The Top 20 of 2020 Year-End Poll — RESULTS!

Posted in Features on January 4th, 2021 by JJ Koczan

year-end-poll-2020-RESULTS-piranesi_colosseum

The world is a different place than it was a year ago on Jan. 4. One can say the same of any year, but it’s a question of scale. My interest isn’t in philosophizing or preaching to you — much; ha — but there’s a good chance your life is substantively different than it was a year ago. For good or bad. Please know that if you can see these words, or if you can’t, I wish you well.

With the ever-appreciated help of the Ever-Indulgent & Long-Serving Official Obelisk Tech Coordinator Go Ahead And Print That Shit On A Business Card, Slevin, the 2020 poll went up I think after Thanksgiving and came down, lazily, on Jan. 2. In the past I’ve been pretty strict on that. This time, less so. In the end, there were an astonishing and humbling 544 lists submitted, with over 2,100 separate album listings. Some of that is different spellings — ‘s/t’ as opposed to ‘self-titled’ or variations like that — but it’s still an astonishing amount of music, as you can see for yourself after the jump in everybody’s list.

As ever, two polls posted. Raw votes and points. For reference, here are the same rules that I’ve been cut and pasting for however long: You submit your list of up to 20 favorites. Anything from the start of 2020 to the finish is eligible. There are two lists, one of the raw votes, and one in which a 1-4 ranking is worth five points, 5-8 worth four, 9-12 worth three, 13-16 worth two and 17-20 worth one.

That’s how the magic happens. Here’s the magic:

Top 20 of 2020 — Weighted Results

Lowrider Refractions

1. Lowrider, Refractions (865 points)
2. Elder, Omens (594)
3. Elephant Tree, Habits (560)
4. All Them Witches, Nothing as the Ideal (557)
5. King Buffalo, Dead Star (492)
6. Psychlona, Venus Skytrip (381)
7. Slift, Ummon (365)
8. REZN, Chaotic Divine (305)
9. EMBR, 1823 (208)
10. Stonus, Aphasia (195)
11. Dopelord, Sign of the Devil (179)
12. Pallbearer, Forgotten Days (178)
13. Kind, Mental Nudge (165)
14. Acid Mammoth, Under Acid Hoof (164)
15. Brant Bjork, Brant Bjork (151)
15. Causa Sui, Szabodelico (151)
16. Forming the Void, Reverie (149)
17. Slomosa, Slomosa (138)
18. Oranssi Pazuzu, Mestarin Kynsi (133)
19. The Atomic Bitchwax, Scorpio (131)
20. Ritual King, Ritual King (126)

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Big Scenic Nowhere, Vision Beyond Horizon (125)
Spirit Adrift, Enlightened in Eternity (118)
Emma Ruth Rundle & Thou, May Our Chambers Be Full (113)
Sigiriya, Maiden – Mother – Crone (110)
Motorpsycho, The All is One (107)
Yawning Man, Live at Giant Rock (105)
Hum, Inlet (104)
Geezer, Groovy (100)
Lord Buffalo, Tohu Wa Bohu (100)

find thiss are basically companies that employ experienced writers to write theses and dissertations for their clients. Sounds like a simple thing to do, doesnt it? Well, the truth is that writing a dissertation the right way takes a lot of time and effort. Even seasoned thesis writers may encounter problems along the way. It goes without saying that students dont have Notes: People know their stuff. There seemed to really be consensus around a few releases — the top picks here — and then everything else kind of filled in from there. I agreed with the top pick and had some other things in different spots, and I had King Buffalo as an EP (which it wasn’t, but I took the out), but there was little to argue with. Cool to see Slift do so well. That album got a lot of love throughout the year and seemed to really resonate with people. Ditto Psychlona. And I’m glad to know I wasn’t the only one who thought Slomosa were onto something cool as well. Good list.

Top 20 of 2020 — Raw Votes

Lowrider Refractions

1. Lowrider, Refractions (203 votes)
2. Elder, Omens (151)
3. Elephant Tree, Habits (147)
4. All Them Witches, Nothing as the Ideal (134)
5. King Buffalo,
Dead Star (107)
6. Psychlona, Venus Skytrip (104)
7. Slift, Ummon (97)
8. REZN, Chaotic Divine (84)
9. Dopelord, Sign of the Devil (58)
10. Pallbearer, Forgotten Days (56)
11. Kind, Mental Nudge (54)
12. Acid Mammoth, Under Acid Hoof (50)
12. EMBR, 1823 (50)
13. Brant Bjork, Brant Bjork (49)
14. Forming the Void, Reverie (46)
15. Causa Sui, Szabodelico (45)
16. Stonus, Aphasia (43)
17. The Atomic Bitchwax, Scorpio (41)
17. Ritual King, Ritual King (41)
18. Kryptograf, Kryptograf (38)
18. Spirit Adrift, Enlightened in Eternity (38)
19. Big Scenic Nowhere, Vision Beyond Horizon (37)
19. Slomosa, Slomosa (37)
20. Emma Ruth Rundle & Thou, May Our Chambers Be Full (36)

