The Obelisk Questionnaire: Adam Heinzmann

Posted in Questionnaire on March 9th, 2021 by JJ Koczan

adam heinzmann

The Obelisk Questionnaire is a series of open questions intended to give the answerer an opportunity to explore these ideas and stories from their life as deeply as they choose. Answers can be short or long, and that reveals something in itself, but the most important factor is honesty.

Based on the Proust Questionnaire, the goal over time is to show a diverse range of perspectives as those who take part bring their own points of view to answering the same questions. To see all The Obelisk Questionnaire posts, click here.

Thank you for reading and thanks to all who participate.

The Obelisk Questionnaire: Adam Heinzmann of Foghound, Internal Void, and More

How do you define what you do and how did you come to do it?

What I do. Interesting question. I suppose at the heart of it, I play music for the possibilities. To make myself happy, of course. If it makes other people happy, well that’s a huge bonus. But it’s the connection. That part that you can’t put into words. Because words can’t describe it. With bandmates, that first time you make eye contact and you KNOW they’re in the same space as you. With fellow musicians, kinda the same thing. Whether I’m playing or watching the band or we’re both watching the band. That look. It’s priceless.

How it came about?

My best friend, to this day, told me to buy a guitar. I was 15. Maybe a year later my best friend and two other good dudes got together a needed a bass player. So, we had some smoke and the three of them said ‘sell all your guitar stuff and buy a bass’. Damnation was formed and, here I am.

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There are so many. Which I don’t take for granted. And while not my first memory it’s certainly the one that truly kickstarted the journey I’m on. December 8th, 1980. Or rather first thing December 9th. I had just turned 10. The Beatles were one of my first loves, still are. I had already been listening to KISS and Queen and had just discovered Neil Young. I didn’t understand at the time why I felt the way I felt. I get it now. And I still feel the same sadness I felt that day.

History Dissertation Topics : Buy essays online cheap Buy cheap papers | Pay for essay writing Essay writer service. Describe your best musical memory to date.

Hmmm… This one is tough. So many. But the two that pop into my head oddly enough happened in the same club. Different years. 2016 Internal Void at the MD Doom Fest. Our farewell show. It was everything I had hoped our finale would be. I miss that band.
Second. Foghound at the 2018 MD Doom Fest. Man. Honestly don’t know where to start. Still not sure I can.

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This one has too many to choose from. I’ll go with this one. Got into a heated argument with a then old friend. It was about the reason I play music. He was insistent on stating that the only reason I don’t care for most ‘big bands’ is because I’m jealous of their fame and fortune. Metallica was his constant reference. I tried my best to correct him. The reason I play is for the love of the music and all that comes with it. If fame and fortune are part of that? Well awesome. I’m tired of having a day job LOL. But he wouldn’t back down. And he got increasingly hostile about ‘proving’ his point. While I don’t like conflict, I also won’t hesitate to tell someone to Fuck Off if it’s the right thing to do. I told him to Fuck Off. Haven’t seen or talked to him since. And that’s not a bad thing.

Homepage from best custom essay writing services in the industry ranked by professionals Where do you feel artistic progression leads?

It leads you on the path you are making for yourself. If that path starts with your heart. You’ll love everything you create.

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Peace of mind. When you lay your head on the pillow, are you at peace? If you’re not, that’s ok. As long as your plan is to fix what is keeping you from your peace. It’s not always easy.

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My Grandma Rosemary a few weeks before she passed. It devastated me. Stuck with me for a long time. Her funeral was the catalyst for my dislike of open casket funerals. I’m getting cremated.

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A huge sanctuary. It would be fully staffed and fully funded. And it would take in all of the homeless dogs and cats in this country.

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To make someone say ‘WOW’ out loud. Think about it. Those moments stay with you. Not that grade on a test. Not that ‘atta boy’ you get from a boss. Art is meant to move you. And if it doesn’t move you, well it may move someone else. And that’s the beauty of art. One piece. One song. One poem. One of so many forms of artistic expression. If it makes just one person say ‘WOW!’ out loud. That’s all that matters.

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Non-musical?

Attending the 105th Indianapolis 500 with my family and closest of friends. It’ll be my 35th 500.

Lastly. Setting myself up for the next 15 years. It involves a lot, obviously. But I’ve got a plan.

And finally. Thank you for this opportunity. I tend to go on a rant. I had to keep myself in check at times while answering these questions. Which is great. Good exercise for my brain and heart

https://www.facebook.com/foghoundbaltimore
http://foghound.net/
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Foghound, “Turn Off the World”

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Friday Full-Length: Various Artists, Blue Explosion: A Tribute to Blue Cheer

Posted in Bootleg Theater on December 27th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

