Tour of the Doomed Launches this Weekend with The Skull, Sheavy, Apostle of Solitude and More

Posted in The Obelisk Presents on August 7th, 2017 by JJ Koczan

This coming Saturday, Aug. 12, sees the launch of the Obelisk-presented Tour of the Doomed at a special nine-band kickoff in Milwaukee with The Skull, Sheavy, Beelzefuzz, Castle, Spillage, Apostle of Solitude, Red Desert, Attalla and Son of the Morning. Mercyful Mike Smith, who put the shindig together, has stopped short of calling it an incarnation of the Days of the Doomed fest he formerly ran out of The Blue Pig/The Metal Grill in Cudahy, WI, which I was fortunate enough to attend a couple times, but needless to say, the spirit is there one way or the other for the all-day event that will send Sheavy, Beelzefuzz and Spillage on their way for a week-long run culminating at the Saint Vitus Bar in Brooklyn on Aug. 19.

Ticket links and such are below as a refresher, and take special note as you peruse the dates of the locals added to each gig. From Apostle of Solitude to Argus to Reign of Zaius, each night of Tour of the Doomed brings a local or local-ish act on board that genuinely adds something to the bill. Looks like it’s going to be an awesome tour, and though I know I said so before, I’m thrilled to be able to have a hand in presenting it.

Here’s the info:

For the first time EVER, Canadian stoner/doom legends Sheavy land in the US, and Milwaukee gets to host the kick off of the Tour Of The Doomed! In true Days Of The Doomed Fest style, we present a full day of monumental riffs by the greatest heavy bands going today! Just look at this line up:

The Skull (ONLY midwest show of the summer!)
sHeavy (first time ever in the US!)
Castle (very special fly in show!)
Apostle of Solitude
Red Desert
Son Of The Morning

This monstrous marathon of molten doom metal starts at 2:00!

Tickets for this show can be purchased here:
$20 Adv / $25 DoS!

Set times are as follows:
2:30 – 3:15 Son Of The Morning
3:35 – 4:20 Attalla
4:40 – 5:25 Red Desert
5:45 – 6:30 Apostle Of Solitude
6:50 – 7:35 Spillage
7:55 – 8:40 Castle
9:00 – 9:45 Beelzefuzz
10:10 – 11:10 Sheavy
11:30 – Close The Skull

TOUR OF THE DOOMED: sHeavy, Spillage & Beelzefuzz
08/12 Club Garibaldi’s Milwaukee WI w/ Apostle of Solitude, The Skull, Castle, Red Desert, Attala & Son of the Morning
08/13 Reggies Chicago IL w/ Apostle of Solitude
08/14 The Melody Inn Indianapolis IN w/ Apostle of Solitude
08/15 New Dodge Lounge Detroit MI w/ Karmic Lava & Marjorie’s Cane
08/16 The Foundry Cleveland OH w/ Argus, Sparrowmilk & Dead East Garden
08/17 Howlers Pittsburgh PA w/ Argus
08/18 The Depot York PA w/ WitchHazel
08/19 Saint Vitus Bar Brooklyn NY w/ Pale Divine & Reign of Zaius (no Spillage)

Brought to you by Mercyful Mike Management & Productions and Days Of The Doomed Fest!

Sheavy, “1111111111”

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Days of the Doomed Fest Announces ‘Tour of the Doomed’

Posted in The Obelisk Presents, Whathaveyou on April 14th, 2017 by JJ Koczan

Today I’m proud to count The Obelisk among the presenters for the Tour of the Doomed — the traveling incarnation of the Wisconsin-based festival Days of the Doomed set to take place this summer. I had some great times out in Cudahy at Days of the Doomed, so it’s awesome to see Mercyful Mike Smith take his game to this important next level, and all the better for the fact that the week-long run will head east, starting out at the fest’s home base of The Metal Grill — formerly The Blue Pig — and finishing in Brooklyn at the Saint Vitus Bar in Brooklyn.