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Oranssi Pazuzu, Mestarin Kynsi (35)
Black Rainbows, Cosmic Ritual Supertrip (31)
Geezer, Groovy (31)
Lord Buffalo, Tohu Wa Bohu (31)
Sigiriya, Maiden – Mother – Crone (31)
Yawning Man, Live at Giant Rock (30)
Motorpsycho, The All is One (29)
Hum, Inlet (26)

Telefon: 089-8576664, E-Mail: http://www.klippmagazin.at/how-to-write-a-grad-school-essay/ in bangalore Zustandige Kammer: Bayerische Landeszahnarztliche Kammer (BLZK), Korperschaft des offentlichen Rechts, Fallstrasse 34, D-81369 Munchen Zustandige Aufsichtsbehorde im vertragszahnarztlichen Bereich: Kassenzahnarztliche Vereinigung Bayern, Fallstr. 34, D-81369 Munchen Zustandige Bezirksregierung: Regierungsbezirk Notes: This one’s pretty clean and in line with the points. Same deal. Lots of big feelings about Lowrider, Elder, Elephant Tree, All Them Witches. Note the difference in votes between numbers eight and nine. Hell, note the difference between one and two. As much as you’re ever going to have clear agreement on anything, that might be it. All along, this was really a race for that number two spot. Lowrider were ahead by the time the poll had been up for a day, and though they pulled away as December wore on, none of the others were really a threat at any point, though it was a late surge for Elder that put them over Elephant Tree. No doubt that last-minute get-out-the-vote campaign (didn’t happen) paid dividends. In any case, aside from having to chase down typos for The Atomic Bitchwax and Causa Sui, this was relatively easy to put together, so I’m sure I’ve got it all wrong. Ha.

Just about time to send you off to peruse everybody’s list. And there are plenty of them. Before you dive in, I want to reiterate my deep appreciation for everybody who took part in the year-end poll for 2020. It was a massive year for albums — had to be since there weren’t shows — and I feel like these lists captured well the variety of what’s out there and the sheer quality of it. Thank you for being a part of that, and for reading as always.

And one last thanks to Slevin for his help in coordinating this on the back end as well. Dude is invaluable, amazing, and a good friend.

Lists follow the jump, and here’s the jump:

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The Top 20 of 2020 Year-End Poll is Now Open!

Posted in Features on November 27th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

year-end-poll-2020-piranesi_colosseum

My favorite post of the year, every year. I’ll spare you (for now) the wax philosophy on what a year it’s been in general terms, but I genuinely believe we’re existing in a golden age of heavy music that, years from now, subsequent generations of fans will look back on the diversity of sounds and talent and geography and ideas and will wonder at the time that was, much as younger fans do now of the ’90s, and older fans of the ’70s.

You know the drill for the poll. There are 20 slots below. Fill out as many as you want — 20 should be easy to fill, but if you only feel strongly about five records, that’s fine — and hit enter. Your email is asked for to prove you’re human and will not be stored or added to any list or sold or whatever.

Same rules as always: Anything from Jan. 2020 to whatever’s coming out between now and Dec. 31 is eligible. Two lists are tabulated; one of the raw votes, and one in which a 1-4 ranking is worth five points, 5-8 worth four, 9-12 worth three, 13-16 worth two and 17-20 worth one.

Results are compiled and painstakingly checked to account for typographical anomalies, then beamed into a spreadsheet to go up Jan. 1, along with everybody’s individual list in one massive explosion of love for music that, if it doesn’t fill your bucket, you may not have a bucket to begin with.

Let’s do it:

The year-end poll would never be possible with the diligence in technical coordination of Our professional writers provide you the supreme quality Ghostwriter Fr Hausarbeit. Also offer instant online help 24/7 at cheap price Slevin, whom I miss dearly in these days of social distancing. I hope my thanks travels virtually since I can’t buy him bread and beer to show my love.

Thanks for your participation. Please share the link if you can.

