Godhead is back with new grooves
By Naughty Mickie
The metal melange Godhead offers up a little bit of the
unexpected on their new effort, "At the Edge of the World" (Driven
Music Group), which perhaps shouldn't be so surprising, as they've
had a steady foothold in the scene for years. In 2001, the band
signed with Marilyn Manson's Posthuman Records label and released
"2000 Years of Human Error." The album garnered them a spot on the
second stage at Ozzfest that year and since they have toured with
Marilyn Manson, Disturbed, Rammstein, Mudvayne, Orgy, Static-X,
Ra, Ill Nino, The Dreaming, Soil, American Head Charge and more,
as well as plenty of headlining on their own. Godhead's song,
"Penetrate," was featured in the film soundtrack of "Queen of the
Damned" and they have a smattering of tracks in other places.
Godhead's current lineup includes vocalist and guitarist Jason
C. Miller, guitarist Mike Miller, bassist and programmer Ulrich
"Method" Hepperlin and drummer Ty Smith. Miller, who has a
schedule busier than mine, found some time early one morning to
talk with me over the telephone.
"It was a continuation of a band that I already had that I
formed in '92 when I was in college (Blind). The incarnation that
it is now, which is me and Mike and Uli, we've been working
together since '96. When Blind started when I was college, then we
started regional touring, then we started international touring
and we signed our first deal with a German record label. There was
already a band called Blind in Europe so we had to change our
name. Godhead was the original name I wanted to call the band. It
was like I never stopped, I just kept going," Miller laughs.
He began performing at age five.
"When I was really, really young I started singing along to
stuff and everyone seemed to remark that I could carry a tune so
my talent was encouraged upon." Miller explains, "I just started
singing in front of people and then in front of crowds since I was
five. I started doing community theater, so I acted as a kid as
well. I've been entertaining people my whole life."
He had classical vocal training as a teen and I remark that I
also sang opera and fronted a hard rock/heavy metal band.
"The skills that you learn in classical singing can definitely
apply to rock singing. It certainly helped me keep my voice when
I'm on the road, so that's a plus, knowing techniques to keep your
voice healthy," notes Miller.
"I went to George Mason University in Virginia. I started out
majoring in music and then I thought to myself, 'Well, do I want
get into green music and end up being a bitter music teacher?' I
think there were a lot of them around at the time, there was
something that inspired me not to want to be a bitter music
teacher," chuckles Miller. "Instead I switched my major to history
and continued on that way and the band."
"So have you used your history education?" I ask.
"Not in any sort of professional field, no," Miller admits.
"I bet you're really good at 'Jeopardy'," I quip.
"Yeah, I'm pretty good at 'Jeopardy.'" replies Miller with a
I ask him about "day jobs" and what he does for fun.
"I worked at a moving company and so did Uli at one point, so
did Mike at one point. That was really, umm, crappy," Miller
shares. "I train in Kung Fu, Hun Gar Kung Fu. I did some when I
was a kid, I did Tai Quan Do, but for the last four years I got
back into it."
Returning back to Godhead, I prod Miller to tell me about their
"We come to each other with stuff that we've started to work on
and then we'll put it together in the end," says Miller. "As a
team, we'll arrange the whole thing. But we don't really have one
set formula, which I think makes things interesting and keeps
things fresh. Sometimes I'll write the entire skeleton of a song
and present it to the band, sometimes Mike or Uli will have part
of a song or all of the song to present to each other so in that
sense we keep things fresh by not approaching a song the same way
"I do write all the lyrics. I feel like if you're going to be
singing them you should know what they're about and they should be
coming from the heart." Miller continues, "I'm inspired by a lot
of different things I see in life. What I tend to do is take real
negative points in my life, write about them and then it exorcises
the demons in me and brings out negativity in the songs and that
way I channel that energy."
I really like "At the Edge of the World" and ask him how it
compares to the rest of Godhead's catalog.
"We went back to our roots a little bit with adding some more
industrial sounds and sticking to some of the things that have
inspired us to make music," Miller tells me. "We have elements of
rock, we have elements of industrial, we have elements of goth, we
have elements of electronic. We have so many different elements of
our music involved that sometimes people can't really pigeonhole
us. We're not goth enough for the goth fans or we're not
industrial enough for the industrial fans I guess, but elements of
all of those styles of music are within our music."
Here, I confess that nothing about Godhead has come across my
desk in years.
"We've had the disadvantage of being on a new record label each
album and that can really hurt because you can't keep the same
publicist, you can't keep the same relationships and that's
certainly hurt us, but you can do anything else but continue to
move on and continue to make music," Miller responds.
Miller has appeared in several television shows and movies,
including Lewis Black's "Root of All Evil" on Comedy Central.
On Nov. 2, he will be on the Sci Fi Channel in the original
movie, "Battle Planet," which includes four Godhead songs in its
soundtrack and on Feb. 8, 2009, the Wonder Woman animated movie
will be released on DVD, which includes Miller voices several of
the character. He has also done voices for Nickelodeon's "Avitar"
and has recorded voices for more than 25 anime shows, as well as
contributed voices for the new expansion of World of Warcraft
video game, which comes out Nov. 13. Miller is the guildmaster of
Godhead Legion in the World of Warcraft and often plays against
his fans (
If that's not enough, Miller owns Central Command Studios (
www.centralcommandstudios.com ), a recording studio in
Hollywood. Godhead records there and Miller uses the space to do
English voiceovers for his Japanese animae projects.
Godhead is hoping to put out a full-length acoustic album next
"We put out an acoustic CD that we sold for a short time when
we were on tour with Jonathan Davis on his Unplugged tour, but we
recorded some more songs off of the new album actually and we plan
to combine all of those to make one big CD," Miller said.
They also plan on touring early next year, but SoCal fans can
catch Godhead 6 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 1 at Whisky-a-Go-Go, 8901
Sunset Blvd., Hollywood. Tickets are $15. For more information,
call (310) 652-4202 or visit
Keep up with Godhead at
Also visit my blogs at
http://mickieszoo.blogspot.com and www.insidesocal.com/doodah