TITANS EVE is an up and coming thrash metal band from Canada. We have been following the band’s exploits lately, like when we streamed their new song last week. They dropped their new album Life Apocalpyse, and are busy playing some big warm up shows and gearing up for their summer tour with thrash/rock godfathers ANVIL and another with KILL DEVIL HILL. Vocalist/guitarist Brian Gamblin has shared some of his thoughts in this exclusive diary for Metal Army America about opening up for KORN in their hometown of Vancouver, B. C.
TITANS EVE played a big hometown show opening for KORN. Photo by Rock 97.7fm Grande Prairie, AB
Getting to the Encana centre arena in Dawson Creek B.C and seeing 3 large tour busses parked outside of the big bay load in doors was quite the site as we pulled up to our first Arena Gig. There was a wave of excitement that hit us all as we pulled into our loading bay because in just a few hours we would be sharing the stage with the band KORN!Once we had parked the Van a group of staff members began helping us load our gear to sound check (holy shit this must be heaven) where we could hear KORN going through some of their new tracks!!! After getting shown to our room where beer and water was supplied (killer) we warmed up for the gig. Then before you knew it the lights went out the crowd roared and we played our new tunes from our up coming album Life Apocalypse to a very supportive crowd. After KORN’s amazing set the band wished us well and we headed back to B.C to prepare for the ANVIL tour!
Brian Gamblin of TITANS EVE. Photo by Rock 97.7fm Grande Prairie, AB
TITANS EVE opens for KORN. Photo by Rock 97.7fm Grande Prairie, AB
Top 5 albums most likely to give you cancer of the mind
There are countless heavy and extreme bands flooding the extreme metal scene at present, but relatively few that actually pose a threat to your health. This review compiles a list of seriously hazardous, antihuman and antihuman albums.
1. PORTAL: Outre
This album is a true scourge on the human race. The sound could be described as “universally ominous”, as it is sickening to most life forms regardless of age, race or position in the food chain. Its spiralling and chaotic structure induces the mind into a state of degenerative confusion that shifts from paranoid schizophrenia through to a catatonic trance. It’s like having a nightmare inside of a nightmare, in which you suddenly swallow your own throat and gaze in horror as you watch a staircase literally fall down the stairs.
2. IMPETUOUS RITUAL: Relentless execution of ceremonial excrescence
Next up is this wretched filth of a record which is the musical equivalent of a thousand hunchbacked men in chains digging a hole for half a century until they hit the magma core and drown in lava. Its cancer inducing properties include the systematic depletion of all hope.
3. DIOCLETIAN: Doom cult
This is distilled, fermented and putrefied loathing in sonic form. The first time I heard this album I was overcome by a pounding pain in my chest. That was because I had been inadvertently thumping my ribcage with my own fists and furiously gnawing my teeth like an orangutan on amphetamines. Neanderthals have discovered the amplifier.
4. BLACK WITCHERY: Inferno of sacred destruction
The barbaric savagery of this album is designed to bring out the worst in every person. Listening to this means invoking the inner bastard that dwells inside, no matter how righteous you think you might be. If listening to this repeatedly doesn’t eventually lead to the implosion of your mind, it will surely result in murder.
5. DEAD CONGREGATION: Graves of the archangels
This band is immensely poisonous for your soul. Every single time you play this album the Virgin Mary gets gang raped by coyotes with rabies and aids. Meanwhile, Jesus gets abducted by winged apes, gets knocked the fuck out, gets placed in the recovery position on top of a railroad track, gets severed in two by a train on fire, resurrects after the third day and it starts all over again as soon as you listen to dead congregation.
Doctors at the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Florida, may have discovered the cause behind Morbid Angel’s widely-panned new album, Illud Divinum Insanus. In a public statement released by the band’s management, frontman David Vincent has been recently been diagnosed with a fast-growing brain tumor.
Founding guitarist Trey Azagthoth elaborated, stating, “When we went into the studio, David was all about making songs like ‘Radikult’ and ‘Destructos vs The Earth’, and I didn’t know what to think. He has always been an unconventional thinker, but he had a lot of pretty strange ideas this time out. I guess this also explains that weird tremor in his left hand.