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Clutch’s The Obelisk Box Set Out This Week

Posted in Whathaveyou on October 20th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

Yeah, I know. Snicker snicker. If I believed in fun, the title of this box set would tickle me pink. In any case, Our professional Southampton Phd Thesiss bring tons of traffic to your website as our blog writers create engaging content. Hire our blog content service on Clutch originally announced their humongous 18LP masters dissertation services research methodology Where Can I Find Essay Editing Service Review abstract b dissertation engineering international science section The Obelisk box set would be out for Record Store Day in April. They had a bunch of tour dates to coincide. Well, neither the tour dates nor the box set nor anyone’s anything happened as scheduled. The box set is happening this weekend. The tour? Well, we’ll just see about that. Don’t forget to wear your mask to your favorite participating record store.

Speaking of. I made the trek to one of New Jersey’s premier indie spots the other day. It was early in the day and I took The Pecan since he says the words “record store” I think because he knows he’ll get a positive response for doing so. Whatever. I looked around at CDs I don’t have room for and LPs that were cool looking but that I also don’t have room for and are more expensive and it was just kind of a bummer. I didn’t end up getting anything. It was cool to go with the kid and all, but I felt like I was kind of missing out. Time was I’d go drop $150 easy at this place without looking back. Now I just suck I guess.

But this’d be a reason to go back:

clutch the obelisk

CLUTCH’S LP BOX SET “THE OBELISK” IS FINALLY HERE

After many delays due to the ongoing pandemic The Obelisk is finally scheduled to hit stores on Saturday, Oct. 24th for the third drop of Record Store Day. The box set is comprised of all of Clutch’s Weathermaker Music vinyl releases. There are six double LP’s, three 12″ LPs, and three 12″ picture discs all together in a beautifully designed box set. In addition, the box contains a turntable mat and a square, artist signed lithograph. The rigid box has a magnetic closure and the silver foil is stamped on black Sierra cloth. This is a unique collector’s item and only 2,000 boxes were made for worldwide sales.

Says Neil Fallon: “In 2008 Clutch launched Weathermaker Music. Starting our own record label has proven to be one of the better decisions we made and The Obelisk box set is evidence. The Obelisk is comprised of all the Clutch vinyl LPs released on Weathermaker Music. It has been a long time coming, but we think it has been worth the wait.”

You can finally find this LP box set at participating Record Store Day retailers everywhere around the country on Saturday, October 24th.”

The individual 12” vinyl releases are Full Fathom Five (2xLP), Live at The Googolplex (Picture Disc), Jam Room (Picture Disc). Pitchfork & Lost Needles (Picture Disc), La Curandera, Strange Cousins From The West (2xLP),Blast Tyrant (2xLP), Robot Hive/Exodus (2xLP), From Beale Street To Oblivion (2xLP) Earth Rocker, Psychic Warfare, and Book Of bad Decisions (2xLP).

CLUTCH:
Neil Fallon – Vocals/Guitar
Tim Sult – Guitar
Dan Maines – Bass
Jean-Paul Gaster – Drums/Percussion

www.facebook.com/clutchband
www.instagram.com/clutchofficial
www.pro-rock.com
www.youtube.com/user/officialclutch

Clutch, Live somewhere in 2020

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God Damn I Miss Festivals

Posted in Whathaveyou on June 23rd, 2020 by JJ Koczan

roadburn 2018 (Photo by Niels Vinck)

By now, I could normally expect to be neck-deep in news about the upcoming Fall festival season. Never mind that last weekend I’d have been at Maryland Doom Fest or the week before that I would’ve traveled to Germany for Freak Valley only about two months after my annual pilgrimage to the Netherlands for Roadburn Festival; my inbox and social media feed should be overflowing with updates, whether it’s Psycho Las Vegas unveiling whatever remainders or updates to its bill for August or the regular batch of European festivals — Keep it Low, Desertfest Belgium, Up in Smoke, Høstsabbat, and so on — unveiling their lineups one, two or three bands at a time.

Most of those are canceled. I’m keeping my fingers crossed at hitting Oslo in October for Høstsabbat, then maybe Stockholm for Truckfighters’ Fuzz Fest in November, but who the hell knows if European countries will even be letting potentially contagious Americans in their borders by then. I know if I was an agent working the arrivals at some EU airport I’d be asking US passport holders if they injected their bleach today. With how much America’s alliances have deteriorated over the last few years, who the hell is going to give US travelers the benefit of the doubt? Why take the risk?

But even apart from even the potentiality of going to one or more of these festivals in the course of the year that 2020 might’ve been, I miss posting about festivals. It’s not for lack of potential content — I still can’t keep up with news or reviews. But just the events themselves. SonicBlast in Portugal. Esbjerg Fuzztival — which is now scheduled for the beginning of September, just sold out and is still adding bands — in Denmark. The annual return of Colour Haze to Keep it Low in Munich. I miss seeing the tour routings take shape with successive weekend stops. The regulars showing up here and there, while maybe new bands from the US go abroad for the first time, like Geezer did for Freak Valley a few years ago, or like Forming the Void were set to do this Spring.