The enduring legacy of blog here are dissertation writing services legal online dissertation help to write Are Dissertation Writing Services Legal Blue Cheer — who did no less than shepherd the transition between the ’60s rock and the heavy ’70s, setting a significant blueprint for the latter in terms of tone and bluesy approach — need not be recounted here. Along with the likes of USE OUR ONLINE Writing A Personal Statement Help 24/7! Whether youre relaxing on a beach or socializing at a packed event, well be available 24/7. Nowadays, having the right credentials is a big part of advancing your career. Being concerned about the quality of your writing due to your busy lifestyle is natural. Let us take some of the responsibility off your shoulders by writing your Cream, When you Baton Rouge Homework Helps from our writing service, our scholars choose the best topic for you and include updated information. Hence, the professors cant find a scope to deduct marks. Read along to know about our salient features when you buy an essay online from us. Buy Essay Online in Australia Anytime You Require Assistance Jimi Hendrix, and others who took a more volatile turn on the era’s psychedelia and volume push, they were a pivotal act and the work they did in their original run from 1966-1972, as well as in various periods thereafter, continues to resonate, with 1968’s Pay someone to http://www.grandbelfort.fr/?website-that-will-write-a-paper-for-you - confide your coursework to qualified writers engaged in the service Instead of worrying about essay writing get Vincebus Eruptum and 1969’s A Dissertation On Constitution service is an excellent way to deal with your assignments when you don't have enough time to complete all of them. That is particularly true for non-native English speakers. When you turn to our academic writers, you can count on a lot of great benefits, and the list below shows just some of them. Our Academic Writing Service Guarantees. CONFIDENTIALITY. We keep no billing OutsideInside (discussed here) rightly considered landmarks in the aforementioned temporal and stylistic shift. In a word, they were “important.” They mattered.

There have been plenty of  Blue Cheer covers along the way, from artists across the globe, but as regards tribute albums, 1999’s Blue Explosion: A Tribute to Blue Cheer (also discussed here) stands in singular testament to the band’s affect on underground heavy rock and roll and doom. Issued by Italy’s Black Widow Records, it was 16 songs from 15 separate artists, totaling about 78 minutes of material with the following tracklisting:

Various Artists Blue Explosion A Tribute to Blue Cheer1. Pentagram, “Doctor Please”
2. Internal Void, “Parchment Farm”
3. Hogwash, “Magnolia Caboose Babyfinger”
4. Thumlock, “Out of Focus”
5. Natas, “Ride with Me”
6. Fireball Ministry, “Fortunes”
7. Norrsken, “Pilot”
8. Garybaldi, “Fresh Fruit & Iceburgs”
9. Rise and Shine, “Sun Cycle”
10. Wicked Minds, “Just a Little Bit”
11. Standarte, “Sandwich”
12. Space Probe Taurus, “Second Time Around”
13. Drag Pack, “Come and Get It”
14. Vortice Cremisi, “I’m the Light”
15. Ufomammut, “Peace of Mind”
16. Pentagram, “Feathers From Your Tree”

Obviously a few immediate standout names in there. First (and last) is Pentagram, who open and close the proceedings with “Doctor Please” and “Feathers From Your Tree” — two choice cuts as regards the Blue Cheer catalog. It ain’t “Summertime Blues,” which is probably Blue Cheer‘s most known single, but you’ll notice no one takes that on, and that seems like a purposeful decision on the part of the label in terms of staying away from the obvious move. Either way, as regards Pentagram, it’s important to consider the timing. This isn’t Pentagram in 1985 or even in 2009. Victor Griffin is nowhere to be found. This is many years before Sean “Pellet” Pelletier would take over as frontman Bobby Liebling‘s manager/caretaker, and despite the best and noble efforts of Joe Hasselvander handling drums, guitar and bass, Liebling sounds like a human being in the throes of a well-documented heroin addiction. Pentagram were signed to Black Widow at the time, and in 1999 they issued Review Your Choices, which was followed in 2001 by Sub-Basement, and if you know those records, they sound like rough years. You can hear that here too.

Highlights, however, include early-Ufomammut‘s psychedelic rendition of “Peace of Mind,” Internal Void paying simultaneous tribute to Blue Cheer and Cactus with “Parchment Farm,” the shimmering proto-proto-metal of Sweden’s Norrsken — the predecessor that birthed both Witchcraft and Graveyard — doing “Pilot” from 1970’s The Original Human Being, Fireball Ministry‘s “Fortunes” and Rise and Shine‘s “Sun Cycle.” Add to that list Argentina’s Natas, who would soon enough be known as Los Natas, doing a rare song in English with “Ride with Me,” since as far as I’m concerned the guitar tone there is worth whatever price of admission the secondary market might be charging for the disc. If you ever question why I’ll listen to anything Sergio Ch. ever puts out, ever, ever, ever and forever, just listen to that guitar and you’ll have your answer as to how that loyalty was earned.

Further, the fuzz blast of Wicked Minds‘ “Just a Little Bit” and the rawness of Drag Pack‘s “Come and Get It” offer good times to fill out the second half of the disc. These, along with the ’90s post-grunge doom roll of Vortice Cremisi‘s “I’m the Light” and the sure tone of Thumlock earlier on, mean that more than just the bigger names on Blue Explosion have something to offer. There’s a lot to dig, and yeah, some of it is pretty uneven in terms of relative volume and production-style changes from one band to the next — going from Wicked Minds to Standarte is notable, as is Thumlock to Natas, but if you take it as a collection of artists coming together on their own terms to celebrate the legacy of one of heavy rock and roll’s formative acts — i.e., if you take it for what it is — Blue Explosion is both a solid listen and worthy mission.

In my mind, it’s always paired with the 1999 Freedoom Records tribute to Trouble, Bastards Will Pay (discussed here), which I bought around the same time, and which also features Rise and Shine and Norrsken. The latter of course are of particular note because of the paucity of material they actually released — a few demos between 1996 and 1997 and a single in 1999 — and the legacy they cast across Sweden and the rest of Europe in the members’ igniting the continent’s vintage-rock movement. That is an influence that continues to spread, and while Blue Explosion might feature still-active and still-influential bands like Pentagram and Ufomammut and Fireball Ministry, as well as others, the opportunity to chase down output from Norrsken is itself an appeal for the disc as a whole.