According to the report of Dr. Harvey Weiz, Vincent’s attending neurologist, the brain tumor is a glioblastoma multiforme, which can be present for an extended period before suddenly accelerating in growth. Dr. Weiz estimates that the tumor probably manifested around 2009, which is when principle planning of the band’s new album began.
“Subjects with this kind of affliction may act erratically,” explained Weiz, “and changes in personality and ability to reason are unfortunately uncommon. Some people will become irritable or estranged from loved ones, while others may act maniacal and animal. It’s a devastating and serious condition.”
Many people around Vincent agreed there were warning signs. “He was making these really far-fetched attempts to justify the new material,” said former Morbid Angel drum tech Rick Barry, “I read a lot of his recent interviews, and I assumed he was just really desperate. I feel bad that it turned out this way, but it makes sense. The guy trying to insist that Illud… was on par with Blessed are the Sick isn’t the David Vincent I know.”
While his condition is regarded as grave, Vincent has insisted on finishing a spate of summer festival appearances with the band. Fans have reported unusual behavior from the singer/bassist, including meandering and pointless speeches between songs, and an inexplicable insistence to add bad goth singing over Morbid Angel’s classic material.
“We are encouraging David to seek treatment as soon as possible,” stated band manager Gunther Ford, “this illness has already caused notable damage to his health, along with the credibility of Morbid Angel. We want him to get well and hopefully create something that will help undo this fiasco of an album.”
Mr. Vincent could not be reached at press time, and friends close the band state that he is currently occupied with living hardcore and radical, in addition to having regular seizures.
Deicide drummer Steve Asheim made a startling announcement today that he has dismissed infamous founding frontman Glen Benton from the group.
“It was time,” stated Asheim, “Glen is simply past his shelf life, but Deicide still has more to say. We needed a change.”
Even more surprising is the accompanying revelation that Benton already has a replacement – an old couch that Asheim found discarded in front of a residence in his hometown of Tampa, Florida.
“I was out running errands the other day, and I noticed that a house down my street had just tossed out their old couch,” he explained. “I took one look at it and realized that it was the new face of Deicide.”
After loading the threadbare and stain-covered piece of furniture into the back of his pickup, Asheim wasted no time in informing Benton of his dismissal. It is expected that longtime fans of the notorious death metal group may not readily accept such a crucial change in the band’s lineup, but the drummer remains optimistic, stating, “Glen was really essential in getting Deicide to where it is today, but now we need someone out front who is stable, reliable, and excited to be there. Sure, the couch is all beat up, smelly, and covered in cigarette burns, but so is Glen.”
The couch, which started out as part of Ethan Allen’s 1993 Fall Collection, was purchased for the den of a family household, and it went on to unofficially serve as a bed for an ailing golden retriever before its appearance on the curb. While Deicide will be the upholstered interior accessory’s first band, many insiders have high hopes for the change in personnel.
“That couch is fucking awesome,” stated Earache A&R representative Dave Wilson, “I’ve seen it in rehearsals, and it totally fills Glen Benton’s shoes with no problem. I didn’t sit on it because it’s infested with bedbugs, but I think it will be the new blood that Deicide has needed for a long time.”
Asheim agreed, saying, “People were pretty upset when the Hoffmans left the band, but we proved that Deicide could succeed without them. Having the couch in the lineup will allow us to further those goals without all the last-minute show cancellations and wild mood swings. I can’t wait!”
The couch’s first appearance with the band will be on the upcoming album, “God, I Hate You”, with North American and European tour dates to follow.
There has been a fair amount of press on the whole “Big 4” showcase, even though the bands in question have been pretty stingy about making the package available to most of their American fans. Perhaps the most undersold moment was at the Indio, California, performance when Slayer’s Jeff Hanneman came out on stage with his hollowed-out right arm to play an encore with his bandmates. Necrotizing fasciitis is some serious shit, and the fact that he was able to perform at all says everything about his (and, by extension, Slayer’s) true greatness.
All things considered, Terrorizer Magazine’s recent “Choose the new Big 4” poll couldn’t have been more inappropriate. The whole premise of new bands effectively replacing the biggest names in the genre is ludicrous in any case. We’re talking about bands who changed the world (well, at least in the case of Metallica and Slayer), and who were inarguably popular and successful.
