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ABORT™ Magazine

Canada’s Counter Culture


Issue 7
Publisher/Editor-in-Chief: E.S. Day
Senior Editor: Grimm Culhane
Hip-Hop Editor: Dave “Corvid” McCallum
Art Director/Layout: Christina Thiele
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ISSN 1918-0594
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4 HEADPHONICA
DENIED
5AUDIOTOPSY
6 ABORTISTS
16 BEHIND THE BOARDS
18 INKSPLOITATION
21TO THE POINT WITH KRS-ONE
22TALES FROM THE EASTSIDE
26 21 & UNDER W/ SCARY EIRE
28 OUT & ABORT
36 DIZZEE RASCAL vs. EL-P
40 MELVINS INTERVIEW
44 SHOOTING GALLERY
58 21 & UNDER W/ ZION I
REVIEWS
LIVE REVIEWS
60
CD
84
DVD
94
FILM
100
BOOK
102
Our monthly chart compiled from the
blood, sweat & fears of our staff.
1. Unleash – Soulfly (Roadrunner)
2. Wild Thing – Peaches w/Tone Loc (Delicious Vinyl)
3. Half The Truth – The Royal Court of China
(A&M)
4. Soul Clap – Showbiz & A.G. (PayDay)
5. Kick You In The Face – MX Machine (Rest-
less)
6. Belfry – Lone Justice (UMG)
7. The Wrath of Kane - Big Daddy Kane (Cold
Chillin’)
8. Blue Rascal(Dizzee vs. New Order) – Dizzee
Rascal(Bootleg)
9. High Grade – Capelton (Greensleeves)
10. Crash, Bang, Wallop – Raven (Neat)

ABORT’S latest list of


interview requests, and
the people who told us to
go fuck ourselves

Erykah
Badu: Ironically Erykah’s ego is
as big as her head, considering we couldn’t even
a proper reply nor denial from Management, she
leaves us no choice but to throw her in our hall of
shame.

Our current record holder now makes


his fourth appearance in DENIED! We
stopped blaming the herb and are now
convinced that it is his horrific semi-
new reality show and hanging with those
Bollywood babes, that’s keeping him from gracing
our pages. Fuck it, we give up.
4 PHOTO BY Paul Michalowski
Bison - Earthbound
We Take An Album and Dissect It Track By Track. The Results can sometimes be… well, messy.
Recent Metal Blade acquirees Bison (whose self produced Earthbound kicks supreme ass), consists of members
formerly belonging to S.T.R.E.E.T.S. and lesser known Pequod. Now known as Bison B.C. (for legal reasons ac-
cording to lead singer James Farwell), their Metal Blade debut Quiet Earth will be released on September 30th,
2008. Produced by Jesse Gander (3 Inches of Blood, Subhumans, Mass Grave, S.T.R.E.E.T.S.), you know that
shit’s gonna rock!

1. Stokasaurus
Head nodding opener that sets the pace for the rest of the album. The build-up is seemingly endless here as
guitars trade riffs, opening a wide expanse that could take this song in any direction. When the vocals join the fray
they only add to the culminating effectiveness of this track.

2. Wartime
The sludge immediately hits the fan on this one. Simply put, this “is” Wartime set to the beat of something more
powerful than a bunch of boring field ordinances. Pure aggression and riff mastery rolled into one fucking great
song!

3. Dark Skies Above


Heavy as fuck from the get go, ending up all sludgy and fuzzed out, just like your head after too many “girly” drinks.
Unlike your drinking habits however, Bison keep things well under control, showcasing their song writing prowess
with slick time changes and no bullshit.

4. The Curse
Long ago in days of yore they used to write songs like this. When a wizard with white hair holds a town hostage,
what else can one do besides play bottom heavy melodic phrase to the coming apocalypse? Nuff sed.

5. Cancer Rat
Bass and drums fade in on what is easily the best song on this album. Once the rest of the band kicks it into gear
the onslaught truly takes ahold of the listener and does not let go. The impressive number of riffs they cram into
this song is only surpassed by Bison’s ability to fit them together effortlessly. Easily their masterpiece... so far.

6. Earthbound
The power of Bison comes out swinging in this the title
track. Catchy, heavy as fuck and put together with both
skill and inherent musical understanding which gives
Bison a definite distinction over any and all other Stoner
Metal bands.

www.myspace.com/bisoneastvan
By Grimm Culhane
ABORTIST

RANK AND FILE


JEFF HAMADA

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www.jeffhamada.com
vancouver, bc

7
ABORTIST

RANK AND FILE


rheanna fancypants

www.rheannafancypants.com
vancouver, bc

8
ABORTIST

RANK AND FILE


bruno daniel

10
WHO: Bruno Macedo
WHAT: Male 25
WHERE: Portugal
WHY: I Like Photo Manipulation, Mixed
Media, Photography and several themes
including opposites as Fantasy and Dark

11
ABORTIST

RANK AND FILE


N O M I C H I
WHO: Nomi Chi

WHERE: Vancouver BC, Canada. The FALL Tattooing! Shameless plug - www.
thefalltattooing.com

WHAT: I’m a tattoo artist and illustrator. I get a jolly out of custom tattoo
work, but for the most part I draw, paint, and eat a lot of bacon.

WHY: Because I want to be like all the cool kids.

WHEN: Book appointments now! nomi@thefalltattooing.com

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www.thefalltattooing.com - I work here
www.nomi-chi.com - My website
wormw00d.livejournal.com - My artblog

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ABORTIST

RANK AND FILE


D O E S
san paulo, brazil

14
with ben kaplan
The year is 2000 and a younger Ben Kaplan jumps on a jet to Vancouver to work on the
new Mudvanye record. He was never to return. Working alongside his partner in crime
Garth Richardson, he catapulted his talents over the music industry’s castle walls, to
rescue the bands in distress and save the world’s ears from heading to the Gallows.

Speaking of which, Ben and Garth are currently producing the new Gallows record as we
speak… just though we’d mention it.

Ben’s impressive client list includes: Kittie, Chevelle, Sarah McLaughlin, Shakira, Hedley,
Project 86, Oliver Black, Atreyu, and Free Flow to name a few.

16
E.S. Day: As a producer, any urge to ever sampling E.S Day: Fave vocal mic for you right now?
electronica or Rap drumbeats to use with a metal/rock BK: believe it or not, a Rode Classic tube mic which is
tracks, I mean, are you open to that? not horrendously expensive, it’s fun because we have
BK: Well these days it blends together anyway like all these other good mikes (Shure) 87’s, 67’s, and it
that, I really try to do “Live” anyway, I really don’t rely depends on bottom row does work on certain vocal-
on loops and samples as much, depending on the ists.
record, I’ll use them as icing on the cake. E.S. Day: Yeah.
BK: But as I said I have been doing more Soul and
E.S. Day: Upcoming acts on the client list who you are R&B., and it has been working for that, but for a
predicting will come out on top based on songwriting screamer, I’d probably use more like an Shure SM-7
(with your help of course)
BK: Sherry St. Germain and Ninjaspy E.S. Day: Can a young group approach Ben Kaplan,
E.S. Day: Mixing – Fave piece of equip. that is now if they save their pennies? can Ben Kaplan be afford-
obsolete? able to the right artist?.
BK: I wouldn’t say obsolete but if I had to choose, I BK: Yes. Usually bands ask “How much you cost?”
would say the Echoplex tape delay, I pretty much use I say, “How much you got?’ (laughs), but most of the
it on everything you wouldn’t expect time its bands saying: “We want a two-sided double
record with a bonus disc and we’ve got a thousand
E.S. Day: Is this something that’s not used anymore bucks” realistically, I mean the more time have, the
or… better you can make it. Now with the way things are,
BK: No, people were using it…it was just one of those bands are recording four and five songs and the days
things, you know, it was noisy and dirty and you had of the album are almost obsolete, what with iTunes
to fuck around with it a bit. Because it’s so dirty and and CD Baby, but on the flip side of that, some are
shitty sounding, it sounds amazing. So yes, that is one into the “Album” now and because of that, it is just
of my favorites. more of a concept album now, kind of like Ninjaspy,
the segues and the flows in between I mean, I still
E.S. Day: I find it strange that people use computer love that [listening to a whole record].
technology today to make things sound like the equip-
ment that they no longer use because they have E.S. Day: Well as far as “concept albums” I wish I
computer technology could say the same for the new Judas Priest album
BK: Yes… but (laughs) “Nostradamus” I wish somebody could have predicted
that fucking disaster!
E.S. Day: Given today’s technology, what album or BK: (laughs)
track would you now like to go back and re-record? E.S. Day: “360 Deals” how much has this changed the
BK: You mean anybody or something I did? producers’ role now?
E.S Day: Well, anybody or just something you that if it BK: Well I mean labels are pretty into doing that right
had been ten years ago “I would have done… this or now right. Bands, not so much all the time, they are
that” just starting to catch on right now, I mean it’s basi-
BK: Well I (laughs), I like to go back and redo every- cally the label gets a cut of everything, merch, touring,
thing! (laughs). Specifically? I don’t know, but it’s one publishing…everything.
of those things, I could work on the same record forev-
er you know what I mean? You can always use more E.S. Day: Items you cant live without in the studio
time, plus you get more experience (besides the obvious)
BK: Um.. Coffee… (Garth Richardson enters and an-
E.S. Day: - Artists that you have never had to chance nounces “Porn”)
to do a record with? E.S. Day: Did Garth just say “Porn”? (laughs)
BK: I would have to say Muse. I just love what they BK: (Laughs) umm coffee, oh – cigarettes and I have
are doing; I like that marriage of electronic and hard a new little addiction to the Food Network
rock. I just love what they’re doing, it’s wicked. Also, E.S. Day: No way, me too! I like the guy who does
Some of the tones they do and some the sounds they “License to Grill” when he smokes the food with the
get. apple wood.
BK: Yeah
E.S. Day: Best starter gear (inexpensive) for up and E.S. Day: Well its “Top Ten Recipes with Ben Kaplan”
coming producers, I’m old school (laughs) everyone!
BK: I still have two Atari 1040’s! (laughs) and the BK: (laughs )
things were like huge, with an 8MHz processor, and E.S. Day: Thanks for your time Ben
if you wanted to do anything you had to put in one of
those little floppy disks. Nevertheless, right now it is BK: Thank you
really about whatever you’re comfortable with. Further
than, that you have to have a really good microphone Ben Kaplan is currently residing at The Farm Studios
and a good pre-amp. in Vancouver BC

www.thefarmstudios.com 17
18 photos by Jordana Meilleur
WITH

19
to the point

with KRS-ONE
A
fter the Blastmaster’s inspiring get into here, is the difference between a Corvid : On the monuments?
address at the Canadian Music Hip Hop historian, and a historian.
Week conference at the Royal York KRS-ONE : On the monuments. He wrote
Hotel in Toronto, ABORT Magazine had In addition, a historian is someone who on the sarcophaguses of the Pharoahs.
the honour of sharing a few words with the documents people, places, things in physi- They have documentation where Napoleon
Teacher. cal time and space. You know, meaning and his soldiers go into the pyramids, and
also... go deeper - I’m black. Therefore, if they say - quote - “graffiti the pyramids”.
Corvid : So, about the art of MCing - I I’m looking for my history, I’m supposed Now this is Hip Hop’s history... this is not
had the privilege of speaking with Brother to go straight to Africa - that’s normal. Black history, this is not white history, this
J of the X Clan a few months ago and he Now Hip Hop’s historian says, “I have a is not Asian history. This is... Hip Hop’s
was speaking about Men of Science gath- Omni history” - I have an Asian history, A history leads us to Napoleon.
ering together... you mentioned the Logos European history, Native American history.
in there - the power of the word, Why? Because I’m not defining myself Hip Hop’s history... Ronald Reagan,
by colour, skin, race, landmass... dates on President Ronald Reagan...was a DJ!
KRS ONE : Yes. a calendar. I am defining myself by ideas. Yeah, he played in 1934, WOC, Davenport
Meaning - Hip Hop is an idea, it’s not Iowa. President Ronald Reagan. His name
Corvid : new and you also said that back physical...it’s not a physical thing. You was Dutch...DJ Dutch. So, the Hip Hop
in the day there where five real MC’s, and can’t... there’s nothing... you can’t drink historian is not interested in colour, skin,
from that it’s gone on to become a million. something and become Hip Hop. Hip Hop landmass - that’s called history. But Hip
Do you see the art of MCing in the Hip is a shared idea. Therefore, the Hip Hop Hop’s history is a Omnihistory. Every-
Hop culture as something specifically new historian is not documenting people - he body’s history is my history. Everybody! I
in the timeline of human existence or is or she is documenting the movement of an could find myself in anybody’s history - as
this the resurgence of something that, at a idea. So, when you read Napoleon...there’s Hip Hop...
deeper level existed in all human cultures ? a book out - “Napoleon in Egypt”, and it
talks about Napoleon -as a graffiti writer!... But NOW, as an African American I’m
KRS ONE : Nothing is new under the yeah. stuck on that BULLSHIT (laughs)
sun, but the way in which newness is ex-
pressed, or should I say the way in which Corvid : How so, how so? Corvid: Thanks Kris
oldness is expressed, is always new. The
world has never seen Hip Hop before, KRS-ONE : When, in his travels, Napo- KRS-ONE : Thank you
but it has! One of the books I’m putting leon made it uhh.it was law. It was like,
out this year is called “The Gospel of Hip part of the military strategy , to write your Special Thanks to Brent Smith and Eric
Hop”, on Powerhouse Publishers. One of name... everywhere you go. Alper
the things we argue in there, which I didn’t
photo by Kalmplex Seen
21
(kind of) a talk with Stephane Dion
E.S.Day: I was going to ask you right off the bat in regards
to the 2010 Olympics, and possibly the B.C government’s
involvement in helping with the homeless out there,
when it comes too. Right now, they are kicking a lot of
people out of some of the low income housing which
is already ridden with bed bugs, cockroaches etc...
a high addiction rate and HIV rate, do you think
maybe Sam Sullivan and the government in
Vancouver is not doing a good job at taking care
of these people? Moreover, if not - for the simple
fact; to make room for tourists?

Stephane Dion: I will not comment on Provincial


politics. What I will say though, is that I am com-
mitted, if I become Prime Minister, I am confident
Canadians will give me the opportunity, to
have a government focusing on the fight
against poverty and helping people
to get out of poverty. Our goal is
to decrease poverty in Canada by
one-third and half for children. This
will include a strong effort for social
housing.

E.S.Day: That’s fine, but I was


probably targeting more of the
people that live in the Downtown
Eastside, who seem to have a
little bit harder. Because its more
of a targeted area. Its a high
concentration of addiction
and HIV. The largest HIV
rate in

22
North America...did you recently see the Dan
Rather report on www.HD.net.? And he cornered Mr. Sul-
livan, kind of boxed him in. But I don’t blame him, he is the
media. We however are trying to get some answers, more from
people higher up in the Government and wondering what they
might be able to do. Do you think you would be able to give a
nudge? I know you say not provincially...

Stephane Dion: You know, if it’s to fight poverty...I will be a


strong partner.

E.S. Day: Specifically in the downtown Eastside?

Stephane Dion: Yes, yes, specifically in the Downtown


Eastside.
E.S.Day: Your views on them kicking [the already poor]
out of the bad hotels to renovate I’m not being a shit
disturber, so to speak. Pardon my French (laughs)

Stephane Dion: (Laughs) No no, I just want to say


that I am proud of the strong colleagues that I have
in Birtish Columbia, who are fighting to be sure that
Social housing and the fight against poverty will be
very effective in your Province. When you have a
champion like Hedy Fry for instance it’s a great
help.

E.S. Day: Stephane Dion; thank you.

By E.S. Day

photo by Chris Webber 23


photos by Scott Alexander

24
photos by Chris Webber 25
21 &
under
with ...

