cool and intense. There were mud everywhere, mud underneath it. It was cool!
Bear: So, will “Adrenaline X” be on TV, I mean, when could we expect it out? Like, channel, time slot?
Jeremy: It is going to be on NBC, Primetime … let me see if I remember this. I think the ads will be in May and it will air in June.
Bear: Sounds pretty tight. Now, you guys recently just signed up with what I consider one of the most important tours of the year, an annual festival of metal, the Ozzfest. How does it feel to play Ozzfest later this summer?
Jeremy: Fuckin’ dream come true! Yea, it’s like wishing for it to be the ultimate goal and how it’s come true. I can’t wait for it! I can’t wait to see all the bands, the performers, it’s going to be amazing. I’ll be seeing my aspirations for the past. My goal though is to represent Ozzfest and do a good job.
Bear: It’s no secret a ton of bands get known on the tour. This further Limp Bizkit’s career back in �98, Godsmack got big off of this, Drowning Pool was a huge breakout band. Could Depswa be the next?
Jeremy: Couldn’t say. No idea. I hope, I hope for the best, prepare for the worse. Ways don’t always come out as you like them. Mainly, just trying to connect with the music. Never say, “Yea, we’re the shit cuz we’re real.” We’re just glad to be doing it.
Bear: Lets hope you become the next breakout band though. Has there been any artists that have influenced Depswa?
Jeremy: Throughout the years, there have been all different influences and with all of us in the band, there is a wide variety of genres. Personally, I love all kinds of music, not just any one genre. You like what ya like. I like some songs, but then, I could like a band entirely. I like Radiohead, Meshuggah, I’m more into 70’s Music, the Doobies, Jeff Buckley, the Eagles.
Bear: It’s no secret you guys have shared the stage with a lot of bands. What has been most memorable?
Jeremy: That’s tough … there is a lot … I’d probably say Rob Zombie. He was cool and has been around for ages. KoRn, that was huge, it was like amazing to open up for them. It was amazing to me that they defined a scene.
Bear: Pretty much opened the door up for the Rap Metal Scene. What I want to know is, what do you guys, what does Depswa want to be remembered for when you’re at the end of your careers?
Jeremy: Sincere. Just hope people know we are sincere. Every song we write is sincere. We expose a part of our lives and we’re letting everyone into it. We’re a positive and real band, and we balance between negative and positive. That reflects on “Two Angels and a Dream.”
Bear: Well Jeremy, I am really grateful that you let me interview you and spread the word for Depswa.
Jeremy: No problem man. Glad to do it, anytime. Thanks Bear.
Bear: Take care and good luck. I’ll try to see you at Ozzfest!
For more information on Depswa, go to or
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