I was fortunate enough to see Blue Cheer on what would be their final run as they supported their 2007 release, What Doesn’t Kill You…, which was the same era captured on their 2009 DVD Rocks Europe (review here) — I think the Rockpalast performance is on YouTube at this point, but get the DVD for the bonus interviews with Dickie Peterson, as his stories about Janis Joplin and Grateful Dead are nothing short of amazing — and though of course it wouldn’t have been the same as seeing them some 40 years earlier, it was a chance to relish in and pay homage to the legacy of a crucial band. They were, I can say without reservation, loud as hell. Everything The Rolling Stones were never brave enough to do more than hint at being.

Blue Explosion: A Tribute to Blue Cheer isn’t the same kind of experience, of course, but it’s the same impulse, paying homage to the legacy. Whether you dig in for the academic appeal, curiosity, or just to hear some unfamiliar takes on familiar riffs, I hope you enjoy.

Thanks for reading.

Xmas wasn’t bad. The Pecan learned the word “presents” and how to open same, and he liked the stuffed Pete the Cat and Little Blue Truck and various other such and sundry things — mostly trucks — we and others in my and The Patient Mrs.’ respective family branches got him, so that’s a win. Dude has plenty, plenty, plenty to keep him occupied. The Patient Mrs.’ sister and mother, as well as our niece and nephew on that side, stayed an extra day as well, and my sister’s oldest son came back yesterday to play video games — ace call on my part to tell the CT branch of the family to bring the Nintendo Switch — and my mother, sister, her husband and other nephew came over last night for pizza and leftovers, and it was great having everyone around. There’s a room in this house — the room I’m in now, as it happens — that’s pretty much made for hosting, and I like hosting. And I think The Patient Mrs. does too. So it works out. I dread the holidays. I really do. Got off relatively light, and got a new coffee grinder and mug to boot. So yeah.

New Year’s is next, which means nothing to me except getting used to writing 2020 instead of 2019, which usually takes at least a month, then The Patient Mrs. is going away to a conference in Puerto Rico for a couple days in January — though she’ll be working, I suspect she’ll find the relative change in climate somewhat restorative; at least that’s my hope — and I’ll be on solo duty with Pecan: Toddlerian. Dude and I spent plenty of days on our own this semester as his mom settled into her new job, so I’m not really nervous about it or anything. I’ll be tired. Big change.

I’m gonna punch out in a minute, but a couple quick things:

— The Quarterly Review was originally going to be next week. I’m pushing it back a week. It’ll start Jan. 6.

— The Best of the 2010s poll is being extended for a week. I want to give it more time beyond the Best of 2019 poll.

— There may be a new Gimme Radio show next Friday? I’m not sure yet.

— Going to see Clutch at Starland Ballroom on Monday. That’ll be good.

Thanks for your support in the Best of 2019, Song of the Decade and Album of the Decade posts this week. You warmed my heart, really, and I promise you, promise you, promise you, I don’t take that support for granted. Thank you.

Hope everyone who celebrated Xmas had a good ‘un, and if New Year’s is a party for you, have fun and please be safe. If you need a ride, get one.

FRM: Forum, Radio, Merch at MiBK.

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Kelly Carmichael Premieres “Desires Tragedy” from Heavy Heart; Album out Sept. 7

Posted in audiObelisk on September 3rd, 2018 by JJ Koczan

Kelly-Carmichael-Photo-by-Shannon-Holliday

The classic sensibility practically bleeds from the speakers of Kelly Carmichael‘s new solo album, Heavy Heart. Set to release this week (Sept. 7) via Dogstreet Records, the eight-track/47-minute third offering from the Internal Void guitarist under his own name is both a return to form and a shift into something new. Also old. Stay with me. Carmichael‘s first two full-lengths, 2005’s Old Stock and 2008’s Queen Fareena, saw him depart from the weighted riffing of his work with Internal Void — whose last album, Matricide, was issued in 2004 — for acoustic roots blues, digging back to the origin points of rock and roll in the uptempo Delta and Chicago-style vibes, writing his own material and playing classics from the likes of Robert Johnson, Mississippi John Hurt and others.

There were aspects of that exploration that felt academic in that Carmichael seemed to be teaching his audience from his own vast knowledge of the blues as well as his soulful execution thereof, but there was no denying the genuine spiritual place he was coming from. Heavy Heart shares that feel, but finds Carmichael teamed with drummer Jesse Shultzaberger and once again taking on heavier riffs and more directly rocking — if occasionally violin-inclusive, as on the piano-based “Soupers” — fare. But there’s still a tie to the idea of roots music, because Heavy Heart isn’t just Maryland doom-style rolling groove or Internal Void by any other name.

Its primary allegiance is to the beginnings of heavy rock in the early 1970s, not simply Black Sabbath but the heavy progressive movement that happened concurrently, and whether it’s the patient King Crimson-esque string sounds and tonal crunch of opener “Shadows Will” or the memorable chug of “Desires Tragedy,” which follows, or the later, almost countrified approach of “Starless Divine,” Carmichael ties his work together with melody and fluid pacing, as well as an undercurrent of songwriting that speaks further to his awareness of classic forms.