I
reland’s original Celtic Funk Warriors SCARY EIRE , have always
stayed true to their roots and the gents decided to give ABORT’s
Dave “Corvid “McCallum a quick break down on the groups status
and how they run things in the land of the Shamrock. Just don’t make
any Leprechaun jokes
ABORT: what was the reason given by Island records for drop- songs that finally became ‘The Scary Era’ album were recorded
ping Scary Eire in 1993 and shelving the “Scary Era” recordings? after a decision was already made to drop the band. I would put it
was it in any way related to your politics and the situation in down to bad timing all-round.
Ireland at the time?
Mek: Island never gave us a reason, they didn’t have to, they just
RíRá: There’s been umpteen stories floating around about that drop you and that’s it. Maybe they wanted an album full of paddy-
situation, none of which were ever clear or confirmed to us. I re- whackery. Ya know, drunken gob-shites throwin’ bottles at the
ally don’t tink it was anything to do with politics. The first album we Brits and singin ‘Danny Boy’. Either way it doesn’t matter, there
recorded for Island was not the best by our own admission. The were some good laughs along the way.
Ireland with bands doing back-lining. I’m currently in the process
ABORT: “Scary Era” captures what has been called “the spirit of of opening Irelands first brothel for leprechauns. It’s the little tings
pre-Celtic Tiger Ireland”, in what ways has the economic/political that count.
climate changed in Ireland since the mid 90’s and how has this Mr.Browne: What?
affected your outlook and music?
5. How would you describe the current state of Hip Hop in Ireland
RíRá: The economical state of the country is far wealthier now, ? Are there any artists that we should be looking out for?
but your ordinary working class are no better off, probably worse
off now. When we spoke about the dole q’s there were 180,000 Mr.Browne: It’s good and bad. I wouldn’t listen to much of it but
people unemployed. It decreased steadily for years but now it’s there’s a few heads doing it right.
risen again to over 200,000 and counting. The Celtic tiger is just
a smoke screen for people traveling here from other countries; RíRá: I don’t listen to much hip hop from anywhere now, it’s 99%
it’s kind of like a Darby O’Gill script. Peace and crocks of gold for muck. There’s alot of talent in Ireland but it’s pretty much low-key.
all. The best of what I’ve heard would be Urban Intelligence, Collie,
The Infomatics, Correkt minds, Exile Eye, Alias Irish.
Mek: Irish dole q’s in the 80s/90s were hilarious. fellas would
be comin’ in wearin’ work boots and overalls..ya know - park- Mek : Like most countries, its hard to find the gems amongst all
ing the work van around the corner and rubbin the paint off their the internet shite now. Every fucker you meet is a rapper or pro-
hands before they queue up for the unemployment benefits. ducer. there’s no ‘fans’ anymore. There’s a bunch of dudes from
The only thing that really changed is that nowadays there’s less Cork called the Rubber Bandits who are funny gits.. rappin about
of a heroin problem, every fucker is snortin’ cocaine instead. To toblerones and drugs and that kinda crap.
answer your question though, the change in economical/political
climate hasn’t affected me at all - musically or otherwise. Same 6. You are clearly aficionados of the sacred herb, what is the
shite - different decade. state of cannabis culture in Ireland today ?
RíRá: The country’s swamped with weed right now, it’s great but
ABORT: You make a point of incorporating traditional Irish music I can’t get a bit of hash anywhere?
into Old School Hip Hop beats, do you draw a direct connection Mr.Browne: The country’s swamped with rotten weed ya mean?
between your lyricism and the Irish poetic tradition? Any favourite Rotten weed and poxy hash.
Irish writers/poets/singers ?
Mek : For me it seemed natural, we came from a mostly Mek : I dont smoke that much, it makes me listen to Jah Shaka
reggae/b-boy background but there was a wealth of traditional albums for hours on end when I should be making my own.
Irish music, that had never been sampled. Me and Sloosh would Sloosh: Pot.
regularly scratch up tracks by Moving Hearts, Davy Spillane,
Oisin etc.. 7. With the emergence of Grime style Hip Hop in the UK, has this
If you get past the diddley-eye sing-along stuff, there’s some sound penetrated much into the Irish scene ?
fuckin great traditional fusion out there. RíRá: We’ve always got a taste of the UK sound here but it never
really took off, not that it even took off much in England. We’ve
RíRá: Using traditional with hip hop wasn’t intentional, it’s just had the Jungle ting, Garage, then Grime,and now Dubstep’s
something your surrounded by in Ireland. Traditional music is part the flavour. I like some of it but like everyting else there’s only a
of what we are. It’s obviously gonna surface if your into music of handful of top tunes, the rest are shallow.
any form, or at least it should unless you’ve grown up in the Bono
bubble. As far as writing, people will always try and make com- 8. Any thoughts on the current state of Northern Ireland and the
parisons to other Irish writers. Nothing wrong with that, I mean coalition government ? (my family lives just outside of Belfast)
this country has produced the best of authors, poets, playwrights. RíRá: No.
If I can write words somewhere between Flan Ó’Brien and Shane Sloosh: I hope it all works out. Seriously.
MaGowan’s thoughts then I’ll be doing something right. Mek : I deejayed at the Belfast City Breakers 25th anniversary a
ABORT Between separating mid 90’s and reforming in ‘07, what while back and it was class.
projects have the members of Scary Eire pursued in the interim? 9. Are you influenced by the Gaelic Revival ? Any dope MC’s
RíRá: After ScaryÉire I moved to London and recorded with spitting “as Gaelge”?
some top musicians, mainly in the reggae field. I hooked up with RíRá: I’ve only ever heard one fella rap in Gaelic, a fella called
a producer called Adrian Sherwood who has been involved in MC Mupéad from Galway I think? It sounded fuckin brilliant. If
the reggae scene in the U.K. since forever really. It was a great only we understood what he was saying? but more of it I say.
experience and exercise to be involved in. I love reggae as much Mek : Same here, that’s the only guy I’ve heard chatting with the
if not more than hip hop so the cross over was natural. I also Irish language.
recorded a lot of solo stuff, some still in the making.
ABORT: What are your future plans re: recording and touring ?
Mek : When the band imploded I hit the bottle hard for a while. It Will we be seeing you in Canada anytime soon?
was a lonely kinda time. One minute you’re the talk of the town, Mek : I’m graftin’ away on some projects with Bionic M.C.
signing autographs, next minute you’re sat on yer arse watching (London posse) and Ian Brown. There’s never much point makin
daytime telly, eating beans on toast. But ya get over it and I was plans with Scary Eire ‘cos things either happen or they don’t.
fortunate to have good people around me. I did some remix work Nobody has control of it.. Its like a big drunken robot and there
for Ian Brown, Rodney P, Glen Hansard and I released some just happens to be 4 fellas hanging on to its wobbly feet.
mixtapes and gigged regularly.
RíRá: New times. New tings. Nuff said.
Sloosh: I took a sound engineering course and traveled around http://www.myspace.com/scareyeire 27
28
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31
EL-P
Brian: I pick up on a lot of S
ences and literary reference
Philip K. Dick was actually in

vs.
wrote Blade Runner, it was k
amine fuelled winter...so I w
about the role of science fict
The ABORT Interview of literature in your lyrics?

El-P: I don’t really care abou


you know, I don’t really care
and lasers and aliens and a

Dizzee: Stop lyin’, you were


aliens and shit for like half a

El-P: But it doesn’t influence

Dizzee: Oh right, yeah yeah

El-P: I’m just saying, like...fo


ing about writers like Philip K
Orwell is the exaggeration o
writing about the future, they
what’s happening now and t
ridiculously exaggerated me
something and open up the,
the curtain of some of the re
ing around us right now. An
the mistake of thinking it’s a
I mean, I respect anyone wh
perspective and can cut thro
bullshit...

Dizzee: It’s like Futurama in


the future but they can only
based on what’s happening

Currently sitting on top of the UK charts Dizzee Ras- El-P: Exactly. And that’s inte
shit flipped my wig when I w
cal and Def Jux’s own EL-P gave ABORT’s Dave writer, I’m kinda like that.
and Brian the one-two punch on touring on drugs, Dave: So, next question is f
writing on drugs and Science Fiction… “Hardback Industry” you say
to be enjoyed while on drugs. a label that “isn’t fulla pricks
Definitive Jux?

Dizzee: I get on very well, p


I’ve done at any other label,
out. Like, I used to hang ou
sell quite a bit, at XL...but th
more like crew I’d hang arou
choice! (LOL) No, me and E

Dave: So how’s the relations


and Dirtee Stank?

Dizzee: It’s not even like tha


ness terms, it’s not even like
people, we just get on, it’s ju
innit?

El-P: We’ve basically been


of strangeness on this bus,
36 photos by Brian Williams
Science Fiction refer- me...that I will never live down. One incredibly ern Style Hip Hop like Three Six Mafia, Master P
es in your music... drunken night that we won’t talk about...eventu- and that around 1999...
n Vancouver when he ally it just got to the point where I couldn’t defend
kind of an amphet- myself anymore and I just became hamburger El-P: I think that if you’re a Hip Hop producer,
was just wondering meat. I became the meat the Rocky hangs in his most producers have a huge record collection,
tion and other forms freezer to train basically... and you’re just constantly listening to other types
of music to see what you can steal from them. I
Dizzee: Whereas, the piece of meat didn’t have mean, I was only Hip Hop as a kid, then when I
ut Science Fiction, a choice, this guy kinda put himself up for it. started to become a producer, I remembered that
e about spaceships my father had all these old records. I mean, he
all that.... Brian: What do you think of the role of psychoac- wasn’t around, but he left a lot of records. And
tive substances in making music, Hip Hop specifi- I can’t understand motherfuckers...it’s like no
e just talkin’ about cally? matter how many records they have they keep
an hour. making the same beat over and over. To me it’s
El-P: I don’t believe in making music, uh, high... like, Hip Hop is the ultimate blending and clus-
e my music terfuck of all this shit, like it’s our job to just take
Dizzee: I fucking do ! it and rape it all and turn it into something fucked
h... up and beautiful, so that’s what I do.
El-P: I mean, like, I’ve done it. At this point in my
or me, what’s interest- life, I might smoke a little weed on occasion... Dave: So, America in some ways sets the
K. Dick and George standard internationally as far as Hip Hop is
of reality...they’re not Dizzee: He’s more than capable of doing it with- concerned. In the same way as Rock and Roll
y’re writing about out it, he don’t need it. started in the U.S. and was followed by the
they’re just using “British Invasion”, do you see that as your music
etaphors to explain El-P: I also just never really had fun combining breaks through to a North American audience
, you know... pull back what I do, with my high. I’ve loved drugs through- more artists are coming over from the UK and be-
eality that’s happen- out my life, and I’ve done so many drugs - to ing successful in the US?
nd I think people make good effect and to horrible effect...and I’ve just
about Science Fiction, never really combined the two. Me saying I don’t Dizzee: Well the thing with the Rock thing...it
ho has an interesting belive in it doesn’t mean that I have some sort of might be the race issue, but white people have
ough the lies and the political reason or even some sort of intelligent sort of got it together more over in England. So
reason. Just, when I’m losing my mind on some to be able to do that kind of shit in the first place,
mushrooms, I’m not really capable of sitting down black people as a community, especially right
nnit? It’s based on to make some joints. now...we’re not in the greatest space as far as
base it in the future organization and doing shit on a big business
now. Dizzee: You know, there was always weed level. Black people over here, although they’ve
around in my situation as far as making music. had their rough times...it’s massive, it’s a billion
eresting to me...that On Pirate radio there was always shit being dollar industry here. Ain’t that kind of industry at
was a kid...and as a passed around, so you might as well get in on home yet, it’s a small place and there’s only a
it...I’ve been smoking since I was like twelve or few people like me cuttin’ through like, just on the
whatever, but I’m more of a social smoker, I don’t whims of knowing different types of music and
for Dizzee. On really go out and buy weed unless I’m on holiday. knowing how to cut in and out of that.
y that you need to find On this album, I did use MDMA a few times, and
s”, how are things on I’ve never made music on MDMA before... Dave: How did the collaboration with Bun B and
UGK come about?
El-P: Which joints?
probably better than Dizzee: I met Bun at SxSW like years ago, when
, like we actually hang Dizzee: No, magic...you put a dab on your finger I first started coming to America. I just kinda kept
ut with Richard Rus- and then on your tongue... the link from then, so, when they were mak-
his guy, he seems like ing their last album, I was making “Maths and
und....if I didn’t have a El-P: No, which songs? English”. So, they had a track called “2 types of
El-P are cool. Bitches”, and they asked me to be on that. I had
Dizzee: Oh, “Bubbles”. Sometimes I listen to one I’d written with the beat on it, and I asked
ship between Def Jux music taking drugs and all that, but it’s not a Bun to be on that, and I asked Pimp as well, and
major part of the creative process. I’m not too it kinda ran from there...it was one of the last
creative on drugs, unless I’m making the beats. things Pimp C did.
at...on paper, in busi-
e that. We’re just two Brian: Just wondering about the influence of dif- Dave: Thanks Guys
ust doing it’s thing ferent kinds of music on your own work?

Dizzee: Punk rock, Heavy Metal...gospel, my


through a variety Mom listened to a lot of soul gospel, drum n bass,
mainly because of garage,...someone introduced me to the South- Dave McCallum and Brian Williams, Seattle WA
37
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Grimm: This soun
old.
Buzzo: Aaaaaaahh
I’m a bad judge of
having been the g
difficult for me to s

Grimm: Someone
years, I have to sa
think it ranks up as
guys have done u
Buzzo: Thank you
That’s very nice of

Grimm: You used


on (A) Senile Anim
Buzzo: Yes, surpr
Grimm: With Cod
Big Business.
Buzzo: Yes, as ba
Senile Animal we
another record.
Grimm: Oh you sti
noble of you.
Buzzo: That’s very

Grimm: Yes (laugh


albums with these
band member situ
Buzzo: Let’s hope
start doing tons of
other crazy shit th

photo by Erin Broadley


happen.

Grimm: Right, and


again.
Buzzo: Might be.
Bootsy Collins.
Grimm: Excellent
about a month and
Buzzo: Wow, did
with us?
Grimm: No he neg
Buzzo: (Laughs) I
ABORT Magazine’s Grimm Culhane caught up with King Buzzo yet.
of the Melvins just prior to their American Summer 2008 Tour Grimm: You proba
him, maybe start p
(with Big Business). The boys discuss the new album Nude With the tour maybe?
Buzzo: We’re gon
Boots, their mutual hatred of Courtney Love, collaberations both gonna start a Red
here and in Hell as well as hair tips and fishing with dynamite. called the Red Ho
gonna be the bass
Rock and roll may be a lifestyle choice, but according to King gonna be the lead
Buzzo, mass murder still has its strong points. a record of all Chil
Junkie. Like it?

Grimm: How are you today King, are you happy with this release? Grimm: So you go from (A) Senile Grimm: (Laughs) T
or should I call you Mr. Buzzo? Buzzo: I’m very happy with it. It Animal to Nude With Boots? be out on Ipecac I
King Buzzo: Whatever, call me smells like what it sounds like. Buzzo: Yes, it’s reverse entropy. Buzzo: Me on guit
Buzzo, you can call me King. Grimm: Is this a natural progres- (A) Senile Animal wasn’t as good lins on bass and N
Grimm: I appreciate that, thank sion for (A) Senile Animal? and this is better. Red Hot Jalapeno
you. Buzzo: It’s a very unnatural pro- Grimm: Ok. Funky Junkie.
Buzzo: Hey no problem. gression. Buzzo: But, (A) Senile Animal was
Grimm: Now the new Melvins good, but not as good.
album, Nude With Boots…
40
nds more like the Melvins of Grimm: We’ll be looking forward to that one for Buzzo: A lot of people think that people like me
sure. should just be jailed just for walking around on
hh, I don’t know about that. Buzzo: It’ll be great (laughs). We don’t have to the street.
f that kind of stuff. You know, write new songs, the Chili Peppers already wrote Grimm: Wow
guy who wrote most of it, it’s them for us. Buzzo: Makes no sense to me, I’m an easy-
say. going, easy to get along with, nice guy.
Grimm: That’s pretty handy, I like it. What dif- Grimm: You seem to be, yeah. Maybe you
e who’s been a fan for 25 fered between recording Nude With Boots and should apply for Canadian citizenship?
ay it’s quite an achievement. I (A) Senile Animal? Buzzo: Nah, I can’t see doing that. You guys
s high as anything else you Buzzo: Those guys weren’t as scared of me on have too harsh of winters up there. I live in Cali-
up to this point for sure. this one. They kinda realized I was a blow hard fornia, I’m a pussy now. 20 years down here in
u, I’d like to think so as well. and weren’t worried at all. the hot sun, I ain’t gonna be moving up into the
f you, I appreciate that. Grimm: And how is Ipecac treating you guys? rust belt, no way. I’d die, I’d whither up and die,
Buzzo: Oh they’re always great. Always caus- you know?
d the same line-up as you did ing trouble when they’re not freebasing. Grimm: (Laughs)
mal. Grimm: Try and get them in between sessions Buzzo: I’m melting… Who’da thought an insig-
risingly enough. kind of thing? nificant amount of water would have melted me.
dy Willis and Jared Warren from Buzzo: That’s right, you can get them at the end I noticed whenever we’re up in Canada there’s
of the month, when they’re out of money, awake always a severe amount of advertisements on
adly as they played on (A) as opposed to comatose. They usually go on TV for snow mobiles.
still used them yet again for these benders that last a week, then they sleep
for about a week. Grimm: Right, yeah, and snow blowers.
ill asked them back, that’s very Grimm: So you wanna get them when they just Buzzo: I don’t think I’ve ever seen one of those
come out of hibernation? down here, no need. Plenty of advertisements
y nice of me. for methadone clinics though down here and the
Buzzo: Well they’re kinda grumpy right out of Hollywood methadone clinic actually has a valet.
hs) So now that you have two hibernation. A little while after that you can talk to Grimm: (Laughs)
e gentlemen, has the Melvins them, kinda get some answers out of them, but Buzzo: (Laughs)
uation stabilized at this point? you know… how do you know when a junkie’s Grimm: That makes sense actually.
e so. God only knows. They lying? Buzzo: It does, totally.
f blow and doing all kinds of Grimm: His lips are moving.
hen God only knows what’ll Buzzo: Exactly, when they open their mouths. Grimm: Do you have any insight as to what’s
Grimm: (Laughs) wrong with popular music these days?
Buzzo: Same as Courtney Love. (laughs). Buzzo: When was it right? That begs the ques-
d then its time to move on yet tion that at some point it was right. Like the Alice
Grimm: (Laughs) Nice. So no love lost there Cooper quote of “we’re pounding a stake through
Bootsy Collins, we have to get with Courtney Love I can imagine? the heart of the peace and love generation”
Buzzo: There was none to begin with.
t, I spoke with Bootsy Collins Grimm: I can understand that having met her Grimm: (Laughs) And is that what the Melvins
d a half ago… myself… are doing as well?
he mention he was gonna play Buzzo: What would the good part be? Buzzo: Yeah, I have little or no interest in that
Grimm: Probably when we parted ways, they kind of “hippy-dom.” I mean some of the music
glected to mention that actually. went East and we went West and we were on a is “ok” but God, the main band for all the hippies
I don’t think he knows about it bill with them and Show Business Giants. was the Grateful Dead and you listen to that shit
Buzzo: Never heard of them. it sounds like fucking Poco, you know?
ably should get in contact with Grimm: How about NoMeansNo? Grimm: (Laughs) Yeah right, good call.
practicing soon, at least after Buzzo: Fuck that. How does Blue Cheer fit in?
Buzzo: Oh yeah, I always heard that they have Where did Hendrix fit into that? Where do The
nna have him, me and Dale are a severe distrust of Americans as a result of the Who fit in?
d Hot Chili Peppers cover band gun situation down here.
ot Jalapeno Poppers. He’s Grimm: That does sound feasible, yeah. Grimm: Well these are bands who’ve pushed
s player and Neil Hamburger’s Buzzo: What are they afraid of? the boundaries at one time or other. I would
d singer. We’re gonna put out Grimm: Getting shot probably. have to say the Melvins fit into that quite nicely.
li Peppers covers called Funky Buzzo: (Laughs) Well I’ve lived here my whole Buzzo: Ah that’s very nice of you. We’re driving
life, so far so good. a stake through the heart of something. (laughs)
Grimm: Well that’s good to hear. Grimm: Keep pounding away Buzzo, please.
That’s good, I like it. And that’ll Buzzo: I’ve never even been shot at. Buzzo: Hey, watch the filthy mouth.
I’d imagine? Grimm: That’s probably a good thing too. Grimm: (Laughs)
tar, Dale on drums, Bootsy Col- Buzzo: Probably should have been shot at on a Buzzo: (Laughs)
Neil Hamburger singing. The number of occasions, but it’s never happened.
o Poppers new album called Grimm: Just too fast? Grimm: You’ve done a lot of collaborations in
Buzzo: Yeah. the last while.

