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Blake Judd talks return, homelessness, opiods and ‘Resilient’

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Thursday, August 10, 2017 at 8:20 PM (PST)

 .The wrongs I committed to support my addiction…I paid for in mental scars that I can never wipe from my mind. All I can do is make sure, every day, that I never, ever make the decision to bring that awful garbage back into my life to ensure that I never have to see or experience anything like that ever again. And through being of service to people who are in the shoes I used to be in today, maybe I can use these awful experiences as a deterrent for others to stop before they go through the hell I experienced.

…I did not “kill” my girlfriend. I did not “use” with my girlfriend. And I certainly did EVERYTHING I could to save her when I found her….but it was just too late. – Blake Judd

We talk about mental health stuff briefly after a celebrity dies and the rest of the time try to ‘trigger’ one another with memes. No wonder some people choose to drop out of society any which way they can. Not that every conversation in life needs to be “are you ok?”, but generally it seems rites of separation are more commonplace than a gathering of those with allegiance to forging deeper opportunities in metal to make the extremity mean bonds, healing and conversation .  At live shows I usually see unity for the most part amongst metal crowds. Though cynicism might mainly be in the world of online trolls, it is good to address stuff head on rather than in the self churning bowels of the comments sections of metal sites and Facebook at times.

I just saw Katie Von Schleicher live in a small venue and was taken out of my daily stress and into a reflective moment, moved by the soulful music. Life is such a fast house of mirrors sometimes and we shine in some and stumble through others, cutting ourselves and fragmenting in the eyes of those around us. Sometimes the process is completely painful and other times it leads us to seeing ourselves differently or more completely as shards are swept up.

Blake Judd is back with a very unexpected EP called Resilient.  They have signed a new 2 album global deal with a new home that includes the Resilient EP as well. Full announcement in late August / early September, but the Resilient EP achieves Blake’s goal of creating an album experience in 3 songs. I have heard it and longtime fans will be thrilled with the variety. Early darker experimental black metal is paired with some of the deepest places you have heard different incarnations of the band go to yet, but as a logical extension of where things left off on the previous few releases.

More BELOW.

All photos courtesy of Nachtmystium.

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Casting Ships are a Kingston, NY based nautical folk punk band who grew up on hardcore and cut their teeth on a deep love for the scene. The band is now a duo made up of Rob Samps on vocals and guitar and Nikki Mayone on cello. They are about to drop one of the gems of the Summer with new release From The State Of New York on Burning Capital Collective. The five song EP was recorded Nada Studios by the great John Naclerio (My Chemical Romance, I Am The Pilot) and will likely turn the head of anyone unfamiliar with the group who hears it as well as please older fans.

I caught up with Samps and had a lengthy chat about the record, the country and a LOT more. Casting Ships are about to open for famed ex-Faith No More and Bad Brains vocalist Chuck Mosley and will have cds available at the show. They have a lot of other stuff on their plate as well.

We don’t really pander to people with short attention spans like a lot of sites these days. If a conversation is interesting but long, chances are we will go way above other sites word counts here. If that offends you, don’t be the daft twit who writes tl;dr on our Fbook page. If it wasn’t for you, go back to twiddling your thumbs liking 800 random Instagram photos and speaking in emojis as you post your 800th Snapchat dog ears/nose selfie.

For those of you who can handle a nuanced hour long conversation, by all means come aboard BELOW.

 

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Deep Cuts: CROWBAR

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Sunday, July 23, 2017 at 5:59 PM (PST)

Few bands reward die hard fans over and over again as well as the metallic sludge cavalcade that is Kirk Windstein’s long adventuring CROWBAR. One of the most potent to this very day veteran bands and one of the first more extreme groups I remember being really blown away by many years ago on Headbanger’s, CROWBAR have delivered album after album and monster riff after monster riff.

The band has some of the most revered heavy gems and arrangements in metal to true metal fans and yet also speak in the eternal secret language of the real underground, purveyors of shadow hits that are the “lifesblood for the downtrodden”, so to speak. Like Candlemass, The Obsessed, Orange Goblin or other bands who are not as big as Sabbath but row in equally heady and heavy waters, CROWBAR are hugely inspirational for those who furrow the brow and trudge through this world while carrying a lot of it on their back.

Today we usher CROWBAR into our DEEP CUTS vault, revealing our choices for three songs from the band that we think are lesser appreciated and yet truly bad ass numbers.

More BELOW.

