Press "Enter" to skip to content

We Sat Down With a Straight Edge Doom Metal Fan to Figure Out His Deal

Most doom metal fans love weed so when we saw a guy with X’s tattooed on his hands drinking Shirley Temples at the bar before an Electric Wizard show, we had to sit down with him and figure out his deal.

Lucky for us, 25-year-old straight edge doom metal fan Dave Shepherd was eager to chat about how he manages to listen to “Dopethrone” and “Dopesmoker” without smoking dope.

The Hard Times: Hey man, cool tats. Are you straight edge by any chance?
Dave Shepherd: You know it! I’m probably the only straight edge person here but I don’t give a shit. Someone’s gotta be the designated driver and I’m the only one who isn’t fucked up tonight.

Oh, so you’re not that into the band then?
No way, I’ve been waiting ages to see Electric Wizard! I’ll admit that I didn’t know all the words to “Funeralopolis” the first time I saw them, but their performance was an experience unlike any other. I felt like I was floating on a cloud of darkness above an evil castle. God, their set ruled.

That sounds really trippy. Are you sure you’re straight edge?
Sure as hell! I’m actually allergic to weed so my eyes got all red half an hour into the show. I ended up going to the back of the crowd to get away from the smell. Normally I try to get as close to the barricade as possible but I have to be careful not to break edge at doom shows.

So going to doom shows isn’t an edge break, but being too close to the front is?
Most straight edge elders say you can see as many shows as you want as long as you never inhale. Using protection also helps. I wore a gas mask to Sleep’s 4/20 show last year and had a great time. I actually got that idea from the straight edge guys on the “Dopesmoker” album cover.

The straight edge guys?
They wear cloaks to keep their X tattoos out of the sun and gas masks to prevent themselves from inhaling smoke in the riff-filled land. If that’s not edge, I don’t know what is.