I Shaved My Beard Because of J. Bennett

BandshootIdesofGemeni1858web vy steven duncan WITH CREDIT J. Bennett is a self-proclaimed Masshole — the first of many things I learned about the scribe-turned-musician during our interview. He spotted the ‘617’ phone number from my landline, so we also briefly discussed his growing up in Mansfield and seeing Willie Nelson at Great Woods as his first live show. But there was a laundry list of topics to get to — women in Metal, writing professionally, important life transitions — not to mention the typical tangents that break into the conversation.

The whole section on beards feels admittedly bittersweet, as I am recently freshly shorn for the first time in five years, and the seed was inadvertently planted by you, J. Bennett. Expect a followup email with both links to this article and requests for advice. I feel… I dunno… “heartbroken” is the closest emotion; that same pit of emptiness — a black sucking void — which must be either forgotten or filled (…with follicles, perhaps?).

Ides of Gemini have come, beware.

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Exorcising BEDEMON with Geof O’Keefe

10 halfpage-Geof

Bedemon is the great proto-doom band that never really was, until now… and I mean that in every way possible. Yeah, we joke about the name, exposit the history, discuss legacy. But Symphony of Shadows is perhaps the best cobbled collection of posthumous pieces since the salvage of Voivod (who happens to get brought up, along with Woods of Ypres).

After a long, convoluted question with the second or third reference to “tuning down”, Geof sets the record straight on that, and even more than I expected!
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Joel Violette on WOODS OF YPRES, David Gold, and ‘Woods 5: Grey Skies & Electric Light’


image snagged from trendcrusher.wordpress.com

I love Grey Skies & Electric Light. It was my favorite album as of the original interview on 2012Mar29, and is still frontrunner six weeks later. Death always weighs heavy with Woods of Ypres, and the loss of founder David Gold brings a bitter denouement, as the music still rings sweet stabs every time. Much of this perfection was honed because of Joel Violette himself, and we speak at length about the development of Woods 5, straighten out confusion behind the various release dates and track listings, explore many memories of David (including his myriad looks through the years), and touch on Joel’s other project, Thrawsunblat, which he describes as “raw black melodic folk metal with a Atlantic Canadian twist”. We bookend with some of the new album—beginning with some of “Lightning and Snow” and concluding with “Kiss My Ashes Goodbye”.

[I decided to initially post as audio-only, but transcription may be added in the future.  —Ed.]


Getting Horrified with Alex Webster of CANNIBAL CORPSE


How in the hell has Cannibal Corpse grown into the monster you see today? I remember my first discussion about the band. The 13-year-old version of me had seen a commercial for Ace Ventura: Pet Detective and thought it was the funniest trailer ever ever. I was really starting to figure some major-decision shit out for myself, boy I tell ya. Especially with music. What was heavier than Rage Against the Machine in 1993, right?

Unholy fucking wrong.

What th… who was this band in the movie? It was too damned noisy, with little setup and almost no screen time—my brain was not prepared. Much time passed; it would be another 13 years before Kill made me suffer. Now the Buffalo bonecrushers are out for even more tympanic Torture, and we’re pushing as deep as the knife will go with bassist/co-founder Alex Webster …then driving past the hilt. There’s a lot about movies, a little about zombies, early misogyny clarification, layers peeled back about their latest work, and how they perpetuate the juggernaut of Cannibal Corpse.

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Questions for ENTHRONED’s Nornagest


Towards The Skullthrone Of Satan (1997)

I was recently graced with the opportunity to interview Nornagest—the frontman of Enthroned, a band that has been around since the early ’90s. I can still remember my first time listening to them. It was on the Burlington waterfront, and I had just bought 1997’s Towards The Skullthrone Of Satan on CD at Disc-Go-Round. It wasn’t my first time hearing black metal, but it was definitely the point where I said to myself: “Holy shit, this stuff is real.” None of the original members of Enthroned are in today’s lineup (Cernunnos, the founder and original drummer committed suicide prior to the album), but Towards The Skullthrone Of Satan was Nornagest’s first recording with the band. Though back then, he only held the role of guitarist and backup vocalist (the frontman was Lord Sabathan—and if I dare say, he sounded a bit like Frau Farbissina from the Austin Powers movies). Enthroned‘s latest album, Obsidium, will be released March 20, 2012. And here’s the fucking interview: Continue reading

MUSICAL MANSLAUGHTER – First Live Interview on 'Mind Over Metal'

Hey, Ian's wearing that shirt we mention in the interview!

Making their radio debut, Musical Manslaughter prove they have the ‘Audacity’ of hopelessness, with a crushing claustrophobic air. We blast the tunes “Automaton”, “You’re Just a Hole”, and “Numb” in full, plus play most of the new album while we talk. It’s Vermont homegrown self-produced death groove—not premeditated, but certainly voluntary.

 [buzzsprout episode=’42214′ player=’true’]

Original mad artwork by Jon Tether