continued
Grimm: (Laughs)

41
Buzzo: We’ve done a number of them, Buzzo: Yeah. and Fantomas will be playing at that
yes. Grimm: I hope to be there. and then maybe doing some of our own
Grimm: Is there any band in particular Buzzo: Only the good go to Hell, that’s it. shows after that.
that you’d like to collaborate with but you
haven’t yet? Grimm: What are the chances of the Grimm: Still in pretty tight with Mike Pat-
Buzzo: The one I always say is that I Melvins showing up on a Big Business ton?
would love to resurrect Jimi Hendrix and album? Buzzo: We’re shoe horned in.
Judy Garland and do a record with both Buzzo: None in the near future cuz they Grimm: Is there enough room for both of
of those together. Wouldn’t that be great? just got done recording their new one. you and all that hair?
Grimm: Yeah, with Judy on guitar and (laughs) I don’t know, it’s never been Buzzo: There’s never enough room for
Jimi singing? talked about. everybody. Bigger is always better.
Buzzo: Judy can sing. We’d have to put Grimm: Are there any more live video Grimm: (Laughs)
Jimi on guitar, maybe even bass. releases coming up, something along the Buzzo: If you’re in a car wreck do you
Grimm: Sure, sure. lines of “Salad of a Thousand Delights”? want to be in a small car or a big car?
Buzzo: Fuck yeah. Him and Judy Gar- Grimm: Depending on how much hair is
land, it’s a match made in Hell. Buzzo: Not for the Melvins. We’ve got involved I guess.
Grimm: (Laughs) the Fantomas/Melvins Big Band DVD Buzzo: Well hair doesn’t take up much
Buzzo: Cuz that’s where they’re burning coming out in August, big live show that room, it’s compactable.
right now. Both of their junkie carcasses we did in England, it came out really cool. Grimm: I read recently that you actually
are burning down there right now. Well… I don’t know when we’ll ever be able to do use wax on your hair.
purgatory if you believe in the Catholic that again, but… Buzzo: Wax… I never heard that one, no.
thing. I don’t know what I would use it for.
Grimm: Any more Fantomas releases? Grimm: That’s curious to me too because
Grimm: They had to abolish purga- Buzzo: No, nothing to speak of at the wax would actually weigh it down.
tory, that’s unfortunate. If you wait long moment. We are going to be playing live Buzzo: Yeah, I don’t use wax on it, I don’t
enough you’ll be collaborating with them at the end of the year at the “All Tomor- do nothing to it.
soon enough I’d say. row’s Parties.” The Melvins and Mike Grimm: No? You just dry it, it’s natural?
Buzzo: In Hell? Patton are curating “All Tomorrow’s Par-
Grimm: In Hell, yeah. ties” a weekend in December in England

42
Buzzo: I don’t dry it, I just let it dry on its Buzzo: They don’t even have good musi- to it. We play Vancouver, kill somebody.
own. I don’t do anything to it, it’s a filthy cal taste, gimme a break. Just go back to We play down in Bellingham, kill some-
rat’s nest. getting drunk. Some of them are smarter body. Kill somebody in Seattle, Mazola,
than others, but by and large they’re the they’d never figure it out, the jurisdictions
Grimm: Now I gotta ask you Buzzo, with laziest people in the world and they’re are all mixed. Canadians and Americans
the US federal elections looming do you whore mongering drug addicts, you would never figure it out.
think it’s a good idea to vote or does that know? (laughs)
only provoke them? Grimm: (Laughs) Grimm: Well you’d better get on that right
Buzzo: Voting’s always a good idea. I Buzzo: Its true, all the stories that you’ve away before someone steals that idea.
think it’s fun. I think it’s a good idea for heard about all those kinds of things, it’s Buzzo: I think they probably already
people to make their own political deci- all true. Absolutely 100% true, if not way have.
sions and look to much higher sources worse. Present company excluded of Grimm: Yeah they may have, that’s a
than entertainers for those beliefs, that’s course, but I’m as rare as hen’s teeth. good point.
always a good idea. I tend to think, Grimm: After this tour what can Melvins Buzzo: Or a bunch of dynamite, that’d
especially in the rock world, people don’t fans expect from you guys? work too.
think about it enough… not at all. As a Buzzo: I’m gonna kill myself. I’m gonna Grimm: We use that for fishing actually.
matter of fact musicians don’t really do take a bunch of people with me too. Buzzo: Yeah! Some of those people do
any of that. I’ve said this a million times that down here too. Fishing sticks they
before, but you have to remember, be it Grimm: A mass murder suicide? call them?
actors or musicians, they’re whore mon- Buzzo: Yes. I don’t want to be a serial Grimm: Fishing sticks, that’s it. (Laughs)
gering drug addicts. Do you really want killer, I wanna be a mass murderer. Mass Buzzo: Magic fishing sticks. (laughs)
whore mongering drug addicts deciding, murderer is way cooler. A year long mass
or people who listen to whore mongering murder spree. Grimm: Well Buzzo I certainly appreciate
drug addicts deciding how the country Grimm: Going from city to city, who’s go- your time today.
should be run? “Rock the Vote?” These ing to open for you? Buzzo: Thank you. I’m glad that you’re
people can’t even pick out a good band to taking such an interest in us, thank you
listen to. Buzzo: I have no idea. Being in a band so much.
Grimm: (Laughs) would be a great place for a serial killer.
Constantly moving, no rhyme nor reason
a l l e r y
t i n g g
s ho o

44 PHOTOS BY AJANI CHARLES


45
46
PHOTOS BY AJANI CHARLES 47
48
PHOTOS BY CHRIS WEBBER 49
50 PHOTOS BY JEFFREY CHAN TIN
PHOTOS BY JORDANA HOVIS 51
52 PHOTOS BY JORDANA MEILLEUR
53
54 PHOTOS BY SCOTT ALEXANDER
55
56 PHOTOS BY SARAH HAMILTON
Photos courtesy Horse-The Band © 2008 Horse-The Band 57
21 &
under
with ...
ZION I
Amalia: We’re live with Zion I in the heart of
East Vancouver, we’ve got emcee Zion and
I definitely feel that people have high energy
and appreciate what we do. Amalia: How do futuristic and spiritual work
Amplive: how’s it going, guys? together, is there a difference?
Zumbi: The music industry’s changing,
Zion I: Whassup. there’s a shift. You guys have always had Amplive: we just do what we feel, we do
a hip-hop scene, but hip-hop scenes aren’t what we see and we just add what we’re
Zumbi: Can i say something here real quick? as big anywhere anymore...it’s like right now feeling at the time to it. Sometimes it’s
I actually changed my name now, so it’s people are going back in the trenches, think- just straight-ahead hip-hop, sometimes it’s
Zumbi. ing of some new stuff, it’ll come back. pushing it, so it just goes all over the place.

Amalia: Yeah, Baba Zumbi, right? I thought Amplive: It’s kind of worldwide, in 98/99 Zumbi: Can I add to that? I think the future
you were still going by both names... it kind of peaked then it went down, and and the spiritualism thing, I don’t know if
then came commercial hip-hop and now it’s they definitely necessarily go together, but
Zumbi: Yeah i mess with it, but just for the moved onto electro stuff. I think the scene i think where we’re at in the world right
new album trying to push myself a little bit, always goes through these waves and people now and all the stuff that’s going on is very
lyrically and creatively, just wanted to change like us, who’ve been doing it a long time, globalized. When something shifts in one
it up for myself a little bit. just stay true to what we do and try to make country and 20 other countries feel it, we’re
good music and just ride the wave. You can’t gonna have to move forward in the future
Amalia: Okay, so henceforth we’ll refer to you always be on top. to be more spiritual. I think that’s what’s
as Zumbi... futuristic about it, that as a collective body,
So let’s talk about your experience coming Amalia: When I was researching your music, a humanity, we have to be more conscious
through Vancouver. I noticed that people call your lyrics spiritual of each other that we are a species on
and your beats futuristic. Do you agree with the planet and we share the planet with
Amplive: We’ve been through Vancouver a that? everything else.
lot, this is, like, our sixth time and each time
it’s just off the hook, we’ve got much respect Zumbi: Yeah, I mean, I try to be a spiritual Amalia: Amplive, I find it interesting that
for Vancouver. cat because it helps me stay grounded and you’ve been doing a lot of work within the
I feel better about myself when I am, so not mainstream: beats for America’s Next Top
Zumbi: It’s just a dope city, man. We’ve trav- everything I do is like that but i try to have a Model, Sports Center, Sony Playstation,
eled a lot and this is one of those cities that’s root. We talk about what we want to do with Akon, the chick from the Pussycat Dolls...
real fresh, it has a vibe that reminds me a lot our music, and i know this cat (motions to what’s it like to work in the corporate
of San Francisco because the geography is amp) is a visionary with his music because world?
so beautiful, the people are so cool and the he gets bored of shit hella quick so he’s al-
crowd comes out and supports. ways grabbing from all this different stuff and Amplive: Some of that was actually Zion
it just starts to meld. Over the years man, I music that got placed, we’ve got people
Amalia: Do you feel that there’s support for it has been a blessing that we can create who are interested in our stuff who are in
the hip-hop scene here in Vancouver? this sound and we both have our steez and those type of places. To me, this is a job. I
together we make Zion I. We just make music love making music but I also make a living
Amplive: I know there’s support for our music, for change. off it so those cheques and that type of
stuff is good becasue we get a chance to do what we love and it gets put on a massive scale.

Amalia: Do you find that at all contradictory to some of the anti-materialistic themes that come up in your music?

Amplive: Honestly, I don’t think we necessarily have anti-materialistic themes. I would be a hypocrite if I said I didn’t want to drive a tight-ass
Mercedes or something like that. But I’m gonna buy property and take care of other shit before I do something like that. I just think that in
this world you gotta have balances and we’re not one of those groups that’s gonna go extreme either way, we’re human beings. We make a
living off this but we also wanna be responsible to our community.

Amalia: How do words translate into social change?

Amplive: Words are power, especially when you’re on a larger platform where you can reach multiple people at one time, you know, so I think
that if you’re somebody who has something positive to say, something that can have a big influence I think you can bring on a lot of social
change. History has proven that.

Zumbi. And I think words are like seeds, since we all learn through verbal communication since we were children. It’s kind of instinctual in
who we are. I also come from the background where we do music, which is vibration, and everything vibrates in the universe, so i feel like
when you make music people tune up spiritually and emotionally to what you’re doing or you tune to what they’re doing and you absorb
some kind of experience, and the words are like seeds or ideas. For me, KRS-One, Public Enemy, all these cats in the late eighties early
nineties, they really opened me up to explore who I was as an African American which was good for me in my development. You pass an
idea on and it keeps getting passed and soon everybody is kind of like, I’m feeling that. If you don’t say nothing, if nobody ever speaks up,
and the way the government is rolling right now you gotta speak up before shit gets locked down and we can’t anymore, that’s how i feel. At
least back home.

Amalia: Do you run into roadblocks because you are speaking up? Are people trying to stand in your way?

Amplive: It’s hard to get radio play sometimes, right now being conscious and speaking like that isn’t the trendiest thing. People are still
broke and when they listen to music, they just wanna have a good time so you’re sort of competing with the economy and what’s going on
right now. When people hear music in the clubs they don’t always wanna hear how bad things are. Right now it’s hard to fight with that so
you gotta spoon-feed people in different types of ways.

Zumbi: I don’t think it holds us back though. If opens us up, we can perform at juvenile halls, talk to youngsters, do benefits, we try to service
the community with what we do and that’s the door that’s opened for us. We can do shows in Oakland, California where a lot of cats can’t do
shows because it’s too rowdy, but we don’t bring out that kind of crowd, those cats don’t really mess with us.

Amplive: We can do stuff that’s considered conscious but overall people are just moving to the music. We get criticized for that but we also
get love for that.

Amalia: Zumbi, I wanna talk about your higher self and your overt use of
religious and spiritual lyrics in a mainly secular society. You guys are ac-
cepted, people are totally down with that shit, why do you think that is?

Zumbi: I dunno, I personally feel some kind of spiritual hunger. I’m not
Buddha...on our first record ten years ago I was meditating all the time,
I’m a different person now but I still have those core values and I was
raised to appreciate god and praise god. I feel that I love hip-hop, I’m
a complete fan of it but a lot of times cats aren’t saying shit that i can
really relate to in my life, like I can’t relate to cats with a Rolls Royce and
twenty-nine hoes, I don’t live like that. I relate to cats that got lyrics that
talk about life, reflection, and stuff like that. I just try to be who I am.
When we started making music we chose the name Zion I because we
were both going through a spiritual experience and getting closer to god,
we chose it to keep us on point and to do this music is a blessing and
we want to give back to people somehow. We could make a song about
some stupid shit and a whole bunch more people would like us, but then
we’d be compromising who we are...i wanna keep the blessings flowing
so I’d rather just do what i feel in my heart and say what i think is the truth.

Amplive: And once again, we’re humans. We like girls, we like nice stuff,
we like to live great (Zumbi interrupts: We like to party and kick it hard.)
It’s a balance and it’s hard as an artist because people always hold you
so much to this bubble but they don’t also realize that after you get off that
stage you’re also living life. On this new album, we have songs for every-
thing: party songs, songs about what’s going on in the world with gas and
how George Bush is fucking everything up, we got songs about girls, how
beautiful they are. It’s all over the place because that’s us.

Amalia: And the new album is The Takeover, coming out in September,
right?

Zumbi: That’s right.

Amalia: Thanks guys, we’ll see you on your tour for The Takeover later
this year, right?

Zion I: For sure.

By Amalia Nickel
59
Blowfly w/ ANTiSEEN like you…” – fucking brilliant!

Thursday, May 22, 2008 Finishing the last third of the set mask off,
The Biltmore Cabaret - Vancouver, BC Blowfly managed to maintain hypeness
throughout, doing an encore in street clothes
Opener ANTiSEEN failed to impress, even with a medley of off colour lyrics to popular
after 25 years of Old-School punk grind and songs, like “Rhinestone Black Dick” instead of
ten hours at the border. Looking more like “Rhinestone Cowboy.”
Lynyrd Skynyrd’s reanimated corpses than
the Ramones, they pounded out mindless and The visionary intensity of his lyrics, the sublimity
predictable riffs with idiotic redneck lyrics like “I’m of his performance and the singular focus of
a wifebeater!” – cool man, I bet she’s your cousin his content are what make Blowfly the greatest
too! MC alive. Maybe not… but he is the first black
President!
As for the inimitable Blowfly, they truly broke
the mold on this motherfucker – 69 years old, By Dave “Corvid” McCallum
decked out in his sequin bedazzled bodysuit
and cowl with two chubby but hot
cheerleaders shaking it to his dirty
old man flow. With Norwood Fisher of
Fishbone on bass thumping out the Old
School funk, the spectacle was in full
effect.

