Midnight Premiere: When the Deadbolt Breaks, “The Woods are Full of Killers”

Posted in Bootleg Theater on January 2nd, 2015 by H.P. Taskmaster

when the deadbolt breaks the woods are full of killers

I don’t know much of anything about anything, but if you’re out in the woods and you see the above aviator-plague-beak-robe-guy hanging out with a couple cronies, some in, some out of gas masks,  you have just entered the wrong woods. But then again, Connecticut trio When the Deadbolt Breaks could probably write a song about a laundromat and make it horrifying. Some bands just have a gift.

It’s midnight, and tonight is the release party for When the Deadbolt Breaks‘ video, “The Woods are Full of Killers,” which is the second clip from 2013’s Drifting Towards the Edge of the Earth. It’s a special night, with guitarist/vocalist Aaron Lewis pulling a sort of triple-duty in the malevolent drone-doomers Deadbolt and the more rock-minded Buzzard Canyon while also showing not only this video but a selection of his photography as well at The Reserve in Meriden, CT, which I’m not familiar with but surely isn’t prepared for the onslaught of volume it will have received by the time this goes live. The show also marks the live debut of new drummer Dumas, who’ll be entering the studio with Lewis and bassist Mike Parkyn later this year to record their next full-length.

“The Woods are Full of Killers” itself is a monster. A 13-minute onslaught of jet-black psychedelic drones and visceral sludge, it takes its time to unfold as one might expect, and works at a grueling pace to craft a threatening, chaotic swirl. The video switches back and forth between a narrative — bondage ritual in the woods, featuring our friend above — and performance footage, but the whole thing is made for lights-off horror, and whether you’re talking about the song or the video that accompanies, black and white save for bizarre washes of color, the whole affair is pretty warped.

Clearly somebody went into the wrong woods.

Details about the production and tonight’s release show — happening right now! — are below, and more stills will be arriving shortly at Lewis‘ photography website, Lounge708.com.


When the Deadbolt Breaks, “The Woods are Full of Killers”

On January 2 When the Deadbolt Breaks will be releasing our 2nd video for from our 2013 album, “Drifting Towards the Edge of the Earth” for the “the woods are full of killers “. The concept behind this video came from a photo shoot idea I (Lounge SevenZeroEight Photography. www.lounge708.com), had been developing for quite some time. While we were shooting a video I also did a photo shoot with all the girls involved.

January 2 will also be a gallery showing as well as the live video viewing at The Reserve in Meriden CT. This gallery will include 3 large shoots that I’ve done over the past couple years but nobody has seen yet. I was waiting for the right time. The Blood Angel shoot, The Dark Deception shoot, and the shoot that coincides with the video.

“Woods Are Full Of Killers” the second video from CT’s When The Deadbolt Breaks; takes you on a mind bending journeydouble album “Drifting Towards the Edge of the Earth” debilitating doom/sludge metamorphosis by When the Deadbolt Breaks from the Ear One Productions CD release.

Written by Aaron Lewis.
Directed by Aaron Lewis and Charlie Winthal.
Edited by Aaron Lewis and Charlie Winthal.
Visual Effects by Charlie Winthal.

Purchase limited edition double CD digipack

When the Deadbolt Breaks on Thee Facebooks

When the Deadbolt Breaks on Bandcamp

Lounge 708 Photography

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When the Deadbolt Breaks Announce Video Release Show Jan. 2

Posted in Whathaveyou on December 10th, 2014 by H.P. Taskmaster

when the deadbolt breaks

Supporting their massive 2013 release, Drifting Towards the Edge of the Earth, Connecticut doomers When the Deadbolt Breaks will have a new video out next month for the song “The Woods are Full of Killers” — if the band has a theme, it’s “threat” — and they’ve booked a release party to mark the occasion. They seem to have undergone another shift in lineup as well, as will happen, around guitarist, vocalist and founding songwriter Aaron Lewis, whose photography will be on show at the Jan. 2 show at The Reserve in Meriden, CT, at which Buzzard Canyon, another of his projects, will also play. Does that count as triple duty? Double duty with bands and a photo gallery? I think it might.

While we debate the finer points of what does or doesn’t qualify as “duty,” you can check out the info for the show below, as well as the song “The Woods are Full of Killers” itself, which is all droney and mindwarpy and creepy in that special way that When the Deadbolt Breaks do so well:

deadbolt flyer

On January 2 When the Deadbolt Breaks will be releasing our 2nd video for from our 2013 album, “Drifting Towards the Edge of the Earth” for the “the woods are full of killers “. The concept behind this video came from a photo shoot idea I (Lounge SevenZeroEight Photography. www.lounge708.com), had been developing for quite some time. While we were shooting a video I also did a photo shoot with all the girls involved.