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Photo by Jake Cunningham

Wilderness Dream released their most recent effort, Paralysis Rise on July 14 (you can grab a digital copy of it over at Bandcamp for $7). Leading up to the release of the album, I had the opportunity to sit down with Wilderness Dream guitarist and vocalist Ben Murray, who is also the label head of Creator-Destructor Records.

Ben is a cool guy who has been involved in the scene in various bands and through his work with Creator-Destructor Records for over ten years, and with Paralysis Rise and Wilderness Dream, he shows no signs of slowing down. In fact, him and his fellow Wilderness Dream thrashers are dropping the melody for speed and brutality on their latest studio effort.

Check out what Ben had to say about the album, Creator-Destructor and what’s next for Wilderness Dream here.

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Stream HAUNTED HORSES “Come” Right Now.

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Sunday, July 16, 2017 at 7:58 AM (PST)

We are very excited today to get to reveal to you a full stream of West Coast post-punk duo HAUNTED HORSES new EP “Come”. It’s fantastic, driving and persistently ominous in a seductive way. The record is out imminently on Cercle Social (Pre-order HERE).

Recorded by Myke Pelly at Crybaby Studios (Seattle, WA) 
Mixed by Myke Pelly and Blake Bickel 
Mastered by Blake Bickel at Dynamic Sound Service 
Artwork by Myke Pelly

Guitar/Vox: Colin Dawson 
Drums: Myke Pelly

 

 

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Five must hear 2017 releases that don’t overstay their welcome

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Thursday, July 13, 2017 at 11:38 AM (PST)

Poison Blood

Some albums are simply better as a less is more statement. It doesn’t mean the music is bad, rather that the record goes for maximum impact. Hardcore is usually pretty traditionally on point about this but metal is not always adept at reeling back on the grandiose enough to actually trim enough fat to make some records all killer. I doubt half as many people would have hated Load by Metallica for example if it wasn’t so B-load-ted at over an hour of music. “Bleeding Me” is a kick ass song and over eight minutes long by itself. Does anyone even really remember how “Poor Twisted Me” goes other than that it had a so so blues intro? “Wasting My Hate” is not exactly up there with the band’s classics either. Only die hards can sing along to that or “The House That Jack Built” despite a few cool riff progressions in each, but everyone knows the damn words and every note of “Sad But True”, get me?

Below are a handful (list kept intentionally short on purpose in lieu of the topic at hand) of 2017 albums that are short, sweet and leave you wanting more.

See more BELOW.

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SEEKER has been perhaps the coolest band on Victory for awhile now, completely uncompromising and out to craft their own approach. Bryce stops by today to take part in our latest edition of Formative Years!

Read BELOW for five records that molded his approach to chaos!

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The people around our group at that time acknowledged the weirdness of it. I know I exist. – Cambria Evans
For years I have had an on again off again argument with Coheed and Cambria. We grew up together in various bands. Their first drummer Nate was my best friend and in bands with me as well. We have had many amazing times and many horrible times and in the early days we all used to play shows together all the time.

 

I remember a particular day in 1997 vividly where a side project band of mine called The Electric Ten Inch was jamming at Shabutie’s regular practice space at Nate Kelley’s family home in Bearsville, NY. The band was myself, Mic Todd on bass, Zac Shaw (now of Dead Unicorn), Nate on guitar and Damien Shannon on lead (he went on to work on Ween’s White Pepper album, incidentally).  Claudio Sanchez was there listening to us jam out on the song “Ghost”, which was about addiction. He was sitting on the floor bopping his head to Mic’s bassline. The sense of brotherhood amongst us all was very strong and the musical energy was so rad.

 

I never thought in a million years I would one day spend almost two decades simply asking for Claudio to admit my sister Cambria exists. She was a part of our scene, collected door money at shows that I booked for us all and is a real and good person. She is also my hero for coming out of our drug crazed Woodstock 90s scene mostly unscathed.

 

My sister is more reconciled to a lot that has happened including the gaslighting and does not let it affect her anymore, despite her initial discomfort. I however have a lot of ptsd from rape trauma, trans issues, being a former junkie and much more that is already hard enough to navigate without gaslighting . I get very bad anxiety attacks. I trigger very, very hard from unresolved conflicts that I bury.  Especially since our dad died and only a short while afterwards people hit me up saying Coheed had a new song mocking me. I want peace but can not always control my mood swings, despite taking medication. I can only try my best. I used to even share stages with them since the band name change but when lots of time passed and they never admitted the truth, it really ate at me and offended me. Being threatened with violence by people also didn’t help.