The sight of a near seventy year old


singing songs like “Pussy Wasn’t Made
for Drugs”, “Suck it ‘Till You’re Satisfied”
and neo-covers like “It’s a Faggot’s
World” (“James Brown would kill me for
that…”) may sound cringingly bizarre,
but really it’s just all about breaking down
audience inhibitions – like the classic
routine where he takes a girl in the
audience by the hand and croons “last
night I fucked someone who looked just
Photo by Grimm Culhane
60
The Warlocks w/
The Black Angels
Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Photo by Jordana Meilleur


Richard’s on Richards - Vancouver, BC.

It was a full on smoke show down at


Richard’s Tuesday night with screeching
guitars replacing screeching tires during
the set of L.A.’s own purveyors of neo-
psychedelia, The Warlocks. Presently on
tour with The Black Angels, The Warlocks
may have stripped down to a five piece (or
maybe so much damn smoke obscured
the sixth member), but their sound is still the constant drone of neo-psychedelia
as full and mind blowing as ever. and filling in the gaps with solid solo
work. Drawn out drone, spacey solos and
Simple progressions built on the power driving beats (plus more smoke than band
of three guitars accompanied by the for most of their set), made for a nice
trebly vocals of Bobby Hecksher made contrast to the current over-the-top metal
for a hypnotic wall of sound. Consisting sound that seems to be purveying modern
of songs from their latest album Heavy psychedelia.
Deavy Skull Lover as well as material from
previous releases, The Warlocks set of low Influences from such notables as
frequency drone seemed laid back and Spaceman 3 and Loop were evident in their
calculated at first, growing and building in set, making it easy for onlookers to just
momentum as they played and culminating close their eyes and drift along. If music
to a cacophonic finish. Their very tasty live were syrup, this would pour in your ears
show was only hampered by too much like warm molasses, settle on your brain
smoke machine fodder, yet it did make like an electric blanket and take you places
concentrating on the music alone a whole you’d never expected to go, even without
lot easier. the aid of certain “herbal” enhancements.

The Warlocks effortlessly recreated that


late 80’s shoe gazing sound, mixing it with By Grimm “Drone Junkie” Culhane
61
Judas Priest with By Grimm “Seizure” Culhane

Testament
Thursday, July 24, 2008
GM Place - Vancouver

It was a tasty lesson in old school Metal


Thursday night at GM Place as Judas Priest and
Testament gave the hearing impaired something
to truly rejoice about. Looking their age, but still
sounding the rage, both bands kept the less than
capacity crowd cheering with impressive sets of
material both old and new.

Testament hit the stage promptly at 7:30pm


and featured songs from their latest album The
Formation of Damnation as well as a wealth of
older material (especially tracks from 1988’s The
New Order). Lead singer Chuck Billy was in fine
form, swinging and air guitaring his sawed off
mic stand with all the deftness of the late Freddy
Mercury. Guitarists Alex Skolnick and Eric
Peterson both sounded great, trading riffs and
wowing onlookers. Lead guitarists just love those
drum risers. What better place could there be to
pose and fling your hair as you bend the shit out
of your whammy bar? Theirs was solid set, tight
and technically sound with enough conniption
inducing strobe lights to satisfy all your seizure
needs.

Sporting the almost identical stage set as they


did on their 1982 Screaming for Vengeance
tour, Judas Priest did not disappoint the black
clad masses assembled for this visage. Like a
glam rock Nostradamus clad in a silver sequined
robe, Rob Halford emerged straight up from the
stage with a curious silver trident in hand hiding
his face for the entirety of the first song (called
“Dawn Of Creation“). Once that familiar Halford
falsetto kicked in the place all but lost it. All band
members were definitely on point this evening,
but it was Halford, roaming the stage as the
black and silver sorcerer who really demanded
the crowd’s attention.

A feast for both eyes and ears, Testament and


Judas Priest easily proved that with the right
seasoning Metal remains tasty as fuck.
Photos by Scott Alexander
Ozzy Osbourne’s On the opposite end of the spectrum,
unfortunately, was Serj Tankian. Though his

Monsters of Rock set was technically sound, it suffered largely


because of its time slot. Wedged in between

Festival Hatebreed and Judas Priest, Tankian’s solo


material did little to keep the crowd’s energy
Saturday, July 26, 2008 level high. While the set would have likely
McMahon Stadium, Calgary AB fared better on its own, it seemed rather
underpowered when seen along with the day’s
Much to the chagrin of the elderly residents other acts.
of the neighbourhood, Ozzy Ozzbourne’s
Monsters of Rock festival landed at Calgary’s Judas Priest delivered the festival’s most
McMahon Stadium on July 26. Featuring theatrical set, complete with multiple costume
eleven bands on one changes for Rob Halford and
outdoor stage, the a drum riser that concealed
festival provided a a motorcycle. Their classic
varied, but always loud tracks easily pumped up the

Photo by Mike Boldt


cross-section of metal crowd, but the band played well
bands. enough that even the tracks
from “Nostradamus” managed to
The festival was a sound lively.
tribute to heavy music
of all incarnations. When Ozzy finally took the
Thankfully, the bands stage, however, it was clear why
were engaging enough he was the headlining act. Bouncing around
to keep the crowd from revolting over the like a madman, Osbourne commanded the
epic lines formed around the single outdoor crowd with ease, showcasing a set with no
beer tent. If you can manage to watch three shortage of classics. His unbridled energy may
separate bands from the beer line without have actually been detrimental to the crowd, as
going insane, it’s a good indication that the he repeatedly sprayed them down with a hose
bands in question are doing a damn good job. despite the cold weather. Maybe pneumonia
isn’t so bad when it’s delivered with a maniacal
Though every band put on a great show, grin?
Cavalera Conspiracy were easily one of the
day’s highlights. The Cavalera brothers’ tribal Though Calgary noise bylaws forced the
thrash still sounds fresh and unique, and the festival to finish early, it was clear that the
band’s unbridled energy and enthusiasm crowd would have been happy to stick around
placed them at the forefront of the pack. for another ten hours. If the organizers manage
Likewise, Hatebreed deserve respect for to add some extra beer tents on their next visit,
managing to energize the entire stadium, they may very well create the perfect festival.
from the floor to the bleachers, despite the
pouring rain that threatened their set. A lesser By Calder Fertig
band could have lost the crowd’s attention to
the terrible weather,
but Hatebreed pulled
through and kept
everyone engaged.
Pemberton Festival The drunken frenzy of the first night came to a
crescendo as Trent and the rest of Nine Inch
July 25-27, 2008 Nails hit the stage with an impressive lightshow
Pemberton, BC backed with a set list chock full of fan favorites.
Trent, clearly on his 15th cup of coffee, bounced
The fields that just this past weekend were host from one side of the stage to another, screaming
to over 120 musical acts on four stages, 40,000 almost as loud as the fans. Nine Inch Nails left
fans in various states of inebriation and several without performing an encore, leaving fans a little
temporary ‘tent cities’ lay quiet now, while the disappointed
task of cleaning up the mess left behind is just
beginning. At this point those wise enough to have arranged
a cabin to stay in were spared the task of
The first annual Pemberton Music Festival shambling back to the tent city with the rest of the
recently wrapped up to rave reviews from zombies.
performers and not so rave reviews from those
of us who had to drive back. Motorists crawled
at a snails pace along the sea to sky highway all
Day Two:
Sam Roberts and his band started the day off at
weekend, heading to and from the festival site in
the main stage. The bearded singer put on a great
the middle of a seemingly deserted town 15km
show, with a powerful stage presence, but paled
north of Whistler, BC. Concert goers were faced
in comparison to that of the Flaming Lips later in
with hay covered dust fields closely resembling
the day.
the desolate wastelands of Las Vegas, with
nothing but the mountains to remind you that you
Gord Downie came on stage with a black jacket
hadn’t left BC. Despite the festival being a fuse lit
which was promptly torn off after the first song,
at both ends, there was still much fun to be had.
seizures ripping through his body, he jolted
and jumped all over stage, kicking wildly and
Day One: attempting to ride his mic stand before breaking
Stuck in traffic for the first acts of the day, Interpol it, and jumping off stage to give the base of the
hit the stage upon our arrival. A bit of a lack-luster stand to one lucky fan… which wasn’t nearly as
performance though, with just enough pizzazz weird as crouching down in front of one of the
to keep fans on their feet and cheering. Interpol cameramen and stroking his head while singing,
bassist Carlos D. figured a dry, hay covered field wiping his sweaty tissue all over his face.
would be a good place to butt out his cigarettes
from on stage. Thankfully that spark didn’t ignite… Not to be outdone, Wayne Coyne, eccentric
much like their music. front man of The Flaming Lips sent out enough
Teletubbies to choke a donkey before inflating a
Heading over to the Bacardi B-live stage for giant bubble, climbing in and rolling himself over
Chromeo, the Bacardi tent was the preferred the crowd, all sorts of weird sounds emanating
venue for a large chunk of the crowd. The lineup from his bands instruments. A crash and a bang
stretched half way across the festival grounds on the gong as confetti exploded from two canons
with many choosing to stay in the cool tent on either side of the stage sent yellow and orange
letting hypnotic beats lull them into a trance while paper into the mountains more than 300 meters
enjoying seven dollar cocktails. Chromeo may away.
have just used Pemberton to warm up for their
next two months on the festival circuit, but their Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers stole this day,
performance lacked nothing and drew one of the with a first rate light show to rival that of Nine Inch
biggest crowds of all three days. Nails and the powerful stage presence of the fifty-
seven year old Tom Petty himself.
64
The crowd erupted louder than at any other single (rehab style), to noticeable guitar riffs from
time to sing along to “Freefallin” and cheered Aerosmith. Guess they had Guitar Hero Aerosmith
Tom and the band off before they ran back to the at the hotel in Whistler.
stage to play a three song encore, starting out
with “Runnin’ Down a Dream,” then a phenomenal Chris Martin and his band Coldplay finished the
long version of Van Morrison’s 1964 “Gloria,” festival to a split crowd, the Coldplay fans, and the
with a little Petty twist to it, and finishing with drunk Coldplay fans. Chris was quoted as saying
“American Girl.” “Thank you for letting us play while you walk to
your cars.”
A quick check on MSTRKRFT in the Bacardi
tent and there wasn’t much room to stand with Despite a shit-load of people calling this a gong
thousands of people jumping up and down and show, the only real problems were the lack of
screaming themselves hoarse. suitable roads to the small town of Pemberton, the
inept volunteers on the first day, and gates A and
Day Three: D, the only gates confiscating alcohol.
Rain. Thankfully.

The dust died down enough to not be a bother for By Sofia Beth Dixon
most of the day, until the crowd summoned more

Photo by Scott Alexander


dust storms by jumping along to bland rockers
Death Cab For Cutie, who’s stage presence
bordered on coma-inducing.

Funk rocker/rapper Pharrell Williams and


N*E*R*D* gave the crowd a much needed boost
of adrenaline, inviting no fewer than a dozen
ladies to the stage, and a single guy with a blow-
up blue guitar to finish out the rhythm section,
which arrived late due to unrealistic traffic coming
up from Whistler.

Pharrell urged the crowd to storm the stage if they


cut him off, or asked him to stop before his set
was done, much to the chagrin of the security in
the pit. Thankfully, Jay-Z and Coldplay agreed to
be pushed back, and crisis was averted.

Half an hour before Jay-Z was scheduled to play,


a single helicopter landed not far from the festival
grounds, so rumors were flying that Jay-Z and
Beyonce had just arrived.

Jay-Z wouldn’t be joined by anyone today, much


to the disappointment of
the crowd, but threw down
some solid tunes, with some
recognizable samples from
artists like Amy Winehouse
EL-P w/Dizzee Rascal timings of “Bubbles” and “Flex” than to the slow/
fast double-time of tracks like “Stop Dat”.

and Busdriver As for the El-Producto himself, he offered a


Monday May 19, 2008 stripped down version of the show we were graced
Neumos, Seattle with last year in Vancouver at the Plaza Club -
just him, his hype-man and DJ Mr. Dibbs tearing
Busdriver must take his job very seriously as the through a set that included Company Flow classics
opening act for the current Definitive Jux tour, like “Definitive”, fan favourites from Fantastic
because within about twenty minutes he had Damage like “Deep Space 9mm” and “Stepfather
moved a seemingly unenthusiastic crowd (less Factory”, and new material from “I’ll Sleep When
styley than in Vancouver, but funny to see that You’re Dead” like “Smithereens”. It’s as though
they are just as apathetic…) into near moshpit after exercising his musical aptitudes in so many
frenzy with his furious quadruple time attack, styles of production in the last few years, he has
and his man backing his very grimey beats with rediscovered his love of Hip Hop performance,
live and spontaneous key pounding on an MPC. and he came across more as the hungry battle
Busdriver’s on some seriously original shit (as is MC B-Boy of “Funcrusher” days than the tortured
any rapper who appears on stage in a They Might artist of “ISWYD”. Mr. Dibbs outdid himself with
Be Giants shirt…) - using two mics at once for his original, electro-scratch sonics, and freaked
strange echo effects and spitting more words in a the audience out during his DJ routine by drawing
set than some MC’s spit in a whole career. sounds from a theramin planted in a baby-doll
head. Despite the density of El-P’s productions,
Dizzee Rascal plays to festival crowds of over 30
the sound was crystal clear, and his crisp
000 people in Europe, and after opening for the
enunciation and booming delivery left hardly a line
Red Hot Chili Peppers on their recent US tour, it’s
of his sprawling, space age lyrics unheard.
cool that he would still play at a grimey club like
Neumos to a crowd of not over 150 people. With The triple threat of Busdriver, Dizzee Rascal and
the Dirtee Stank emblem of steaming shit covered El-P left the audience sweaty and stupefied, dazed
in flies displayed proudly behind them, Dizzee’s by the experience of artists with such complete
DJ warmed the crowd up with a display of UK control over their sound and performance. If they
styles, mixing garage, grime and old classics like had chosen to come to Vancouver, they could
“Wait a Minute Mr. Postman” into a blitzkrieg of have packed the Commodore and left a massive
elecronic mash-up. When Dizzee took the stage, bootprint on our collective ass. Alas, it was
he announced that “when I’m through, you all are America, and the only difference between this and
gonna know my name!”, launching into the metal a Vancity crowd was the distinct lack of chronic to
guitar driven “Just a Rascal” to wild response. be had…
The set drew mostly from Dizzee’s first album “Boy By Dave “Corvid” McCallum
in Da Corner” and his recent “Maths and English”,

Photo by Brian Williams


with classics like “I Love You” and “Stand Up Tall”
alternating with newer bangers like “Where’s Da
G’s?” and “Paranoid”. When the ride cymbal and
distorted guitars of “Sirens” kicked in, the effect
live through a sound system was absolutely
crushing, heavier than 90% of today’s metal and
ending with the audience screaming out “I break
the law, I will never change!!!”. It still seems as
though the North American audience doesn’t quite
feel or understand the beat structure of grime,
as the dancing was more frenetic to the familiar
66
tasteful styles of DJ L’Oqenz (as
in Eloquence), all the way from
the T-Dot. Warming the crowd to
his flexible, laid back yet intense
flow, Joose started with a call
and response, then dropped
his “Education” verse acapella.
Fellow Killawatt member Lamar
Ashe stepped up to back him
on “Too Many Gangsters,” a
cautionary song about the life of
violence that seemed to resonate
in a scene that too often glorifies
Photo by Chris Webber

it. Conscious and intelligent, gritty


and street all at once, Joose kept
the crowd hyped.