Kelly Carmichael Heavy HeartSo it’s a return to form because it’s heavy, it’s something new because it’s a different take on heavy, and it’s something old because that take on heavy is based in large part on the formative period of the style. Heavy Heart is somewhat expectedly led by Carmichael‘s guitar, but his arrangements of piano and violin and bringing aboard Shultzaberger on drums present as genuine a take on mellow ’70s heavy as I’ve heard from the Chesapeake watershed — Carmichael came up in Frederick, MD, but currently resides in West Virginia — since Against Nature‘s subtle progressivisms, and yes, that’s a compliment.

Closing with its title-track, Heavy Heart soothes in its overarching impression, but still has plenty of outwardly rocking moments, as on said closer and a meaty cut like “The Palmist” or “Vine of the Soul,” which pairs spacious noodling with a thicker central riff, and “Desires Tragedy,” which boasts a particularly memorable hook to coincide with its density of tone and Carmichael‘s effects-laden vocals, adding atmosphere to the proceedings throughout. With songs ranging largely between five and six minutes long, Carmichael takes his time fleshing out ideas and bringing parts to life, but there’s variety of mood carrying through that feeds into the overarching flow of one track into the next across the record as a whole, so while the production is organic, it’s not necessarily flat, making it all the more suited to the ’70s stylization of the songwriting.

If this is a sonic place Carmichael is carving out for himself for a longer term than just this album, he seems well comfortable in it already, and there’s no reason that what Heavy Heart begins couldn’t move forward however far Carmichael wants to take it. On the other hand, if it’s a one-off, then it’s still a satisfying excursion into intricately-constructed craft and sound, and should have no trouble appealing not only to the Maryland doom scene from which Carmichael emerged with Internal Void, but to anyone seeking out a take on first-wave heavy not at all beholden to the strict tenets of modern retroism.

Ultimately, Heavy Heart brims with both.

I’m thrilled today to host the premiere of “Desires Tragedy,” which you can hear below followed by more info about the record from the PR wire.

Please enjoy:

Guitarist Kelly Carmichael ex-Internal Void, ex-Pentagram premieres a track off his new album Heavy Heart due for release on September 7th. The album features Carmichael on guitar, vocals, bass, and piano, and drummer Jesse Shultzaberger The Woodshedders, Ginada Piñata, and ex-Deep Swell.

Heavy Heart embodies 70’s inspired hard-rock/doom with deep bluesy overtones, interwoven with piano and violin accompaniments. Aside from his solo roots-blues releases, this is his first return to volume induced heavy rock.

Internal Void released their debut album Standing on the Sun in 1992 on the German record label HellHound Records. Their second offering Unearthed, was released on Southern Lord Recordings in 2000, and Matricide in 2004 on Dogstreet Records. In 2003-2005 Carmichael recorded with Pentagram on the album Show ‘em How for the Italian label Black Widow Records.

Shifting gears in 2005-2009 Kelly released two albums of pre-war era roots-blues. Both Old Stock and Queen Fareena featured tunes of Robert Johnson, Mississippi John Hurt, Son House and Blind Blake.

Kelly Carmichael on Thee Facebooks

Kelly Carmichael website

Dogstreet Records website

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Live Review: Maryland Doom Fest 2016 Night One

Posted in Reviews on June 25th, 2016 by JJ Koczan

maryland doom fest poster

It was a hell of a ride, and by that I mean I sat in traffic from about 8:30 in the morning until I walked into Cafe 611 in Frederick, Maryland, just in time for the start of the first band at 5:15PM. I soon found that my plan to not wear the supportive boot for my continuing ankle pain was, let’s say, ambitious. Basically I couldn’t stand up for more than like five minutes at a time. Fortunately the boot was in the car. Then my camera broke.

This is the part where normally I’d say “some you win, some you lose,” but the quality of the first night of Maryland Doom Fest 2016 — the second edition of the festival put on by JB Matson and Mark Cruikshank; still kicking myself for missing it last year — was such that I couldn’t really feel too down about any of the above, except perhaps the camera, which served me well for half a decade and hopefully I’ll be able to have fixed in the near term, no doubt at significant cost. Not for this weekend, though. Bummer.

Well. Now that I think I’ve gotten all or at least most of the bitching out of the way, we can get down to business. Like I said, I watched from the first band on, as much as I was able, and got pictures on my phone after the camera went down. I did the best I could.

Alright, here goes:

Black Urn

black urn (photo by JJ Koczan)

Clearly a trial by fire for the room. Some fests might try to ease the audience into the event; Maryland Doom Fest 2016 not so much. Philadelphia’s Black Urn would wind up being the most extreme band of the night, digging their way into vicious sludge metal topped by growls and screams exclusively, proffered through two guitars finding balance in the mix with bass that seemed utterly dominant at first but soon enough evened out. That kind of stuff runs the risk of coming across as samey when you don’t know the songs — they have a 2015 demo and a 2016 EP, The Pangs of Our Covenant, out, but this was my first exposure to them — but Black Urn knew when to change the pace up, and their faster parts had a heavy rock edge to them that set well alongside the grueling brutalities they fostered otherwise. Plus vocalist John Jones wore an Iron Monkey t-shirt, and that’s just about always going to earn some extra points in my book.