The lineup is three bands strong with Sheavy headlining and supported by Beelzefuzz and Spillage, covering a swath of heavy from the doom-tinged Chicago-style deep-dishery of Spillage through the progressive oddness that always emanates from Beelzefuzz on stage to the we’ve-long-since-mastered-this riff rock Sheavy have been proffering for more than the last 20 years. Not a doubt in my mind the shows will be killer and there might be a few surprises in store along the way as well, so stay tuned for more as we get closer to August.

Poster and announcement from Mercyful Mike himself follow:

tour of the doomed 2017

After a much needed break to focus on work, family, and life in general, 2017 has presented itself as a fine time to bring back Days Of The Doomed Fest. That being said, I wanted to do something different this time around, so I revisited something I had been working on since late 2011. The planets had never lined up for this to happen before, but again, 2017 presented itself as the perfect time for this to work out.

So… prepare yourselves because we are taking Days Of The Doomed Fest on the road!!! I give you TOUR OF THE DOOMED! I am absolutely ecstatic to announce that this tour will be headlined by a legendary band that will be making its first official visit to the US! The one and only… SHEAVY! Stephen Hennessey (lead vocalist) and I have been in touch for the past 6 years trying to make this happen, and we are both stoked to finally make this a reality. Through the years of doing Days Of The Doomed Fest, sHeavy has always been one of the most mentioned bands to be added to the roster. I am so happy to now be able to honor those requests!

Direct support for the tour will be supplied by the undeniably unique, heavy riffs of the mighty Beelzefuzz, and the brilliant, “bluesy-doom” sounds of Chicago’s own Spillage! But that’s not all! Each date on the tour will feature more support acts that make Days Of The Doomed Fest what it is. You will see some favorite alumni acts along the way, and of course be witness to the new crop of riff-worshiping bands as well!

The tour kicks off on 8/12 in Milwaukee, WI, and in true Days Of The Doomed Fest style, I promise you an absolutely insane line up to literally “get the show on the road”! Rosters for each date of the tour will be announced next week, so keep an eye out!

I’m really excited to be bringing Days Of The Doomed Fest to all of you, so come on out and get heavy with us!!! See you in August!!!
–Mercyful Mike

Sheavy, “0000011111”

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Sometimes You Just Gotta Go to the Record Show

Posted in Buried Treasure on October 15th, 2012 by JJ Koczan

It had been a while since I’d been to the Second Saturday Record Show in flood-prone Wayne, NJ. In fact, relatively speaking, my load of CD acquisitions has been light of late, a combination of pricing myself out of the market, saving cash to move, being annoyed at digital promos, etc. But Saturday was the record show and I happened to be in the state, so I wasn’t going to miss it.

The Wayne Firehouse, which is where the show has been held since before time began, was as packed as I’ve ever seen it, and with more vinyl. Believe the hype, I guess. People were pushing through the aisles at crowded tables, and even though I was working under my self-imposed limit to CDs and tapes, I wavered when I happened upon an original LP of the first Goatsnake record. I didn’t buy it, because it was $75, but I came close.

Treasures persisted though. Here’s a quick rundown.

Among the CDs, the self-titled Electric Wizard was the highlight, no doubt about. Original jewel case issue on Rise Above. I’d only had the reissue before that paired it with Come My Fanatics and the digipak that came out even later, so to get the first version was a treat. Of course the album rules, but I already knew that going into it.

Tapes were three for two bucks at one seller’s table, so I grabbed the Dio, Sacred Heart, and Black Sabbath, Mob Rules and Born Again tapes from him, as well as the three-tape set of Carl Reiner and Mel BrooksThe 2,000 Year Old Man, which is a classic. The Ozzy tape came from his as well, which threw off the three-for-two thing, but it was worth the extra 50 cents anyway. I think actually I only wound up paying $2.50 anyhow. Fucking awesome.

The Hendrix tape in the top right corner I bought off a different dude for a buck. It’s a dub of “Top Gear”/BBC stuff (click here to pop up the full tracklist), and yeah, it’s probably all been officially released at this point, but it fucking rules anyway, front to back. 1967. Gorgeous.

