Ape Machine Hit the Road Starting Nov. 9; New Album in 2017

Posted in Whathaveyou on November 1st, 2016 by H.P. Taskmaster

ape machine

Well yeah, it’s been a few months, so seems like it’s about time again for Ape Machine to announce a string of tour dates. The Portland, Oregon, four-piece will head out to shut the door on Spring 2016’s Coalition of the Unwilling (review here), which they released via Heavy Psych Sounds, and move ahead with road-testing new songs as they make ready to record a fourth long-player. Presumably that’ll be out sometime early next year, though whether through Heavy Psych Sounds or Ripple Music, which handled their prior full-length, 2013’s Mangled by the Machine (review here), remains to be seen. And by that I mean I don’t know. Just being honest, folks. Gotta stay humble.

The band sent the dates down the PR wire:


Ape Machine West Coast tour

Ape Machine is planning for one more run of dates before the year’s up. We’re basically wanting to try out some new material and have some studio time booked to start working on the next (fourth) full-length. We figured we might as well go rock a few shows while we’re at it!

November 9th: Starlite Lounge – Sacramento, CA
November 10th: Frank’s Place – Fresno, CA
November 11th: Til Two Club – San Diego, CA
November 12th: Pier View Pub – Oceanside, CA
November 13th: Silverlake Lounge – Los Angeles, CA
November 16th: Dante’s – Portland, OR
November 17th: Funhouse – Seattle, WA

The name APE MACHINE is a nod to the days of reel-to-reel magnetic tape audio recording; a fitting moniker for the Portland heavy-hitting quartet as the band plays through vintage tube amplifiers and lays down its songs using exclusively throwback quality studio equipment.

With a heady mix of animal aggression and technical precision, APE MACHINE’s music carries an organic depth and warmth rarely heard since the time of rock’s glorious early years (or your Dad’s bad ass record collection) infused with an exceptional modern sensibility. When the mystical lyrics of vocalist Caleb Heinze lock in with the band’s stone-cold groove, the band demonstrates an earth-shaking ability to rock. A true four-piece, the group has been called “a rock and roll band with a finger on the pulse of the 70’s and their asses firmly in the present” and “real heavy-psych for the iPhone generation” that delivers “true guts and glory rock and roll”.

Caleb Heinze – Vocals
Ian Watts – Guitar
Brian True – Bass
Damon De La Paz – Drums


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Mane of the Cur Post “Uncovering Time” Video; Playing Ceremony of Sludge V this Weekend

Posted in Bootleg Theater on September 15th, 2016 by H.P. Taskmaster


This weekend, Portland, Oregon, five-piece Mane of the Cur take part in Ceremony of Sludge V at the High Water Mark Lounge, which may or may not be the final edition of the festival. To mark the occasion, they’ve released a new single called “Uncovering Time” and have put up a video accompanying the track, which is their first since their first EP, Three of Cups (review here), came out last year. The new track finds the returning lineup of vocalist Melynda Amann, guitarist Shawn Mentzer, bassist Cory DeCaire, drummer Blaine Burnham and keyboardist Nate Baisch digging further into atmospheric heavy rock, a natural foundation set in the rhythm section on which the keys and vocals build with melody and progressive undertones.

I dug the EP, and “Uncovering Time” shows growth in progress on the part of the band, so I’m in no way inclined to argue as Mane of the Cur figure out where they want to place elements in their mix, the keys rising here to fill space as the guitars step back, Amann‘s vocals taking the fore before relinquishing again to instrumental push. It’s a quick but telling four and a half minutes, and though it’s the first I’ve heard of what they may have put together since their last time out, I wouldn’t be surprised if there was more to come soon. In the interim, they should be right at home at Ceremony of Sludge V alongside groups like He Whose Ox is GoredSerial HawkHoly GroveDisenchanter and more.

If you happen to be in the Pacific Northwest, you’ll find the info for that show and links under the video for “Uncovering Time” below. Please enjoy:

Mane of the Cur, “Uncovering Time” official video

Ceremony of Sludge V

September 16 – September 17
High Water Mark Lounge
6800 NE Martin Luther King Jr Blvd, Portland, Oregon 97211

Good filthy fun.