Atala

atala (Photo by JJ Koczan)

The Californian heavy atmospheric doom rockers were a treat for anyone who showed up early, playing through a considerable investment portfolio of amplification, fresh-looking Oranges and Sunn for the guitar of Kyle Stratton and the bass of John Chavarria, while drummer Jeff Tedtaotao punctuated the massive rolling grooves elicited from them. They’d been on tour for about a week supporting the recently-released, Billy Anderson-produced Shaman’s Path of the Serpent (stream here; review here), and “Gravity” was a highlight of the set, which rightly focused on the new album and its ambient largesse, in which one can hear shades of anything from YOB to Neurosis to Deftones in Stratton‘s vocals to Tool in some of their quiet, winding parts. It’s a varied blend, and they can make it move as well when they want, but they were impressively fluid front to back, and seemed most at home with the three of them locked into any number of lumbering progressions, of which they offered plenty.

Admiral Browning

admiral browning (Photo by JJ Koczan)

I’ve been watching Admiral Browning play shows for more than a decade. I say this not to brag about having seen the band a bunch of times, but to emphasize the point that when they take a given stage, I still don’t know what to expect. Oh, you can be sure that guitarist Matt LeGrow, bassist Ron “Fezz” McGinnis and drummer Tim Otis will offer dizzying technicality and frenetic groove, but just where they might take that is perpetually up in the air. Their 2015 tape EP, Corvette Summer (review here), found them experimenting further with incorporating vocals into their long-instrumentally-focused sound, and it worked. At Maryland Doom Fest 2016, it wasn’t a question. Both LeGrow and McGinnis had mics and used them liberally. I’ll admit it was a somewhat jarring sight — as I said, they were strictly instrumental for a long time — but they’ve developed relentlessly over their years together, and that process obviously continues unabated. Nothing new to say I’m looking forward to what they do next, but it’s true all the same. Way underappreciated band.

Demon Eye

demon eye (Photo by JJ Koczan)

Probably should’ve seen these cats by now. Led by guitarist/vocalist Erik Sugg, North Carolina’s Demon Eye have been tearing it up on the Eastern Seaboard for the last couple years, also journeying west this past April to tour alongside Disenchanter in support of their second record, 2015’s Tempora Infernalia (review here), and after hearing such encouraging things about their stage presence, yeah, it felt overdue. Sugg was indeed very much in the lead position, bantering with the crowd between songs, headbanging and stomping in classic rock style, backed by drummer Bill Egan on vocals and lead guitarist Larry Burlison while Paul Walz‘s Rickenbacker tied it all together in the low end. They opened with “End of Days” and closed with “Sons of Man,” both from the new record, but “From Beyond” from 2014’s Leave the Light (review here) was a highlight as well, their songs upbeat. In my notes, it just says “ace songwriting,” so we’ll leave it at that, and while I’ll admit some of their cult themes leave me a little cold, both their craft and the energy of their performance are absolutely undeniable.

Pale Divine

pale divine (Photo by JJ Koczan)

With guitarist/vocalist Greg Diener and drummer Darin McCloskey both now in Beelzefuzz and bassist/backing vocalist Ron “Fezz” McGinnis sharing his time with Admiral Browning and several other projects, Pale Divine has kind of become a part-time institution, but in all the years I’ve seen them — I think the first time was in Philly with The Hidden Hand, circa ’04 — they’ve never failed to deliver on their particular kind of woeful traditional doom. Though they’re not actually from the state, they were a perfect centerpiece for Maryland Doom Fest 2016’s first night, and the assembled crowd, younger and older, showed their appreciation duly. As I was dealing with my just-busted camera, I’ll admit my attention was somewhat divided, but Pale Divine don’t screw around on stage, and they closed their set playing something they’ve never played before. Diener gave the title but of course I missed it, in the back fumbling with the camera battery and lens as I was, sadly to no avail. The doom felt perhaps even more appropriate in such a context.

Ruby the Hatchet

ruby the hatchet (Photo by JJ Koczan)

Philly-region five-piece Ruby the Hatchet are on something of a mini-tour this week, up the Northeast in the formidable company of Black Mountain. Not at all their first run in support of last year’s way-right-on Valley of the Snake (review here), but they’ve also reissued their first record, Ouroboros, on vinyl through Tee Pee Records, and I’d imagine when the chance to do shows with a group like Black Mountain crops up, or to, say, play Maryland Doom Fest 2016 on the night The Obsessed are headlining, it’s a thing you do your best to make happen. Starting off their set with the memorable “Heavy Blanket” from Valley of the Snake, they jammed profusely and featured what I think might be the weekend’s only on-stage organ, so bonus points there. Vocalist Jillian Taylor was in firm command on stage, her vocals run through a close delay for a live-doubletracking effect that only made their cultistry seem more resonant. Taylor, together with bassist Lake Muir, guitarist John Scarperia, drummer Owen Stewart and organist Sean Hur, have pretty clearly mastered the post-Uncle Acid blend of hooks and bounce, and set about reshaping them to suit their own melodic purposes. One expects that will be a process that plays out over the next several years/albums, but they were impressively tight and for my first time seeing them, I was glad I finally did.