Os12 has been working hard in


the Vancouver Hip Hop scene
(and elsewhere) for years, and
the result is “The Demonslayer”
- an MC prepared to face all
obstacles to come through hard
Keep 6ix, Joose, and slay demons and wack MC’s everywhere.
His initial freestyle was five minutes of fury with
Os12 and Hellnback the focus, meaning and clarity of a carving - all
inspired by the technical glitches that conspired
Monday, July 21, 2008
Monday Night Live at the Lamplighter - to ruin his set. His written tracks dropped
Vancouver, BC. indigenous knowledge, righteous rage and party
raps over mostly Westcoast gangster beats,
Keep 6ix kicked it off with a slammin’ set of with a commanding stage presence and self-
heavy gutter beats and hustle raps. Their effacing humour.
rugged lyricism and gangster hyphy beats
primed the audience for yet another night of Hellnback of Team Rezofficial, whose video
what has become a VanCity Hip Hop institution. for “Lonely” is in top ten circulation on Rap
After the first track, Keep 6ix had all heads City, represented for the hardcore gangster
turned stageward steadily nodding to the beat. element ferociously. His fierce flow and massive
presence upped the ante for intensity, and
Killawatt crew member Joose, fresh from left the audience stunned like deer in the
some dope shows in the Kootenays, was headlights.
accompanied on the decks by the subtle and
By Dave “Corvid” McCallum
DJ Kool Herc With his frequent shout-outs to the dancers and
rough and ready skills on the decks, he made clear
Friday, May 23, 2008 the Jamaican dancehall origins of his technique
Club Shine - Vancouver, BC and vibe.
The man known as the Father of Hip Hop and When moving into the present, Herc’s choice of
born Clive Campbell in Kingston, Jamaica, Kool tracks was less than satisfying, with an unfortunate
Herc entered the club without fanfare shortly predilection for radio friendly club bangers from
before his set, in the humble yet dignified manner the Akon School of Pitch Correction. Perhaps
of an elder statesman of the culture he is credited it’s because he didn’t want to represent for the
with originating. After briefly introducing himself violence predominant in modern Hip Hop, but to
and exhorting the crowd to “just have fun” in his my mind songs about “making love in this club” do
inimitable Bronx accent, he launched into a near more damage to my sanity than gangsta rap ever
two hour set that spanned the entire history of Hip could.
Hop - from it’s origins in the hard breaks on James
Brown records, through dub and reggae and into Kool Herc was never known for producing original
the current era of pop/party rap music. music of his own, but for organizing and instigating
parties which are still legendary today. The fact that
The mixing may be primitive in it’s truly Old School he is still making a career touring and performing
simplicity, and it’s obvious that Herc’s break DJ sets is a testament to the fact that he can
juggling was probably never the smoothest, but the still rock a party well into his 50’s - while I may
first portion of the set represented Hip Hop in it’s not have been feeling all of his track selections,
most elemental form - recalling a time when Herc the vast majority of the audience were happily
and his crew would jack power from lampposts to sweating and grinding away a great Friday night.
throw down the hardest sounds available in order
to counteract the twin evils of gang violence and Respect due, and not just for his past
disco music. Herc had the bass up to a punishing achievements - Kool Herc still rocks the house! To
eleven, which made the transition from hard funk to the beat Y’all!
classic 70’s reggae sounds perfectly chest rattling.
By Dave “Corvid” McCallum

Photo by Joose

68
Diamond D.
Monday, July 7, 2008
Monday Night Live at the Lamplighter

It was still light outside when legendary


producer/DJ/Emcee Diamond D began
his early show at the Lamplighter. One
might expect that the presence whose
production credits include Mos Def, A
Tribe Called Quest and The Pharcyde
would be hardly contained inside a small
club, but the entire set was surprisingly
low-key. Ticket holders came and went
without even realizing that Diamond D
had hit the stage: he stood behind his
turntables and did not get on the mic.

Photo by Sarah Hamilton


Diamond D’s classic production style
includes mostly simple loops and
heavy breaks, so listening to him spin
his creations was a treat. It is rather
unfortunate that he avoided the mic
because he paved the way for producer/
rappers with his self-produced debut
Stunts Blunts and Hip-Hop in 1992.
Since then he has continued to build
his reputation in both arenas, winning a
Grammy for The Fugees The Score in
1996.

Diamond D’s set may not have been


very hype, but he is a pioneer of hip-hop
production and Vancouver should feel
lucky to have had him at all.

By Amalia Nickel
Rock the Bells years younger. From over a decade of classics
to new joints off of “The Grind Date”, De La

Festival had the audience in the palms of their hands,


finishing with “Rock Co. Kane Flow”.
Sunday, July 20th, 2008
Arrow Hall, Mississauga, Ontario The Mighty Mos Def seemed a little less
mighty in his unfocused and rather lackluster
Kidz in the Hall seemed unfaded by the task of performance. Dwelling too long on old Reggae
opening this edition of Hip Hop Master Class. tracks, spitting almost half heartedly, it was
They rocked their styles to the fullest to an rather disappointing from an artist capable
indifferent, “Screwface City” crowd. Next up, of so much more. Time to stop acting and
Supernatural get back to
blazed MCing.
through
cascades of Rakim opened
freestyle, on with “Guess
topics from Who’s Back”,
the audience but plagued by
and back sound issues
screen he harangued
visuals. His the soundman
virtuosity and even
is truly threatened
deserving of to leave at
legendary one point.
status. Awe inspiring
as it was to
Cool Kids see Rakim,
rocked a when Redman
short set of and Method Man took the stage it was
their hipster rap. Decent in it’s own way but pandemonium. Their high octane set left
not overwhelming, given the context. Murs the audience sweating and bewildered. Nas
managed to win over a difficult crowd by finally arrived with DJ Green Lantern, and his
taking requests from the audience and doing charisma and nearly visible aura more than
double duty as his DJ had been detained at the made up for his occasional fumbles and lack of
border. breath.

A live band took the stage, and Fatlip, Imani, Q-Tip also was backed by a band, and joined
Slimkid and Bootie Brown appeared to remind by Mos Def on the opener “Feva”. After a
us all why The Pharcyde are a classic group few solo tracks, Phife joined Tip for “Bugging
still relevant today. Opening with “Pharcyde”, Out”, and a host of other Tribe classics.
they tore through tracks like “Drop” and “Ya The audience literally lost their shit at the
Mama”, each one a unique and engaging intensity of seeing Q-Tip, Phife, Jarobi and Ali
performer. Shaheed together on stage again, and this was
definitely the culmination of a night of Hip Hop
De La Soul are a group who seem to age greatness.
without ever getting old, and the energy they
threw into their set made them all seem fifteen Photo and text by Ajani Charles
70
RZA as Bobby Wu catalogue and his own Bobby Digital
tracks, and hyping the release of his new

Digital feat. Stone “DigiSnacks” album, which drops on July 1


2008. Despite consuming a whole bottle of

Mecca wine and the better part of a forty-pounder


of vodka on stage, (and God knows how
Wednesday, June 25, 2008 many blunts backstage), he remained
Richards on Richards, Vancouver BC focused and energized, his characteristically
slurred delivery belying his unmatched
After whetting the crowd’s appetite with a
prowess as an MC god.
dope DJ set of Wu Tang classics, Stone
Mecca took the stage in all their glory to tear
through a passionate set of “Futuresoul”, “If you ain’t having a good time then you’re
reminiscent of Parliament/Funkadelic, wasting your time!”– the theme of the
complete with congas, keys, pummeling evening and the essence of life according to
bass and rotating vocals from four different Bobby Digital. RZA showed a side of himself
singers. Initially the audience seemed that surprised many in the audience - some
surprised at the shift from down-tempo of whom joined him onstage toward the end
Hip Hop to more upbeat funk and soul, but of the set to shake their drunken asses – a
transformed into a sweltering dance floor hype live rapper whose band tears through
after the third song or so by the brilliantly funk, soul and Hip Hop like few others can.
intense tunes and smoking hot vocals (and
vocalists…). Peace to the Gods and the Earths.

By Dave “Corvid ” McCallum


When Bobby Digital took the stage with
mic in one hand and wine bottle in the Photo by Scott Alexander
other, Stone Mecca immediately shifted
into an immaculately thudding Wu Tang
groove, played with sample-like precision
and uncannily faithful to the 36 Chambers
sound, so much so that at times I nearly
forgot that this was a live band running
through classics like “C.R.E.A.M.” and
“Reunited”. Rarely have I heard musicians
who can lock into solid Hip Hop like Stone
Mecca, and RZA’s production style lends
itself well to live bass, drums and keys.

RZA’s flow was solid throughout, rarely


faltering or relying on his hypeman to
finish his lines, competently working the
crowd into a frenzy with a two hour set of
material drawn equally from the classic
Terror, The Warriors, CDC went up next, and plowed through
sophisticated breakdowns and blistering beats,
Death Before cajoling the crowd ceaselessly to pick up their
feet. But something had happened to the energy,
Dishonor, CDC, perhaps a symptom of feeble Vancouverite
laziness syndrome. They practically spoon-fed
Trapped Under Ice hype to the people. Props to them for trying, but
there efforts were futile, for they knew not the
Wednesday, July 30, 2008 mysterious and unconquerable demon that is
The Sweatshop - Vancouver, BC. often Vancouver music viewers.

There are few instances in history when many Death Before Dishonor was fucking intense. All
voices become one. Rarely will you see shows voices were heard on “Count Me In”, a gang
with so much heart and camaraderie. Terror scream-along so good, people who had never
returned with a line-up so anti-arena rock that heard it could chime in, and did. People hurled
those who have only seen them otherwise would themselves across the front of the stage so
marvel. This is where they began and it is where wildly it’s possible they thought they could fly. It
they will always be the most real. is possible they did…for a second. The intensity
only went up and the gravity down from there.
The night started early, and the crowd was still
sparse when Trapped Under Ice took the stage, The Warriors waged their campaign of good hard
but they played like it was their only show ever. time’s right through the thin walls of the venue.
They had huge heart, you could see it in their Their lead vocalist was refreshingly diverse, and
unassuming and again all voices became
humble fervor. one in the final chanting of
In between the “War Is Hell.”
barrage of heavy
chordage they Terror was more intense
featured a lead than I have ever witnessed
guitarist who them before. “More stage
shredded like dives! More stage dives!”
Kerry King, just could be called the quote
a hint of the of the evening. The pit was
metal that seems mayhem as scene kids
to permeate, and newcomers became
beautifully, much enmeshed, surprisingly,
of today’s hard without incident. The
core. They played whole crowd shared
like every word lead vocal duty for the
was sacred, breakdown in “Keep
but gladly gave Your Mouth Shut,” and
up the mic to somehow ego managed
anyone, including not to get the better of
members of other most people that night.
bands, who knew Perhaps it had something
the words. The to do with Scott Vogel’s
line between the humble words… “I am not
stage and the in a rock band. I am not
crowd disappears cool. I don’t care how big
here, and music or good your band is. All
is nothing without I care about is right here.
the people that This is fucking beautiful.”
hear and feel it.
By .ninjoelspy.
72 Photos by Jorda
The Jolts CD did manage to maintain
a fresh sound in spite
Release Party of varied and numerous

w/ The High comparisons. Their


haunting keyboards,
School Girls + sweet vocals and catchy

The Parallels tunes will definitely carry


these boys a long way.
June 13, 2008
The Cobalt - Vancouver, BC The Jolts hit the stage
and proceeded to tear the
Friday the 13th may be unlucky Cobalt a new asshole (not
for some, but not if you’re a fan that there was anything
of The Jolts. Celebrating the wrong with the old one).
release of their latest album With more energy than
Haute Voltage last Friday at the an editor-in-chief working
Cobalt (with friends The High on his 2nd pot of coffee of
School Girls and The Parallels), the day, Joey Blitzkrieg,
this was a night of surf/retro/ Dr. Dylan Danger, Lector
punk rock bliss. Kurrentz and Matt Von
Dander showed the
The High School Girls shot the hometown audience
curl first, playing sweet surf exactly why they are one
instrumentals the likes of which of the most exciting live
you don’t hear enough of these acts presently playing in
days. Clad in a white blazer, Vancouver. Riding on the
sporting a bitchin’ pompadour strength of their latest slab Haute Voltage, The
and with toothpick firmly in mouth, lead guitarist Jolts and their swaggering, sneering and searing
James “Guitar Owner” Elwood displayed some live set gave new meaning to the term “holy fuck!”
expert chops for all the “hodads,” “landsharks” New songs like “DXM,” “Hey, Alright!” and “Bloody
and “surf bunnies” in attendance. Backed by the Eye Socket” sounded right at home with their
frenetic energy of second guitarist Ben “Guitar earlier material (especially live, where The Jolts
Aficionado” Fussell and solid drumming from truly excel) and show these boys have what it
Tony Dallas, The High School Girls went “off the takes to be the next big thing.
Richter” with classic surf covers of “Walk Don’t
Run” and “Misirlou,” as well as plenty of original If you haven’t caught The Jolts live yet I suggest
material. Even with no bass player The High you run, don’t walk, to their next show, you won’t
School Girls still sounded locked in, maxed out regret it. In the mean time, grab yourself a copy of
and ripping. Haute Voltage, put on some coffee and prepare
yourself for The Jolts.
The Jam was up next… or at least they sure
sounded like The Jam. Actually it was Vancouver’s
The Parallels and their very retro sounding set. By Grimm “Wipe Out” Culhane
Flashbacks to the 2nd British Invasion were
evident as they played songs reminiscent of The
Clash, Squeeze and
Elvis Costello (and even
older bands like The
Kinks). This four piece

ana Meilleur
Photo by Amalia Nickel

Zion I,
featuring
Emotionz,
Main
Offenders
and Manik
Monday, June 30, 2008
The Lamplighter, Vancouver
BC

Emotionz, Main Offenders


and Manik 1derful kicked tracks running the gamut from ‘97’s “Enter
the night off with a fine selection of sets the Woods” EP to the ’07 “Street Legends”
showcasing some of the best of Vancity’s mixtape, they presented a thorough world view
underground talent. All of them have been at and musical platform influenced by Oakland’s
it for more than a minute, and it’s good to see original finest – the Black Panther party,
the progression of their skills, with Manik’s Rastafarianism and a spiritual understanding
voice sounding more gravelly and mature while of life.
kicking a dope, more self-reflexive freestyle.
Zion kicked things into high gear by
Oakland’s own Zion I’s entire set seemed announcing that they had been “spending
to revolve around the persistent one-two time in the lab”, and then dropping one of the
handclap that AmpLive laid down on his MPC, quickest freestyles I have ever heard – jaw
with MC’s Zion and guest hypeman Mikah 9 dropping flow with seriously visual content, a
dropping intensely passionate, positive yet rare combination indeed.
blazing lyrics over increasingly complex beats
played live by Amp. Zion I proved that “conscious” and “positive”
are not necessarily dirty words in Hip Hop – it’s
With accompanying visuals on multiple flat- a matter of focus and intensity with the beats
screens and Zion’s scorching delivery gaining to back it up, that separate the righteous from
speed and hypeness steadily through the set, the wack. Zion I have reached the heights,
the effect was seriously elevating. Their- reality but rather than looking down on the crowd
focused and spiritually minded lyrics drew they seek to bring them up to a higher level of
the mind into higher regions of overstanding being.
while AmpLive’s electro sounding beats (more
reminiscent of Southern crunk than Westcoast) By Dave “Corvid ” McCallum
got asses shaking and fists pounding. With

74
Pidgeon John and to the Show,” and let the crowd know exactly
what they were in for, to “have fun in a major

Luckyjam way.” The styles of his dance beats made


an excursion through the eras, musical
June 23, 2008 interludes introduced as 1969, 1979 and so
Monday Night Live: Hip-Hop at the on. In true Pidgeon John fashion, songs were
Lamplighter - Vancouver, BC. broken up with stories and jokes, the artist
leading by example by having a lot of fun in
Monday Night Live continued to bring hip- his performance. The usual hype songs like
hop communities together with intimate “Freaks! Freaks!” and “Do the Pidgeon” were
performances by Living Legends’ Luckyiam balanced with darker intimations in “Life Goes
and Quannum Records’ Pidgeon John. The On” and “Emily.” Pidgeon John’s uninhibited
stylistic differences in Lucky’s matter-of- energy caused his set to gain a rather
fact storytelling and Pidgeon John’s twisted uncommon depth both musically and in the
charisma made for a unique combination. content of the stories he told.

“It’s poetry, but it’s not a poetry reading” One can hardly ask for more on a Monday
declared Luckyiam as he took the small night in East Vancouver.
stage at the Lamplighter. He immersed the
crowd in lightning fast flows and made it
look easy; the crowd unabashedly beamed By Amalia Nickel
at him as he connected to the eager fans in
the front. There were some new songs with
the old favorites; It’s Time to
Get Lucky is the new album
out soon, and the title track
featured shrill melodies and
layered rhythms, the narrative
relatable: “Your family/ No
Plan B.” Through his entire
set, crisp beats accompanied
memorable tracks like “Play
This” and “The Best I Can”
while Lucky sang, rapped,
rapped faster, and sang some
more.

Pidgeon John opened his set


with the inevitable “Welcome

Photo by Chris Webber


Venetian Snares
w/ Guests
Friday, June 6, 2008
The Fall - Vancouver, BC

If they aren’t piercing it through you,


inking it on you or cutting it off you
they’re blasting it through you down
at The Fall these days. A sweaty
Friday night of Venetian Snares
drum’n’bass/drillcore with a myriad
of guests was a perfect example,
and the buzz generated beforehand
made this one impossible to miss.
Guests including The Square Root
of Evil, Taal Mala, Colby Sparks,
Hunter Green and The Goblin

Photo by Grimm Culhane


Queen (some of whom even got
to play), and close to 200 of The
Fall’s best friends, it was a packed
and humid house of beat hungry
electronic enthusiasts.

Altering perception is much easier to


accomplish when music is involved,
which is exactly what Aaron Funk
(Venetian Snares) seems to be
intent on doing. Celebrated by the
late John Peel for his inventiveness,
the soundtrack for a higher level of music
Funk’s elaborate time signatures and rapid,
aficionado, music both challenging and
almost frantic beats give him a distinct,
exhilarating at the same time.
intense sound. Your body can’t help but be
moved by his music even if its challenging For those of you who have experienced a
to finding the groove amidst the onslaught of live battlefield or had your chest repeatedly
sound. thumped by recoil during an ammunitions
test, Venetian Snare’s set would have had
Although intense and almost riotously
a distinct familiarity to it. For the uninitiated,
aggressive, it was nice to be a part of
suffice it to say that destructive and
an audience definitely into the sounds of
constructive forces can have a lot in common,
Venetian Snares, respecting each other’s
yet be worlds apart when it comes to delivery.
space and not slamming into each other.
Not only did Venetian Snares deliver, he blew
Things did get out of hand, but not out of
the fucking doors of perception clean off the
control. Altered perceptions are only violent
place.
by choice and much more useful when used
for personal growth. Venetian Snares, along
with a very few other artists, are composing By Grimm “Aldous” Culhane
76
Imaginations heavily complemented by raw talent… it’s always
surprising to come across an emcee who can

Treetrunk Reunion actually sing.