There will never be another thrash band that sells a million copies of anything, ever. The industry keeps trying to do this pathetic Pet Sematary thing with the propped-up retro-thrash gimmick, but it isn’t working. Like the man said, sometimes dead is better! More significantly, the bands mentioned don’t even properly represent a post-download era movement. Who are they?? I see a couple of bands I recognize, including my Texan compatriots in Pasadena Napalm Division (they’re good, check them out), but with a few exceptions this list is full of nobodies that will make zero impact on metal, period.
The Brits love to act like their nation’s current output is just as good as the NWOBHM stuff, but the only ones they’re fooling are themselves. Evile is not going to become a dynasty, no matter how bad those gob hacks over at Terrorizer want it to be true. Keep in mind that this is the same publication that repeatedly put the execrable Akercocke on their cover, even though they were virtually anti-popular outside of London. Pretty much the last British band that made any waves was Cradle of Filth, and since then it has been nothing but blue Mondays for that sad little island. Napalm Death hasn’t helped things with their insistence on recording new albums.
So, back to this stupid list; some of you might be reading this and thinking, “Hey, fuck you! Juggern0rt is my favorite band! They’re gonna rule the world!” If that’s you, then you’re beyond help. Enjoy your deluded life. As for the rest of you, I’ll employ the litmus test by which all metal should be judged - if aliens landed on earth and ordered you to recommend relevant new thrash bands, would you give them this list? Think it over. The fate of mankind could depend on it!
More to the point, this list reveals the conceit of retro-thrash; the motivations are largely about living in the past and riding the coattails of bands that were actually memorable and meaningful. There’s far too much focus on retread and imitation, and no concern for creating something viable for the new generation of fans. As it stands, to claim that any current band can stand with the Big 4 is as reasonable as Civil War recreationists trying to take credit for winning back the South.
The bottom line is that bands like Slayer are huge for a reason and they simply will not be replaced, especially if modern thrash continues to serve as some kind of RenFaire for denim enthusiasts. And on a personal note, I am not in the least bit annoyed that Birth A.D. was not mentioned. I’ve never been so proud to be excluded.
When I’m out on tour, I like to eat ice cream with stuff in it. Smooth ice cream is for 3 year olds who still risk choking if they try to swallow a Macadamia nut. Despite all the cutesy packaging, Ben and Jerry’s is still the best store-bought ice cream ever. I can eat just about any flavor they make, though right now Late Night Snack is my first choice. The caramel mixed with the salty chocolate-covered potato chip bits tastes even better than you’d guess. It’s so irresistible that I always eat the pint in one sitting.
I’m not much of a drinker, so it’s nice to have new kinds of ice cream to try out when traveling through different parts of the country. Sometimes I’ll get locked into the “Moose Tracks” flavor variations for a while when I’m going through the Midwest. The chocolate, nuts, and peanut butter combination never dissapoint. Blue Bunny does a pretty decent version called “Bunny Tracks”, but it’s basically the same. All of that goes out the window if I find a Ben and Jerry’s flavor that isn’t common in Texas, though. “Chubby Hubby” doesn’t just grow on trees.
Sometimes it’s easier to grab something portable, especially if it’s the end of the night and you don’t want to bother with a spoon. Nutty Buddy and King Cone are common, cheap, and tasty, even if they are a bit over-processed. The best part is the bottom of the cone where all the chocolate filling collects. There’s nothing like one last big bite of crunchy chocolate to close things out.
Occasionally, we’ll come across an ice cream store like Baskin Robbins or Marble Slab, which is a welcome change of pace. Fresh strawberries in Belgian chocolate ice cream is a surefire winner, and BR’s mint chocolate chip is quintessential. Avoid Cold Stone Creamery, though; their ice cream is garbage and they cover it up by adding a shitload of sweetener. I tried it when I was out with Immolation in New York, and I nearly threw up in Times Square because of it.
If you’re in the South, don’t miss an opportunity to stop at Dairy Queen. They invented the Blizzard, which is of course soft serve with ground up cookies or candy bars in it. The Oreo Blizzard is their flagship item for a reason, so give it a shot. If you’re not looking to pound 800 calories, try a chocolate dipped cone instead. Braum’s ice cream stores in the North Texas/Oklahoma corridor are pretty excellent as well. They get their milk from local dairies, so the everything is fresh and savory. Their brownie ice cream is outstanding, and their burgers are pretty good, too.