The 1996 debut by Canada’s Sheavy was in the same bin as the Electric Wizard (and some Death SS, which I picked up as well), but might have been an even bigger surprise, if only because it was so random. I’ve never been really hooked by the band — though they do take Sabbath worship to a different level entirely and there’s something inherently admirable in that — but the record’s cool and it’s got a handmade-looking foldout included detailing the bonus tracks and even a little pyramid-shaped piece of paper that seems to be a kind of mail-order catalog:

And here’s the foldout, when folded out:

Pretty cool that that stuff would be with the album after all these years, and in impeccable shape at that. The CD was obviously well loved, kept out of sunlight, and so on. Hard not to appreciate stumbling on something like that, no matter how attached to Sheavy‘s work I may or may not be.

One of my main reasons for going in the first place, however, was the hope of picking up a turntable on the cheap. I’ve invested about as much time and effort into trying to repair the one at my office as I care to, and it’s time to move on. They didn’t have any at the record show, which was a bummer, but en route to other errands, The Patient Mrs. found a $40 Best Buy gift card that’s apparently been in my wallet since 2009. Could only be providence, right?

We shot over to the local big-box — a desert of outdated technologies (which actually gave it a certain charm in my eyes) — and grabbed the floor model of one of those “put your LPs on your iPod” turntables for what turned out to be $24 after the gift card was applied. Brought it to the office this morning, and of course it didn’t work. Now I’m 0-2 and I’ve got two busted record players one on top of the other on top of my office shelf unit, which I think makes me some kind of warped reality redneck.

Some you win, some you lose. I’ll try to return it and see if I can give it another go, and I’ve got plenty to keep me busy in the meantime. If nothing else, the growling and howling in “Hound Dog” on that Hendrix tape has the little dog Dio eyeballing the speaker curiously, and that’s bound to be hours of entertainment. Rock and roll.

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Buried Treasure in a Spiral Shadow

Posted in Buried Treasure on November 1st, 2010 by JJ Koczan

It had been my intention to spend yesterday (Sunday) making the November podcast using the suggested Southern theme, but two things kept me from meeting that goal. First was homework, which can’t be helped. Second, and more pivotal, was the fact that I don’t yet own a physical copy of Spiral Shadow by Kylesa.

Fucking tragedy, right?

I tried to remedy this first at Sound Exchange in Wayne, my go-to shop for its proximity to my humble river valley and for the fact that if it’s between them and almost anyone else in the physical realm, I’d rather give them the money. They were a no dice. Thus began the agonizing, drawn-out process of not wanting to drive to Vintage Vinyl in Fords — an hour away on a good day — and knowing that I had zero chance of finding Spiral Shadow anywhere else near me.

My ride to Vintage Vinyl is agony, and not just because I have to spend the whole time anticipating what treasures I might find when I get there. It includes some of Northern New Jersey‘s most cripplingly boring roads, including Rt. 24, Rt. 78 and the ludicrously engineered Garden State Parkway. Nonetheless, at about four o’clock yesterday afternoon, after whining for nearly two hours about how much I didn’t want to make the trip — and no, it’s not lost on me that that’s long enough to make the trip twice over — off I went.

Should’ve called first. They didn’t have it. They’d only gotten a few copies and those were gone. Boy, did I feel stupid. Who does that? Who spends two hours in a car at the prospect of buying a CD without calling first to make sure the store has it?

I drowned my jackass sorrows in picking up The Elf Albums by Ronnie James Dio (and the rest of Elf, who aren’t cool enough to get mentioned on the cover), a used copy of Celestial Hi-Fi by Sheavy, who I never particularly enjoy hearing but keep buying the records of when I see them, Hippie Killer by Bongripper for $6.99, a used copy of the Boris and Ian Astbury collaboration, BXI, and, for $3.99, the version of Entombed‘s Wolverine Blues with the (apparently not) titular Marvel Comics character on the front.