Monday, June 9, 2008 Ending the night were Chadio and Azrael, later
The Lamplighter – Vancouver joined by Shay and Cons to form Dance Dance
Revolution, whose enjoyable set reflected the
Last Monday night at the Lamplighter marked tone of the entire night. A lovely dance party was
the gathering of no less than eight local acts on had by all, on and off the stage, while Shay stole
the independent Vancouver label Imaginations the show with her charismatic style and wickedly
Treetrunk. The Imaginations Treetrunk fast flows. A good-clean-fun kind of rowdiness
Reunion Show did not disappoint in content ensued to send the crowd home in true family
or tone: it certainly was a reunion, like a family reunion style.
gathering if your crazy drunken grandmother
wore booty shorts.

An unexpected bonus was hometown hero Text and Photo by Amalia Nickel
Josh Martinez’s performance and video shoot.
A young veteran of the underground scene,
Martinez effortlessly had the crowd eating out of
his hand. Something of a scene-stealer, it was
unfortunate that Billy Botox and Mars G had
to follow in his wake with comparatively drab
performances.

Things started to pick up again with The


Groundbreakers’ formidable contrast of
staccato and smooth vocals and old school
vibes. G-Boxx hit the spot with some intricate
beatboxing while Attikus rhymed real nice.

Main Offenders kept it simple with concise,


conscious rhymes and bare-bones beats. Amid
old-school cuts they brought local issues to
the table, incorporating political, social and
environmental ideas into their high-energy
presentation and had the crowd vehemently
chanting “slum city” by the second song.

The lyrically limber Tapwater were followed


by crowd favorite Kaboom. His comic energy
and uncontained self-assurance set the stage
for sick rhymes of multiple speeds, styles and
rhythms. His irresistible stage presence was
Edgefest 2008 had no desire to be sober had to wait at least 2 to
3 HOURS just to get their hands on a maximum
Saturday, July 12, 2008 of 2 piss-warm cups of draught beer. Nothing like
Downsview Park - Toronto, ON. waiting for beer in a mud-field under the rain and
broiled alive in 40 degree Celsius weather only
Edgefest is normally held in Molson Park, in Barrie to by corralled like cattle to a feeding trough on a
Ontario. Its ideal location of 45 minutes north of uneven fenced-in zoo-like area! .
Toronto does little to dissuade the locals from
showing up in droves. Unfortunately, the property After what seemed like forever, amazingly enough
adjoining the park, the gigantic Molson brewery the Stone Temple Pilots managed to find their way
itself, was shut down for being Canada’s largest from their tour bus to the stage. Thank god for
clandestine marijuana grow-op (complete with the GPS! The sound man must have been in the
workers quarters, lounge and common areas… oh, employ of STP, because it was way louder than
and all the dope you can smoke!). before, but then again, who could remember? And
hey, what’s with the moving scarecrow onstage?
Two stages awaited in excess of twenty thousand Oh, wait, sorry, it’s actually Scott Weiland doing his
people, who were in desperate need of a diversion best impersonation of someone respectable.
from the fact that they just shelled out $80 bucks to
get in. The proceedings were plagued by lengthy By the time Linkin Park went onstage the beer
delays throughout the day and night. None more sales had been mysteriously extinguished, fueling
lengthy, however, than the 35 minute wait after the wrath of many. Sober times indeed, as if on
Sam Roberts until the Stone Temple Pilots (no cue Linkin Park came out with a whimper, playing
doubt some kind of dope malfunction). a lame version of Breaking the Habit and other
equally sleepy-time crap with one-third of their line-
Stage two was reserved for lesser known bands up on stage.
like The Flatliners (the headliners), Hostage Life,
The Coast and on and on. Mostly forgettable, All in all, it was a trial run for this location which
except for Modernboys Moderngirls, who for their proved to be an easily accessible one, with public
20 minute set pumped out 80’s style new wave, transit right there and major highway access
clad in “The 20 minute workout-meets-Blondie” nearby. Under slightly different circumstances
style outfits. A fine effort indeed, considering there it would have been amazing. It should be done
were only 50 or so people watching at the time. again, but this time consult the Weather Channel,
get more
Stage One’s last four bands were The Bravery, beer
Sam Roberts Band, Stone Temple Pilots and gardens
headliners Linkin Park. The Bravery put on a brave and have
show indeed, for as soon as they appeared the heavier
heavens opened up and monsoon rains turned the bands.
grounds to a giant mud-pit (much to the delight of Maybe
otherwise pissed-off mosh-pitters). Sam Roberts this would
still cant afford razors, but at least he can put on put some
Photo by Jeffery Chan Tin

a respectable show. Not exactly alternative, but more


the audience preferred it compared to the silence Edge in
between bands. Edgefest.

After Sam Roberts finished the rains subsided By Jimmy


somewhat and the drenched fans streamed Lynch
towards the beer gardens area. By 2pm the line-up
had reached at least 250 people. Those who
78
Reverend Horton Heat and a few decibels louder, their set sure was fun
to watch.

w/ Nashville Pussy When the irreverent Reverend took the stage


Thursday, June 26, 2008 for some “country-fed punkabilly” a respectful
Commodore Ballroom - Vancouver, BC. hush fell over the crowd the likes of which you’d
probably hear in a church, synagogue or any
There ain’t nothin’ more pleasing to a man than place of worship. Nah, I’m just jerking your rosary,
a trusty hound dog, an ice cold beer and a big ol’ the place went fucking ballistic! Reverend Horton
plate of Southern fried rock! Although my hound Heat has been extolling the virtues of good times,
dog couldn’t get into the Commodore on Thursday good friends and good beer for neigh on 20 years
night, The Reverend Horton now with no sign of
Heat and Nashville Pussy slowing down.
supplied enough shit
kicking distraction to make With his signature orange
me forget my troubles for Gretch slung across his
a while. Ice cold beer sure shoulder and backed by
helped too. band members Jimbo
Wallace on stand-up
All the way from Atlanta, bass and drummer Paul
Georgia and swinging hair Simmons supplying the
instead of fists, Nashville blessed beats, Reverend
Pussy beat the crap out Heat commenced to
of the audience with their preach songful sermons
hard driving, hook laden of love, life and liquor.
and right from the crotch Like preaching to the
RAWK! Long hair, bending choir, the boys went
at the knees and flailing on through their set with
an instrument like a crazy song after song of crowd
person seems awful easy pleasing hits, all the while
when you’re mashed up keeping the frenzied
against some stranger in audience just this
the pit, but boy howdy that side of spontaneously
shit’s gotta be a challenge, combusting.
especially with all that
damned hair to contend with. If hell doesn’t want you and heaven is full, I’d just
as soon stay right here if I were you, especially
Lead guitarist Ruyter Suys made her presence with shows like this to bide your time and blow
known by swaggering and tossing her hair like your mind. Myself, I just gotta figure out how I’m
she owned the place. Two seconds into the first gonna get my trusty hound dog in next time.
song and she did! With hubby Blaine Cartwright
revved up on guitar and vocals, Karen Cuda
supplying the buxom basslines and Jeremy Text and Photo by Grimm “Shit Kicking” Culhane
Thompson swinging sticks like there’s no
tomorrow, Nashville Pussy commenced on ripping
through their set like a
hound dog rips through an
ornery possum. Although
considerably less bloody
through their set like field artillery leveling an
Afghani village. With song titles like “Horde
of Undead Vengeance,” “Assassins of the
Cursed Mist” and “Slaughter the Bestial
Legion” you can pretty much guarantee these
boys won’t be playing your niece’s sixth
birthday party, unless she already has five
piercings and a tattoo of Satan on her… uh…
self.

An amazing set from Miami based Torche


was up next. This four piece displayed some
of the most relentless rock you’re ever likely
to experience. Drummer Rick Smith beat the
absolute fuck out of his kit while the rest of
the band (Steve Brooks on guitar and vocals,
Juan Montoya on guitar and Jonathan Nuñez
on bass), executed some of the most unique
songs this reviewer has heard in a long damn
time. Pere Ubu on way too much speed with
a mix of Keith Moon and John Bonham on
drums. Check these guys out, phenomenal!

If your ears hadn’t been ripped from your head


by this point, Boris climbed on stage to finish
the job. Takeshi, Wata and Atsuo were joined
this night by touring guitarist Michio and after
a lengthy “sound re-check” (what with 2 dozen
or so pedals to plug in) they tore into their set
like a Sumo tears into his first meal of the day.
Boris w/ Liar of the Touring on the strength of their 17th studio
album (which Atsuo calls “a pop record”), Boris

Minotaur and Torche played a myriad of songs off previous albums


Heavy Rocks, Pink and Akuma no Uta as well as
Wednesday, July 30, 2008 plenty of new material from their latest disc Smile.
Richard’s on Richards - Vancouver, BC
Loud, furious and unrelenting, there’s something
Drone metal is quickly becoming a genre to be about drone metal coming at you in Japanese
reckoned with as evidenced by Wednesday night’s that gives it an extra edge. Whether it’s Wata’s
gig at Richard’s on Richards. Along with Liar tasty guitar riffs, Atsuo’s insanity on the drum kit or
of the Minotaur and Torche, Japan’s favourite Takeshi’s multi-talented work on vocals and his two
psychedelic “Droners of Doom” Boris made a necked bass/guitar, (with no lesser credit going to
much welcome return to Vancouver, extolling the Michio), Boris has that edge and it’s razor sharp.
virtues of Japan’s second best export (after sake), Two days after this gig my ears were still ringing.
loud music. Fucking brilliant!
Chicago’s Lair of the Minotaur got the evening
going with a blistering set of heavy fucking metal.
These “War Metal Battle Masters” (which is also By Grimm “Hebi-Metaru” Culhane
the name of their latest release) shredded
80
Snoop Dogg w/ syncopation on topics ranging from, well… women
to money, but delivered with such finesse and with

Warzone and Westurn such a strong downbeat that his a cappella voice
alone was enough to move the crowd to bumping.

Union After an overly long wait filled with vapid club


Thursday, June 19, 2008 tracks and bright lights flooding the dance
Commodore Ballroom - Vancouver, BC. floor, Snoop, Warren G, Nate Dogg (et al.)
Openers Warzone and Westurn Union provided took the stage to the expected fanfare. After
an adequate set of hype Westcoast gangsta flows seeing Snoop’s performance at GM place last
to warm up the rather lethargically stoned crowd year featuring band, dancers and assorted
to moderately warm response. Obviously this was shenanigans, this evening’s middle aged sausage
just another Thursday night for many club goers fest on stage really failed to impress. Snoop
who were clearly there only for the main event. drawled his verses laconically throughout, and the
requisite hits like “Gin and Juice” were delivered
Mistah Fab’s flow on his written tracks was again like classic rock tracks whose time has passed.
merely satisfactory Westcoast thuggishness,
but when he dropped a solid five minutes plus
freestyle his skills shone as brightly as the Even the crowd seemed only moderately amused,
platinum and diamonds hanging from his neck. indulging to the fullest in the booze and trees,
Effortless Old School cadences dropped in perfect perhaps to convince themselves that it was better
than it actually was rather than wilding out and
shaking it. Despite some seriously chest rattling
bass reverberations, the beats themselves sound
dated and the rappers skills are more as showmen
than as lyricists.

Still, it’s the big Dee Oh double Gee and his


aura of greatness that surrounds him regardless
(more purple than Rick James’ reputedly orange
glow). The cocky ease with which he handles the
stage (and the foot long blunt) is the hallmark of
his fame, and for those that came to worship at
the feet of Snoop, all his shortcomings are easily
forgiven.

By Dave “Corvid” McCallum


Food4Music w/ Nylithia, Magnus Rising, Re-
Entry and Flood of Fire
Saturday, June 21, 2008
Pub 340 - Vancouver, BC.

Local entertainment company Food4Music, who bring attention to independent bands through charity
fundraising (especially for the food bank), presented two nights of Vancouver’s best up and coming
bands last Friday and Saturday nights at Pub 340. ABORT Magazine was proud to attend Saturday
night’s show with a non-perishable desire for good music… and a non-perishable jar of peanut butter
for the food bank.

Show starters Nylithia


(with big hair and big
energy) got the place
sweating immediately.
This hometown four
piece possessed
the proverbial “wall
of sound” and put it
too good use as they
blasted out some
impressive experimental
thrash metal. It takes
more than blazing
solos, decent songs
and visual presence
to make a band truly
impressive though as
Nylithia proved in their
all too short set.

“You can’t stop the pit,”


said lead singer Aaron
Hawkins of Magnus
Rising as they readied
to play next, and he
was right. Their latent
heavy sludge sound,
chest thumping bass
and finely tuned solo
work had bodies flying
everywhere. With new

82
drummer Kevin Wesley in tow and Aaron’s vocals on point this night, (along with bass player Matt
Snow and guitarist Roger Cranford supplying the systematic string slaughter), Magnus Rising happily
(and loudly) supplied the soundtrack to the alpha-chimp work-out taking place around them. Stopping
this pit would have been like stopping a tsunami with a beach blanket.

Performing their own brand of progressive math-Metal, Coquitlam five piece Re-Entry were up next,
dropping some deep syncopated beats, heavy and melodic chord changes and enough foul language
to make my fucking truckdriving granny blush. Numerous short genre-splicing chord changes tended
to destroy the groove of some songs, but when the band kicked in with power chords they fucking
rocked!

The final band of the night, Flood of Fire, gave the crowd even more of what they came for. Sounding
like a dozen recognizable bands
rolled into one tight machine
(think Monster Maiden), Flood
of Fire does maintain a unique
sound through duel guitars and
solid drumming. Alex Domijan
possess a decent voice as well
as bass playing chops making
him a stand out front man. The
Pink Floyd sounding interludes
in some of their songs worked
very well book-ended between
power riffs and some heavy
King Kong attracting drumming.

A bit of this, a bit of that, but


most notable was the sound
that seems to be rising from
the usual steaming pile of
Vancouver shit. All four of these
bands, as unique as they are,
exemplified that sound and will
hopefully continue to carry us
through the next great wave of
local metal.

By Grimm “Non-Perishable”
Culhane
CD REVIEWS My Cluttered Handbag
Eyeliner Damage
Murse Records
Lesser known Emo pioneers My Cluttered
Handbag return to form with their third nod to
Misery Signals banality entitled Eyeliner Damage, the follow
Controller up to their staggeringly un-popular, yet equally
Ferret Music abysmal Chicks Stole My Pants. For a band
Misery Signals destroys contrived, whiny, that continually sucks balls (and have for their
angry for trendiness sake “Metal” bands entire career), My Cluttered Handbag show no
with their newest release Controller. signs of ever being taken seriously and keep
Straight from a place of passion, anger, pumping out albums like blood seeping from a
aggression and sincerity, this album is a Sound and Fury
Self-Titled gaping self inflicted wound.
straight up blast of heartfelt, heavy fuck- Lead singer Mopey Felo-De-Se is in rare form
ing metal. Rebel Youth
Shit-kicking, in your face, AC/DC here, whining and simpering his way through
Although Misery Signals was originally some of the most forgettable tracks you’re ever
formed in 2002, their current vocal- style Canadian rock and roll, the
Sound and Fury boys have some likely to avoid. The bass sounds “phoned-in,”
ist Karl Schubach joined the ranks just which, coincidentally, it was, played over the
before the band was set to record their chantable choruses that showcase ex-
actly what they’ve grown up on: old phone from bass player Sad Tragic’s room in
previous album Mirrors (2006). In such a the legendary McLean Psychiatric Hospital.
relatively short period of time the band’s school rock. No copy/paste formula
here folks, just straight-ahead, from Guitarist Sonny Daze R. Painful performed his
overall sound has evolved into a much immediately regrettable riffs while suspended
heavier, concise new breed of technical the heart and downright nasty. The
sound and fury of Sound and Fury by the neck from the rafters of his parent’s
hardcore that hits like a sledgehammer basement. This slowed recording time down
to the face. While the heaviness and ag- sounds nothing like a typical Cana-
dian act and maybe it’s a good thing. considerably as he repeatedly passed out and
gression seems to have been achieved in needed to be cut down and revived between
large part by Karl’s powerful, hard-hitting They’ve been fortunate enough to
be given the right to tour the States, takes. Asked why he preferred to record this
vocal style, the other members have defi- way Painful replied, “I’m a perfectionist and
nitely put a focus on aggression as well. including festival appearances at
Warped tour and more, that also sees if it weren’t for all these damn people around I
In regards to outside influence, the boys could get it done right!”
had enlisted the help of Devin Townsend the gents arriving here in town with
Airbourne. Hopefully the West Coast In response to the complete lack of drumming
as producer. His creative and boundary- on the album, lead singer Mopey was heard to
pushing insights have certainly helped to will be enlightened by the east again,
and these boozy blues-hounds will mumble, “our drummer’s girlfriend accidental-
develop their sound on this record. ly cut his bangs and he (Dreary Failure) hasn’t
The second track, titled “Weight of the deliver the goods in their own right.
All songs (music and lyrics) writ- been seen since. We would replace him, but
World”, opens with a machine-gun-like, everyone who showed up with their Mum and
rapid-fire riff courtesy of Ryan Morgan ten by lead vocalist Luke Metcalf.
Production credits are also awarded tried out couldn’t pout with real conviction the
(guitar), Stu Ross (guitar) and Kyle way Dreary could.”
Johnson (bass). This track seems to take to this gent as it seems like he’s the
brainchild of the whole thing. Hope- After the exceedingly wretched performance of
on the mentality of destroy the audience their seminal “concept” album Killing Your-
in under three minutes and leave them fully that doesn’t keep the rest of the
band from looking like hired guns. self… With Friends (with guests Ian Curtis (Joy
wondering what the fuck hit them. With Division), Kurt Cobain (Nirvana) and Michael
some very brilliant and varying rhythms There is nothing exceptionally
original here, but certainly a bit of a Hutchence (INXS) who were posthumously
instigated by Branden Morgan (drums), channeled by psychic Madame Jizorka on her
“Weight of the World” is both a perfect catchy, energetic and younger take,
on the traditional “Local Bar Metal” sousaphone), record executives considered
song to mosh to as well as a great ex- pulling it from store shelves and free download
ample of flawless musicianship. sound, certainly worthy of getting a
stamp of approval. sites until it was pointed out to them that the
As a matter of fact, Controller is front record had never actually been released.
to back a very listenable and infectious The perfect companion to a basement
kegger and may well be the sound- If emptying the contents of your stomach or
demonstration of what can be achieved finding creative ways to cut yourself are on
musically and lyrically when the mem- track for a new breed of denim and
leather clad aficionado. your daily agenda, nothing will be more accom-
bers of Misery Signals put their hearts modating than a good dose of Eyeliner Damage
and souls into a project. Set to hit the to go with it.
shelves July 22, 2008, Controller will By E.S. Day
definitely set Misery Signals apart from By Grimm “Prevaricative” Culhane
the masses and into the ears of metal
heads everywhere.