Sometimes in a pinch I’ll go for a plain vanilla soft serve at McDonald’s. It’s kind of hard to mess up. Their hot fudge sundaes are ok but pretty remedial. They have no idea how to make a milkshake, so don’t waste your money on that.
Oh yeah, and Morbid Angel’s Illud Divinum Insanus is fucking awful. What a piece of shit. You probably knew about that already from all the other reviews that tore it apart, so don’t even bother with it.
We’re about to commence recording Terminal Aggressor II. Terminal Aggressor was a tape release from 2008 when life seemed to make a lot more sense to all of us. We pressed only 100 copies of Terminal Aggressor, but if you managed to get a copy, it’s a vicious release and you’re guaranteed to trip out forever.
Terminal Aggressor was a collaborative effort with our friend Kas Mana and you should take the opportunity to check out his latest experiment, “Mantisce”. Death to false noise. We’re also aiming to record a live noise set for a split release with Gnaw Their Tongues from Holland. We’re not really too fucked about a label just yet, the primary aim is to create a noise so sonic that skulls will implode. On that note, this month’s list is all things AMSTERDAMN and it is with great pleasure that Dragged Into Sunlight endorse the black stuff, the green stuff and anything in between, pot is officially man’s best friend. Church of Misery and certain Wino riffs are a close second.
1) Zong Bong – the reason this takes first place is because, well i’ve never owned one, that seems like a ludicrous reason but it seems that whilst i’ve been dreaming in dog years, Zong have reached a martyr-like place in my mind, reserved only for the likes of Mayhem’s Deathcrush vinyl press on Posercorpse. It just looks cool as fuck. The 2004 Original Zong Bong has elegant curves, green tint 5mm glass, solid slider and downstem for a clean hit. Perhaps it seems cooler than it actually is and if that is in fact the case, i’m all ears. But realistically there are only two negatives I see with owning such an item - if you drop it, you’re fucked and cleaning the pipe would be a mission. But I put it to you that the types of people who drop their bong or clean their bong shouldn’t be smoking pot. Zong come with the added bonus that they don’t smash easily, unlike ROOR, who come to the market with an extortionately priced milk bottle.
2) Amber 420 Jar – the first heavy wearing stash jar. Available in three different sizes Extra Small, Small and Medium. Now you’re probably thinking, who needs a glass stash jar when you can use a trusty Braveheart VHS case or several thousand baggies. It may seem like another unnecessary piece to the puzzle but this thing comes in handy. It’s smell proof and when handled with relative care, the thing doesn’t smash. Having owned a variety of other stash jars, i.e. Roor, I am the first to vilify the unnecessary purchase of glassware. Glass is easily broken and when it smashes, it is never a good thing. One of two things normally happens – you end up cleaning minute pieces of glass from every corner of your room or you end up wounded. But so far, my Amber 420 stash jar has proved to be the perfect companion. Strong, reliable and holding 7g, it packs a punch. Good for storing seeds too. The only disadvantage is if your jar goes empty, it becomes almost as insufferable as an Oxfam advert. On the otherhand, if your jar never goes empty, it becomes sort of a mixing pot, 7 grams of goodness. My recent mixing pot is dubbed Hendrix, noone has a fucking clue what’s going on but whatever it is, it’s life affirming.
3) Kavatza Rolling Pouch – I would say that this is more of a Summer accessory really. It’s for the mobile smoker on the move. It can basically be described as a glorified wallet for your pot with adequate space for storing papers, small grinder, tips, pot and tobacco. It’s old suede leather, so lasts literally forever and the more worn it becomes, the better it feels to touch when your high. I can’t really sell this as essential, you can definitely live without one, but it beats putting all your shit in different pockets so that rolling your next joint becomes rocket science, everything in a different place, then you put one thing down and end up losing your skins. It’s probably about as necessary as roach tips. Ok, so it’s fine to tear up a train ticket or desecrate your Rizla packet and there’s no social stigma attached, but my point is that Jeff Hanneman did not write Haunting the Chapel using a Stagg amp. A professional delivery is everything and if you want to cut corners, that’s cool, but you’re only cheating yourself. It comes with a pokie and a rolling perch, and it folds easily. It just seems much more sensical than your Original Rolling Tray brand which really isn’t so original at all. It’s just a fucking box with shit hinges.