January 2 will also be a gallery showing as well as the live video viewing at The Reserve in Meriden CT. This gallery will include 3 large shoots that I’ve done over the past couple years but nobody has seen yet. I was waiting for the right time. The Blood Angel shoot, The Dark Deception shoot, and the shoot that coincides with the video. After January 2, EarSplit Promotions, Ear One Productions and 313 Inc Artist Management Will release the video worldwide.


When the Deadbolt Breaks, “The Woods are Full of Killers”

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When the Deadbolt Breaks Get Creepy in Video for “Sleeps in Burning Hills”

Posted in Bootleg Theater on November 11th, 2013 by H.P. Taskmaster

Even unto the very name of the band, drone heavy Connecticut outfit When the Deadbolt Breaks have always done exceedingly well in creating a sense of mire and an atmosphere of threat. Put those two together and what you wind up with is a feeling of impending violence — one that pays off periodically with bursts of grindcore from out of the droning morass — from which there’s no escape. Led by guitarist/vocalist/engineer Aaron Lewis, the band released their latest outing, Drifting toward the Edge of the Earth, last month on Ear One Productions, and basked in the challenge they laid out for their audience over the course of the album’s two discs, an entire one of which they dedicated to the 51-minute exploration, “My Coffin is Loaded with Sand and Fire.”

Rest assured then that the sonics of their lurching, sneaking Godflesh-derived plodding “Sleeps in Burning Hills” are duly fucked. And rest doubly assured that the video for the song, which was directed and edited by Lewis himself (that’s him with the cigar in the image above) and Charlie Winthal, is likewise. Culminating in quick, vague jumpcuts that give way to eerily peaceful footage of forest sunset, there’s a sense the whole time that something vile will happen, is happening, has happened. Lewis doubles as a photographer and is no stranger to fetish-based work, and it’s precisely that air of sexualized violence/violent sexuality that comes through across “Sleeps in Burning Hills.” I won’t spoil the narrative thread, but things hardly seem to turn out well for the lady in the white dress. Take that, purity.

If you think you’re up to the sensory assault that Deadbolt bring to bear across “Sleeps in Burning Hills,” then yeah, you’re probably not. When the Deadbolt Breaks harness a very particular brand of the aurally deranged, and that they’d match it with visuals so fitting here only speaks to an expansion of their disturbing aesthetic. Like an escalating serial killer.


When the Deadbolt Breaks, “Sleeps in Burning Hills” official video

When the Deadbolt Breaks on Thee Facebooks

Ear One Productions

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When the Deadbolt Breaks to Release Drifting towards the Edge of the Earth on Oct. 1

Posted in Whathaveyou on September 23rd, 2013 by H.P. Taskmaster

Two discs of churning, brooding, grinding doomed malevo-violence — the second of which is comprised solely of the 51-minute five-parter “My Coffin is Loaded with Sand and Fire” — the new Drifting towards the Edge of the Earth from Connecticut bringers-of-darkness When the Deadbolt Breaks is as affecting psychologically as it is sonically. The three-piece outfit’s fourth record will be released on Oct. 1 through Ear One Records, and sure enough, it’s a monster. Challenging and brutal whether raging or creeping in ambient threat,When the Deadbolt Breakshave always promised consumingly bleak fare, and the latest is no exception.

The PR wire has release info for the daring:

WHEN THE DEADBOLT BREAKS: Connecticut Doom Unit Prepares For Release Of Massive Fourth Album

Connecticut’s long-running doom outfit, WHEN THE DEADBOLT BREAKS, is preparing to unload the most massive and expansive recording in their now eight year existence, as their mighty fourth full-length release, aptly entitled Drifting Towards The Edge Of The Earth, nears release.

Formed in 2005 by ex-Cable guitarist/vocalist Aaron Lewis, alongside bassist/vocalist Mike Parkyn and drummer Rich Kalinowski, WTDB signed with EarOne Productions early this year, and set out to capture their most ambitious work yet. Painstakingly recorded this past Spring at Room SevenZeroEight, mastered by Chris Tobias and Mike Livingston at Ear One Studios, on Drifting Towards The Edge Of The Earth WHEN THE DEADBOLT BREAKS is undoubtedly at their finest and most explorative hour. The nearly two-hour-long 2xCD takes the listener on an extensive and extremely lengthy, yet completely engulfing and never lagging voyage through the cosmos and through the annals of sludge/doom. Devastating amplification boasts everything the talented members can create; mournful segues, booming classic rock ballad riffs, mystical and melodic interludes and straightforward, thunderous riffage coalesce into an exceptionally diverse album fans of Sleep, YOB, Ufomammut, Samothrace, Ramesses, Cable and the like will indisputably benefit from experiencing.

With an official street date for Towards The Edge Of The Earth confirmed for October 1st, WHEN THE DEADBOLT BREAKS will host a CD release show this Friday, September 27th in Wallingford, Connecticut with support from Pristina and Rozamov. Admission is only $10 and includes a copy of the band’s new 2xCD ahead of street date. At this show the band will be doing a long set playing almost their entire Drifting Towards The Edge Of The Earth opus to their local fans and friends.