I know live music isn’t gone forever, and that in Europe, groups are starting to schedule events even in more than just the moving-this-2020-thing-to-2021 fashion, but not only do I miss live music, I miss the idea of live music. I’m trying not to get my hopes up for Maryland Doom Fest this October but it’s hard. I miss daydreaming about Duna Jam, or about Desertfest in London and Berlin — or New York, for that matter. This year I was going to melt my own brain with mushrooms at Psycho Las Vegas just to see what happened when I subsequently set fingers to keyboard. Stoned and Dusted. Monolith on the Mesa. Stoned From the Underground. Lake on Fire. Sonic Whip. Even Hellfest and those bigger ones that throw an occasional bone or stage up for heavy stuff. Is Muddy Roots going to happen in September in Tennessee? Is anything?

I miss losing myself in the thought of traveling to a place outside the norm of my day-to-day and seeing a special moment while it’s happening. The streams some bands are doing are cool. They give me something to write about. And I know the world has bigger concerns between America’s semi-reckoning with its ongoing systemic racism and the aforementioned pandemic, but everything feels that much harder without even that mental escape. God damn I miss festivals.

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Days of Rona: The Patient Mrs.

Posted in Features on May 1st, 2020 by JJ Koczan

[This is my wife. After posting my own installment in this series a couple weeks back, it seemed only fair to ask her to do the same, given that we’re sharing such close quarters. She gracefully accepted the offer and the Q&A is below. I deeply appreciate her taking the time.]

The statistics of COVID-19 change with every news cycle, and with growing numbers, stay-at-home isolation and a near-universal disruption to society on a global scale, it is ever more important to consider the human aspect of this coronavirus. Amid the sad surrealism of living through social distancing, quarantines and bans on gatherings of groups of any size, creative professionals — artists, musicians, promoters, club owners, techs, producers, and more — are seeing an effect like nothing witnessed in the last century, and as humanity as a whole deals with this calamity, some perspective on who, what, where, when and how we’re all getting through is a needed reminder of why we’re doing so in the first place.

Thus, Days of Rona, in some attempt to help document the state of things as they are now, both so help can be asked for and given where needed, and so that when this is over it can be remembered.

Thanks to all who participate. To read all the Days of Rona coverage, click here. — JJ Koczan

the patient mrs days of rona

Days of Rona: The Patient Mrs. (Parsippany, New Jersey)

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So, I’m going to answer this as though our family unit is the band: JJ, me, and the Pecan. (Alternative take on that social media thing where you talk about your kids and pets as bad coworkers?) Our daily routines are quite disrupted, but in a pretty privileged way. Thus far, we haven’t experienced a loss of income — though my university is forecasting layoffs/furloughs starting in July, I don’t know how that will affect me/us. Fingers crossed for a one-day/pay period furlough—I’m pretty sure we can absorb that.

To-date, our close family has been fine. My father died, but that can really only be thought of as the silver lining of this pandemic. However, I do have a bunch of students who are/have been sick and I’m pretty concerned for them and their families. The university I work for serves a pretty precarious population and this will have rippling effects.

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My last day physically at my job was March 12. In the week following, we (and our state) tightened up lockdown from there. The stay at home order gives exceptions for essential businesses, seeing family and exercising (and a few other things that don’t apply to us). We’ve also been going for drives here and again, just to get out of the house with a very energetic toddler. In addition to the formal rules, we have also adopted the recommendation that only one household member (JJ) actually goes in anywhere. I think the last time I went into a store was March 18.

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Regarding music, I mostly just keep seeing all of JJ’s plans getting canceled. I’ve been thinking a lot about what it means to live in a ‘between time.’ What I mean by that is that this pandemic is almost like a distillation of an ideology (?) that says do x, then you’ll be able to do y. Make some good money, then you can travel. Build a career, then you can think about your passions. In this pandemic, it’s wait at home, then resume your life. Life is ‘suspended’ between now and then. But this is our life, just a different moment of it.

I think the music scene resists that waiting ethos in many ways. So many people just make this music and art a central piece of their lives, whether it ‘fits’ or not. Others can’t quite make it fit, but try and hold on the best they can. What, then, does this moment mean? What can be learned about how we ought to and must live our lives if we’re never actually ‘between,’ we just are?

http://agentur.mugsart.com/?essay-correction-helps. If youve arrived on this page, it probably means youve lost someone. I have no words to share other than Im sorry. What is the one thing you want people to know about your situation, either as a band, or personally, or anything?