Come celebrate our fifth (and perhaps final) year of dredging up the grittiest, haziest and most scorching heavy music roiling in the murk of our fine region’s musical under-underground.

He Whose Ox is Gored
Serial Hawk
Holy Grove
Drunk Dad
Hair Puller
Mane of the Cur

Mane of the Cur on Thee Facebooks

Mane of the Cur on Bandcamp

Ceremony of Sludge on Thee Facebooks

Ceremony of Sludge V event page

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Red Fang Continue Collaboration with Whitey McConnaughy in “Shadows” Video

Posted in Bootleg Theater on September 14th, 2016 by H.P. Taskmaster


Look, some shit just works. This track taken from their upcoming LP, Only Ghosts (out Oct. 10 on Relapse), marks the sixth time that Portland, Oregon’s Red Fang have collaborated with video director Whitey McConnaughy, and clearly it’s a system that isn’t broken. Hell, I think you could very easily make the argument that it was the viral takeoff from “Prehistoric Dog” from their 2009 self-titled debut that had a major part in Relapse picking them up for 2011’s Murder the Mountains (review here). And each subsequent clip the four-piece and McConnaughy have made together has been likewise entertaining and likewise successful. Remember “Wires” (posted here)? That was awesome.

You’ve probably seen this already — because the internet — but I wanted to get “Shadows” posted anyway, particularly as it comes coupled with a mighty package of tour dates that only further emphasize the fact that in addition to handing heavy rock and roll its ass with songwriting and their sense of humor, Red Fang also outwork just about everybody on the road. One doubts they’re sleeping on floors at this point, or at least not every night, but even as they moved through 2013’s Whales and Leeches (discussed here), they have kept that ethic going and as a result have become a powerhouse live act worthy of stepping into the headliner role they’ve taken on over the last several years. Dudes kill it. On just about every level.

Interested to dig into the Ross Robinson-produced Only Ghosts, and “Shadows” provides even more intrigue.


Red Fang, “Shadows” official video

Red Fang mess with the wrong comic book collectors in the band’s new video for “Shadows.”

“We had the pleasure of working with Whitey (McConnaughy) again on another music video,” Red Fang singer/guitar player Bryan Giles explains of the Predator like clip. “It was a crazy adventure through the woods in rural Oregon. It has stunt men, real firepower and some great explosions! We had a blast on this one.”

The video is the sixth video to pair Red Fang and director McConnaughy with the first clip from the partnership being 2010’s “Prehistoric Dog,” which saw the Portland-based band challenge a local role playing troupe only to suffer the consequences. The most recent video from the band is the 2013 clip featuring Fred Armisen and a horde of beer thirsty zombies in “Blood Like Cream.”

“Shadows” is the second new song to preview music from the band’s Ross Robinson produced album, Only Ghosts (Oct. 14, Relapse Records).

The band kick off an extensive fall tour on Sept. 26 with the first leg being a month of European tour dates followed by a month of U.S. dates. Label mates Torche will open on both runs with Whores joining the U.S. dates.

Red Fang tour dates:
September 22 Portland, OR Northwest Hesh Fest
September 26 Brighton, UK Concorde 2
September 27 London, UK Koko
September 28 Bristol, UK Bierkeller
September 29 Leeds, UK Leeds Stylus
September 30 Manchester, UK Manchester Academy 2
October 2 Birmingham, UK Institute2
October 3 Glasgow, UK Garage
October 4 Newcastle, UK Riverside
October 5 Southampton, UK Engine Rooms
October 7 Athens, Greece Desert Fest
October 9 Paris, France Trabendo
October 10 Munich, Germany Strom
October 11 Vienna, Austria Szene Wien
October 12 Berlin, Germany Huxleys
October 13 Cologne, Germany Essigfabrik
October 14 Antwerp, Belgium Desert Fest
October 15 Leipzig, Germany Conne Island
October 16 Hamburg, Germany Markethalle
October 18 Odense, Denmark Posten
October 19 Oslo, Norway John Dee
October 20 Stockholm, Sweden Debaser Medis
October 21 Malmo, Sweden KB
October 22 Munster, Germany Skater’s Place
October 23 Karlsruhe, Germany Substage
October 24 Amsterdam, Netherlands Melkweg (OZ)