By Alxs Ness
84
Withered Straight Line Stitch
Folie Circulaire When Skies Wash Ashore
Prosthetic Records Koch Records
If you can envision a soundtrack befitting For whatever reason, metal is a male-dom-
a soul’s slow descent into madness, With- inated genre; while there are some kick ass
ered’s Folie Circulaire would be about as Opio
Vulture’s Wisdom, Volume One female-fronted metal bands out there, they
close as you can get. Even the title, when are few and far between. In a way, the fact
translated reads circular insanity (if taken Hiero Imperium
Souls of Mischief emcee Opio releases that metal isn’t saturated with female scream-
literally); this term alludes to bipolar dis- ers allows them to stand out. Sometimes this
order and manic depression. Whether or Vulture’s Wisdom, Volume One as the
first of three solo projects coming up this happens in a negative way where they stand
not Withered intended this relation of the out due to the sheer novelty (unfortunately) of
terms and their meanings to this album, year. This lyrically-focused album, pro-
duced by Oakland-based The Architect, is a woman screaming, but sometimes they stand
there’s definitely a dominant feeling of out because the front-person is genuinely tal-
torment and suffering woven into each short, sweet and stripped down to the rap
basics: uncomplicated beats and poetic ented and can kick ass just as hard as any guy.
song. This is the case with Knoxville, Tennessee’s
With dynamics ranging from sludgy, dis- rhymes.
The first single, “Stop the Press,” is car- Straight Line Stitch. With their newest release
tortion consumed riffs to intricate, fast- When Skies Wash Ashore set to hit shelves
changing rhythms Folie Circulaire keeps ried by deep electronic sounds layered
and repeated while Opio reminisces about August 19th, 2008, SLS are set to leave their
the listener on their toes. A great example mark on the metal scene once again.
of varied and contrasting elements tightly the good old days of hip-hop: “I come
from an era where you might get charged What makes this album unique is the dynam-
bound together can be found on the track ics involved with each song. Although the
“Dichotomy of Exile”. This song starts at/ For rapping on stage and you look like
a mallrat”. Opio’s off-handed commen- use of melodic vocals and rock-influenced
off slow and deliberate with a guitar-only choruses may not appeal to those only inter-
intro (Chris Freeman and Mike Thomp- taries do not come across as the bragging
of a cocky young rapper but rather as the ested in straight screaming/growling vocals,
son), but quickly accelerates when the you can’t ignore the fact that Alexis Brown is
bass (Mike Longoria) and drums (Beau wisdom of an experienced veteran.
He does indulge in the typical self-hype able to both scream and sing extremely well.
Brandon) kick in. There are some really On top of that, the music itself creates a nice
impressive rhythms and flourishes thrown of rap though, and takes the expected
jabs at hip-hop culture. From materialis- blend of skull-fucking heavy shit and quieter
in as well, courtesy of Brandon. One of more introspective parts. Overall each song
the most disconcerting elements of this tic priorities -“of course you wanna get
with me, I live in a mansion”- to failed explores aggression together with beauty and
track however, is found in the mixture of melody. The boys, Seth (guitar), Pat (guitar),
ruthlessly executed demon growls with attempts at originality- “plus you just
a succubus who’s taking all my con- Jason (bass) and Patrick (drums) supply a
mournful, wailing screams. Vocalists heavy, steadfast foundation while Alexis shifts
Freeman and Thompson definitely cre- cepts”- Opio is unafraid to play the critic.
Although the album is largely void of from vocal chord shredding screams to strong
ate a dark and unsettling tone with their melodies and back again.
individual voices giving rise to a call and skits and other such filler, each and every
song opens with a redundant announce- One standout track is titled “World Made
response type feeling in this track. Flesh.” This one is easily the most intense
As far as classifying Withered into a par- ment; “you are listening to limited edition
volume one Vulture’s Wisdom, be on the song on the album. It starts off with a pretty
ticular genre or style, good luck. These chill introduction, quickly leading into a
guys seem to have a concentrated focus look-out for volume 2…” Yeah, we get it.
Fifteen years after ’93 Til Infinity Opio savage verse that has you head banging from
on mood and progression/regression in beginning to end. Seth and Pat certainly
their tracks and not so much a preoccupa- has become a living classic: his style has
changed little since the early 90s yet has composed some crazy riffs for this track and
tion with fitting into a particular brand of picked the ideal times to break them out.
metal. Props to them! Along with the fact not become outdated. As a whole, there
is nothing exceptionally exciting about Other highlights include some crafty drum-
that this album contains some wicked art- ming, a solid chorus and a mood-setting guitar
work by Paul Romano, Folie Circulaire Vulture’s Wisdom, Volume One but the
beats are solid, the flows tight and the solo near the last half of the song.
is definitely a must have for those who Having performed with heavy hitters such
enjoy becoming completely engrossed in words wise.
as Slayer, Mastodon, Killswitch Engage and
the music that they listen to. Napalm Death, Straight Line Stitch are no
By Amalia Nickel
strangers to playing live and holding their
By Alxs Ness own. They are definitely a band to watch out
for. Also, be sure to check out the video for
“Black Veil” and keep your eyes peeled for
the soon-to-be-released video for “Taste of
Ashes”, featuring Hatebreed vocalist Jamey
Jasta. One word: HOT.

By Alxs Ness

85
Hammerfall
Masterpieces Neuraxis
Nuclear Blast The Thin Line Between
Hammerfall’s latest release Masterpieces Prosthetic Records
is an eighteen track compilation of metal Neuraxis, based out of Montreal, QC are one of those metal
cover songs. Since these tracks are all bands that make you proud to be Canadian. These guys have
taken from a selection of both obscure successfully created a unique sound that merges both melodic
and well known bands from the 1970s and technical aspects of metal without sacrificing aggression
and 1980s, this album is definitely going or composition. Having been at the task of creating music and
to be of interest to all the power metal/ performing live for over fourteen years, they definitely have
hard rock/epic metal aficionados out both down to a science. Their newest release, The Thin Line
there. The one strange thing about it, Between, hits shelves July 22, 2008 and it is definitely worth
however, is that Hammerfall had previ- picking up! Do yourself a favor and buy the actual CD as it
ously released all of these songs except contains some excellent artwork by renowned artist Dennis
the last three (“Flight of the Warrior”, Sibeijn (Chimaira, NIN, Job for a Cowboy, etc…).
“Youth Gone Wild” and “Aphasia”) The album begins with “Darkness Prevails.” This track does
on various albums from 1997-2005. In not waste any time to get to the meat and potatoes aspect of
effect, Masterpieces is a greatest hits of Neuraxis; impeccable technical skill by Rob Milley (guitar),
cover tunes. Well, that bit of strangeness Will Seghers (guitar), Tommy McKinnon (drums) and Yan
aside; it is a great album and definitely a Thiel (Bass), as well as vocals (Alex Leblanc) that kick you
valuable metal almanac for those of you straight in the throat. At times it is Leblanc’s relentless vocal
who weren’t yet born when these songs style that helps to keep the overall sound brutal and dark. One
were originally recorded. cool detail that was not overlooked in the design of the CD
This album has two very strong effects. book is the inclusion of the lyrics. Although Alex’s vocals are
First, it definitely works to showcase discernible and clear on their own, it’s nice to have the print for
Hammerfall’s talent as musicians. reference; these lyrics are extremely well written.
Joacim (vocals), Anders (drums), Oscar The self-titled track is an eight minute behemoth. It starts off
(guitars), Stefan (guitars) and Fredrik like a kamikaze freight train on a journey to hell, with mo-
(bass) definitely deserve some props for ments of building and releasing tension the whole way through.
the fact that they chose eighteen tracks There’s also an eerie cool-down moment near the last half of
from many different styles of metal and the song that seriously shows off McKinnon’s flawless double-
managed to maintain the original feel of kicks. One aspect of this album that is almost immediately
each song. That’s not to say that these are perceptible is the way that each song flows into the next while
bare-bones covers though; the talent and still remaining individual and distinct. There isn’t one bad track
style of Hammerfall does shine through. to be found anywhere. Also, the sound quality is amazing.
The upgrade in sound quality from the The Thin Line Between is definitely an accomplishment that
original “old-school” recordings is also a Neuraxis should be proud of! They’re certainly working hard to
nice touch. The second positive effect, is spread the word; these guys just recently completed a cross-
that Masterpieces pays homage to many Canada tour with Fuck the Facts and Gross Misconduct. If you
of the fore-fathers and mothers (check happened to miss those shows, you have a chance to redeem
out Chastain’s original version of “Angel yourself as they are on the Summer Slaughter Tour Canada
of Mercy”) of metal. While a few of the line-up, alongside Necrophagist, Dying Fetus, Beneath the
bands such as Judas Priest, Twisted Sister Massacre, Into Eternity, Whitechapel, Veil of Maya, Divinity
and Helloween are well known, many of and Common Grave. Their live-show contains the same quality
the others have since faded into obscu- musicianship and vocals found on the album but with the added
rity and would’ve probably remained bonus of the intense energy that can only be experienced in a
unknown if it wasn’t for an album such as live setting.
this. That being said, it’s definitely worth
your while to check out the original ver- By Alxs Ness
sions of each song; the ones you can find
anyway…

CD REVIEWS
By Alxs Ness

86
Gnarls Barkley
The Acacia Strain The Odd Couple
Ancestors Continent Downtown Music/Atlantic Records
Neptune With Fire Prosthetic Records Gnarls Barkley, the geniuses behind
North Atlantic Sound The Acacia Strain’s fourth studio release 2006’s brilliant St. Elsewhere, return
Slaves to the riff take heed, the debut Continent is by far one of the heaviest al- with their sophomore album The Odd
album from L.A.’s Ancestors entitled bums to be released this summer. You’re Couple… and there was much rejoicing!
Neptune With Fire is here and it wants going to be hard pressed to find another Danger Mouse and Cee-Lo Green have
your soul. Of course you’ll gladly give album or band for that matter, that is taken all the elements that made their ini-
it over when you hear this riff laden as angry lyrically or that creates such a tial release such a success (including the
psychedelic opus and its multi-layered, sludgy, low sound even during ferocious, film projector sound at the beginning and
thick, progressive doom, culled straight fast-paced riffs. This shit is seriously end of the album), turned them slightly
from the seventies and blasted through intense! on their ear and have produced an album
every essence of your being. The intro track “Skynet” starts off with of comparable if not superior quality. A
Conceptual in its construction, this a pretty basic riff but as soon as Vincent bit more sombre than their debut, The
immersive aural experience consists kicks in with his soul-darkening vocals, Odd Couple plays out like the perfect B-
of two tracks (clocking in at 16:41 and the whole thing turns into a mind-fuck; side to St. Elsewhere, even if record sales
21:39 respectively) which meander Kevin (drums) drops the tempo and DL don’t back up that fact.
from one riff to the next with fluid (guitar) and Jack (Bass) follow suit, Its sad to think that great bands like
grace and effortless timing. Opening creating a sound suggestive of a giant Gnarls Barkley are being driven out of
track “Orcus’ Avarice” has an initial industrial machine slowly grinding to a existence by the fans themselves who use
jam feel to it, but plays out like a road halt. Then, just when you’re accustomed peer to peer networking and bit torrents
“trip” through your subconscious, to the deliberate, brutally slow riff, DL to download albums rather than spend
while title track “Neptune With Fire” comes in like a bat out of hell (so sorry good money on good music. Cee-Lo him-
takes the listener on the cosmic journey for the Meatloaf reference) and the ma- self (in a recent interview with HIPHOP
of a mythical character and the trials chine starts turning once again. “Skynet” DX) expressed the desire to do one more
and tribulations inherent in that jour- is definitely among the best songs on the album under this current moniker so not
ney. Each of these tracks plays out like album. to be “summed up” by Gnarls Barkley
multiple songs meshed together with Overall, Continent plays solid and deadly (a similar sentiment he expressed about
instrumental interludes, reminiscent of the entire way through. Some nice touch- Goodie Mob).
stoner doom bands like Sleep, Green es include the melodic guitar parts sewn Sixty’s Go-Go beats, Cee-Lo’s distinct
Milk From the Planet Orange and Sons into the low-down and dirty riffs. These vocals, deeper self reflective lyrics and
of Otis. little shreds of melody affect the tone Danger Mouse’s superior production
Although elements of doom metal of songs such as “Cthulhu” and “JFC” sensibilities put The Odd Couple far
are present in Neptune With Fire, this because they come across subtle amongst above most rival discs in both sound and
album is not predominantly “doom” the dominant heavy riffs. Another nice song quality. I defy anyone to try “not” to
in nature. By fusing styles and genres, touch is the variation in vocal style found move when “Run (I’m A Natural Disas-
Ancestors owe more “props” to Pink on the track “Baby Buster.” Vincent ter)” starts playing or not picture mini-
Floyd than Black Sabbath, with their chose the perfect track to switch it up on, skirts, long hair and go-go boots when
organ and vocal work giving this al- as it offers a nice break in the somewhat “Whatever” or “Surprise” blast out.
bum a modern classic feel. Add to that repetitive low vocal style that’s found on More serious songs like “Charity Case”
some of the most intricate and sweep- 95% of this album. No slight intended, and “No Time Soon” compel the listener
ing guitar and bass work, “textural he’s a stellar vocalist, but the tone is basi- to actually “listen” to the lyrics as Cee-Lo
incarnations” and drumming second to cally the same the entire way through and seeks self redemption through self reflec-
none and this one album holds more it’s nice to have something unexpected tion, something we all can relate to even
power and grace than most artists tossed in their just to keep everybody on if its something we fail to do or recognize
scrape together in a whole career. their toes. in ourselves.
With sludge factors set on high, Nep- Continent is set to hit the shelves August Consummate song writers through and
tune With Fire takes the pure enjoy- 19, 2008. Be sure to make a pilgrimage to through, Gnarls Barkley do not disap-
ment of riff soaked nods to the past and your local metal “record” shop and pick point with The Odd Couple. Even though
breaths new life into a genre set adrift up a hard-copy of this album. See you in its sombre tone may turn some listeners
by speed and repetition. the pit, motherfuckers! off, there’s definitely enough here to keep
serious music listeners more than satis-
By Grimm “Bongwater” Culhane By Alxs Ness fied.