We in the US have been bemused/astonished/horrified at the rise (resurgence) of an ethnofascist state insistently driving towards crises of every sort; the absurdity of it all seems to be on full show in coronaland. I think this pandemic and our response to it is yet one more point of possibility. JJ tends toward political cynicism, but I still believe another world is possible. I don’t know the way there, but you know, if nothing else, unionize your workplace.

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Days of Rona: JJ Koczan of The Obelisk

Posted in Features on April 10th, 2020 by JJ Koczan

[I’ve been back and forth about whether or not to post this. I wrote it yesterday afternoon at a particularly dark feeling moment. The day picked up after. The Patient Mrs. made me delicious garlicky cloud bread for dinner that I ate with pesto and The Pecan woke up from his nap in better spirits for the afternoon than before he went down. It was still a rough day but the point is we all got through. In the end, I’m running this because it seems no less important to show the shittiest times than the good ones.]

I did a poll on Instagram the other day about if I should do one of these. I’ve been incredibly grateful at the response from people sending in their answers to the questionnaire thus far, and after seeing the results of that poll, decided to give it a shot myself. So here we are. We’ll proceed otherwise as usual, and since I’m using this post to close out this week, I’ll just add that I wish you a great and safe weekend.

The statistics of COVID-19 change with every news cycle, and with growing numbers, stay-at-home isolation and a near-universal disruption to society on a global scale, it is ever more important to consider the human aspect of this coronavirus. Amid the sad surrealism of living through social distancing, quarantines and bans on gatherings of groups of any size, creative professionals — artists, musicians, promoters, club owners, techs, producers, and more — are seeing an effect like nothing witnessed in the last century, and as humanity as a whole deals with this calamity, some perspective on who, what, where, when and how we’re all getting through is a needed reminder of why we’re doing so in the first place.

Thus, Days of Rona, in some attempt to help document the state of things as they are now, both so help can be asked for and given where needed, and so that when this is over it can be remembered.

Thanks to all who participate. To read all the Days of Rona coverage, click here. — JJ Koczan

the obelisk jj koczan

Days of Rona: JJ Koczan of The Obelisk (Parsippany, New Jersey)

Buy best admission essay of high quality written from scratch by Cheap like it UK. Our Admission Essay Writing Service are cheap How are you dealing with this crisis? Have you had to rework plans at all? How is everyone’s health so far?

How I’m dealing with this crisis: Today, not well. Since this lockdown started I have had days where I’m like, “Wow, nobody in my family is sick and we’re so lucky to be in this house and no one has to go to work when it’s so life-threateningly dangerous to do so and I am one privileged motherfucker to lead the life I do.” Today is not one of those days.

Today’s the other kind of day. I didn’t get to sleep until after midnight last night because I was feeling so much anxiety about having to go out of the house this morning to fucking buy ice. I shut off the alarm, which was otherwise set for four, so I could get at least six hours of sleep until our two year old, The Pecan, was getting up around six or 6:30AM. Well, he got up, had a poopy diaper as he will, and it’s all pretty much been downhill from there. Full-on fuck everything mode. My wife, who’s been working from home, and I canceled a remote appointment for him this morning to watch an old baseball game instead, and that didn’t really chill him out. He’s stir crazy and doesn’t understand why all the stuff he did before — swim class, gymnastics class, daycare, going to run errands — he can’t do anymore and why he’s stuck in the house. We’re just trying to throw as much stimuli as we can at him (while still minimizing screen time) to keep him busy until this is over. When I think about the fact that it’s only April 9 and it’ll probably be June before I’m comfortable letting him plotz around town the way we did before, I want to bash my skull in with a fucking hammer.

Yes, I have had to rework plans. Roadburn’s off. Ode to Doom is off. My wife’s semester is remote. My son’s schedule has completely changed. Tours I was presenting are off. Fests I was presenting are off. Like everyone else on the planet, my life has been turned upside down, and my every single day is affected. Come to think of it, that question about reworking plans is pretty god damned stupid. Like at this point anyone’s going to say, “Nope, all good, chief!” and give a thumbs up emoji. Where’s that hammer?

Everyone’s health is good so far. The Patient Mrs. coughs all winter anyway, but her cough is her normal cough. My mother’s fine. My wife’s mother’s fine. Her grandmother’s fine. Her father died of COVID-19 the other day, so I guess that’s something, but they weren’t in touch. Zero relationship. Still affecting whether you want it to be or not, though, and the house was not lacking for emotional strain. I finally got to sleep last night by taking half a xanax, and that was not the first time I’ve resorted to that in order to stop my brain from overloading like a Constitution Class warp core.