November 18 San Francisco, CA Slim’s
November 19 Pomona, CA Glasshouse
November 20 Los Angeles, CA Teragram Ballroom
November 22 San Diego, CA Casbah
November 23 Phoenix, AZ Rebel Lounge
November 25 Austin, TX Mohawk
November 26 Dallas, TX Three Links
November 27 Houston, TX Warehouse Studio
November 29 Atlanta, GA Masquerade (Hell)
November 30 Durham, NC Motorco
December 1 Washington, DC Rock and Roll Hotel
December 2 Philadelphia, PA Underground Arts
December 3 Brooklyn, NY Music Hall of Williamsburg
December 4 Boston, MA The Sinclair
December 5 New York, NY Mercury Lounge
December 7 Pittsburgh, PA Spirit Lounge
December 8 Cleveland, OH Beachland Ballroom
December 9 Detroit, MI El Club
December 10 Chicago, IL Metro
December 11 Bloomington, IL Castle Theater
December 13 Denver, CO Bluebird Theater
December 14 Salt Lake City, UT Urban Lounge
December 15 Boise, ID Neurolux
December 16 Seattle, WA Showbox

Torche appears on all European and U.S. dates except Heshfest
Whores appear on all U.S. dates except Heshfest

Red Fang website

Red Fang on Thee Facebooks

Only Ghosts preorder at Relapse Records

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R.I.P. to Release In the Wind on RidingEasy Records Dec. 9

Posted in Whathaveyou on September 13th, 2016 by H.P. Taskmaster


Portland four-piece R.I.P. released their debut album, In the Wind (review here), through Totem Cat Records back in March, and as they embarked on a West Coast tour this past weekend, the news came in that the band has been picked up by the rightly-venerated RidingEasy Records for a new version of the outing. Solid company to keep on the part of the group all around, who notably tag themselves as “street doom” and endeavor to live up to that gritty an ethic, and who’ve shared the track “Black Leather” below in case anyone who hasn’t yet gotten a taste of In the Wind would like to get one.

From the PR wire:


R.I.P. sign to RidingEasy Records, share first track from forthcoming debut album

Speedy gutter-metal group kicks off tour of Western U.S.

Portland, OR quartet R.I.P. announce their signing to L.A. label RidingEasy Records to release their debut album In The Wind later this year.

Operating on the belief that heavy metal didn’t come from the forest or beam down from outer space, but rather that it crawled up out of the sewer and writhed to life in the grit and grime of the streets, the four rock ‘n’ roll freaks of R.I.P. call their sound “Street Doom” and spread the message with heavy touring across the United States. Obsessed with death and disgusted with the scene, they dragged their knuckles into the studio in 2016 and excavated a debut LP dedicated to fear and trembling, calling it In The Wind.

R.I.P. is defined by fast, regressive riffs, terrified vocals, live shows akin to near-death experiences, and steadfast adherence to the notion that doom isn’t how slow or de-tuned you can play, but the combination of fear, death, and leather. In The Wind is just the right level of down ‘n’ dirty guttural rock that cuts and chews with raw fury.

In The Wind will be available everywhere on LP, CD and download on December 9th, 2016 via RidingEasy Records.

09/13 San Diego, CA @ Till 2 Club
09/14 Encinitas, CA @ The Saloon
09/15 Flagstaff, AZ @ Flag Brew
09/16 Santa Fe, NM @ The Cave
09/17 Denver, CO @ The Squire
09/19 Reno, NV @ @ Shea’s Tavern
09/20 San Fransisco, CA @ the Knockout

Artist: R.I.P.
Album: In The Wind
Record label: RidingEasy Records
Release date: December 9th, 2016

01) The Scythe
02) In The Wind pt.1
03) Tremble
04) Black Leather
05) Smoke & Lightning
06) In The Wind pt. 2
07) The Tombstone
08) Bereaved
09) Brave In the Grave
10) In The Wind pt. 3


R.I.P., “Black Leather”

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Giveaway: Enter to Win a 3-Day Pass to Northwest Hesh Fest 2016!