Stay tuned for more music from the album to be released in the coming days.

9/27/2013 Cherry Street Station – Wallingford, CT w/ Pristina, Rozamov


When the Deadbolt Breaks, “The Scavenger’s Daughter”

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When the Deadbolt Breaks to Release Drifting Toward the Edge of the Earth on Ear One Records

Posted in Whathaveyou on August 7th, 2013 by H.P. Taskmaster

I haven’t gotten the lab results back yet, but I’m pretty sure two solid hours of exposure to the tornado of aural malevolence that When the Deadbolt Breaks conjures could have lasting psychological effects. The Connecticut trio have announced that their fourth album, the no-less-cumbersomely-named Drifting Toward the Edge of the Earth, is available now for pre-order through Ear One Records and that it will ship out as a 2CD digipak later this month. Goodness gracious that’s a lot of doom.

Here’s the info:

When the Deadbolt Breaks is releasing our 4th full length record with Ear One Productions. This record is close to 2 hours long on 2 cds. This record is our heart and soul, while we are currently writing for a new record yet again, we pushed ourselves with “Drifting Toward the Edge of the Earth”. Its dark, eclectic and honest.

After a ton of work, we are really psyched to have landed When The Deadbolt Breaks a record deal w/ Ear One Records… (Just in case you didn’t know When The Deadbolt Breaks is Aaron Lewis, Mike Parkyn and Rich Kalinowski). The record label is doing a really cool pre order special where you get the CD (it’s a double CD!) for $10… ($13 w/ shipping). If you’re able to swing ordering the CD, we would be hugely great full for the show of support. So, just throwing it out there… If you have the $13 to spare, we would really appreciate you doing a pre order.

“Drifting Towards The Edge Of The Earth” the new double album from CT’s When The Deadbolt Breaks A nearly two-hour-long diverse, debilitating doom/sludge metamorphosis taking place, the mammoth album is available as a limited edition double CD digipak.

This is a pre-order. Digipaks are expected to start shipping on or around Aug. 27, 2013


When the Deadbolt Breaks, “The Scavenger’s Daughter”


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Moving the Earth Festival Coming to Baltimore June 22 & 23

Posted in Whathaveyou on April 11th, 2013 by H.P. Taskmaster

Comprising what’s sure to be a weekend full of riffs, fuzz and grooving stomp, the inaugural Moving the Earth festival is set to roll out at The Windup Space in scenic (if you like stoner rock, anyway) Baltimore, Maryland. It shares a weekend with Days of the Doomed III out in Wisconsin, but for anyone on the East Coast lamenting not being able to make the trip to the Midwest, the lineup below certainly makes a compelling argument in its own favor, with The Flying Eyes assuming a headliner position among stalwart Marylanders like War Injun and Weed is Weed while out-of-towners like When the Deadbolt Breaks and Borracho add variety to the still-quite-heavy mix.

Here’s to the first of many:

Moving the Earth Fest, June 22-23 at The Windup Space, Baltimore, MD

You can hear the low rumble in the distance getting deafeningly louder with every closing second… Plumes of diesel smoke, fire, and dust billow upwards to block out the sun… An army of sonic bulldozers are coming together to lay waste to the Mid Atlantic region’s musical landscape…….

The MOVING THE EARTH FEST, a two day celebration of all that is Heavy/ Stoner-Rock / Psych/ and Doom will take place at The Windup Space in Baltimore MD Saturday/ Sunday June 22nd and 23rd…….

Saturday June 22nd

The Flying Eyes -(Baltimore psych rock heavyweights/ headliner)
Foghound – (ex Sixty Watt Shaman/ Halfway To Gone)
Weed is Weed – (ex Spirit Caravan / Earthride)
War Injun -(MD Doom legends)
When the Deadbolt Breaks -(NY/CT experimental, psychedelic, doom)
Wasted Theory – (Philly/ Del Stoner Rawk)
The Deserts of Maine -(ex Wooly Mammoth)
The Walking Ghost – (Aaron from W.t.d.b.- solo accoustic opener)

Sunday June 23rd 2013

Bastards of Reality (AllStar KickAss Black Sabbath tribute/ headliner)
The Convocation – (ex-Moss Icon, Universal Order of Armageddon, & Born Against)
The 91’s -(PA Stoner Fuzz)
Borracho -(DC Stoner rock bulldozers)
Lazlo Lee and the Motherless Children – (manic garage/psych/ blues)
We are Blackbirds – (“heavy wood” prog/stonerrock)
Balors Eye -(inspired prog /tech metal w/ crushing grooves)
Ophidian – (bleak sludge/ doom)

the Windup Space
12 W. North Avenue, Baltimore, MD.
(410) 244-8855


Foghound, “Gotta Go and High Rider”

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Visual Evidence: Quintuple-State Convergence April 6 in NYC with Black Thai, Infernal Overdrive, John Wilkes Booth, When the Deadbolt Breaks and Wasted Theory

Posted in Visual Evidence on March 11th, 2013 by H.P. Taskmaster

Five bands, five states. Well, NYC has never been anything if it hasn’t been a melting pot, so when Black Thai (from Massachusetts), Infernal Overdrive (New Jersey), When the Deadbolt Breaks (Connecticut), John Wilkes Booth (Long Island, NY) and Wasted Theory (Delaware) converge on Tobacco Road in Manhattan on April 6, at least it’ll be in the borough’s long-standing tradition. If you’re on Thee Facebooks, the event page is here, and I thought I’d share the poster for the show, since it’s awesome.