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Parsippany, where we live, has the most cases of COVID-19 in Morris County, New Jersey. Lucky us. Passaic County, which is between us and Manhattan, of course has more cases overall, but still, we’re good and locked down. On the rare occasions I’ve left the house in the last couple weeks to, say, buy ice or other food stuffs — I haven’t left for anything else, so it’d be that — I’ve worn a mask that our neighbors were kind enough to give us from their own stockpile.

Nobody’s allowed to gather, and all non-essential travel is discouraged. Most parks are shut now even to passive recreation — i.e. going for a walk or run — so that’s that. We are locked. fucking. down., and no fooling. I stood on line outside Wegman’s the other day for half an hour to buy almond butter and berries for the kid. Shit is dire and for real, and the fervency of the response now only highlights the utter ineptitude of our elected federal officials — congress, the president — when it comes to the initial response to this virus. Yes, it is a political issue, sorry. Fucking everything is. Grow up. The president might’ve been able to walk down 5th Avenue and shoot somebody and get away with it with his base, but let’s go ahead and hold him accountable for the 800 fucking people who died in New York yesterday too and see how he does in November.

You know what’s fucking saddest? He’ll still win. Joe fucking Biden? Ugh. Democrats. What’s the matter, guys? Vanilla too much flavor for you?

Whatever. Quarantine sucks. And if it can get worse, it will. Always. Maybe next time don’t elect a sociopathic reality tv star with zero political experience to lead your fucking country you god damned cracker motherfucker idiots. Unfriend me. I don’t give a shit.

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People are doing live streams and giving music away for free. That’s awesome. If you can find some escape in that for upwards of 30 seconds, do it. Fucking do it. I’ve been trying today to do that. I just can’t today. Today there’s no getting away from any of it and I feel like everything is collapsing around me.

And you know what? That’s fucking okay too. I know I’m not the worst off. I’m not working right now. I’m not an EMT picking up people who I know in a matter of hours are going to be dead and wondering if they’re getting me sick. I have it pretty easy in all this. I even have a garage to let The Pecan play in. I’m dirt fucking lucky. But it’s still hard. It’s still hard. This is hard on everyone. It fucking sucks for everybody. From the dude delivering our pizza last night to the lady at Stop and Shop this morning who was wearing what looked like a welder’s mask — it sucks for everyone. There’s no getting away from it. If you’re human, it sucks. We don’t all have to be yoga-mom social media gurus broadcasting how much we’re growing inside thanks to this process. It’s fucking awful. Let’s not pretend otherwise. I’m sure people are learning all kinds of shit about themselves and each other in this process. I’ve learned that golly plagues are unpleasant. Thanks for reading! Hashtag enlightenment! Hashtag COVID19! Hashtag homebody! Hashtag blessed!

What is the one thing you want people to know about your situation, either as a group, or personally, or anything?

I take pills for depression. I take pills for anxiety. I am a father of one. I am a human being. I usually run this site because it keeps me sane and I feel compulsive about writing and it reminds me to be grateful for what I have, because this is a thing I have. It’s important to do that for all of us. But it’s okay to feel shitty too. You’re right to feel shitty. This is shitty. It sucks having your life upended. If you lost your job, I’m sorry you lost your job. That’s a political issue too, but saying that isn’t gonna get you a new job or the 16 million other people who’ve been kicked off the rolls the last three weeks. There’s so much bullshit. We’re all covered in it. Here’s hoping it’s sterile.

All my best to you and yours. Really. If you’re reading this, please stay well. The world needs you around. I need you around. The world needs less assholes, and if you’re seeing this, you’re at least cool by me, so thank you.

Thank you. Be safe.

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Clutch to Release 18LP The Obelisk Box Set for Record Store Day April 18

Posted in Whathaveyou on March 3rd, 2020 by JJ Koczan

Look, I’m not even going to pretend to flatter myself here in thinking either I or this site would ever be on this band’s radar whatsoever. Clutch might’ve known who I was when I worked in print media due to the fact that basically I stalked them and their poor publicist, but I cut a different profile these days — literally and figuratively — so yeah. It’s a cute coincidence.

The reference Clutch are obviously making in titling their 12-album/18LP box set The Obelisk comes from their 1995 self-titled second album, the line from the song “Escape from the Prison Planet” that goes, “Rebuild the remnants of the obelisk, one mile from the pyramids” (which actually isn’t where I got the name of this site from, but again, that’s not relevant and neither am I; see above). And certainly that’s what they’re doing here. They’re rebuilding the remnants. clutch-the-obelisk-boxPutting 12 albums in the same place definitely counts. I guess that’s everything they’ve done through Weathermaker at any point — I’m not sure as to what is actually going to be in this thing, whether it’s all their studio albums, or some of those minus the major-label stuff that Weathermaker never reissued, but with live recordings, or maybe something new like a comp of the Weathermaker Singles Series or what. I have no idea. None. Don’t ask.