Castle

castle (Photo by JJ Koczan)

Speaking of bands I should’ve seen before — as I realize I have a couple times at this point — fucking Castle. The hard-touring San Francisco outfit sounded so much like a group used to being on the road. Some bands just develop that thing. They show up in a room, assess the place, the people, the sound, say, “Okay, we can kick ass here,” and then do. That’s exactly what Castle did. They’re the kind of band who could make you believe in heavy metal. A lot of what they played was new — they’re touring to herald the arrival of their new album, Welcome to the Graveyard, which is out July 12 on Ván Records — and their righteously individualized blend of thrash, traditional metal, doom, heavy rock and roll, etc., speaks to some mystical bygone era when metal was about not compromising, putting a fist in the air against expectation and going on tour forever. Castle were so deep into what they were doing that I think they could’ve been anywhere and it would’ve been the same, that trance taking hold early on as they locked in and holding sway for the duration of their set, which seemed short when it was over. They’ve made themselves pretty available for in-person experience over the years, and now I understand why. I don’t think it’s really possible to get them until you see them live. I’m late to the party on that one, I know, but they didn’t seem to care if it was somebody’s first time, fifth time, or however-manyeth time seeing them. Everyone got their ass handed to them equally.

Internal Void

internal void (Photo by JJ Koczan)

Not to toot my own horn, but I said not too long ago that if you get the chance to see Internal Void, you should do it, and their hour-long set at Cafe 611 only affirmed the truth of that. The four-piece of vocalist J.D. Williams, guitarist Kelly Carmichael, bassist Adam Heinzmann and drummer Brian Goad packed out the room shoulder to shoulder and were clearly as glad to see the hometown crowd as the hometown crowd was to see them, even before Carmichael started shredding out solos, before Williams widened his eyes and loosed his gravely sneer, and before they brought out original drummer Eric Little to play a couple cuts from 1993’s Standing on the Sun, marking the first time that album’s full lineup had shared the stage in 23 years. With their own banner behind them, Internal Void epitomized Maryland doom. Their workingman’s grooves, classic edge and sans-bullshit delivery spoke to everything that has allowed the scene in and around Frederick to flourish for the last three decades to where it is now and where it’s headed in the future. Last time I saw Internal Void was at the Afterburner for Roadburn 2012, and several others remarked that it had been several years since they last played, so that might well have been their most recent show. Either way, they brought it hard for the Maryland Doom Fest 2016 crowd and were a joy to watch. If you get the chance to see them, do it. Don’t hesitate.

The Obsessed

the obsessed (Photo by JJ Koczan)

I’m not sure anyone would’ve been a better fit to headline Maryland Doom Fest than The Obsessed. I mean that wholeheartedly. Their legacy as a band — only more so now that guitarist/vocalist Scott “Wino” Weinrich has brought in his Spirit Caravan bandmate Dave Sherman (recent interview here) on bass/backing vocals, alongside new drummer Brian Costantino — is so tied to that of Maryland doom that you just don’t have the one without the other. Their set might be considered a victory lap for the month-long tour they just did with Karma to Burn (who also play this weekend) as much as a precursor to their hitting the studio with Frank “The Punisher” Marchand in a couple weeks to record their first album since 1994. In addition to The Obsessed staples “Neatz Brigade,” “Streamlined,” “Protect and Serve” and “Blind Lightning,” they worked in a couple Spirit Caravan cuts, among them “Retroman” and the ultra-rolling “Sea Legs.” It was late, and the room began to thin out some as they made their way toward the close of the evening with “Freedom,” but in giving a look at some newer material with the speedy “Be the Night” and the more expansive “Sacred” (which has been kicking around Spirit Caravan sets for a few years now and has older roots), The Obsessed looked ahead in addition to celebrating their legacy, and that seemed no less appropriate. Even after Internal Void, they held the room wrapt, and there was zero doubt to whom the night ultimately belonged.

Next show starts in a little over an hour, so I gotta get moving. No extra pics on account of the broken camera, but thanks for reading anyway.

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Friday Full-Length: Internal Void, Standing on the Sun

Posted in Bootleg Theater on June 17th, 2016 by JJ Koczan

Internal Void, Standing on the Sun (1993)

Admittedly, I’ve got Maryland doom on the brain. Next weekend is Maryland Doom Fest 2016 at Cafe 611 in Fredrick (info here), and as a part of a stellar lineup that reaches well outside genre confines, Internal Void will put in a rare appearance that includes a guest spot from former drummer Eric Little (see also Earthride and the most recent offering from Church of Misery), marking the first time the complete Standing on the Sun lineup will be on the same stage in nearly a quarter-century.

To listen now to Standing on the Sun, issued in 1993 through Germany’s Hellhound Records, it’s a prototype workingman’s doom that bands around the Frederick area continue to build on to this day. As did concurrent groups like The Obsessed, Revelation, Wretched, Unorthodox and Iron Man, Internal Void set themselves to the task of refining a Sabbathian ethic on sans-frills principles, rolling out bluesy grooves in songs like “Take a Look” after beginning the album with a foreboding chug on “Warhorse” and before creeping their way through the title-track and the acoustic melancholy of the later “Eclipsed.” It’s worth noting that all of the above-listed bands issued albums between 1991 and 1993 via Hellhound, as did Saint Vitus, Pigmy Love Circus, Lost Breed, Count Raven and Year Zero, among others, and though located on a different continent, that label’s contributions to this pivotal formative stage of Maryland doom aren’t to be understated. Internal Void‘s Standing on the Sun remains a prime example of the attitude and aesthetic of Maryland doom, and even 23 years later, its roughed-up-Candlemass vibes ring through loud and clear of a time when doom and metal were in many ways far more interchangeable than they are today.

