Aaron Edge of Lumbar Fractures Vertebra; Fundraiser Launched for Medical Expenses

Posted in Whathaveyou on June 8th, 2015 by JJ Koczan

aaron edge

I try not to spend too much of other people’s money, because I know it’s a finite resource and because it is for me as well. However, we are also fortunate enough to live in an age where even passing off a couple bucks here 5and there can genuinely make a difference in someone’s existence. I’ve known Aaron Edge for years now. He’s someone whose work has directly inspired me — when I started a label years back, it was because Aaron basically called me up and told me to so I could put out the Roareth record he’d written and played on — and someone who continues to inspire.

Everything with corporeal presence is physical, but I’ve known few who’ve made the most of that in the way Aaron has. A distance runner in years past, vehement stage presence in more bands than I think even he could remember if you asked and a mountain biker even after his 2013 diagnosis with MS, Aaron was able to channel physical anguish into devastating sonic and emotional heft on Lumbar‘s The First and Last Days of Unwelcome (review here; interview here), having written and recorded the instruments himself and collaborated with YOB‘s Mike Scheidt on vocals and Tad Doyle on recording to create one of the most powerful heavy records of the last five years. More than that, it was a testament to the sheer indomitable spirit that drives Aaron — confirmation of the fact that he simply would not be stopped.

While mountain biking on Friday, May 29, Aaron had a bad accident on a trail. He was airlifted to the hospital where he was told his recovery would be three to six months. The T6 vertebra in his back was fractured. Life put Aaron on his ass once again, but if history has shown anything it’s that Aaron only knows how to get back up and keep fighting. The truth is, Aaron will be back out there one way or another. Fractured vertebra, MS, cartoon piano falling on his head — whatever it might be, there’s no keeping him down. This too will be channeled, contorted into something from which he’ll only come back stronger. And that process will be that much easier with as much support as possible.

So yes, I’m spending your money. A GoFundMe has been launched to help Aaron with medical expenses from his stay at the hospital, and you can and should donate below:

Last Friday, while test riding a full suspension mountain bike amongst redwood trees, I fell off on a technical course and landed hard on my back. I couldn’t move or stand and was in lots of pain, I was airlifted via helicopter to a San Jose hospital soon after.

Tests and scans were done: my back is broken, specifically my T6 vertebrae.

I’m in a huge brace for a few months and in bad shape, mentally and of course physically. For those of you who already found out, thank you for the texts, messages and emails. — Aaron of Lumbar

Aaron Edge GoFundMe fundraiser

Lumbar on Thee Facebooks

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Visual Evidence: Searing Limb’s Poster for St. Vitus Bar’s Aaron Edge Benefit Show March 26

Posted in Visual Evidence on March 11th, 2014 by JJ Koczan

God. Damn. Quite a lineup, quite a poster. I’ll give credit to Hollow Leg‘s Brent Lynch who first brought my attention to the poster for his band’s March 26 gig at St. Vitus Bar in Brooklyn. The evening, on which Kings Destroy (fresh off their West Coast tour) headlines with Hollow Leg, Holly Hunt, Clamfight and The Scimitar supporting, is a benefit for Aaron Edge, the Seattle-based graphic designer and former Roareth (etc.) guitarist, whose struggle with multiple sclerosis led to the creation last year of Lumbar‘s The First and Last Days of Unwelcome (review here) and whose medical bills continue to accumulate.

True to oblivious form, I actually wasn’t aware The Obelisk was sponsoring the show or I’d have been plugging it much sooner. There were some discussions earlier on and I had thought it just kind of petered out as these things sometimes do, but I’m honored to have the name of this site associated with such a lineup, with War Crime Recordings who released Kings Destroy‘s A Time of Hunting last year, and of course with St. Vitus Bar, whose reputation at this point spreads well beyond the bounds of Brooklyn. I won’t be sorry to catch Hollow Leg and Holly Hunt when they come through Boston with Ichabod and Balam, but no doubt this is something special, and the poster, by Searing Limb‘s Connor Anderson, certainly lives up to the occasion.

Behold:

Click the image to enlarge for a more detailed look (click it again to remove). For more on the Anderson‘s work, this show, the Holly Hunt/Hollow Leg tour dates and how you can contribute to Edge‘s continuing fight, check the links below.

Searing Limb on Thee Facebooks

Kings Destroy on Thee Facebooks

Lumbar on Thee Facebooks

Hollow Leg/Holly Hunt tour

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Lumbar Interview with Aaron Edge and Mike Scheidt (Plus Exclusive Track Stream)

Posted in audiObelisk, Features on October 23rd, 2013 by JJ Koczan

Lumbar, “Day Six” from The First and Last Days of Unwelcome

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There’s nothing comfortable about listening to Lumbar‘s debut and quite possibly only outing, The First and Last Days of Unwelcome. A 24-minute full-length comprised of seven tracks of huge tones and fraught wails, screams and psychedelic helplessness, there’s a consuming darkness in the audio that bleeds through the atmosphere in layers of drones, lumbering riffs and varied vocals from the three component members of the project — Aaron Edge (Roareth, Rote Hexe, Hauler, etc.), Tad Doyle (TAD) and Mike Scheidt (YOB, Vhöl) — all of whose personalities are evident throughout the monumental proceedings.

Aaron Edge has spent years bouncing from band to band, new project to new project, as well as working as a graphic designer for Southern Lord (which is releasing Lumbar) and others in a sort of tornado of creativity. In all my dealings with him — Roareth‘s first and only CD came out on The Maple Forum — I’ve found him to be passionate, dedicated and exceedingly driven. The kind of person who’s already there by the time you’re ready to go. Relentless in his energy and will to create, he’s also a marathon runner, long-distance biker, vegan and straightedge. Someone for whom movement both conceptual and physical is the norm. Perhaps because of that it was all the more a shock early this year when he was diagnosed with MS.