All I know is it’s out April 18 for Record Store Day 2020 as part of an ongoing tradition Clutch have, and that someone sent me the link to a preorder page through Season of Mist in Europe. Apparently Europe is getting 200 of them. No clue as to how many North America might end up with, but I wouldn’t think it’ll be nearly enough.

Clutch US dates for April and May — they’ll also be in South America in April — and they’re in Australia this month and UK/Europe later in the summer. You know how they do. I reformatted everything listed on their site, so here’s that, along with the info for The Obelisk, which I cut and pasted right off the Season of Mist page.

Here it is [UPDATE MARCH 6: New details came down the PR wire. I’ve included them here in place of the info from the preorder page]:

clutch the obelisk

Clutch – The Obelisk

“The Obelisk” is a box set that is comprised of all of Clutch’s Weathermaker Music vinyl releases. There are six double LP’s, three 12″ LPs, and three 12″ picture discs all together in a beautifully designed box set. In addition, the box contains a turntable mat and a square, artist signed lithograph. The rigid box has a magnetic closure and the silver foil is stamped on black Sierra cloth. This is a unique collector’s item and only 1,000 boxes were made for worldwide sales.

The individual 12” vinyl releases are Full Fathom Five (2xLP), Live At The Googolplex (Picture Disc), Jam Room (Picture Disc). Pitchfork & Lost Needles (Picture Disc), La Curandera, Strange Cousins From The West (2xLP),Blast Tyrant (2xLP), Robot Hive/Exodus (2xLP), From Beale Street To Oblivion (2xLP) Earth Rocker, Psychic Warfare, and Book Of bad Decisions (2xLP).

Clutch Live 2020:
Fri, MAR 20 Download Festival 2020 Melbourne Ascot Vale, Australia
Sat, MAR 21 Download Festival 2020 Sydney Sydney, Australia
Sat, APR 4 Big Surf Tempe, AZ
Sun, APR 5 Palms Casino Resort Las Vegas, NV
Tue, APR 7 Mission Ballroom Denver, CO
Wed, APR 8 Silverstein Eye Centers Arena Independence, MO
Fri, APR 10 Irving Music Factory Irving, TX
Sat, APR 11 Ford Park Entertainment Complex Beaumont, TX
Mon, APR 13 Nashville Municipal Auditorium Nashville, TN
Tue, APR 14 Knoxville Civic Auditorium and Coliseum Knoxville, TN
Wed, APR 15 Coca-Cola Roxy Atlanta, GA
Thu, APR 16 Blind Tiger Greensboro, NC
Sun, APR 26 Fabrique Club São Paulo, Brazil
Tue, APR 28 UNICLUB Abasto, Argentina
Thu, APR 30 Club Chocolate Recoleta, Chile
Sat, MAY 2 Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez Mexico, Mexico
Tue, MAY 5 Covelli Centre Youngstown, OH
Wed, MAY 6 Schottenstein Center Columbus, OH
Thu, MAY 7 The Machine Shop Flint, MI
Fri, MAY 8 The Machine Shop Flint, MI
Sat, MAY 9 The Rave / Eagles Club Milwaukee, WI
Sun, MAY 10 DeltaPlex Arena & Conference Center Grand Rapids, MI
Tue, MAY 12 UMBC Event Center Baltimore, MD
Wed, MAY 13 The Rooftop at Pier 17 New York City, NY
Fri, JUL 17 Ramblin’ Man Fair Maidstone, United Kingdom
Sat, JUL 18 Ramblin’ Man Fair Maidstone, United Kingdom
Sun, JUL 19 Ramblin’ Man Fair Maidstone, United Kingdom
Tue, JUL 21 Limelight Belfast, United Kingdom
Wed, JUL 22 The Academy Dublin 1, Ireland
Thu, JUL 23 O2 Academy Glasgow Glasgow, United Kingdom
Mon, JUL 27 ARTmania Festival Sibiu, Romania
Tue, JUL 28 MetalDays Tolmin, Slovenia
Thu, JUL 30 Kostrzy?skie Centrum Kultury Kostrzyn Nad Odr?, Poland
Sat, AUG 1 Gijon Gijón, Spain
Mon, AUG 3 Hard Club Porto, Portugal
Tue, AUG 4 CINETEATRO CAPITÓLIO Lisbon, Portugal
Wed, AUG 5 Open Flair Festival Eschwege, Germany
Thu, AUG 6 Rocco del Schlacko 2020 Püttlingen, Germany
Thu, AUG 6 Eiswiese Rothenburg Ob Der Tauber, Germany
Fri, AUG 7 Into The Grave Leeuwarden, Netherlands
Sat, AUG 8 Rocco Del Schlakko Saarbrücken, Germany
Sun, AUG 9 Taubertal Festival Rothenburg Ob Der Tauber, Germany
Tue, AUG 11 Sziget Festival Budapest, Hungary
Fri, AUG 14 Summer Breeze Open Air Dinkelsbühl, Germany
Sun, AUG 16 Kulturbolaget Malmö, Sweden
Tue, AUG 18 Gröna Lund Stockholm, Sweden
Wed, AUG 19 Sentrum Scene Oslo, Norway
Thu, AUG 20 Liseberg Göteborg, Sweden
Tue, SEP 22 Pukkelpop Festival Hasselt, Belgium