Five bands for $7 is a pretty heavy deal, if you’re into bargain-hunting.

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Doommantia Bash Benefit for Ed Barnard Scheduled for Oct. 13; War Injun, Against Nature, When the Deadbolt Breaks and More Confirmed

Posted in Whathaveyou on September 19th, 2012 by H.P. Taskmaster

If you haven’t yet, head over to Doommantia and donate some cash to help Ed Barnard, the owner of that site, get back on his feet. Anyone who’s ever spoken to him, myself included, will tell you Ed‘s a great dude, and a huge supporter of this weird underground community, and it’s times like this that the community needs to come together for one of its own.

Back at the end of July, Ed suffered a heart attack and as a result of not being able to pay the ensuing nightmarish medical bills, is homeless and living in a tent. It’s pretty bleak times, and as an admirer of Ed‘s work and his dedication, I encourage you to please, please take a couple seconds and throw a couple bucks his way. I didn’t realize it at the time, but he’s apparently also giving away Wizardrone CDs to anyone who donates $20 or more.

But seriously, don’t do it for the free CD. Do it because this is a small community as compared to the outside world, and if we don’t take care of each other when we need to, we suck just as much as everyone else.

On Oct. 13, at Lallo’s in Knoxville, Maryland, they’ll be throwing a Doommantia Bash to help out Ed‘s cause. Bands are still being confirmed, but so far on the bill are War Injun, Against Nature, When the Deadbolt Breaks, Fire Faithful, Foghound, Ghutt, Akris, and Balam, with more to come.

You can keep up with the show’s lineup at the Thee Facebooks event page, and don’t forget to donate to Ed through Doommantia’s Paypal link.

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Total Coverage: Stoner Hands of Doom XII (Night Two)

Posted in Features on August 31st, 2012 by H.P. Taskmaster

I’m not sure how long my laptop battery is going to last, or what I’m going to do when it dies, but the idea for tonight is to write as much as I can while I’m actually at the El ‘n’ Gee in New London for the second night of Stoner Hands of Doom XII. Tomorrow starts earlier, so I don’t know when else I’ll have time to write.

In other words, I basically said “Fuck it, I’ll do it live.”

What you see in the photo above is the view from the couch I’m sitting on in the corner of the bar area. There are no plugs in the walls save for one that’s otherwise occupied. Tonight’s lineup is seven bands, which is one more than yesterday. Connecticut natives When the Deadbolt Breaks are setting up their gear behind me on the stage, and they’ll be followed in turn by Wizard Eye from Philadelphia, Long Island’s own John Wilkes Booth, Massachusetts’ Faces of Bayon, CT’s Lord Fowl, Maryland doomers Revelation. Rhode Island upstarts Pilgrim will close out the night. They’re here already wandering around, as are the Wizard Eye dudes.

Gonna be a good time no matter what else goes down, I’ve got no doubt. It’s also fest organizer Rob Levey‘s birthday tonight, so to Rob, happy birthday from the couch.

Night two of SHoD XII gets underway in about an hour, give or take. I’ll hopefully have updates as we go along, added to this post.

When the Deadbolt Breaks

UPDATE 7:43PM: As ever, Connecticut natives When the Deadbolt Breaks dipped their audience in a distortion caked coating of the truly deranged. They’ve gotten a new bassist since I last saw them, guitarist/vocalist Aaron Lewis perpetually chasing a rhythm section that can keep pace with him, both in tempo and tone. And by “keep pace,” I mean play slow as fuck. Reportedly, the second platter of Deadbolt‘s forthcoming 2LP release is one 60-minute-long song. That’s probably a solid format for the band to work in, as Lewis‘ songs have always tended to wander into these sort of pits of ambient quicksand. When he spaces out thusly, the atmospherics are almost always hypnotic, such as 10 minutes ago, when John Wilkes Booth vocalist Kerry Merkle had to rouse me back to conscious before handing me a couple stickers. The crux of Deadbolt‘s approach though is playing those sections off the droning doom that follows and metering them with sections of mournful, Danzig-style clean singing. There still isn’t a subgenre designation for what they do, but maybe sooner or later someone will come up with something. In any case, with all the lights turned low and a projector going, they were a suitably menacing start to tonight’s diverse roster of acts.