Talking to him about it now, several months after the fact, Edge hardly remembers how he spent the 40 solid days in bed from the pain, but it was during this traumatic time that he wrote what would become Lumbar (and two other in-progress projects) once Scheidt and Doyle got involved. The name Lumbar derives from the medical procedure “lumbar puncture,” also known as a spinal tap, wherein a needle is inserted between the vertebrae of a person’s back and spinal fluid is collected for diagnosis. Edge has had a few at this point, and one could easily look at The First and Last Days of Unwelcome as the same kind of process.

Because where many might allow for some distance — that is, might wait until an experience is over and then write an album about it — in LumbarEdge thrusts listeners into the moment itself. The album’s seven tracks, broken down as “Day One,” “Day Two” and so on, are like a transcription of agony. There isn’t distance or the feeling of safety that distance might provide. With Scheidt and Doyle contributing to the vocal arrangements and recording, Edge tells a story through captured moments that’s haunting, tragic, beautiful, hopeful at times and incomplete in the way that life itself is incomplete and in the way that his story, his battle with this disease, is ongoing and continues to shape what has become his being.

In the interviews that follow, Edge discusses how Lumbar came together, working with Scheidt and recording with Doyle, the relationships he’s had with the two over the years, doing art for YOB and playing drums for a time in Doyle‘s band, Brothers of the Sonic Cloth, as well as sharing the first listen to the finished product of The First and Last Days of Unwelcome with family and friends in a moment of communal support, while Scheidt — checking in from Idaho on a solo tour alongside Uzala — expands on his friendship with Edge, how he came to be involved in Lumbar and his feelings on how the album came out.

Because I spoke to Edge first, then Scheidt, that’s how I’ve chosen to present the Q&As. If you haven’t yet, check out “Day Six,” one of the album’s most exceedingly righteous stretches, on the player above.

The First and Last Days of Unwelcome will be released on LP and digital through Southern Lord on Nov. 26, with CD to follow from the band and a cassette through Holy Mountain.

As always, thanks for reading. Interviews are after the jump.

Read more »

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Visual Evidence: Aaron Edge Gets His Goat out to Fight MS

Posted in Visual Evidence on August 19th, 2013 by JJ Koczan

While I’m not sure I agree with the initial assertion of the product copy below — I’d argue otherwise at very least on a level of exclusivity that metal is no more about hate than it is love, pumpkin pie or any other single thing — the ultimate mission going on here is one to support. Earlier this year, former Roareth guitarist and friend of the site Aaron Edge was diagnosed with MS and has been fighting the disease since, accumulating medical bills and all the other expenses that arise when your body betrays you.

To help offset some of these costs, Edge‘s Invisible Hour design company has put together the goat-tastic “Metalheads Against MS” shirt you see below, followed by a link to the shirt pre-order:

Metal is about hatred. It’s about disgust and distrust. It’s about the release of energy and rage. Metal has (and will always be) about aggression via heavy riffs and lyrics. Metal contains a strong disdain for the sheep that follow blindly, for those that lack of their own opinion, for all who give up without a fight. That said, some hands dealt to us require true strength to persevere. Some are forced to fight harder. This shirt is dedicated to them, specifically those that struggle to control the terrible disease that is Multiple Sclerosis. Channel your hate, the hatred for MS.

This two-color, American Apparel fine jersey shirt is 100% cotton and printed in the United States. The beautifully illustrated goat was done by Invisible Hour. This pre-order is only up for two weeks!

http://holymountainprinting.bigcartel.com/product/metal-heads-against-ms

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Aaron Edge Needs Your Support — Plus You Get a Shirt Out of the Deal

Posted in Label Stuff on March 21st, 2013 by JJ Koczan

When Aaron Edge first hit me up to put out a CD by his band Roareth, I had barely given thought to starting a record label as an extension of what I was doing with The Obelisk. It was one of many passing ideas that, were it not for his “get off your ass and do it” — a bonus considering it didn’t actually require I get off my ass — I probably would never have had the motivation to make it happen. I know The Maple Forum hasn’t exactly changed the world, but I’ve been able to support projects I believe in and I’ve had a lot of fun in the process. Aaron Edge was instrumental in making that happen.

To run through the list of bands Aaron has been in over the years is an exhausting undertaking. In and out of acts like Roareth (short-lived and badass as they were), Brothers of the Sonic Cloth, Harkonen, Iamthethorn, Grievous, he’s also done design work for Southern Lord, YOB, and countless others. He designed the Maple Forum logo that I use on all the label’s sporadic releases. Some people just can’t sit still, and that’s an ethic that has seen Aaron move from Seattle to Los Angeles to Portland over the last several years, all the while remaining an active part of both the creative underground and building a name and having an impact in the world of distance biking and running with the #furtherfasterforever hash tag and the community that’s built up around it.

Aaron was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis on March 6 after months of pain and tests. When he emailed me last night, he was in the ER again. The pain is tremendous and of a scale matched perhaps only by the medical bills. There’s no cure, and on freelancer wages, he’s taken a hit on the financial end as well as physically and emotionally. A fund has been set up to help Aaron keep up with the costs of his treatment — which will be ongoing — and the good people at #furtherfasterforever are giving a shirt away with donations the design for which you can see below:

So, as it was Aaron’s call to action that inspired me to start The Maple Forum, I hope you’ll take the time and give him some support when he needs it most.

Read an interview with Aaron about his situation here: http://furtherfasterforever.com/blog/aaron-edge/

Buy a shirt and donate here: http://furtherfasterforever.com/store/products/limited-edition-when-life-deals-you-a-bad-hand-t-shirt/

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