CLUTCH:
Neil Fallon – Vocals/Guitar
Tim Sult – Guitar
Dan Maines – Bass
Jean-Paul Gaster – Drums/Percussion

www.facebook.com/clutchband
www.instagram.com/clutchofficial
www.pro-rock.com
www.youtube.com/user/officialclutch

Clutch, “Evil” Live at Download Fest, UK, June 2019

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The Obelisk Turns 11 Years Old Today

Posted in The Numbers on January 31st, 2020 by JJ Koczan

the-obelisk-11

So here we are, 11 years later. Maybe Monday would be better for me to mark the 11th anniversary of starting The Obelisk, but the first post was Jan. 31, 2009, so while I’ve got the day I’ll take it. Thanks for reading.

That’s really all I want to say. You can probably go about your business now. I mean, the big deal was last year, right? 10! Such a satisfyingly round number. Nobody ever decided to base an entire number system on 11. It just kind of hangs there on the edge of puberty. You can’t do a damn thing with it. You ever meet an 11-year-old? They’re greasy and they smell. It’s a hard point in life to be a human being. You want to tell them it gets better, but does it?

So yeah, the site’s 11. Cool. I said last year I wanted to change the theme. I didn’t change the theme. At some point I said changes were coming to the forum. They didn’t really. The radio is still streaming and that makes me happy, but things are proceeding otherwise as naturally as they can. I’m writing as much as I can. That’s why I’m here. The music too, obviously — I should hope so — but really for me it’s the writing. That’s what I need most in the day. Any day. Every day at this point. Even though I’m not posting on the weekends, I’m usually writing. Klacky klacky klacky on the keyboard. That’s how it feels rightest. Write write write, go go go. Head down, keep working.

I am constantly honored, humbled and occasionally humiliated by the amount of support this site receives. Thank you.

In the last week I’ve had three professionals with whom I’ve worked for well longer than the 11 years of The Obelisk’s existence compliment the work I do here. Now, a part of public relations is maintaining relationships with contacts, but at this point, I know these people, and the relationship is solid — i.e., they didn’t have to say anything at all and they did anyway. My perspective on the site is so personal on the day-to-day — it’s about how many hours do I have and how can I best use them to write as much as possible — that I really have no idea what people might think of it generally or if it’s a consideration at all. I’m pretty separate from that stuff. But people say nice things sometimes and it’s awkward but appreciated.

So while 11’s just a stop on the way to the next divisible-by-five stop, I’m grateful to have the chance to say thank you again for being a part of this project which I guess has kind of become my life’s work at least to this point. I’m 38, so provided I don’t get hit by a bus there’s time to do more if I want to or can, but on the rare occasions I let myself be, I’m proud generally of what The Obelisk has become. I don’t know. My family wears the hoodies around and stuff. The Pecan has one.

I want to say thanks to them — my family, The Patient Mrs., The Pecan — as well as to Slevin for setting up the site 11 years ago and continuing to understand how much it means to me in a way that I think a very small number of people do. There are also a few people in particular whose drive is a constant inspiration. In that regard, foremost thanks to Walter Hoeijmakers of Roadburn Festival, to Tony Reed, Gabe Fiori, the Sound of Liberation crew, Gero Argonauta, Todd Severin, Scott Hamilton, Vadim Dyadyuk, and far, far too many others. The labels, the PR folks, the bands themselves who support this site. Gimme Radio for hosting The Obelisk Show (new episode today!). Thank you so much.

And the biggest inspiration that gets me up with the alarm every morning is the fact that someone else out there might give half a crap about something I write, ever, anywhere, so thank you for that. You are amazing and I hope The Obelisk has been or continues to be something positive in your day as it (generally, ha) is in mine.

Okay that’s enough. I gotta go write another post.

Onward.

All love,
JJ Koczan

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