4) Cheeky One Grinder – I’ve owned countless grinders in my life, but this is by far the best. We’re on our four year anniversary. It never loses its shine, it’s completely silent and totally efficient. Cheeky one specialise in grinding small amounts but really, when you think about it, do you really need to grind enough herb to last you in case of a nuclear fallout. Not really. You need enough to last you for a day or two and Cheeky One offer a pocket size light weight solution to the problem without sacrificing chambers. Not to mention the dust tray is quite discrete and as it’s only small, it’s relatively easy to fill yet carries the same overwhelming sense of reward. It’s got a decent capacity but if you get arrested in a foreign country, you know that you’re still going to see Christmas. I would sell this as a tour friendly grinder. It’s definitely not party friendly, but that isn’t so much of a concern if
you have a general distaste for human kind.
5) Volcano Vapouriser – Vapouriser sounds like something out of star trek. This gadget is definitely from the future. It’s a low ranking, because really it isn’t totally essential, it’s over priced and it’s a bit confusing. But I assure you, Earth’s ’2′ will never sound the same again. Paying for one of these things is along the lines of funding surgery to look like Sly Stallone, your life will never be the same but at the same time, noone will ever fuck with you again. A lot of smokers are using vapourisers nowadays with the mindset that it’s the healthier option. I’m not saying quit tobacco, but if you have a spare £400, this will make your weekend and perhaps your life.
Press releases are kind of glib and overdone as a rule. The point of promotion is to make something sound as cool and important as possible in the interest of… well, driving interest. This idea becomes problematic when promoting an underground metal band, because it’s not easy to sell it as both hip and dangerous at the same time. It’s even worse when the band in question isn’t doing anything all that earth-shattering, as it requires a lot of padding that reveals the press release as an inflated make-work piece that only exists to repeatedly put the band’s name in bold type.
I’m sympathetic to the people who have to come up with reports on bands, regardless of the actual necessity, but it doesn’t bode well for the health of the underground when some of these announcements read like parodies of the real thing. One of these recently made it to my Examiner column’s inbox, and for the sake of preventing a lot of hurt feelings that don’t want to hear about, I have re-edited the content with brackets in an attempt to capture the nature of metal press releases in general. Keep in mind this was written from the perspective of a cynical veteran. Your mileage may vary.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
[BAND NAME] recently announced a series of shows [ because they haven't had their name thrown around on Blabbermouth recently], along with an upcoming new album that [has no release date in sight].
Upcoming shows for [BAND NAME] include performing a headlining gig at [a venue the size of a tool shed], with [several unknown support acts that you've never heard of]. Next they will will appear at [some small pseudo-metal festival you'd never attend], where they will share the stage with [many other bands of equally dubious distinction]. Following that, [BAND NAME] will appear at [a really horrible second-string metal festival that you'll ignore in favor of the Maryland Deathfest]. Then the band will head off to play [a respectable European metal festival, which is nice for them because they will get their name in print with a bunch of bands you know and actually like]. Earlier this year, [BAND NAME] was out in support of [a band that has been played-out for a decade and only has mall kids for fans].
The current lineup of [BAND NAME] consists of [a series of guys from bands we make you feel like you should have heard of, but haven't ], along with [the trendy ringer musician from bands you've heard of but would never listen to], and founding member [guy who is responsible for the endless revolving door band lineup]. According to him, “the new album will sound like [a bunch of popular stuff from the mid-90s that was co-opted by every metal band on earth to great detriment], but also with [something that sounds threatening and underground while being non-specific].” The band is also recruiting [an unnecessary additional member], whose identity will be announced [in the next superfluous press release].
Members of [BAND NAME] are also working with [underground band that was active 20 years ago, but were finally discovered by people 10 years ago, though this band only seems to have found about them last year] on a new collaborative effort that [sounds like it's going to be awful] and will be [instantly irrelevant]. Full details are forthcoming, and the release is expected to [show up on distro clearance sales within three months of release].