Posted in Features on September 12th, 2016 by H.P. Taskmaster


[TO ENTER GIVEAWAY: Leave a comment on this post with your email address in the form. You’ll be contacted at that address if you win.]

Sorry, but the lineup here pretty much sells itself. Over three nights, Sept. 22-24, at Dante’s in Portland, Oregon, Northwest Hesh Fest 2016 will host:

Night 1:
Red Fang
American Sharks
Witch Mountain

Night 2:
Uncle Acid and the Deadbeats

Night 3:
The Blood Royale

If you enter now by leaving a comment on this post, you can win a three-day pass to see all of the above and get a limited, signed screenprint of the poster shown here, of which only 100 are being made. Obviously, you need to get your ass to Portland — if I could afford to fly you in, I would, believe me — but barring for anyone in that part of the world who’s maybe been on the fence about going or just hasn’t managed to buy tickets yet, yeah, entering seems like it would be kind of a no-brainer. High “duh” factor and whatnot.

For the headliners alone, never mind the chance to see locals like Witch Mountain, Danava and Diesto tear it up alongside imports from Austin, Texas, like American Sharks, The Blood Royale, Banquet and Greenbeard, essentially pairing two of the country’s strongest scenes — Portland and Austin — and topping it not only with the Pacific Northwest’s number one heavy rock export in Red Fang, but bringing up Uncle Acid and the Deadbeats on their tour with The Shrine, as well as Deafheaven, who seem to divide opinion everywhere they go while consistently drawing a crowd from both sides of the argument.

Killer lineups, killer shows, free pass and free poster. Like I said, it sells itself. One winner picked a week from today. Thanks to all who enter and to American Icon for letting me host the giveaway.

[TO ENTER GIVEAWAY: Leave a comment on this post with your email address in the form. You’ll be contacted at that address if you win.]

Northwest Hesh Fest on Thee Facebooks

Northwest Hesh Fest 2016 tickets at Eventbrite

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Eight Bells Announce New Lineup and Pacific Northwest Shows

Posted in Whathaveyou on August 5th, 2016 by H.P. Taskmaster

So, blackened experimentalists Eight Bells currently list their lineup as consisting of guitarist/vocalist/founder Melynda Jackson, bassist Dan Barone and bassist/vocalist/synthesist Melynda Marie Amann. Something tells me the Portland-based outfit might not be done announcing lineup changes considering there isn’t a drummer mentioned anywhere in there. Rae Amitay played on the band’s second album, Landless (review here), which came out earlier this year on Battleground Records, but I guess it’s entirely possible they’ll get someone else for the role if she’s not still in it.

The PR wire brings the latest update and a couple dates Eight Bells will do with SubRosa in the Pacific Northwest:

eight bells poster

EIGHT BELLS: Experimental Doom Unit Announces Updated Lineup; November Shows With SubRosa Confirmed

Experimental doom unit EIGHT BELLS — featuring within their eclectic ranks guitarist/vocalist Melynda Jackson, formerly of SubArachnoid Space, the San Francisco psych rockers whose final album, released in 2009 on Crucial Blast, is the origin of the EIGHT BELLS name — is pleased to welcome bassist/SubArachnoid Space alumni Dan Barone and Melynda Amann of Portland’s Jamais Jamais to the fold.

Comments Jackson of the band’s new recruits: “I am super excited for this upcoming next chapter. I am thrilled to be playing again after five or so years with Dan Barone. He played a writing role as well as bass on the final SubArachnoid Space album, and I feel lucky to have reunited with him. Melynda — yes we have the same name spelled the same way — honors me by joining. She will be adding some keyboard and of course her amazing voice. To have our first performance in Portland be with our friends in SubRosa is amazing, and we can’t wait to travel with them, even if it is short but sweet!”

The trio-turned-quartet will play their first shows together this Fall supporting SubRosa with additional live appearances in the plotting stages.

11/16/2016 Mississippi Studios – Portland, OR w/ SubRosa, Jamais Jamais
11/17/2016 Cobalt – Vancouver BC w/ SubRosa
11/18/2016 Highline – Seattle, WA w/ SubRosa

EIGHT BELLS released their sophomore full-length, Landless, via Battleground Records earlier this year.