Wizard Eye

UPDATE 8:41PM: Guitarist/vocalist Erik from Philly trio Wizard Eye looked the part of the wizard manning his theremin, his dreadlocks dragging on the floor of the stage behind him, impossibly long. Long like you think of roads as being long. The three-piece blended Weedeater sludge with Fu Manchu stonerisms, had some Sabbath in there of course, but did not short either on aggression. Erik does guest leads on the new Clamfight CD and he showed off a bit of that prowess as well, in between bursts of dual-vocals with bassist Dave while Scott slammed away behind. They’ve got a CD for sale that I’ll pick up before the night is through, I’ve no doubt. This despite the incense on the stage behind Erik, which has now made the front of the El ‘n’ Gee smell like a teenager’s bedroom. Part of the package, I guess, and if it’s to be a total sensory experience, I suppose I shouldn’t complain. They were — what’s the word again? — heavy. Some familiar elements, but put to good use, and the theremin went a long way in adding to the overall wash of noise. Stone and tone: It’s not exactly the new math when it comes to this kind of thing, but Wizard Eye did well with it. The balance of the vocal mics was a little off coming through the house, but I get the sense in a smaller room, they’d be absolutely crushing. Philly’s Kung Fu Necktie, perhaps, or some basement where the soundwaves have no place to go and no choice but to cleave your skull.

John Wilkes Booth

UPDATE 9:33PM: I’ve known these dudes for years. Played shows with them, seen them come into their own as a band. It’d been a while though, and in the interim, John Wilkes Booth — as bands will do — wrote a shitload of new material. Also, apparently at some point Kerry Merkle‘s megaphone had babies and grew an entire family of effects pedals for the vocalist. Well done, proud papa. It’s been over three years since they released their Sic Semper Tyrannis full-length (review here), so maybe they’re due for a new record as well. In any case, their crunching ’90s riffs — not quite stoner, not quite noise, but definitely heavy and skirting the line between the two — did not fail to satisfy, and Merkle‘s effects added complexity to what, admittedly, I used to enjoy the rawness of, without necessarily distracting from what bassist Harry, drummer Christian and subdued guitarist Jason were doing. Solid heavy rock band, as ever, and it’ll be interesting to hear how the vocal extras factor into a new recording. Actually, I guess I’d just like to hear a new recording, however the pedals may or may not play into it. These guys pretty obviously just do it because they love to do it, and that’s always welcome on any stage I happen to be in front of.

Faces of Bayon

UPDATE 10:25PM: If the next wave of stuff people decide to give a shit about was to be doom riffing mixed with old school death metal, I’d be happy to watch Massachusetts’ own Faces of Bayon lead the charge. Before the set even started, the charm was evident, as guitarist/vocalist Matt Smith asked the crowd in a low growl if they liked stoner doom. Later, after his amp cut out in the middle of one of the tracks from their Heart of the Fire LP — which, pros to the last, bassist Ron Miles and drummer Mike Brown kept going — Smith apologized to the crowd with a simple, “Sorry,” before resuming his tale of the fall of Lucifer in a low, throaty whisper. No substitute for that kind of charm, and to go with it, Faces of Bayon were crushingly heavy, Miles playing a six-string in the deathly tradition. I don’t think the winds of trend will ever blow in their favor, but I also don’t think they give a shit. They closed with a new song from an upcoming album which Smith said would be recorded this fall, and I guess someone needs to tell these dudes Labor Day’s on Monday so they can get on it. That last album got a huge response, so I’ll look forward to seeing how the next one comes out. If their closer was anything to go by, you can bet on slow, heavy and evil, with more than just a dash of stoner.

Lord Fowl

UPDATE 11:11PM: Double kudos to Connecticut’s Lord Fowl for not only rocking the house, but for rocking the house after the ultra-doom bestowed upon it by Faces of Bayon. I had wondered how the transition would go from Faces of Bayon‘s downer moodiness and morose heavy to Lord Fowl‘s upbeat arena-ready hooks, but the latter more than pulled it off. Their record, being the last one I reviewed before leaving to come up here on Thursday, was still pretty fresh in my head, but even those who didn’t know the songs were hooked by the time the four-piece were through album and set opener “Moon Queen” and its follow-up “Touch that Groove.” Another transition straight off the Moon Queen album that worked really well was “Streets of Evermore” into “Dirty Driving,” guitarist/vocalists Vechel Jaynes and Mike Pellegrino trading off lead spots in the process. I don’t know how much of the audience knew the songs going into the set, but Lord Fowl’s brand of rock is basically undeniable if you’ve ever had a ’70s chorus stuck in your head. They were unafraid to smile on stage, and everywhere they went, they made sure the crowd came with them. It was a lot of fun, and I still think there’s a lot more potential to them even than they showed tonight, though they showed plenty.


