Download 2017: No. 34 - The Dillinger Escape Plan - 50 bands in 50 days


By Eric Mackinnon
eric@newrocktimes.com

The Dillinger Escape Plan
Download Festival
Avalanche Stage
Sunday, June 11, 2017

The Dillinger Escape Plan  are scheduled to headline the Avalanche Stage at the Download Festival on Sunday, June 11, but could this be the last time they play Download?
Frontman Greg Puciato suggests it might be as Download goers prepare to catch their heroes on Donington soil for what looks like the final time.
"Yeah, these are it (the last shows)," he insits in an interview with The Denver Post.. "I don’t see the band returning unless we really feel we have something new to say. I’m not gonna be bored, I’m not gonna come back because I’m bored, or because we need money.
"We need to be excited to come do this correctly, on stage and on record, with fire and something to expel, with the right reasons for creating and the right love and respect for one another and the music and our history and the roles we fill in the larger context of our past present and future, with more of a similar view on how much we wanna do it, how we wanna approach it, etc.
"Right now we just aren’t on the same page enough with all of that stuff to make it worthwhile and honest, and I don’t like half-assing anything. It’s just not stimulating to me. So, we’re just getting through it and setting each other free, so as to not hold each other back. And if it ever happens again? We’ll see."
Like so many in the rock family, the tragic death of Chris Cornell has hit  Greg Puciato 'like a ton of bricks.'
The Dillinger Escape Plan have been on the road with Soundgarden in recent months with frontman Puciato left pinching himself and admittedly in awe at times at sharing a bill with a band he openly embraces as musical heroes.
They were scheduled to open for Soundgarden on Monday night at the Fillmore Auditorium, just as it had as recently as last Sunday in Kansas. The Dillinger Escape Plan have been sharing opening slots with The Pretty Reckless on Soundgarden's tour. The tragic events of last week have changed that with Cornell sadly taking his own life.
For Puciato , it has been especially hard hitting as he admits Cornell's passing is the first musician's death which has left him literally weeping.
"It all just hit me like a ton of bricks," he tells The Denver Post. "It’s the first artist death that I wept uncontrollably over. When I heard the news, I was out, and then just proceeded to sit with my mouth open for an hour before getting completely bombed. 
"Before bed that night, and then at random times throughout the next day, I would find myself just welling up or fully breaking into tears, for all of the reasons I mentioned earlier. Just a lot of heavy stuff."
He continues: "It’s been pretty brutal, honestly. It just hit close to home in a lot of ways.
"As a long-term fan, as someone who had just recently seen him and his band and crew and interacted with them in very close proximity; as a singer; as a singer whose band is ending, seeing a singer whose band had recently re-formed; as a musician who struggles with sometimes debilitating anxiety and depression and panic and knows how to hide it extremely well; as the loss of someone pivotal in my formative musical years. 
"The brutality and sadness of the suicide aspect…the empathy not just for him but for his loved ones. Knowing the unfair guilt it will cause some of the survivors. So many aspects."