EIGHT BELLS was forged in 2010 by Melynda Jackson (SubArachnoid Space) and began as a songwriting collaboration with jazz-trained six-string bassist Haley Westeiner and drummer Chris Van Huffel. Based in Portland, Oregon, EIGHT BELLS explores dark sonic realms with a blackened dissonance combined with ethereal and haunting female vocals.


Eight Bells, Landless (2016)

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Red Fang Announce First US Tour for New Album Only Ghosts

Posted in Whathaveyou on August 4th, 2016 by H.P. Taskmaster

red fang

The reason I say it’s Red Fang‘s first tour in the US for their new album Only Ghosts is because we know damn well it won’t be the last. Forerunners of Portland’s heavy rock scene and having already had a significant influence on the development thereof, Red Fang will issue Only Ghosts on Oct. 14 via Relapse Records, and while they were already booked to head overseas with Torche when the record was announced and the first track streamed, it seems the two groups will partner for a US run a few weeks after the European one is finished. Whores will also join in on the fun for the US dates, which bring the band right up to the holidays.

Doubtless they’ll be back on the road in 2017 — the future! — so keep an eye out in the next couple months for more to come. A corresponding Spring run doesn’t seem unlikely, though we also know that’s when a lot of US acts go abroad to take advantage of festival season. Either way, the cycle is just starting, as much as it ever stopped.

From the PR wire:

red fang us dates

RED FANG Announce US Tour With Torche; Music Featured on PBR Can Crusher Pinball Machine

In addition to their recently-announced UK/EU dates this coming fall, Portland hard rockers RED FANG have announced a new US tour with labelmates Torche set to kick off this November. The trek will see the bands touring from coast to coast in support of their signature brands of stoner metal for a full month. Noise rockers Whores will also support; tickets will be on sale this Friday at 10 AM PST. Check out a full itinerary of dates below.

After three years of vigorously touring the world, RED FANG, the beer-loving Portland-based rock band re-emerge with their greatest and latest full-length album, Only Ghosts. Produced by the legendary Ross Robinson (At The Drive In, The Cure, Slipknot, and many more) and mixed by Joe Barresi (Queens of the Stone Age, Kyuss, Melvins), Only Ghosts consists of 10 new tracks of the band’s signature, high-impact, hook-filled, hard rock. RED FANG prove once again they are top-notch songwriters who have mastered the heavy anthem without taking themselves too seriously. Only Ghosts is a rock album of incredible magnitude that demands to be played at maximum volume!

Only Ghosts is set for release this October 14 on CD/LP/Digital via Relapse Records. Physical pre-orders are available via Relapse.com here, and digital pre-orders can be found at the band’s Bandcamp page at this location.

Aug 4 Copenhagen, DK Jr Vega
Aug 5 Wacken, DE Wacken Open Air
Aug 6 Utrecht, NL Tivoli Pandora
Aug 7 Lokeren, BE Lokerse Feesten

Aug 17 Tacoma, WA Jazzbones
Aug 18 Walla Walla, WA Main Street Studios
Aug 19 Missoula, MT The Palace Lounge
Aug 21 Spokane, WA All Age Rage @ The Viking
Sept 22 Portland, OR Northwest Hesh Fest

**All Dates from Nov 18 – Dec 16 with Torche and Whores***
Nov 18 San Francisco, CA Slims
Nov 19 Pomona, CA Glasshouse
Nov 20 Los Angeles, CA Terragram Ballroom
Nov 22 San Diego, CA Casbah
Nov 23 Phoenix, AZ Rebel Lounge
Nov 25 Austin, TX Mohawk
Nov 26 Dallas, TX Three Links
Nov 27 Houston, TX Warehouse Studio
Nov 29 Atlanta, GA Masquerade (Hell)
Nov 30 Durham, NC Motorco
Dec 1 Washington, DC Rock and Roll Hotel
Dec 2 Philadelphia, PA Underground Arts
Dec 4 Boston, MA The Sinclair
Dec 5 New York, NY Mercury Lounge
Dec 7 Pittsburgh, PA Spirit Lounge
Dec 8 Cleveland, OH Beachland Ballroom
Dec 9 Detroit, MI El Club
Dec 10 Chicago, IL Metro
Dec 11 Bloomington, IL Castle Theater
Dec 13 Denver, CO Bluebird Theater
Dec 14 Salt Lake City, UT Urban Lounge
Dec 15 Boise, ID Nuerolox
Dec 16 Seattle, WA Showbox