UPDATE 12:17AM: Of the handful of times I’ve seen Maryland doom stalwarts Revelation, this was easily the best. If you want to think of this weekend as one huge tone-off, then John Brenner and Bert Hall are the dudes who sneak in just at the last minute totally unsuspecting and walk away with the prize. They didn’t play anything new — as Brenner said on stage, they don’t know the songs — but their set was tighter and more energetic than I’ve ever seen from them. They weren’t jumping around the stage by any means, not thrashing about, but they delivered all the same. Brenner’s Laney sounded gorgeous, Hall played a bass that had an axe built into the body — one assumes it’s in case he has to chop wood in the middle of the set — and drummer Steve Branagan held down both quiet and loud with ease. Like several of the acts tonight — When the Deadbolt BreaksJohn Wilkes Booth, Faces of Bayon – they’ve got new material in the works (as a recent audio stream will attest), but as the penultimate band of the night, they did well bridging a sizable gap in modus between Lord Fowl and Pilgrim still to come. The room has mostly cleared out and it’s getting late, but the people still here are glad to be, alternating between partying outside in the fenced patio area of the El ‘n’ Gee and just getting drunk(er) at the bar. Either way.


UPDATE 1:14AM: That picture above of Pilgrim was taken before the show started. Much to the credit of the hot-as-hell Rhode Island trio, they were here the whole show, and didn’t leave so far as I know as so many who played did. Maybe they went and got a bite to eat or something like that — to be fair, I wasn’t keeping tabs on them all night. Before their set started, they asked specifically to play in the dark, and the request was granted, so I was doubly glad to have snapped a few shots outside of them on the couch outside on the sidewalk. They’re the first band to play this fest that everyone in the place went right to the front of the stage to see. I stood back, and I think doing so helped me to see what it is about them that has the hype rolling so hard. To share: They’re young, and they’re frighteningly cohesive. They play off familiar elements — slow riffs, emotional anguish — but do so with strong performances and an air of sincerity. If you wanted to paint a picture of an exciting young act in the genre, that picture would probably look a lot like Pilgrim, and whatever excitement they have around them, they do well to justify it with the promise they show both on stage and in their recorded work. They were a great cap for the night and had a tremendous response. No complaints from my end. The only x-factor is if they can keep it together, but pending that, they’re most definitely on the right track. If nothing else, they’ve proven they’re a band worth pulling for.

UPDATE 2:25AM: Blue moon indeed. It’s full and up there and hard to argue with, and I’m down by the shoreline of the Long Island Sound outside with the laptop and I’m tired but things have been far worse. The trip back from New London to here was uneventful, at least in comparison to the evening preceding. Tomorrow I’m going to have to figure out a way to see every band play and also provide myself with some basic kind of nutrition. There’s a grease truck in the public parking lot across the street from the El ‘n’ Gee. The last two nights in a row I’ve been tempted to get a cheeseburger for the ride and both times I’ve chickened out and just gotten a bottle of water. Maybe tomorrow will be my day.

Akris are slated to open the gig at noon. I doubt they’ll actually start on time, but that’s what’s slated to go down, so I’m going to try to be there before then. I’ll crash out in a couple minutes, but not just yet.

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When the Deadbolt Breaks Announce New Bassist

Posted in Whathaveyou on March 1st, 2012 by H.P. Taskmaster

I’ve long been a fan of Connecticut’s When the Deadbolt Breaks, and as I’ve been lucky enough to hear their forthcoming album, Drifting Towards the End of the Earth, I can safely say it’s a monster. The new songs continue their malevolent, grim ultra-doom and still work in enough melody to make you hear bleeding-out echoes. There’s something about them that sounds like shattered glass to me.

The band’s management sent word of their new bassist down the PR wire, so here goes:

Psychedelic doom cult, When the Deadbolt Breaks is pleased to announce the addition of new bassist, Mike Parkyn. Being a long time friend of When the Deadbolt Breaks main man, Aaron Lewis, helped make for a quick and natural transition bringing Mike into the fold. “I’ve known Mike for well over 20 years and have always considered him one of the best musicians I’ve known. When I heard that he was interested in working with When the Deadbolt Breaks, I jumped at the chance to get him down here to jam. It’s obvious that he’s going to add a lot to the over all vibe of what we do. We both share a lust for vintage gear and heavy as hell music, I consider this to be When the Deadbolt Breaks‘ natural progression, and we welcome Mike and his talents on board.”

The band has been hulled up in Room SevenZeroEight Studios working on their highly anticipated upcoming release, Drifting Towards the End of the Earth, months have been spent experimenting and developing what promises to be their heaviest and most dynamic release to date. With recording sessions wrapped up in early 2012, the band commissioned Andrew Devlin to handle the album art.

In related news, When the Deadbolt Breaks, has also recently resigned with 313 Inc. Artist Management, also home to Sixty Watt Shaman, Hour of 13, King Giant, Order of the Owl and Borracho.