In addition to Little on drums, the band at the time was comprised of vocalist J.D. Williams, guitarist Kelly Carmichael and bassist Adam HeinzmannWilliams also fronts War Injun, and Carmichael and Heinzmann have done the requisite stints in Pentagram, but Internal Void remains a standout from their contemporaries. After Standing on the Sun, it would be seven years before their second album, Unearthed, arrived in 2000, and four after that for the follow-up, Matricide. They reissued their 1991 Voyages demo in time to sell copies at Roadburn 2012, which was where I last saw them — by coincidence, The Obsessed also played and will be at Maryland Doom Fest 2016 as well — and I’ve seen no indication of future plans past this one-off appearance. The basic operating rule seems to be that if you can see Internal Void, see them, because you never know when the chance will come again.

Hope you enjoy Standing on the Sun. For more on Maryland Doom Fest 2016, click here for the Thee Facebooks page. If you’re going, I’ll look forward to seeing you there.

Getting there will require a bit of travel on my part, but next week is also the Quarterly Review, so keep an eye out for that. 50 reviews between next Monday and Friday. I expect by the end of it I’ll be very much ready to get out and see a show. We start Monday. Have I started putting any of it together yet? No I have not. As I’m also going to New York tomorrow and New Jersey on Sunday, I expect it’s going to be quite a weekend.

I want to thank Diane Farris aka Diane Kamikaze for having me down to WFMU once again for an appearance on her show, The Kamikaze Fun Machine. It was a pleasure and an honor to share the airwaves with her once again for two hours, and thank you as well if you had the chance to tune in. If not, the show is archived and available to check out here: https://wfmu.org/playlists/DK.

Of course, the focus next week is the Quarterly Review and travel to Maryland, but also look out for new videos from Mars Red Sky (along with a cool announcement), KadavarTelstar Sound Drone and Soon A.D., and a bunch of other news as well that I’m already behind on. This was my second week of unemployment before I start my new job at Hasbro, and it was fantastic. Really, this entire period has just completely underscored how ready I am to retire. I mean that. I’m not even kidding.

Gonna go head to the farmer’s market in a bit and get my hair cut, then enjoy a quiet evening with The Patient Mrs. before tomorrow brings its own brand of chaos. I hope you have a great and safe weekend, and thank you for reading.

Please check out the forum and radio stream.

The Obelisk Forum

The Obelisk Radio

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Maryland Doom Fest 2016: Internal Void to Perform as Standing on the Sun Lineup for First Time in 23 Years

Posted in Whathaveyou on May 19th, 2016 by JJ Koczan

internal void

The question of whether or not Internal Void would play at Maryland Doom Fest 2016 was somewhat fluid at first, but over the last couple months, more details have emerged about what the hometown heroes will bring to the festival, and today there’s even more confirmation from their camp. As part of a three-day bill that also features The ObsessedBangMos GeneratorCastlePlace of SkullsOrodruin and many, many more, Internal Void will play a full-hour set that’s set to include a guest appearance from drummer Eric Little (most recently heard bashing skins on the new Church of Misery album), who played on the band’s 1993 debut, Standing on the Sun.

The Maryland Doom Fest 2016 performance will be the first time in 23 years the Standing on the Sun lineup of Internal Void appears together onstage. Fest is set for June 24, 25 and 26 at Cafe 611 in Frederick, MD.

Here’s word from the band:

maryland doom fest 2016 poster

INTERNAL VOID – SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT

On Friday June 24 2016 Internal Void will be performing a 60 minute career spanning set as part of The Maryland Doom Fest being held at Café 611 in Frederick Maryland.

The line-up will consist of original founding members Kelly Carmichael (g), Adam Heinzmann (b) and JD Williams (v) with longtime friend and IV member for the past 7 years Brian Goad on drums (Brian was also in the line-up for a short period in the mid-90’s and currently plays with the excellent Nagato).

At this time Internal Void would like to announce that original drummer and founding member Eric Little (Dark Music Theory/Church of Misery/x-Earthride) will be joining the band on stage for a couple of songs from the band’s Standing on the Sun era for this special appearance.

This will be the first time in 23 years that the original Standing on the Sun lineup has performed live. So be there at Café 611 and The Maryland Doom Fest on Friday June 24 2016 to witness this reunion.

All the Best and DOOM ON!!
Kelly, JD, Adam, Brian and Eric

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/the-maryland-doom-fest-2-weekend-passes-2016-tickets-18924966083
https://www.facebook.com/The-maryland-DOOM-Fest-815331421863100/
http://www.themarylanddoomfest.com/
https://www.facebook.com/internalvoidofficial/

Internal Void, “Standing on the Sun”

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Maryland Doom Fest 2016 Highlights Special Sets from Internal Void, Unorthodox and War Injun

Posted in Whathaveyou on January 14th, 2016 by JJ Koczan

maryland-doom-fest-2016-banner

You can see the full lineup for Maryland Doom Fest 2016 below, and I’m sure once you glance at it you’ll agree that the Frederick, MD-based three-dayer needs me to talk it up like it needs a hole in the head. Conceived and organized by JB Matson and Mark Cruikshank, this year’s fest was announced with its full lineup back in October, and of course since that time some changes have been made. It’s inevitable. Place of Skulls were added, Internal Void‘s slot was clarified, and as we move into 2016 and invariably closer to the event itself, the fest is taking some time to highlight some of its special sets.

