The first time I heard Between the Buried and Me was when Mike Portnoy announced the first Progressive Nation Tour with Dream Theater, Opeth, BTBAM, and 3 back in 2008 (I believe). I didn’t get to see the tour, but it made me wonder who the two bands I didn’t know were (BTBAM and 3). BTBAM shortly thereafter released The Great Misdirect and I picked it up.
If I am honest, I didn’t get into it right away. I think I didn’t understand the method in the chaos. It wasn’t until a friend of mine (Bart from Straightline) later suggested I watch them play Colors live. So I did. And then I got it.
And from then on, BTBAM became my favorite extreme prog band, bar none. I went back and bought the older catalogue and was blown away by the consecutive releases of Parallax I & II and Coma Ecliptic. I was in for the ride.
This shoot was not particularly easy because we were not completely used to the format yet and we were shooting two bands in one day (Haken & BTBAM). So Kai and I took Kris Krash for sound and lights and our in-house photographer, Nadja Daniel, to assist with the day. We had to pick two different interview locations for the two bands to keep it fresh, but in fact the two locations are only about 10 feet apart from one another.
FreqsFact: BTBAM bassist, Dan Briggs, is my favorite modern prog bassist. He always manages to add an extremely musical layer on top of the guitar craziness in BTBAM. Besides BTBAM, he plays in some pretty rad side projects. The first is Trioscapes, a sort of fusion mashup which includes bass, drums and an overdriven saxophone.
Plus, his newer side project, Nova Collective, which has him teaming up with Haken guitarist Richard Henshall. Wicked instrumental prog fusion.