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Live Review: Earthride, When the Deadbolt Breaks and Archon in Brooklyn, 10.07.11

Posted in Reviews on October 10th, 2011 by H.P. Taskmaster

It was going to take a bastard of a bill to make me crawl out from the rock I’ve been hiding under and go see a show at the Acheron in Brooklyn, but Friday night, that’s just what I got. The show began two nights in a row of Earthride, and boasted hometown ultra-doomers Archon and the similarly-minded ambient evil deeds of Connecticut‘s When the Deadbolt Breaks in the support slots. After sitting in traffic for approximately four hours to get from Central Jersey to the gig, I was in just the right mindset for Archon‘s screaming dirges.

I had four dollars to my name and spent them promptly on a can of High Life. Archon were already loaded in and ready to roll. The room — longer than it is wide, black-painted cinderblock or brick with drywall and cement floor, small stage and high ceiling — wasn’t full, but the turnout was decent given the probably five or six other shows happening down the block in Williamsburg. The dreadlocked/male contingent of Archon‘s vocalizing duo, Chris Dialogue, bassist Nikhil Kamineni and drummer Rajah Marcelo are all also members of Alkahest (album review here), so with vocalist Rachel Brown and guitarist Andrew Jude the only parties unaccounted for in that band, it was kind of like the two acts had merged on stage. Heavy as hell, either way.

Jude, who as I understand it writes most of the material, always seems to have one foot planted in Dopesmoker no matter the project he’s involved in — and that’s not a critique, since anyone who’s heard Archon‘s death/doom plod will tell you he’s doing more than merely aping the influence. Dialogue set up down in front of the stage on which the other four members of the band played and did the kind of thrashing around I’ve come to expect from his performances, his low growls and high screams sounding no less vicious for the physical exertion. His vocals and Brown‘s — mostly melodic, but with some screams in there as well — played off each other well, and though the bass seemed to be lost in the room through much of the night, there was sufficient low end to stand up to the multi-pronged assault.

That was true as well for When the Deadbolt Breaks. Like Archon, they’re a band I consider friends more than a group I’d be able to really review with total impartiality (which, as a concept, is a farce anyway), but I was glad to see them anyhow and hear Aaron Lewis‘ violent levels of volume. He and bassist Roman Garbacick shared screaming duties and, together with new drummer Rich Kalinowski, crafted a sound as foreboding as the band’s name. Kalinowski‘s china cymbal kept getting stuck up next to Lewis‘ Sunn rig, but he worked with it and it was far and away the best drumming When the Deadbolt Breaks has ever had. Lewis has been through a few rhythm sections and singers over the years, but with Garbacick and Kalinowski (sounds a little like a law firm), he has two presences in the band to complement his own.

One of my favorite aspects of Deadbolt‘s sound has always been the creepy parts. Lewis has always been patient in steering the band through these sections of malevolent ambience, and though the Acheron wasn’t ideal for Garbacick‘s heavy bass or Kalinowski‘s china, the black walls and forced-in sound did work with the psychologically disturbing elements of their approach. Of course, they contrast those stretches with hurtful sludge, so you have to take it with the context surrounding as well. At this point, I’ve seen and done shows with them so many times over the years I’d be hard-pressed to pick a favorite, but this might be the most together lineup When the Deadbolt Breaks have put together yet. Here’s hoping it sticks.

And it’s funny to think of it, but in a way, Earthride were the odd men out on their own bill. Archon and When the Deadbolt Breaks — whom Earthride vocalist Dave Sherman referred to as “Acheron” (the name of the venue) and “When the Deadbolt Strikes,” respectively — had enough similarities of approach between them to be cohesive, but throw in Earthride‘s more stonerly-directed riffing, laid back doom groove and always-charming (no sarcasm; see previous sentence) stage antics, and it was a whole different kind of heavy. Bassist Josh Hart and drummer Eric Little were even more in the pocket than at SHoD, and guitarist Kyle Van Steinberg, also of War Injun, busted into a few freakishly good solos. I’m not 100 percent, but I think they might also all have been stoned.

They opened with “Fighting the Devils Inside of You” from 2005’s Vampire Circus and moved into a few cuts from last year’s Something Wicked album, starting with the righteously grooving title-track and “Hacksaw Eyeball,” which Sherman noted was about the band’s hometown in Frederick, Maryland, and which underscored the point of how much Southern Lord missed the boat on not putting out that record. “Hacksaw Eyeball” might have been Sherman‘s best performance, taking the blown-out screams and cleaner choruses of the album version and bringing them to life, but I wouldn’t discount the riff-riding the frontman broke out for “Earthride,” arms stretched out in front of him, steering an invisible stoner rock chopper down I-95 to some freedom most of us will never see.