Expect more updates of [BAND NAME] activity in the coming weeks, and check out the band’s song [forgettable title], which was just made available on [laughably inappropriate mainstream media outlet].
[This was fucking hysterical to me and it reminded me of the video below. -Editor]
I have really come to hate the local bands who open for touring packages. I mentioned this in my last update, but that was just the tip of the iceberg. Like I said, there was a time (about 20 years ago) when it was exciting to see local metal bands. Texas was one of many American hotbeds for the upstarts who got to open for the big names, and a lot of those bands went on to become bigger themselves in the process. For fans, it was all part of the underground continuum, and we looked forward to seeing our local favorites stand tall with the touring bands. They represented our local scenes, and they added a regional flavor to what an already great lineup.
Things aren’t that way anymore, and they haven’t been for a long time. The reason I’m noticing it now is because it’s clear that this miserable trend isn’t going to change anytime soon. With very few exceptions, all the local opening acts on the Rotting Christ tour were horrible. They also came in three flavors – shitty death metal, shitty metalcore, and shitty black metal. Death metal is the oldest of the three styles, and shitty death metal bands have been around in droves since the beginning, so no real surprise there. The shitty metalcore was laughable, mainly because it’s a new style that has already flared out, and basically the only kids who still play it are hicks who loiter at malls. I was, however, surprised at the number of immensely shitty black metal bands that popped up on the bills. American kids are still trying to do that? Christ.
Anyway, the short version is that these bands were nothing but trouble and detracted from the shows without exception. Some readers of this blog are younger and more impressionable, and so here’s a few pointers for how to make your band something other than the bane of the headliner’s evening.
Show up early.
You’re going on first, fuckers, so make a point of getting there a minimum of an hour before doors open. Make sure your jerkoff keyboardist has the day off from work, that everyone’s car runs, and that your guitarist knows that the show is TODAY.
Be aware of your set time and honor it.
If you’re late to the gig or take to long to set up, that’s too goddamn bad. The clock doesn’t start ticking when you finally start playing, it starts based on the posted schedule. If you’re supposed to be on at 6:30 – 7:00, and you start at 6:45, then enjoy a 15 minute set. Also, make a point of preparing a set that matches your time slot! One way you can help yourself is to:
Play shorter songs.
Local black metal bands in particular really love songs that contain a hero sandwich’s worth of riffs and at least three false endings. If you’re trying to give potential fans a proper sampling of your work, how does being long-winded benefit you. It’s true that some bands have long songs in general, so just learn to write ones that are actually good and it will all come out in the wash.
Put your paint on after you load in.
It’s hard to refrain from picking on the horrible black metal bands (I admit to having a personal stake in it), but there’s so much grist for the mill. So you took my advice and showed up early… in full corpse paint. Why? There’s nothing you have going on with your look that you couldn’t attempt after you loaded your gear on stage. Most of you guys are doing the standard “panda bear” move anyway. Are you trying to prove a point? Do you feel like it’s not black metal to show up in your street clothes? It’s actually the other way around, kiddos. The only time you should be wearing paint and spikes in on stage. And don’t leave it on for the rest of the night while you watch the headlining bands, either! Find some self-respect.
Forget about Cradle of Filth.
If you’re in a US black metal band that has been around for less than a decade, chances are that Cradle of Filth is a prominent part of your musical lexicon. Considering the band effectively peaked in 1998, I don’t know why this happens. The inevitable result is that your band is not only influenced by CoF, a band long regarded as non grata in the black metal community, but you’re influenced by their unbearable post-millennium output. That’s some pretty heavy double jeopardy, and your band is all but dead in the water if Dani Filth is still your hero. Get heavy into Slayer instead; you won’t be better liked, but you might be less hated.
Don’t have a problematic gimmick.
If you want to wear masks or corpse paint or faux fur (yep, seen it) on stage, go right ahead if it doesn’t mess with your set time. If it involves projectiles, liquids, explosions, or anything else that might break stage gear or shut the show down outright, then forget it. You’re not Watain, and you won’t get to be anything like them if you sabotage an entire concert with your moronic shenanigans. Some douchelord openers in Rochester had a dead octopus as a prop, and nobody dug it. Apparently, they’re now banned from that venue. Come to think of it, maybe all opening bands should do retarded shit at shows and get banned as a result – it would solve a lot of problems!
