Sunday 26 August 2012

20 Questions w/ Sons Of Tonatiuh

Sons Of Tonatiuh 2012 (Tim, Dan, Mike)


Hey Sludge hounds, yes, it is that time again!  20 Questions...time.  This week I had the pleasure of speaking with Dan Caycedo, guitarist and front man with ace Atlanta, Georgia band, Sons Of Tonatiuh.
I reviewed their exceptional sophomore record last month here, however I have been a fan of Dan's music since before his tenure with this band .  For those of you that didn't know, Dan was also the driving force of the band Leechmilk.  Check them out too.  Anyway I digress, Parade of Sorrow is a fantastic record and I am more than fortunate that Dan took the time to speak with us.  So here in full, is my 20 Questions with Dan from Sons Of Tonatiuh.  Hope you enjoy! 


Hey guys, how are you?  I'm thrilled and extremely grateful you agreed to talk to us, here at The Sludgelord Blog.

Doing swell thank you.

Where are you guys at the moment and what are you doing, in terms of the band at the present?  You preparing to tour? 

We are all over the place! Been busy trying to get our Northeast tour under wraps. We leave in a couple of days. Also been setting up a West coast tour for October. Trying to maintain our brand new website ( Working on brand new material. Etc…

You’re a band that came to my attention, following the release of your excellent S/T debut album in 2010 and also from your association with the band Leechmilk, who released one full length album, 2 demos and a split with Sofa King Killer.  (Correct me if I’m wrong?)

You are correct sir.

For those folks who are not familiar with your band, could you tell us a little a bit about the history of the band?  Where you’re from, when Sons Of Tonatiuh first formed? Current band members etc?

The idea for Sons came about back in 2006. I had been trying to find a drummer and bass for a couple of years off and on in the meantime promoting other shows that I liked here in Atlanta. In 2008 I came across a drummer through a mutual friend that had a guitar rig (which turns out was the same rig my old guitar player had from Leechmilk days) that I ended up buying from him. I found Mike, bassman, on line by chance. He was essentially the 1st bass player I tried out. Lucky me. After a year and a half with Jake, our first drummer, we hired on Tim Genius. He brought a whole new dynamic and so it took off from there. That was 2010 right before we recorded our first album. 7 tours later… here we are.

What is the metal scene like in your home town? 

It’s decent. It has been developing since the early 00’s.

Are you fans of metal?  If so who are you listening to at the moment?

Yes, I grew up a metal head. Mike grew up listening to crust punk and Tim grew up in the DC area listening and seeing a lot of Fugazi and other DC hardcore bands. At the moment though we probably all have big contrast in music tastes as compared to our youthful experiences. Even-though we’re in a doom/sludge band you’d be surprised to what we listen to. I like a lot of old bluesy, flamenco and Dixieland type stuff these days. Once in a while I’ll crack open a Neurosis album but for the most part I’m listening to more chill stuff. I’ve also been collecting a lot of classic rock stuff on vinyl. Mike and Tim are pretty much in the same boat with Tim more into really underground stuff that I don’t even know about. Which doesn’t say much. I find out about new music every day.

What made you start the band?

Probably my desire to stay involved with playing music. I’ve been playing music since my teens so it’s almost a habit I can’t seem to break.

Is SOT a full time project? 


Where did the name SOT come from?  What was the inspiration behind it?  In Aztec Mythology Tonatiuh was the sun god, is that right?

Tonatiuh is the name of one of the many Aztec gods. Specifically it is a sun god that they used to worship and make sacrifices to. I’ve always been fond of ancient religions, so when I came across this godhead, it pretty much sold me on the idea of a band name.

Your artwork is amazing on Parade of Sorrow, were you involved in the creation of it?  What does it represent?

We threw around many ideas for the album cover and went through 2 different artists before settling on someone that could make it really happen. We gave Chris Parry, the artist, some direction in the idea for the album cover but he really went with his own intuition and made it his. It’s basically a reflection on the despair that we have as a human race when all is lost.