 

I also have shielded my sister the best I could for years from online trolls calling me a liar or her a whore, people telling me to kill myself (which I have attempted before including as recently as 2015) or shitty things going on behind the scenes to discredit me and get me blacklisted. It has honestly really been hellish and made it hard not to feel a constant low level paranoia. It is also very hurtful because I have tried to save their lives before from drugs. I also put out the first cd compilation Shabutie was ever on w one of my friends Tom (called Error 404 Not Found) in 1999. I booked most of their early shows for them. I even dated the ex bassists ex wife and we have a very tangled history. Coheed even stole the guitarist of my old band of seven years Divest (who had the same producers) to be their touring keyboardist after members promised to help us get a record deal but instead we were broken up by him jumping ranks. And I know they have told people to steer clear of me.

 

Ten fucking years later it really broke my heart when “You’ve Got Spirit Kid” came out with alleged fresh attacks about me. They had used lyrics of mine before in “Hearshot Kid Disaster” and all kinds of weirdness over the years. But this new song came right as I was finally speaking to Mic Todd again after 9 years trying to heal our friendship and was giving him cancer remedies meant for my dad. I blew up online at Claudio and Mic and I have not talked again since. It sucks. He used to be one of my very best friends. Someone even vandalized my non writing related workplace at that time and I thought it was an associate of the band who I was arguing with, though now am not sure and have forgiven him.

 

That said, my sister and I really do want peace with the past and present members. People think I am a hypocrite at times because I will say that and then lose my temper and attack them again in very angry language. I get how that can make me seem like a bully to people who don’t know the massive personal histories or the wall of silence from Claudio. I find that to be like tone policing an abuse victim who is trying to raise awareness. I mean there is a reason my band now is called Walking Bombs. I can only do my best and try not to explode but I really struggle. Doc from Bad Brains asked me at my dad;s funeral to try and lift the burden from my heart and let it go. AND I really want that but with mental health problems it comes back up. It feels like everyone is fine if I shut up about it but after near two decades of telling people I have serious manic depression issues and would simply like the respect of the warts and all truth to help heal and not re-trigger me, you’d think the band could take five minutes to make a public statement. It would seriously help me stay level and not freak out on them anymore randomly.

 

After many years my sister finally feels comfortable with me asking her some questions. I am very glad it doesn’t upset her or reach her any more, though she also has had far less drama with them than I have.

 

 Read more BELOW.
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Apex is choosing to accept your fate and make the best of it! – Brittney

Don’t be mistaken, the title of this article is not implying that Apex from Canada’s much raved about Unleash The Archers is a failure by any means, rather that it proves they have so much to give that they can climb the metal stairway to heaven immeasurably from here. Apex is already an album of the year contender to a few of my friends I have spoken with.

Formed in 2007, the power metal and thrash hybrid band eschew boring classifications and instead just boldly mold themselves into their own metal unit, a true heavy metal band like Judas Priest, Sister Sin, King Diamond, Accept, Huntress, Valient Thorr, Ross The Boss Band, Tower, The Agonist or any real deal blue blooded defenders of the faith out there.

Let’s catch up with vocalist Brittney, who I personally always say has some of the best pipes in the game these days, and get the scoop on the new album Apex.

Read onward BELOW!

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Insatia‘s energetic, melodic and sophisticated Phoenix Aflame is turning heads in the power metal scene. This is a band on the rise. From the soaring declaration of guilt in “Act Of Mercy” to the formidable march of “We Are The Grey”, this band show that symphonic metal can be all-embracing to different facets of life while still keeping in line with the love for the dramatic that is a key to the genre.

Today we are happy to welcome vocalist Zoë Marie Federoff to this edition of our new Formative Years column with her selections of five albums that changed her life. But first you should also see the band’s video for “Memory Of A Sapphire”!

Now that you have been rocked, for Zoe’s album picks see BELOW.

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Photo by Jeremy Saffer

Shattered Sun became a thrash band we loved after vocalist Marcos Leal sold us on his passion for thrashin’ during an interview with Metal Riot a few years ago. We knew we had to keep an eye on this bunch. Now after a lot of growth and touring the band are back with The Evolution of Anger next month (Pre Order HERE).

Marcos stops by again today to participate in our new formative years column with five records that changed his own life, as surely as his own band has made a difference for someone from a new generation. Check out his picks and Shattered Sun’s new video for “Burn It Down” BELOW!

