Skeletonwitch and 3 Inches of Blood
"These Ohio headcases come closer to the fiery spirit of the old days than most, and as they channel the fury and flair of Slayer, Megadeth and Destruction it's obvious that they would have gone down a storm 20 years ago. It's the sound of modern metal reclaiming its mean-spirited and malevolent heritage."
Metal Hammer Magazine
3 Inches of Blood
You've heard them ad nauseum: "Nu-metal", "Hair-metal", "Emo", "Screamo", "Post-hardcore", "Metal-core", and on, and on.
3 Inches Of Blood has arrived to tread on the bleached bones of those exhausted genres. A band to unite the tribes of mall rats, skaters, punks and bikers under one banner. Because, after years of a steady de-evolution of the founding tenets of heavy music, to today's ears, 3 Inches Of Blood's ADVANCE AND VANQUISH could not be more fresh.
Make that banner the skull and crossbones, because the Vancouver-based metal band 3 Inches of Blood write about pirates. And swords. And, for good measure, warring cyborgs from the future. But most importantly, the band write about heavy metal. The best way to describe 3 Inches of Blood is "reverential" - essentially, take everything great about heavy music before 1985, and go from there. Which means the shrieking vocal assault of Rob Halford, the epic guitars and storytelling of Iron Maiden, the pirate theme of Running Wild, and, most importantly, the lasting influence of the British New Wave of Heavy Metal. 3 Inches of Blood is a band that knows their Diamond Head from their Motorhead.
"That's definitely our biggest influence, the late 70's British stuff," says one of 3 Inches' two singers, Jamie Hooper. "And also bands that were influenced by those U.K. bands, like early Slayer, and Ride the Lightning-era Metallica." On the other hand, singer Cam Pipes asserts, "3 Inches of Blood are influenced by barley, hops, yeast, and water and heavy metal!"
When 3 Inches originally formed in 2000 in Vancouver, British Columbia, they had no idea they would someday sign to the world's biggest metal label (Roadrunner) and tour with a platinum hard rock band (The Darkness - more on that in a minute). Jamie Hooper, Sunny Dhak and Bob Froese originally got together to do a one-off reunion gig for an old group of their's - however, things went so well they decided to continue under a new moniker. A five-track demo of the new band, now dubbed 3 Inches of Blood after a particularly gruesome dream of Froese's, found its way over to the house of Hot Hot Heat keyboardist Steve Bays. Bays' friend, death metal vocalist Cam Pipes (and yes, Cam Pipes is his real name), was impressed with 3 Inches' old school sound. "I was asked to lay down some backup vocals on the demo EP and they liked it. Afterwards I was asked to join as a permanent member and naturally, I said 'fuck yeah!'" exclaims the aptly-named Pipes.
It worked. What could have been just a simple experiment ended up changing 3 Inches of Blood forever. "We liked him so much on the demo, we asked him to be in the band," says Hooper. Over the next two years the group became a popular local concert draw, and recorded one well-received album, BATTLECRY UNDER A WINTER SUN, in 2002. That record, full of Dungeons and Dragons fantasy imagery and lightning-quick guitar riffs, set the tone for the group. First rule of 3 Inches: metal. Second rule of 3 Inches: metal. Third rule: no angst. "My first bedtime story was Lord of the Rings, which was read to me when I was three," says Hooper. "So that influenced me a lot, and my lyrics. We just want to be a story-based, imaginative band that plays metal."
Although the group had little distribution for the record, they did share the same U.K. label as The Darkness, who at the time were on their way to becoming the UK's latest rock sensation. When 3 Inches went overseas, they hooked up with The Darkness for a UK tour. The pairing, as it turned out, could not have been more natural: both bands forsake modern, formulated music in favor of the undeniable giants of rock's past. The tour was a smash success. The Darkness fans loved 3 Inches, and Darkness frontman Justin Hawkins soon became a huge fan. So much so that on one of the tour's final nights, Hawkins asked to go on stage with 3 Inches and scream backup on their speed-metal blitzkrieg "Deadly Sinners." Unfortunately, Justin's appreciation of the track, and his own experience in upper-register anthems, where not sufficient to get him through unscathed. "By the next night, he had crazy laryngitis," says Pipes, laughing. "So we kind of feel responsible."