***All Dates with Torche***
Sept 26 Brighton, UK Concorde 2
Sept 27 London, UK Koko
Sept 28 Bristol, UK Bierkeller
Sept 29 Leeds, UK Leeds Stylus
Sept 30 Manchester, UK Manchester Academy 2
Oct 2 Birmingham, UK Institute2
Oct 3 Glasgow, UK Garage
Oct 4 Newcastle, UK Riverside
Oct 5 Southampton, UK Engine Rooms
Oct 7 Athens, Greece Desert Fest
Oct 9 Paris, FR Trabendo
Oct 10 Munich, DE Strom
Oct 11 Vienna, AT Szene Wien
Oct 12 Berlin, DE Huxleys
Oct 13 Cologne, DE Essigfabrik
Oct 14 Antwerp, BE Desertfest
Oct 15 Leipzig, DE Conne Island
Oct 16 Hamburg, DE Markthalle
Oct 18 Odense, DK Posten
Oct 19 Oslo, NO John Dee
Oct 20 Stockholm, SE Debaser Medis
Oct 21 Malmo, SE KB
Oct 22 Munster, DE Skater’s Place
Oct 23 Karlsruhe, DE Substage
Oct 24 Amsterdam, NL Melkweg (OZ)

The band has also premiered the first in a multi-part series of behind-the-scenes webisodes documenting their studio sessions for Only Ghosts. The clip, which can be seen here or below, focuses on John Sherman and the drum tracks for the new album.

Additionally, RED FANG’s music and likeness are featured on Pabst Blue Ribbon’s new pinball machine, the Can Crusher, which was unveiled at San Diego Comic-Con. The machine, developed in partnership with Stern Pinball, Inc., features a retro game design with art by Dirty Donny.

John Sherman – Drums
Aaron Beam – Bass, Vocals
David Sullivan – Guitar
Maurice Bryan Giles – Guitar, Vocals


Red Fang, Only Ghosts In-Studio Episode 1 – Drums

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Murcielago Announce Hiatus; Farewell Show this Weekend

Posted in Whathaveyou on August 3rd, 2016 by H.P. Taskmaster

Fare thee well to Portland, Maine, heavy rockers Murcielago, who will wrap seven years together this weekend with a hometown show at Portland House of Music and Events. The dual-guitar four-piece, which happens to feature Ian Ross of Roadsaw on guitar alongside guitarist Matthew Robbins, bassist/vocalist Neil Collins and drummer Brian Chaloux, issued their self-titled debut in 2014 and have been playing local shows in New England for the last half-decade or more. Their disbanding — hiatus? breakup?; one word is as good as the other — comes with the caveat that they might decide to get back together at some point and jam again, and honestly I doubt anyone would hold it against them if they did just that.

After sharing the stage recently with the recently-reactivated Scissorfight, they’ll close out their tenure alongside Eldemur Krimm and Pigboat this Saturday, Aug. 6, at the aforementioned venue. Their announcement and the info for the show follows here, as well as the stream of the self-titled for anyone who’d like to hear what they missed:


Murcielago (Last Show!) with Eldemur Krimm and Pigboat

Aug 6 at 9 PM

Portland House of Music and Events
25 Temple St, Portland, Maine 04101

We’ve decided to take a long bow after an excellent 7 year run. Thank You all who have come to our shows, bought our music and merchandise, and told your friends. We are grateful and humbled.

Many thanks to Nick Lamberto for getting us going, huge thanks to Benny Grotto and Mad Oak Studios for excellent work. Many thanks to the bands and promoters we’ve been lucky enough to work with during our time.

Come say goodnight to Murcielago as we send ourselves off with great friends Eldemur Krimm and Pigboat. We THANK YOU dearly for the years of support.

Neil Collins- bass, vocals
Ian Ross- guitar (right channel)
Matthew Robbins- guitar (left channel)
Brian Chaloux- drums


Murcielago, Murcielago (2014)

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