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The first time I heard Drug Honkey was almost a decade ago now! It stuck out from a pile of boring emo-goth promo cds like a cancerous growth – Death Dub. ‘WTF is this?’, I thought. I took the cdr home from my then editor’s apartment and soon was lost in a swirl of cacophony and acidic rage amidst a Scorn-like clatter of urban blight and very cool, weird atmosphere. The vocals sounded like they were sung by a demon punching up through concrete but the music was both smothering and spacious. Fuck yeah!

I remember thinking how cool it was that there were still some underground bands who took the lessons of Godflesh to heart that you can do something outside the template of what is standard metal and add some punk freedom into the recipe to create a unique experience. This was a nightmarish but addictive sound and perfect with a spliff for those already halfway into an existential crisis who figure, ‘Fuck it, let’s go full bore.’

Cue 2017 and the band are still around and getting better reviews, and deservedly so, than ever for new album Cloak Of Skies on the label Transcending Obscurity. Cloak of Skies boasts seven tracks, including a remix by the legendary Justin K. Broadrick (Godflesh, Jesu) and a guest saxophone feature from Bruce Lamont (Yakuza, Corrections House, Brain Tentacles). Cover art was hand-painted by renowned artist Paulo Girardi (Inquisition, Power Trip).

Let’s catch up with Paul Gillis and learn more about this current era of a long running project who do things their own way! Read it BELOW.

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Interview: Dying Fetus are the wrong ones to fuck with

Posted by longhairedpoet on Friday, June 9, 2017 at 5:18 PM (PST)

Photo by Josh Sisk

I was introduced to Dying Fetus through “Homicidal Retribution,” a track off the band’s 2007 release War of Attrition. By the time the line “You are fucking worthless, I don’t give a fuck about you!!” was growled out, I knew I was a fan. Now, ten years later the band returns again with their 8th studio album, which promises to smash faces and beat in skulls.

Ahead of the album’s impending release on June 23 via Relapse Records, I had the chance to talk with Dying Fetus drummer Trey Williams about Wrong One To Fuck With.

Check out the full interview here.

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Formative Years: 5 album picks – 3. LAGO’s Cole Jabobsen

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Thursday, June 8, 2017 at 9:44 PM (PST)

Everyone has records that first got them into rock n roll, metal, rap, smooth jazz or whatever. Formative Years is our new feature delving into the brains of various people in the scene to see what made them choose the realm of music as a focus. Jason from IKILLYA did one HERE and I also kicked it off HERE, and we have more cool artists to come in the future. Really this seed was planted by me interviewing Kayla from Witch Mountain awhile ago about her vocal influences, one of the posts that we sadly lost when we were hacked and lost almost a year of content recently. But in memory of that awesomeness we have made a whole ongoing thing out of influences in general, so thanks Kayla!

Anyhow, this round we have the one and only Mr. Cole Jacobsen of Arizona death metallers Lago. They’ve been one of my very favorite up and coming extreme metal bands ever since I first heard them, just nailing all the right components that makes death metal unkillable.  Peep their recent split with mighty Calm Hatchery HERE (you will fucking thank me later if you aren’t throttled to a pulp).

Check out Cole’s choices for albums that inspired him as a young rager BELOW and stay tuned for big things from this band in the future.

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Interview: Beastmaker – Inside The Skull with Trevor Church

Posted by Morgan Ywain Evans on Wednesday, May 31, 2017 at 11:25 AM (PST)

Photo by Ester Segarra

“I enjoy writing songs so much that even my shitty songs are meaningful and important to me.” – Trevor Church

I was going to go jogging today but actually ate so many chickpeas trying to re submerge into healthier dieting that I feel like I may puke. That could also be because I had a bunch of Prosecco with the chickpeas but anyway, to make a long story short I am instead lying in bed guilt listening to the first Carnivore record (remastered and expanded soon for a Metalville re-issue, incidentally).

Anyhow, a few weeks ago I was eternally cucked when I had to miss Beastmaker, Geezer and friggin’ Black Sabbath at Gramercy at the last minute. All I can do is wallow beneath the dripping head of a vaguely familiar looking demagogue that Kathy Griffin was waving around yesterday and pray that if I lap up some of the droplets of falling gore that my metal points will rise again like a health meter in some early 90’s side scrolling fighting game. But wait, the Gods of metal have intervened and today brings a chance to redeem myself by sharing with you the good news of Beastmaker’s crushing new opus Inside The Skull ! 

Songs like “Evil One” and “Now Howls The Beast” not only deliver everything a true metal fan could want in a song, but will also be sure to appease fans of the band’s cool earlier songs.

Read more BELOW.

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