The latter was obviously the find of the trip, but even that wasn’t enough to make me feel like any less of an idiot for spending that much of my day in blind pursuit of Spiral Shadow, which, it should be noted, I still haven’t gotten and is now holding up the November podcast. I don’t own Black Tusk either, but there are enough bands around who sound just like them that I can let that go. The Kylesa I pretty much need. The dude behind the counter said they’d be getting more this week, and I might try another run tomorrow, but needless to say, I’ll be calling first.

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Sheavy Looking to Release Two Albums in 2010; Stream New Track

Posted in Whathaveyou on April 12th, 2010 by JJ Koczan

I’m not the biggest fan in the world of Canadian stoner rockers Sheavy, but hey, at least they’re out there doing what they do. Their upcoming album, The Golden Age of Daredevils is due out next month on I don’t know what label, and as Blabbermouth revealed this weekend, they’ve already got a follow-up written and mostly recorded. The new new album is to be called Disfigurine, so, you know, good for them, working hard. Here’s the story:

St. John’s, Newfoundland, Canada “stoner” rockers Sheavy have completed work on their new album, The Golden Age of Daredevils, for a tentative May release. The CD was recorded as part of the RPM (Record Production Month) challenge, a creative challenge offered yearly to musicians, similar to other time-based challenges such as NaNoWriMo (the National Novel Writing Month held each November).

A song from The Golden Age of Daredevils is available for streaming at this location.

Sheavy‘s second new project, entitled Disfigurine is almost finished as well. According to the band, “vocals need to be done on three tracks and then it’s off for mixing and mastering. This album should be available in early July.”

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Sheavy and the Republic of “Meh”

Posted in Buried Treasure on August 28th, 2009 by JJ Koczan

Sheavy is one of those bands who I never really listen to, but whose records I inevitably pick up when I find them used. It’s like we keep bumping into each other, Sheavy and I, and we have a little bit of awkward conversation — “Oh hey, didn’t see you there, guess I’ll buy you because you’re stoner rock and I’m the stoner rock guy…” — and then they sit on my shelf and gather dust. Blah.

Egh.Nothing against them, I’m just not that into it, and to be fair, I don’t have Blue Sky Mind, which as I understand it is their best work. But, already owning Synchronized and The Electric Sleep, I picked up 2005’s Republic? for five bucks a couple weeks back at Vintage Vinyl here in Jersey, thinking the worst that could happen would be the record sucked and I wouldn’t listen to it again.

Well, I’ve listened to it once — not even the whole way through — and that’s it. I don’t know why, since I get off on all kinds of generic stoner stuff, but Sheavy doesn’t do it for me. Vocalist Steve Hennessey‘s Ozzy impression is spot on, the riffs are cool and there’s nothing wrong with the sound of the band, but I have a hard time convincing myself I care. Republic? is no different.

Am I way off on this one? Is there something I’m missing? Maybe when they drop their new album, The Golden Age of Daredevils, this fall, I’ll give it another shot. Or maybe I’ll just wait a year or two, find it used, and be underwhelmed. One never knows how these things will work out.

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Sheavy Lose a Guitarist, Enter a Golden Age

Posted in Whathaveyou on June 1st, 2009 by JJ Koczan

Band on the couch! Band on the couch! (Okay, so maybe you don't get the full Paul McCartney vibe in the photo caption, but dammit, I'd like to see you do better)Looks like everyone’s favorite Newfoundland stoner rockers (and there’s so much competition!) Sheavy are now sans guitarist Dan Moore. No word on what wholesome activities Moore is up to now that he’s out of the band, but vocalist Steve Hennessey issued the following update and revealed the band’s new album title:

“Some of you may be aware of the fact that Dan Moore has left Sheavy after 16 years of faithful service. We want to thank Dan for all the songs and the memories. You will be missed, my friend. But, as they say, life goes on, and so will the band. We have about 16 ?new songs?[one for each year Dan was in the band]?written and by the looks of it we’ll pen a few more before heading to the studio in August. We’re all pretty excited about the new stuff and we’re really looking forward to putting together a new record. So, look forward to The Golden Age of Daredevils later this fall.”

Sheavy in happier times:

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