*This is part of our State Of The Art series, showcasing bands every Monday from the state of the month*
This month’s state is Illinois!
Sable Beldam is a vicious and brutal death metal band from Chicago. They formed in 2007 and have had numerous lineup changes over the years but the band is releasing some great material. They have toured throughout the U.S. and even played with another of our favorite bands Diamond Plate. So I’m sure the band has devastated fans, created some chaotic mosh pits and melted faces off with their all up in your grill brand of metal.
Recently I was able to hear two of the new songs from the forth coming Long Beach Vagrant album “Death Be Thy Name” that released this week. Immediately I was impressed and was fortunate enough to get in touch with one of the members of the band. Drummer John Aragonez took the time to speak with me about everything going on with the band and what the future may hold for the California based metallers. (There was a technical problem when we were speaking on the phone the call was supposed to be recorded so I could later write the information out, Due to the error I’m not able to quote everything exactly, so the following is in my own words). As some of you may or may not know Long Beach Vagrant (formerly Vagrant) has been around since the 90’s and has opened for some amazing acts in their long tenure. John spent some time in the band about 5-6 years ago. He was living in the high desert and the distance from the other members in the band made it difficult for him to commit to the band. However, now he is fully invested in the band and brings a great amount of experience to the band. He has an amazing drumming style which you can hear on each song. Some drummers that he looks up to are Joey Jordison formerly of Slipknot and All That Remains drummer Jason Costa. The one original member of the band is Mike Pain, who is greatly influenced by horror movies. He also is a renowned artist and because of that the band has a lot of horror related lyrics. They have spent time touring with other horror based bands. We also mentioned that a lot of horror based bands perform at horror conventions around the country as well. It really helps define their audience and fan base since they have horror based lyrics. Instead of trying to garner the attention of a broad audience they can narrow down the field to people that are already passionate about the subject matter. The band also has two new members in Randy Blount on vocals and Rob Gresham on bass. John mentions that these two guys have really brought some new life into the new band, and the fact that they are younger has brought some new influences into the band as well.
After finally releasing their first studio album in over 13 years Coal Chamber has organized one of the best touring lineups in recent years. Of course you have Coal Chamber, and co-headlining is Fear Factory who have a new album releasing August 7th entitled “Genexus”. The Devil You Know was on select dates of the tour and it features Howard Jones formerly of Killswitch Engage. On the date we were attending at The Orange Peel in Asheville, North Carolina we got Jasta. The band of course features the namesake of the band Jamey Jasta of Hatebreed and Kingdom of Sorrow fame. If you thought this was enough there are still two bands left. Motor City Metal band Saint Ridley was immediate support for the bands. They were also on Coal Chamber’s previous tour with Filter and Combichrist. The opening band was Los Angeles based nu metal band Madlife, who became the pleasant surprise of the night.
*This is part of our State Of The Arts series, showcasing bands every Monday from the state of the month*
This month’s state is Ohio.
Cleveland, Ohio is home of the Rock N Roll Hall of Fame, and Lebron James, but most importantly it’s home to one of Ohio’s best rock bands in The Great Iron Snake. The band is a trio of hard rocking guys that have some chemistry when it comes to being in a band together. The comradery and stage presence they have may seem like déjà vu, but that’s only because they are ¾’s of the band Red Giant. The guys have been together sporting this new band name since 2012. You have Damien Perry at the helm on vocals and rocking out his Gretsch White Falcon guitar that sounds absolutely amazing. Brian Skinner is setting the low tones on bass, and behind the kit is Eric Matthews on the sticks. The band recently released a single in February entitled “Pungent Porcelain”. Like a trucker in a roadside brothel, the song gets right to business. The guitar work leads the song through its paces, from start to finish it’s an uphill to downhill rhythm. Playing off every up tempo and downtempo change the song perfectly showcases the talents of the band. They have been playing live shows in and around the Cleveland area with some other bands we enjoy like Trouble, and Black Pussy. Presently The Great Iron Snake is unsigned to a label, which we don’t think will last very long. With a unique sound and with as much chemistry Damien, Eric and Brian have together it won’t be long before they are fighting away offers. Other than the one song “Pungent Porcelain” that has been recorded and is streaming on Bandcamp there are a few good quality live videos available of the band as well. The song “Elipsis” (which we will link below) has this great little bluesy groove to it that just has this amazing energy to it. We always say that the best way to see a band is live and in person. We look forward to catching these guys on the road soon.
