Profile: Jon Howell of Less Art

Less Art
Less Art – photo courtesy of Scott Evans

If you’ve been missing artists that truly go for the jugular in terms of real world lyricism and real world emotions that run the gamut of feels you are in luck because Strangled Light from Less Art has it in spades. Set for release next week on Gilead Media, this post-hardcore beast hits the ground running with musicianship sharper than a brand new knife and as clear as a crisp winter morning. The band features members from Kowloon Walled City, Thrice and Curl Up and Die so unless you’ve been hiding under a rock this combination is absolutely an indication of the quality contained within. Ahead of their debut full length release we got the chance to ask Jon Howell (guitar) our set of Profile questions and as you will see he is as eloquent and gracious in his answers as he is with his music. Continue reading

Donuts & CANTO: Baroness, Judas Priest, Deftones and more!

baroness band photo 2017
Baroness

July 19, 2017

Good morning, it’s time to metal. Here’s some news you might have missed from yesterday:

    • Leading off, Baroness have been announced as the headliner of something called the Brewtal Beer Fest out in Pittsburgh. They’re the only band on the bill that I really could give two shits about, but hey, at least there’ll be some good breweries!

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Best of 2017 (mid-year report): Zyklonius’ list

I'd Buy That for a Dollar

Thanks to the demands, deadlines and drudgery of my day job, this stocktaking listicle was delayed two weeks past its intended publication date at the half-way point of the year. In the intervening time, additional waves of releases were unleashed, a reminder of the golden era of quantity and quality we are currently living in. It has become increasingly challenging to stay on top of must-hear releases, even with obsessive research and vigilance, but the untold satisfaction of unearthing new records that hit you like a brick in the face, make being a metalhead in this day and age such a thrilling glory ride.

I had a difficult time narrowing the following list (in alphabetical order) down to only ten releases (ultimately, the aforementioned day job dictated its final length) that have made a lasting impact in my heart of hearts during the first six months of this year, thanks to their creativity, vision, emotion, pummeling ferocity, gripping melody, riff mastery, headbangability, confident musicianship and that certain je ne sais quoi that elevates some albums and the whole genre to dizzying artistic heights. Continue reading

Nine Circles ov…Self Definition Through Music

self definition playlist

I may have said this before, but a large part of my life’s journey over the last 20 years has been analyzing what the media we consume says about us.  Each of us is obviously more than the sum of what they’ve read, watched, or listened to, but that doesn’t mean there’s not a hell of a lot of those films, books, and albums tied into the bundle of molecules that makes up who were are.  Whether it’s that record you heard at your first college party or the movie you remember watching over and over again with your father as a little kid, this seemingly disposable media is anything but…

Especially when you’re not in the most optimal mental or emotional state.  That’s when you turn to those things the resonate closest to you, that help you reinforce and re-align your identity with yourself.  For years I’ve kept an ever-expanding list of songs and albums under a playlist simply titled “Self Definition.”  It’s my lifeline for when the water gets too choppy, for when things seems to fall in on themselves in such a way you feel like you’re buried under a million things that won’t let you breathe, let you be heard.  And since the past few weeks have felt like to me, I wanted to take this edition of Nine Circles ov… to share some of those tracks that get me through the dark and remind me in a note or a chord or lyric of who I am.  Let’s dive in…   Continue reading

Donuts & CANTO: Steel Panther, Ministry, Eyehategod and more!

steel-panther-band
Steel Panther

July 18, 2017

Good morning, it’s time to metal. Here’s some news — mostly tour date announcements, but news nonetheless — you might have missed from yesterday:

    • Leading off, in “tour packages that don’t make sense,” we’ve got Stone Sour and Steel Panther! Because reasons. Anyway, they’ll be going around to these places in September and October.

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