When you started SOT what were your hopes and aspirations for the band?


For the uninitiated, how would you describe the sound of SOT? Has it evolved?

We’re trying to evolve as a band and steer away from our doom/crust/sludge sound to elaborate more on a song structure that is unique in our own way. Not sure how to describe this since you haven’t heard the material we are currently writing but it’s a leap in a new direction entirely.

What do think of labels such a doom and or sludge/doom metal in reference to your sound?  Is it a help or a hindrance?  Do you agree with it?

Not sure. Labels are necessary as means of communication to others. You can’t just call it music without explaining what kind of music is involved. I think we have elements of doom, sludge, crust, punk, metal, dirge, grunge, among others so its probably easiest to just call us a doom/sludge band for what its worth. Or maybe just say we’re Black Sabbath Jr. Haha…

Are you full time musicians?

Nope, we all have day jobs.

What are your views of blogs such as the Sludgelord reviewing your records, as opposed to mainstream music magazine?  Is there a difference?

There aren’t too many mainstream mags left that cover this kind of music, so it’s pretty much a necessity for metal blogs to cover music since the majority of people get their info from the internet.

What's it like being in an underground metal band? Is it a struggle?

You have no idea. Struggling is an understatement.

Who are your influences musically and artistically? Do these influences affect the way you write for SOT?

Musically I would have to say Neurosis, Eyehategod, Floor, Melvins, Ohlm, Electric Wizard, Johnny Cash, Sonic Youth, Coffins, etc…And yes, they influence my ideas about music but I would never write music based solely on any one artist’s perspective.


Does it surprise you that people buy your music and merch?

Very much so! Haha…

Why should fans part with their money and buy your record?  Do you feel Parade of Sorrow has been well received?

Nobody should buy our album based on what I say. If they like what they hear then it’s up to them to decide. I’m not a business man by any means. Nor do I preach to people about what they should or shouldn’t do. However, I’d probably make more money if I did!

What are your views of people who download music for free? Is it a help or a hindrance to your band?  Are you in favour of the digital era or do you prefer CDS or vinyl? 

I’m a big fan of vinyl, hence why we released our first 2 albums via vinyl. This is the first band I’ve ever been in where I’ve had vinyl done of music I’ve recorded. Downloading music is what people do regardless of it being free or not. I’ve downloaded music for free myself but I’m not in favour of people downloading/pirating independent music as much since most of these bands/musicians are struggling to survive.

During your short career so far with SOT, what are some of your highlights so far? What are your aspirations for the future? How do you measure success?

Highlight would be opening for EHG, playing a few festivals, releasing 2 albums without breaking up! We hope to travel more next year as in go to Europe, Japan, Australia, Canada, etc…Success is measured by the length of the reefer in your mouth. Really, I have no idea. Success to me is just surviving and being able quit my day job some day.

Do you have any interesting stories from your tours?  Who have been your favourite bands to tour with? Favourite place to tour?

For stories you should go to our Tumblr page ( to read all our tour diaries. There are too many stories for me to tell here.  Our favourite bands to tour with so far would have to be Accept Death, Fistula, Black Pussy, and Man Will Destroy Himself among others.
Favourite places: New Orleans, Chicago, Miami, Austin, Asheville, Richmond, Memphis…

How does the process of writing work within the band?  Does everyone contribute ideas etc?

Yes, everyone contributes. Whether they like it or not! In the beginning we fight and bicker about every riff and drum fill, but in the end we’re closer to where we want to be musically.

Any chance you're doing UK dates this year?  What are you plans for the remainder of

No Europe this year. Working on a West coast tour for October. Possibly Europe next year. You got a hook up for us??


A big big thank you for taking the time to answer my questions, one final question, have you got anything you like to say to your fans?

Thank you to everyone who comes out to our shows and buys our music! We’re happy someone likes what we do. And thank you for the opportunity to do this interview.


I must say a massive thank you again to Dan for talking the time to answer my questions and thanks to you guys for reading.  There will be more 20 questions next week. 

Hydro-Phonic Records