Cancer is a disease that seems to have touched every family in America. Over 20 bands are donating their time by putting on an amazing show in Louisville, KY at Diamonds Pub Concert Hall to help raise money to fight cancer. Horns Up Against Cancer is an all day music festival and the money raised goes to the F*uck Cancer Foundation. The foundation uses proceeds to raise awareness, educate about early childhood cancer detection, and help victims and their families deal with the ongoing epidemic through the Dyin 2 Live Program.
The bands honoring the stage are some great national touring acts. Headlining the show is Primer 55 who have rootd on Kentucky and were formed in 1997 and are a household name with any rock or metal fan. They will be giving “The Big F*uck You” to cancer. They are by no means the only well known band there. X Factor 1 will also be rocking out at the benefit as well. Coming down from Columbus the band has been a regional favorite around Kentucky, West Virginia and their home state of Ohio. Just a few other bands showcasing their talent to help fight cancer are In Virgo, 8lb Pressure, Eye Ov The Storm. There are far too many more bands to name. Remember that these bands are not being paid and are playing this show simply to help in the fight against this horrible disease. Other than the bands there are a lot of people behind the scenes that helped this all day music fest happen and they deserve your praise as well. Barring jail or death anyone able should attend this show, Saturday September 19th. It kicks off at 10 a.m. and you can pick up at ticket for $25 bucks. How often can you help out a good cause and enjoy some amazing metal bands at the same time? You can help make a difference! Be there!
Rising out of the country music capital of the world, All Them Witches formed in 2012 and quickly became one of our favorite bands. They released their second album entitled “Lightning at the Door” in 2014 and it’s an album that never grows old. They can be called anything from desert rock, stoner rock, to psychedelic. The sound they create is like a potluck, where everyone in the band brings something to the table. Last year’s release is going to be hard to compete with in regards to a follow up, but they announced they have been working on their 3rd release. Unlike “Lightning at the Door” the 3rd All Them Witches album will not be self-released, as they recently signed with New West Records. They have been making the festival rounds this year as they just played Bonnaroo on June 13th and have been added to the Louder Than Life festival taking the stage on October 3rd in Louisville, Kentucky. They are by far one of the best bands on the bill that is filled with other big names. Not only is the music they play different from some of the rest that will be playing at the festival, but you can expect them to have a breakthrough live performance that will leave you wanting more. They are a raw talent that has a beautiful and unpolished sound that is sure to create fans by the masses. Festival goers who aren’t familiar with the band will be pleasantly surprised and we think All Them Witches will be leaving Kentucky with a much larger fan base. They are just one of many reasons to attend the festival this year as we will continue to showcase the bands appearing at Louder Than Life.
Iron Maiden are set to release their 16th studio album on September 4th worldwide. The new album titled “The Book of Souls” will be a double album and was produced by Kevin Shirley and recorded in Paris, France. He has worked with other well-known bands in the past such as Aerosmith, Dream Theater, Black Country Communion, Journey, The Black Crowes, Silverchair and Rush. Finishing touches on the highly anticipated album from the metal stalwarts was just recently completed, and in many ways answers the questions that were posed when Bruce Dickinson had shockingly released news he had a tumor on the back of his tongue back in 2014. Chemotherapy and radiation have helped and Bruce has been given the all clear from his medical staff, although most recently it has been said the band may have to postpone a full scale tour until next year. The new album contains 11 tracks, and is a whopping 92 minutes long. This will be the first double studio album that Iron Maiden has released. The cover art was completed by 62 year old British artist Mark Wilkinson who is well known for his work on Judas Priest albums Ram It Down, Painkiller, Jugulator, Nostradamus and Redeemer of Souls. Eddie is looking as fierce as ever I might add as well.