When they were finished, the crowd demanded another song, and with some discussion, they acquiesced. The place never really packed out, but it was clear that those who showed up knew why they were there. I left soon enough after they were done and headed back through Manhattan to pick up The Patient Mrs., who’d spent the evening among the ranks “occupying” Wall Street — and if you ever want a convenient metaphor for what our relationship is like, that’s it.

Like I alluded to earlier, it was the first of two nights in a row I’d be seeing Earthride. The second was at Asbury Lanes in the surprisingly built-up Asbury Park, NJ, where they were on the bill for (former) Solace guitarist Tommy Southard‘s wedding reception. I’d write about that too, but it seems tacky somehow to review someone’s nuptial celebrations, however much Shiner Bock I may have imbibed. Suffice it to say a good time was had by all (again), and Earthride delivered the doom as increasingly they seem to be the only ones able to do.

Many more pics after the jump.

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Get Your Free When the Deadbolt Breaks Album While Infinite Supplies Last

Posted in Whathaveyou on March 18th, 2010 by H.P. Taskmaster

Connecticut darkened self-sustaining metallers When the Deadbolt Breaks have announced a partnership with the recently-launched FuzzTown Records. The now-four-piece outfit is responsible for some seriously deranged, murderous, brutally slow doom, and as much as I’d like to give the album a review, ethics and the fact that I sing vocals on the track “As Flies for Flesh” oblige me otherwise. Suffice it to say, Deadbolt play some incredibly fucked up shit and every time I play it I feel like there should probably be pills to stop whatever it is I’m thinking.

Here’s the PR wire with the news and where you can get your free download of the new album, The Last Day of Sun.

FuzzTown Records is amped to announce the signing of psychedelic dirge metal vagabonds When the Deadbolt Breaks. Their devastating new release, The Last Day of Sun, is a double CD that promises to be the darkest and most musically evolved CD this cult of nomads has released to date.

This collection marks the next two twisted chapters in the audio mindfuck of producer/vocalist/guitarist Aaron Lewis. The band (rounded out by Mike Connor on drums, Jon Harrison on guitar and Roman Garbacik on bass and vocals), brings new levels of aggression to the songwriting all the while bathing The Last Day of Sun with endless depths of low-end riffage and trippy psychedelia.

To mark the launch of FuzzTown Records, a label dedicated to bringing new and innovative music to the public, we’re releasing When the Deadbolt BreaksThe Last Day of Sun as a free download, exclusively through FuzzTown Records! Tell your friends, spread the word! Enjoy!

Download When the Deadbolt Breaks, The Last Day of Sun here.

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Live Review: O, New England, What Doom Hast Thou Wrought?

Posted in Reviews on August 26th, 2009 by H.P. Taskmaster

It was a three-night tour and I, being a colonel among the weekend warriors, missed Friday night in Boston, but hopefully made up for it Saturday and Sunday in Maryland and Connecticut, respectively. Afforded a chance to catch the likes of Amped for the funny horse head.Cortez, Ichabod and When the Deadbolt Breaks live two nights in a row, it was not an opportunity I was going to pass on. They called it the Amped for the End tour. Pristina was on the bill as well, but fuck Pristina. They blew Saturday, played their wannabe Meshuggahcore first and then split before the next band even went on. It’s not there were so many people there; it was basically the bands playing to each other and a few sporadic others. Splitting was a dick move.

Sunday they didn’t even show up. They live in Connecticut. Screw those guys. Who names a record Boner Jams?

The other three bands, by contrast, were killer. The sound at Krug’s Place in Frederick (where Stoner Hands of Doom X will be held next weekend) was a little muddy, but everyone seemed to be having a good time anyway, and it’s not like Deadbolt was about to break out the catchy corporate number that required absolute clarity. This is doom. Muddy works. It was clearer at the El n Gee in scenic New London the next night anyway, so in watching the three bands, you got a taste of both worlds.

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The Show that Was and Wasn’t and Was Again

Posted in Reviews on March 25th, 2009 by H.P. Taskmaster

The original.Come to think of it, there were as many bands who were supposed to play Europa in Brooklyn last night who didn’t as there were who did. It’s a three-to-three tie! Outlaw Order, If He Dies He Dies and Pristina were nowhere to be found, but When the Deadbolt Breaks, Negative Reaction and Sourvein picked up the slack, and though we standing in the club held our breath awaiting the arrival of the latter, there was a collective exhale when frontman T-Roy Medlin walked in during Negative Reaction‘s set. They’d apparently gotten lost on the way and it had been back and forth as to whether or not The modified.they’d make it the whole night.

Driving from the valley to Brooklyn is a daunting task, and not just because of the traffic. With Manhattan between me and that most “Howya doin’?” of boroughs, it’s like climbing a mountain just to get there. When I showed up and saw the room largely empty save for a sampling of the NYC stoner rock faithful, I was glad I’d made the trip. In a town of eight million people and so few heads around, one is not only just as conspicuous by one’s absence as one’s presence, but also it’s just good to show up and support your friends’ bands.

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