Since inception, this purity of vision has earned the band critical acclaim in metal and alternative circles alike. Due to this bubbling under at the press level, Roadrunner Records took notice of the group's demo, and signed the band in 2004. "We're kind of in a weird position, considering the more modern leaning line-up of that label," says Hooper. "We're nu-metal's greatest enemies, so it's a weird juxtaposition for us. But let's just say that we fit in very well with their back catalogue - Annihilator, Pestilence, King Diamond, Suffocation. We're very pleased to be a part of that."
3 Inches began work on ADVANCE AND VANQUISH early this year, determined to make it a "classic" metal album in every sense. That meant hiring a classic metal producer (Neil Kernon, of Judas Priest and Queensryche fame), an engineer best known for his work with Cannibal Corpse and Napalm Death (Colin Richardson), and a cover artist with an old-school metal past. Like that warring barbarian on the cover? That comes courtesy of Ed Repka, the man behind all those cool Vic Rattlehead images on the early Megadeth albums.
Musically, the band has expanded on their classic metal roots, developing into one of the tightest hard rock bands of modern times. Hooper's screams, coupled with the epic guitar lines on "Lord of the Storm," bring to mind classic Cradle of Filth, while "Deadly Sinners" features an almost hardcore-style vocal chant. But for all their modern touches, the band still lives in a world where Priest and Maiden rule the airwaves. After all, they do have a three-part pirate-theme metal epic on the record (subtitled "Upon the Boiling Sea"). And then there's "Wykydtron," which may be the closest thing to a 3 Inches singalong.
"An unnamed band that opened for us wasn't very good," explains Hooper. "Somebody ripped their name of a poster and wrote in 'Wykydtron.' I don't know what it means, but it sounded cool and futuristic. So we developed it into a space-themed tale of cyborg warfare."
Before the recording, the band went through some line-up changes, bringing in former Trial bassist Brian Redman and Goatsblood drummer Matt Wood. To fully incorporate them into the group, the band delayed recording for a month. The end results speak for themselves. "Our band has been reborn and intensified," says Hooper.
3 Inches of Blood will hit the road this August with Machine Head and Chimaira for the "Road Rage" tour, and then have tentatively planned to continue on in the fall on the annual (MTV2) Headbangers Ball jaunt. The group will use this time to convert fans to their old-is-new style - just like Slayer did back in the day, winning over fans one at a time. "Once people see us live, everything changes," says Pipes. "They all come to me and are like, 'we thought maybe you were a joke. But we just saw you play, and you're pretty fucking serious!'"
All hail the arrival of 3 Inches Of Blood. If there's a sub-genre label to apply to them, let it relate to how they draw from a hard rock scene that pre-dates concert riders, rented jets, remixes, and trysts with pop divas. We propose you call it this: "Pre-Suck."
LORDS OF THE TRIDENT
"Gauntlet-sporting frontman Fang VonKillenstein pumps his macho mid-range and screeching falsetto in a silly yet affectionate approximation of Bruce Dickinson, and dual-lead guitarists Asian Metaland Killius Maximuspull off a decent combination of galloping riffs and harmonized solos." - The Onion
"Lords of the Trident kick ass...threads of Dio and Iron Maiden wove themselves through the chainmail of hard rock antics with all the audacity and none of the pretense. ... But you haven't even heard the balls out riffage, singer Fang VonKilenstein's falsetto fury, and the nimble fingers of lead guitarists Asian Metal and Killius Maximus." - Local Sounds Magazine
"(Death or Sandwich) proves to be as solid as if a blacksmith hammered it into place ." Les Chappel, Independent Journalist
"sick guitar riffs and intense lyricsfierce drumming and complicated guitar solos."