Getting Internal Void out for anything is pretty rare. I was fortunate enough to see them at Roadburn in 2012 (review here), but the native Maryland doomers don’t often get together, and it’s just as likely as not that Maryland Doom Fest 2016 will be their only appearance this time around. They share vocalist J.D. Williams with War Injun, who haven’t also played since 2013. For the fest, War Injun‘s lineup will include bassist Dave Sherman (EarthrideSpirit Caravan), and to sweeten the pot, they’ve brought in former Pentagram and current Weed is Weed guitarist Russ Strahan alongside Williams on vocals and Matson himself on drums.

Unorthodox, meanwhile, will play with the same lineup the band had when it was called Asylum, having gotten their start in 1981 as one of the earlier acts to come from the scene, along with The Obsessed and Force, who later became Iron Man.

In typically sans-bullshit fashion, the fest offers these facts and more below, in addition to the aforementioned full lineup. Dig in:

maryland doom fest 2016

Internal Void – they have regrouped solely for The MDoomFest 2016 and this appearance will more than likely be their only gig.

War Injun – MDoomFest 2016 will be their first live appearance over 3 years. Lineup includes founding member and bassist Dave Sherman (Spirit Caravan / Earthride). Russ Strahan (Pentagram / W$W) has been added to the ranks on lead guitar.

Unorthodox – reunited with the original Asylum lineup. MDoomFest 2016 will be the second appearance of this unique progressive Md doom collaboration, the trio’s first reunion was MDoomFest 2015. The Asylum lineup members live in Md, Tennesee, and California. Their live performances are exclusively for The Maryland Doom Festival.

This will be IV’s first show since the Williams Benefit in 2013 and WI’s first show since Moving The Earth Fest in 2013.

The Maryland Doom Fest 2 – 2016

FRIDAY NIGHT
• Spirit Caravan 1235 – 135
• Internal Void 1120 – 1220
• Castle 1020 – 1105
• Ruby The Hatchet 925 – 1005
• Pale Divine 830 – 910
• Demon Eye 735 – 815
• Admiral Browning 645 – 720
• Atala 600 – 630
• Black Urn 515 – 545

SATURDAY NIGHT
• BANG 1235 – 135
• Place of Skulls 1140 – 1220
• Blackfinger 1125 – 1205
• Unorthodox 1030 – 1110
• War Injun 935 – 1015
• Hollow Leg 840 – 920
• Wizard Eye 750 – 825
• Spillage 700 – 735
• Argus 610 – 645
• Serpents of Secrecy 520 – 555
• Wicked Inquisition 430 – 505

SUNDAY NIGHT
• Mos Generator 1140 – 1245
• Karma To Burn 1045 -1125
• King Giant 950 – 1030
• Wasted Theory 855 – 935
• Orodruin 800 – 840
• Toke 710 – 745
• Eternal Black 620 – 655
• Seasick Gladiator 530 – 605
• Doperider 445 – 515
• Flummox 400 – 430

https://www.facebook.com/The-maryland-DOOM-Fest-815331421863100/
https://www.facebook.com/events/864772630244169/
https://www.eventbrite.com/e/the-maryland-doom-fest-2-weekend-passes-2016-tickets-18924966083

Unorthodox, “To Kill a Monster”

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Maryland Doom Fest 2016 Adds Place of Skulls and Internal Void

Posted in Whathaveyou on November 2nd, 2015 by JJ Koczan

maryland doom fest 2016 lineup

Last month, when the complete lineup for Maryland Doom Fest 2016 was announced here, there was some measure of confusion as to whether or not Internal Void would play. At the time, promoters JB Matson and Mark Cruikshank said the band, who released three albums — Standing on the Sun (1993), Unearthed (2000) and Matricide (2004) — during their initial run and have been off and on since (mostly off), would not, but that guitarist Kelly Carmichael would be unveiling a new project at the fest.

Whether or not that will still happen, I’m not sure, but Carmichael — who also played a solo blues set at Vultures of Volume in MD in Sept. (review here) — and the rest of Internal Void will indeed play, for what may or may not be the first time since 2013. They and Place of Skulls have joined the bill among previously-announced headliners Spirit Caravan, Bang and Unorthodox, and Place of Skulls are in a pretty similar situation. Their shows are more frequent, admittedly, but between guitarist/vocalist Victor Griffin‘s intermittent tenure in Pentagram and getting the In~Graved project going and bringing it to fruition, they’re nowhere near as active as they once were. To wit, their most recent outing, As a Dog Returns (review here), was released in 2010.

So, if you’ve been keeping up, this means that Griffin will be there, Wino will be there, Sherman will be there, and UnorthodoxWar InjunPale DivineAdmiral Browning and Internal Void will play (among many others). It really is a Maryland doom fest. It’s not just a clever name.

True to the no-frills heart of Maryland doom, the announcement that came with the additions of Place of Skulls and Internal Void was straightforward, to the point, and laid it all on the line. It follows the posters below in its entirety:

Yet another chance for you to get stoked!

Be there…..or suck.

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/the-maryland-doom-fest-2-weekend-passes-2016-tickets-18924966083
https://www.facebook.com/The-maryland-DOOM-Fest-815331421863100
https://www.facebook.com/events/864772630244169/
http://www.themarylanddoomfest.com/

Place of Skulls, Live at Bannerfest 2014

Internal Void, Live at Stoner Hands of Doom X, 2009

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