…with anyone, about anything! Shut the fuck up! You are the local band, and you don’t have a say, period! The touring package that comes on after you just got done sucking the air out of the room is into this endeavor for hundreds of thousands of dollars. That probably never occurred to you. Do you have any idea what it costs to fund a tour bus? Trust me, nobody besides your skank of a girlfriend gives a flying fuck about whether or not you feel like you’ve been treated fairly. Take your $30 payout and go bitch about it at the Denny’s across the street.
Get your shit out of the way.
Once you’ve blundered through your time slot, the real bands will be ready to play, so get your shit off the stage. Don’t try to take the cymbals off the stands one by one – yank them off to the side and put them away later. Get everyone in your band handing stuff off like a bucket line from an old-timey fire brigade. We don’t care how your gear leaves the stage, as long as it’s this instant!
There are plenty more pointers where these came from (in point of fact, similar lists are floating around, but whatever), but these were the things I saw and dealt with every night with Rotting Christ and Melechesh. It was sometimes embarrassing to try to explain to two European act what was wrong with all our regional bands. After a fashion, I simply couldn’t. If you’re in a local band and don’t do any of the things above, then congratulations and see you on the tour circuit. If not, you’re probably not aware of it, so re-read this list until it sinks in. Either way, get the fuck off the stage!
After a rough night at the office on Saturday, I gathered what little energy I had left and headed over to my afterparty. I wasn’t in the mood after getting my ass kicked for fifteen minutes, a little earlier on. Not wanting to disappoint anyone (or upset the people that worked so hard organizing it!), I got to the club Just before midnight.
El Corazon in Seattle, Washington… awesome venue. We had three bands booked for the show, playing a mix of their own songs and some of my favourites. Cascabel, Hollowpoints and John Pettibone’s mighty Heiress. Three storming performances got me excited about how many ass-kicking bands there are out there, that I haven’t yet had the pleasure of grinding my teeth to.
Heading back to LA on a late night flight the day after, I got my trusty iPod out, freshly updated with a few new albums. In the added selection I had three albums by three local Nottingham bands, that had all sent me their new work in the past few months. I took the opportunity to dedicate my entire attention to my listeneing skills and see what my city is contributing to angry music.
Starting from ‘Z’ and scrolling up through my library, I first hit Widows and pressed play. The first track on their album, ‘Raise the Monolith’, is ‘The Kiss of Failure’. A galloping onslaught of smooth, bass-heavy riffs and rough-throated vocals. The only way I can describe them is if you took Pantera, Black Label Society and Clutch, crammed them into a hotrod and drove at top speed until the wheels fell off or it burst into flames. Angry, intense and hell-bent on making your ears bleed.
Continuing up, I found My War, sitting comfortably between Municipal Waste and Nailbomb. They came together from other groups (Varukers, EyeHateGod and Iron Monkey) and formed a strong line of grindcore enthusiasts, to put out their debut album, ‘Wounds’. Every song on the record contributes equally to a truly awesome piece of work. Technical and smartly crafted, at the same time as being ferocious and powerful.
Getting towards the upper echelons of the alphabet, I got to F.U.K. Their album was sent to me at the start of training camp, and never left the CD player in my car for the whole ten week stint. It was my adrenaline shot right before a tough session, and is to me, what British punk is all about. Listing ‘cider’ and ‘peoples misery’ as their influences, its no suprise that the record turned out as it did.
Pissed-off and politically aware, they hammer through twelve tracks, letting you know exactly what they think of the world. Think Crass or Conflict for the 21st century, it should be played to every tourist coming to the UK on holiday. After doing all of the sugar-coated shit in London, this will help balance your perspective on British society.
To anyone in bands out there, or anyone with the desire to create something, please go ahead and do it. Its important to keep music alive, and the alternative music scene does it better than any other. Thanks for reading and if you get a chance, check out any of the bands I mentioned that you haven’t heard of before. Show some support, buy a CD and a shirt and represent.