"The Lords are showmen at heart. They strive to bring people into the genre of heavy metal who would typically dismiss it without a second thought...Through the ups and downs of the local scene these guys have really stuck by their guns, and branded their own little piece of the Madison scene and the metal genre." - Maximum Ink Magazine
"The actual overall sound is nothing short of impressive considering that it is an independent record...To be honest this is probably one of the most original things I have heard in quite some time...Strong rhythm figures from the guitar, rather dramatic solos, drums exciting and complex, and bass lines that you could build a house on top of." - Nightspirit Magazine (Norway)
"When it comes to command of a stage by a local band it is difficult to do better than the costumed Lords of the Trident." - Dane101.com
Fang VonKillenstein was born when a volcano containing metal and steel erupted at the beginning of time. His one and only mission: create the most metal band in the world. He searched across the land for many centuries, until during his travels in Greece, he heard the sound of sweep picking emanating from a cave. After fighting off the man-eating bats with his bare hands, he came upon the one known only as the Socrates of Shred. Socrates imparted his sage advice upon Fang, and the next stop was the top of the tallest mountain in Japan: Mt. Yuufretokuwiku. Quickly ascending the treacherous mountain by riding on a cloud of pure shredding guitar, they met the fierce guitar warrior known as Asian Metal. After a three day battle that left most of the surrounding mountainside in ruins (and most of its inhabitants deaf), Asian Metal decided to join the warriors on their quest.
On the voyage across the Pacific Ocean, their ship was attacked by the fierce and proud Captain Bluddbeard, whose proficiency with the bass was so well known that the waves themselves would run in fear from the swelling sounds emanating from his pirate ship. During the battle, all four of the warriors happened to strike the same chord at the same time, causing a giant tsunami which flung the two ships across the sky, eventually crash landing in Southern Wisconsin. Striking a truce, the band was now almost complete. Suddenly, from a rip in the fabric of space and time itself stepped the cyborg DANALOG. Hailing from the equatorial submersible cities of the future, DANALOG explained to the warriors that the convergence of their explosive sound without a uniting beat could threaten to destroy the very fabric of the universe.
However, during one of the Lords' most epic battles, one of DANALOG's arm servos became jammed. A tremendous buildup of pressure caused the cyborg to explode, creating a massive crater that reached to the depths of Hell itself. Seizing his chance, the demon king Korgoth escaped from Hell through the crust and emerged from the crater, hungry for souls. Socrates, in his wisdom, immediately challenged the demon king to a guitar duel - a challenge Korgoth could not deny under demon law. As the battle raged, the surrounding landscape was reduced to rubble from the tremendous force of the sonic waves. Socrates stunned the demon with his flawless sweep arpeggios, then shattered his guitar with a pinch harmonic. The demon king, now enslaved, became the new demonic drummer for the Lords.
Soon after, the LORDS manifested what mankind now knows as the most metal album ever conceived: "Death, or Sandwich". Following numerous highly publicized incidents of spontaneous combustion and/or face melting due to listening to the CD's contents, a shadowy multinational group known only as "SPIDR" amassed an army of the most battle-hardened special ops soldiers they could find. Their mission: find and imprison the LORDS in order to use their unimaginable power as a weapon. Their first target was the Socrates of Shred. Although Socrates managed to destroy a large number of the soldiers, the group's leader (codename: Red Widow) knocked him out from behind. Imprisoned, the Socrates of Shred decided to take his own life rather than be turned into a weapon. The resulting implosion wiped the prison (and a large section of the countryside) off of the map.
Weakened, but not yet defeated, the LORDS began their search for a new guitarist, all the while keeping a watchful eye for the agents of SPIDR. Traveling to Rome, the LORDS decided to attend the games at the Colosseum. There they encountered the famed Killius Maximus, an undefeated gladiator whose only weapon was shred guitar. Admiring his skill, Asian Metal leapt into the area and challenged him to a duel. Their furious playing eventually led to a massive earthquake, destroying much of the city and leaving many sections of the Colosseum in ruins. After this impressive display, the LORDS were in agreement: Killius Maximus would be the new guitarist. But this would not be the end of strife for the LORDS...
