Ancient ANTHRAX guitarist Dan Spitzwho became an award-winning world-renowned watchmaker after leaving the group for the first time, shared a “taste of the new ‘ZeRo Bridge’ caliber in in-house design and manufacture” for the upcoming Tidemann & Spitz timepiece. He says: “We are the very first independent luxury watch brand in the United States (USA and Norway) to be led by Total Metal Heads and to meet the specifics of musical artists, by musical artists. We invite all to enter this new chapter of what has never been before and cannot be duplicated by anyone in the future.”
Last March, Loulou shared a short video detailing his watchmaking technique. In a message accompanying the instagram video output, Loulou wrote: “Using a ~~~100 year old screw grinding and polishing machine and technique, I handcraft each screw from raw stock for the j11.13 caliber. After turning to size on the Schaublin lathe and used a miniature roller die for threading, switching to a smaller lathe for exact sizing and angular areas, on the F1 milling machine for screw slotting, in the dirty room for the flame heat treatment, then annealing, to bring to the appropriate elasticity and hardness properties, cleaned of cooling burnt oil debris after heat treatment, each screw goes into this finishing technique ~~~ The machine has different weighted discs to grind the heads to parallelism and if done correctly can get a black polish (as seen).~~~~ Many weeks of work for each of my unique pieces goes into the many different sized screws , all by hand. #iworkalone #mybossisthewatch”.
In 1995, Loulou left ANTHRAX pursue a career in Swiss luxury watchmaking, attending the Swiss watchmaking school WOSTEP on a full scholarship. He was certified as a specialist in mechanical complications, obtained Swiss degrees in micromechanical engineering and opened his own luxury watch department. In 2012 Loulou was elected number 1 interview of the year for the watch magazine Hodinkee. In 2016, the production company Big big story produced a documentary on Loulouis a watchmaker’s job.
Loulouwho currently resides in Gun Barrel City, Texas, about an hour’s drive southeast of Dallas, said recently The New York Times that his carpal tunnel syndrome prevents him from playing the guitar for long periods of time. However, that hasn’t stopped him from designing and manufacturing around three custom wristwatches a year, with prices starting at $128,000.
“When you want to be one of the best guitarists on the planet, you lock yourself in your room for years and play and play and play – you have to understand.” Loulou said. “It’s the same in watchmaking.”
Five years ago, Louloua born-again Christian and messianic Jew who frequently cites his faith as an influential part of his life, the “Talking Bullshit” podcast about his decision to leave ANTHRAX for the second time after participating in the group’s classic line-up reunion in 2005 and 2006: “We were all in that moment. We did, like, two, three years [of touring]and we wanted to make new music [with the classic lineup]. And it was difficult. At the very end, we decided to stop touring, and it was hard to get Joey to commit [to making a new album]. Me and Charly [Benante, ANTHRAX drummer] came and went to talk to Joey, and I called Charly then and say, ‘Did you get an answer? Did you get a “yes”? And he was like, ‘Did you get a ‘yes’?’ And I’m like, ‘I don’t know what I have. I just spoke for an hour. We couldn’t get Joey engage for a very long time, and they couldn’t stand still for very long. Obviously, it’s a business; you can’t just do nothing — you have to know: do we continue or don’t we? So I was making another album like the real one ANTHRAX. And we just [could not come to an agreement with] Joey. And you saw what happened next. So I decided to go back and relax. They kept going, and whatever they did, they did.”
Last year, Loulou spoken to YouTube Channel Beyond Time of the passion and dedication he puts into everything he does, whether it’s playing music or making watches.
“Now you see what is called slamdancing everywhere,” Dan said. “You see it at a Britney Spears concert. It’s quite disgusting. If you know what it is, you know it’s from the punk era – it was dancing for the punk era. But eventually we brought that into heavy metal; he made his way in there. And you saw people at the beginning of the “Big Four”, which is METALLIC, MEGADETH, KILLER and ANTHRAX, you saw the crowd trying to get on stage. And it wasn’t, ‘She’s the pop star. We want to touch it. He is so cute.’ It’s the contrary. We’re like those filthy metal guys. So why would you want to be on stage? It’s because we’re all one big family. It’s almost like THE GRATEFUL DEAD – it’s the same kind of thing. They’re not fans of what I do; they are in the group. Each person is in the group. It’s as if they were there, [and] they’re almost writing the songs, if you follow what i’m saying. It’s that kind of human connection and love. And giving love is the most important thing. God gives us… and fills us with love. What we’re supposed to do is transcend that love into the next person. And that’s what I try to do with everything I do. So even though it’s an intangible piece of metal that’s strapped to your wrist, we don’t need to read the time on our wrist anymore, do we? It is truly a tangible piece of my love reaching you. So that better represents every fiber that God has made of me.”
Photo courtesy of Dan Spitzit is instagram page