During a short break from touring, Captain Bluddbeard and his crew decided to set sail in search of a legendary treasure in the middle of the treacherous sea graveyard known only as La Boca Del Diablo. Using his immeasurable skill to navigate the deadly rock formations, the Captain was near his prize. Suddenly, and without warning, a gigantic mechanical shark leapt out from the black sea, devouring the ship and all of its inhabitants. Broken, bleeding, and grasping at life, Captain Bluddbeard continued to pound away furiously at his bass, trying to escape the clutches of Davey Jones' Locker. From the abyss, Death appeared. The Captain pounded his bass against even Death himself, but was no match. With his last breath, he begged Death to assist the LORDS in finding a replacement. Death agreed.
Shortly thereafter, Death appeared to the LORDS and informed them of the Captain's demise. The LORDS were in shock - was this another attempt by SPIDR? Or perhaps someone (or something) else? But the issue remained - the LORDS needed a new bass player. Death thought the matter over. As Death himself was the only spirit able to match Bluddbeard on the bass, the only worthy replacement for Bluddbeard would be a bassist infused with the power of Death...and one who would be taught by Death himself.
For this task, Death journeyed to the decaying towers of the afterworld to seek out his High Priest - Pontifex Mortis. As the most revered leader of the Priests of Death, he would be the most worthy candidate for this task. Death explained the situation to Pontifex, and told him he would teach Pontifex the secrets of his deadly bass skill - if he survived the training. Over the course of months, Death's arcane bass secrets were imparted to Pontifex, and through his careful study he harnessed a bass power equally as deadly as the power of Death himself. Summoned before the LORDS, and at the request of Death, Pontifex swore a blood oath to aid the LORDS in their metal quest. Thus, the LORDS were again united, and METAL REIGNED SUPREME!!
Warseid (War-Sayde) began in late 2008, when Logan Smith (vocals, guitar) began writing folk metal under the name Varangian Guard. He soon realized the project's potential, and recruited drummer Kellan Hilscher, bassist Kyle Cushman, and guitarist Brandon Salaway in February 2009 to self-record the 'Winter Legions demo'. After being released for free and promoted extensively online, the three-track demo was met with praise among fellow musicians in Madison. Shortly after the recording, the four changed their name to Warseid (War-Sayde) to represent the birth of a new band, and Joe Meland (keyboard, accordion) was added to provide a new, symphonic layer to their music. Now with five members, the group began to promote themselves through local shows, trying to maintain an equilibrium between school and music.
When listeners began urging the band to release more of their music, Warseid recorded and released their second CD, 'Autumn Winds', in April 2010. Much like the previous demo, it consisted of three tracks, was released for free online, but was met with even higher praise.
With numerous shows played, as well as the inevitable leaving of lead guitarist Brandon Salaway, Warseid have released their first EP entitled, 'Sentry': an 8-track behemoth delivering bone-crushing symphonic folk metal. As King Luke from Coils of the Serpent puts it, "Warseid are fluently bridging the gap between folk and black metal in a very respectable and enjoyable way, by creating ambitious metal inspired by all of the essential masters."
By endlessly working to bring their passion to the forefront of the local scene, and with relentless determination and tenacity to become some of the best at what they do, Warseid have proven that they are an up-and-coming band worthy of keeping an eye on.
MY FAIR SHARE
We are here to recreate a name for hard rock. In a time when bands sacrifice integrity for a name, we are here to stand our ground. We have no agenda. No preaching. No politics. No watered-down formula. Just pure, and original music. Drawing influence from everything like Iron Maiden to Slipknot, Ozzy to Shadows Fall, we aim to take the best of everything; spare the extra effects, bells, and whistles. What's left is a raw, energetic blend of rock 'n' roll. As other bands sellout, falter, and fade away; We will rise.
Formed in 2008, by a group of long time friends from a small town getting together just to jam covers, My Fair Share has formed into a tight group dedicated to bringing our energetic, powerful music to the world. High intensity shows are our specialty; aimed on getting the crowd involved, playing great, and making a memorable impression on all that come to see us play. We believe that every piece of the band is as important as the others, and make our writing a collaborative process. Great music is the result.
My Fair Share is:
Hans Koyen - Vocals
Erik Wyko - Bass
Wade Schultz - Drums
Sawyer Hildebrandt - Guitar
1206 Regent St
Madison, WI 53715