By Grimm “Natural Disaster” Culhane

87
Cradle To Grave N.E.R.D.
Texas Medicine Seeing Sounds
Year of The Sun UMG
NIM VIND Southern Fried, shit-kicker metal… Synesthesia is both a physiological and
The Fashion of Fear Canadian style. Board-monger Devin poetical concept; it implies the cross-
Nv Music Townsend (Lamb of God , GWAR, Strap- ing of the senses, like numbers being
David Bowie goes disco Danzig and ping Young Lad) has once again managed perceived as inherently colored or as the
gets pummeled by a lolly-gaggle of to envelope the intensity of the local lads case may be, seeing sounds. Although
70’s punks and a flock of seagulls. True in Cradle To Grave as they churn out an listening to the rock and hip-hop fusion
story. These boys have got this musical opus that is nothing short of brilliant of N.E.R.D’s latest album may be confus-
situation dialed. Every game is played Produced by the “Grimmer Twins,” un- ing to the senses, there is little lyrical
here. They rock the wheedly-wheedly on like Mick and “Keef” these two have an quality to inspire sensory appreciation of
“Outsiders”. They blow out melodies that obvious musical bond that supersedes a any kind.
pit Cindy Lauper against the Crash Test majority of (Canadian) songwriting duos The Neptunes (N.E.R.D. members Phar-
Dummies, and fisticuffs are unavoidable. out there. Power to them. rell Williams and Chad Hugo) may be
The clash that occurs sets off infectious one of the tightest production teams of
sparks that will light your ass on fire and Transplanted from Montreal, guitarist this era: Britney Spears, Nelly and Justin
make you dance all the way to the pro- Denis Barthe has an irreverent and sim- Timberlake all coasted to number one
verbial well into which you will plummet plistic edge on the standard guitar lick, status with Neptunes beats. Along with
in an attempt to douse the flame, only to and given his long time history in the Shay Haley, the trio’s first two albums,
find yourself hopelessly stranded with metal scene there is certainly no lack of In Search Of… and Fly or Die both were
little Timmy in a dank, dark and dirty enthusiasm. The vocal styling’s of Greg progressive in their attempts to fuse
dungeon. Nim Vind may have sent you Cavanagh are prominent and procure genres and even in the fact that all of the
there, but they will bring you back with the ears of any true metalhead, from the members learned instruments to play on
uplifting buckets of blistering classic get-go. the second album. Seeing Sounds is dis-
punk guitars infused with incomprehen- Track s like the punk edged “Fuck It Up” appointingly different in its sameness and
sible cacophony (please refer to “The and “Broken God” make for a lovely contains few new ideas or styles.
Fashion of Fear” 0:55 – 1:01; brilliant) Sunday afternoon with thy headphones The album is catchy if nothing else; the
and reverberating retro rippage. securely placed on ones head. Any one characteristic synth lines, snares and
Then, just when you think you’ve got it over the age of 30 or who grew up listen- chanted or falsetto hooks are all present.
all figured out, you stumble over “The ing to real NWOBHM mixed with a Pharrell’s voice is interesting to listen to
Bitter End”, an acoustic ballad that little Molly Hatchet may find themselves and its imperfections give character to
features gang whistling and all the old engaging in a tremulous head nod for words that are candidly unpoetic. “Love
west wonder of a black, star speckled weeks to come. Bomb” is sappy and soulful, “Don’t need
sky. Then Kooper Kain kicks in his two Let the ear bleeding commence. another love song, we need a love bomb,”
bits with two electro-iconic collab-bonus while “You Know What” has an eight-
tracks to take your trip out to lunch in the By E.S. Day ies pop beat and an unapologetic sexual
halls of flamboyantly dressed radioac- agenda: “Nobody made me cum like
tive monks. The Fashion of Fear is a dark you, I just roll over…” There’s a cocaine
marriage of music that should be cel- critique along with horn samples (Every-
ebrated by all sun-fearing citizens, which body Nose) and relationship talk along
is all of us. Make no mistake; the sun with outrageous guitar solos (It’s Over).
will one day consume us should we be so Seeing Sounds has a familiar feel to it; it
lucky to survive as a species for another does little to distinguish itself from previ-
few billion years (This is not likely.) ous N.E.R.D. efforts but at the same is
In the meantime let us enjoy the mythical fun to listen to for that very reason.
musings of a few foresighted individuals,
the meticulously mopped up blood trio By Amalia Nickel
that is NIM VIND.

By ninjoelspy

88
The Jolts
Haute Voltage
Haute Voltage Records
Valient Thorr If, like many of our readers, you are a fan of The
Immortalizer Jolts, then you have been waiting for this moment
Volcom Entertainment for a long time. The moment of having Haute Volt-
Enough about the 70’s already! Oh sure, they age running through your veins. Let me tell you,
were great in their own mixed up, bell bottom, it’s worth the wait.
mood ring, sexual revolution kind of way, but The Jolts come at you with eleven hot tracks of
who can forget the Energy Crisis, Richard blasting rock ‘n roll that’ll make you want to shake
Nixon, Kent State and all the trappings of the your ass. The album is chock full of fire breathing
“Me” decade? Its time to move on people! guitar leads that will burn down small villages,
Take your contraceptive pills, join a hippy lyrics that’ll make girls cry, and pounding drums
commune and don’t forget your cocaine at played with two murderous sticks. These songs are
the disco may not be the type of advice your going to make you want to pop pills, drive fast and
mother gives you now a days, but she proba- beat the piss out of anyone who get’s in your way.
bly wasn’t first in line for Led Zeppelin tickets The opening track “Hey, Alright” is an epically
either… or was she? catchy tune, while “An Electric Testimonial” is a
Fortunately trends are like visitors to a Ne- fast furious song with a great sing-a-long chorus.
vada brothel, they come and they go. Judge Now, if this isn’t enough for you there is a piano
for yourself the importance of the 70’s and solo on “The Bar Again.” A fucking piano solo!
you’ll always come back to one single surviv- It’s played by that guy with the stumps for legs
ing significance, the music. With the rash of and little half sized arms that can be found on the
70’s sounding bands out there today its hard to corner of Georgia and Granville at Christmas time.
separate the influences from the rip-offs. Give Ok, I don’t think he played it, but wouldn’t that be
me the choice of a modern “throw back” who cool?
can actually “throw down” and I’ll give you The boys have re-recorded “Bloody Eye Socket,”
the name of one band, Valient Thorr. which was originally featured on The Jinx EP, and
Stranded on Earth because Walt Disney stole they’ve beefed it up with an extra lead guitar lick
their time machine 21 years earlier, Eidan, that is magical. It’s amazing what a few different
Voiden and Lucian Thorr, along with Dr. notes can do.
Professor Nitewolf Strangees and Valient The final track on the album is quite the finisher.
Himself, continue doing what they do best, “Why Do You Do Me (Like You Do)?” has catchy
and that’s kicking supreme ass! The boys “whoa’s” that will get stuck in your head as you
outdo themselves on this their fourth album, make your way to the grocery store to bring home
Immortalizer, by packing this baby with more some eggs and milk for the Missis. When you
vintage, hard, stoner, psychedelic mayhem show up with a copy of Haute Voltage for her
than ever! instead, she’ll be pleasantly surprised.
The illegitimate children of Alice Cooper Now we are only halfway through 2008 but I will
sounding “Tomorrow Police,” the Ted Nugent make the bold statement of saying that this could
cross-bow to the chops of “Parable of Dae- very well be the punk album of the year…and
dalus,” the Steve Miller when he shuts the probably next year too.
fuck up sound of “Vernal Equinox;” the list
of comparisons could go on and on, but screw By Denis Malle
that noise; this disc is pure Valient Thorr
through and through.
Considering my mood ring remains a consis-
tent black in colour (so I know it still works)
and judging from Valient Thorr’s latest slab
of righteousness, perhaps the 70’s weren’t all
that shitty after all.

CD REVIEWS
By Grimm “Thorr” Culhane

89
D-Sisive
The Book The New Odds
Urbnet Records Cheerleader The Offspring
D’s come a long way since Popped, Pheromone Recordings Rise and Fall, Rage and Grace
where DJ Serious unleashed his hilari- I really wanted to love this album. I’ve Sony/BMG
ously comic disdain for early 2000’s re- always wanted these guys to be great. It is damning with faint praise to say that
cord industry types. His distinctive T-dot I fondly recall watching The Dawn Patrol Rise and Fall, Rage and Grace is the best
whiteboy cadence has gone from funny at The Roxy before they hit it as The album The Offspring have produced in a
to serious in response to some real shit Odds. They were the best cover band - decade.
dropping in his life - namely the death of ever. Their time as The Odds provided a Here is a band that has consistently
first his mother then father. The darkness few highlights that won some of my stu- appeared to record the same material re-
and melancholy introspection caused by dent loan money. And I’m glad they’ve peatedly since their break out album, the
these experiences has D-Sisive opening made good - just check their Wikipedia record breaking Smash in 1994. Can they
The Book with “Intro (the story of an entry. really be blamed? They do their unmis-
artist)” - a paean to unappreciated artists Their new album as The New Odds - a takable mix of skate-punk, post-grunge &
growing old. moniker that makes me smirk, thinking ska with (ahem) virtuosity. The conse-
“Brian Wilson” bumps a bit harder, but about Spinal Tap incarnation ‘The New quent range of their cannon doesn’t leave
continues the theme of self-indulgent Originals’ - starts off well, but apart from a lot of scope for differentiation between
depression with lines like “I wish that I a few tracks never really rises. the ‘good’ and the ‘bad,’ resulting in a
was younger”. “Ambulance,” features Right out of the gate they knock you long period of stale releases. Did “Hit
Tom Waits on a typically husky, growl- back with “Cloud Full of Rocks” - which That” really manage to go anywhere that
ing chorus and D rhyming over crazy rocks and reflects too much of my past… “Original Prankster” didn’t? Likewise
janky guitars and percussion reminiscent I’ve dated that woman, it seems. The from “Original Prankster” back to “Pretty
of Waits’ Bone Machine. It’s interesting inertia flows straight through “Write it Fly”? For year’s their best output was
for a Hip Hop track, but not particularly in Lightning,” but by the time the third covers of The Police and The Ramones.
effective. track (the IMHO misguided single) “My So what makes R&G, R&F a return to
D’s in better form on “ThisIsWhatIt- Happy Place” comes along, it’s all start- form for a band whose biggest liability
SoundsLikeWhenWhiteBoysListenTo- ing to sound like Toad the Wet Sprocket has been their lack of ability to extend
HopHop,” dropping his usually sarcastic & The Northern Pikes at their un-inspired beyond their established formula? More
and humorous lines over a funky guitar worst, and I’m not paying any attention than anything, Dexter Holland’s lyrics
loop, breaking down and satirizing ste- anymore. have finally grown up. Once upon a time,
reotypes in a self deprecating way. “Up” “Jumper” pulls me back in, but it’s a his sarcastic insight was part of the hall-
is his attempt to rise out of the wreckage long wait with only some occasional wit mark that lifted The Offspring above the
and seek inspiration in positivity. (the purile lyric “look at the piece of tail pack. How many mid 20s guys didn’t feel
Art may be the best form of therapy, but on the mermaid girl” leaps out) to lift like they had shamefully shared the same
that doesn’t mean that therapy always it anywhere above the same songs they girl-friend depicted in “Self-esteem”? But
produces great art. The Book is so were writing in the early 90s… and why from there, though the wit remained, the
saturated with D-Sisive’s self-pity and wouldn’t I rather listen to “Wendy Under content didn’t do much to mature… until
palpable despair that it is something the Stars” or “Heterosexual Man” instead now.
of a difficult listen, one which doesn’t - they at least have nostalgia value. This is an Offspring album for former
necessarily lead to a cathartic experience. To be fair, I think I’m more disappointed punk-rock kids who are now raising their
Lacking the qualities of humour, sarcasm that I’m disappointed than genuinely own kids - who live in defiance of their
and vivd imagery that marked his earlier disappointed. parent’s version of outrage. This is a nos-
work, The Book comes off too much as Sigh. talgic sounding album for a generation,
an album made for the artist’s own satis- Perhaps their greatest feat was always now approaching forty who are following
faction, without elevating his experiences destined to be a wicked live version of the 2008 election with trepidation, who
to an everyman’s perspective that others Radar Love in a bar packed with Univer- are still angered by the world they’ve
can relate too. It shows a great deal of sity students on Granville. inherited and frustrated at their limited
potential in D-Sisive as an artist matur- ability to set it right after all these years.
ing beyond the limitations of his earlier By Kennedy Goodkey Thank god it’s fun to listen to The Off-
sound and style, but as a work in itself it spring again. How refreshing.
feels patchy, and too relentlessly focussed
on D’s own misfortune to come up with By Kennedy Goodkey

CD REVIEWS
any truly profound insights.
Better luck next time…

By Dave “Corvid” McCallum

90
Tanya Morgan Elephant Man
The Bridge EP Let’s Get Physical
IM Culture Bad Boy Records Magnus Rising
Tanya Morgan may be a pretty silly name At least you know what you’re in for Counting the Numbers
for a rap trio, but this is some dope shit with the cover - a red haired Elephant Independent
that’s been making heads turn since their Man with the requisite bling (watch,
Moonlighting debut drew praise from rings and Jesus piece…) acting the part Born in 2002, like many an act before
XXL, The Source, and made Questlove’s of personal trainer for three gold bikinied them (via bored musicians answering
2006 top ten list. Comprised of Cincin- dancehall queens. Executive produced by posters precariously strewn throughout
nati duo Ilwill (Donwill and Ilyas), and none other than P. Diddy, this is clearly the city), St. John, Newfoundland’s
Brooklyn MC/Producer Von Pea, Tanya El-Man’s attempt to break through into a power metal quartet, Magnus Rising have
Morgan compare favourably to the “True larger North American audience. since relocated to the growing musical
School” sounds of Little Brother, heav- The first two tracks tread familiar hotbed that is Vancouver.
ily influenced by the positive vibes and dancehall ground. “Drop Dead” rocks Deciding to gruelingly trudge along in
everyman realism of De La Soul and A double time and “Dem Nah Ready” kicks their musical conquest after a fire de-
Tribe Called Quest. the typical misogyny over the classic stroyed the majority of their equipment,
The Bridge Ep is intended to serve as a “whoomp whoomp” - adequate tracks Magnus Rising deliver straight ahead
bridge between the trio’s former work that establish the over-amped tempos and power metal, slower than similar acts in
and the upcoming full-length release larger than life attitude that characterize the genre, but ferociously energetic none-
of “Brooklynati” It also references the the genre. “Feel the Stream” (featuring theless, passion dripping from every note.
file sharing techniques used to create Chris Brown) and “Throw Your Hands Their debut full-length, recorded at Fac-
Moonlighting when the group still oc- Up” (featuring Rihanna) shift the vibe to tory and produced by Doug Mix, kicks
cupied different cities. Saturated with sugary teen pop mixed with Elephant’s off with an almost seven minute metal
compressed soul samples, and featuring perverted flow, Rihanna’s hook is the opus bequeathed with the album’s title,
the distinctively syncopated stylings of more radio friendly of the two. Counting the Numbers.
three highly skilled MC’s, this EP is like Wyclef and Diddy step in on the slower, “Whoever said ‘we only really die once’
a satisfying snack that’s wholesome but more roots-based “Five-O,” a welcome never really lived,” proclaims a heart
spicy, each element carefully arranged to diversion that attests to Elephant’s gang- wrenching ballad, “From the Ashes,” in
be savoured by Hip Hop connoisseurs. ster status. Swizz Beatz track on “Jump” which guitars whine and the music seems
Track one The Bridge feat. Elucid rocks is an almost unbearably basic series of to bleed. But in very metal way. Fuck
over a catchy Hammond Organ sample sounds that slam without any concept of you.
with shuffling percussion and brilliant, swing or groove, one of the worst beats I Amongst the standout tracks: the ex-
behind the beat flows laying out the have heard in ages. Even Busta Rhymes tremely danceable thrasher “Shallow
blueprints for this meeting of minds. and Shaggy can’t enliven a deadbeat End,” the groove laden “Crisis” and the
Filthier Interlude AKA “Place” calls to wanna be banger like “The Way We involuntary headbanger “Evidence In
mind Mr. Hood-era KMD, with a 60’s Roll.” It’s as though they’ve all become Safety.”
R+B sample and MC’s rocking to a faster way too comfortable in these beats and Showing extreme versatility, the melodic
pace. Bonus track How Low with produc- don’t even try to come up with exciting album weaves its way from torturous
tion by Mysterious Productions bumps an flows. ballads to blistering hair-swinging romps
80’s electro beat that should appeal to all Whereas in North America, it often seems and is undeniably sincere.
the scarf wearing club kids, but with lazy as though “street” or “gangsta” MC’s
rhymes and a mediocre chorus (”how low have the better flows while “conscious” By Kristina Mameli
can you go?”), hopefully this is just an artists usually don’t. Maybe in Jamaica
experimental diversion. the opposite principle is in effect - for
Mostly though, this is an enjoyable al- all their fanatical fundamentalist beliefs,
bum, and Tanya Morgan definitely sound no-one can say that Sizzla and Capleton
better when talking about real life than don’t have unique and inventive styles.
when trying to make club bangers. With With all the high-profile collabs, Elephant
a wide range of styles and a focus on Man is clearly shooting for a larger,
cultivating an original sound and iden- Hip-Hop/Pop audience, but as much as
tity, expect to hear great things from this I love dancehall in it’s purest forms, this
dedicated trio. album is just too basic and uninteresting
to break through.
By Dave “Corvid” McCallum
By Dave “Corvid” McCallum

91
Mad Shadow
Whitechapel Mad Shadow
This Is Exile Everlast
Love, War and the Independent
Metal Blade Mad Shadow’s self-t
Fuck Yea! Ghost of Whitey Ford
Martyr Inc/Sony debut is a ten track fl
Pure gut stomping, eardrum flattening mindfuck: kind of guitar driven,
This Is Exile, Whitechapel’s second full-length Undoubtedly, one of his best releases to
date, Everlast once again displays his hard-rock sounds tha
release. Seriously, these people have only been Sabbath, Led Zeppel
together a mere two years and they have already magnetic skills on both the mic (see this
Usinger?) and the guitar. Of course we helped to originate ba
created an album that plays solid and engaging 70’s. For those who s
the entire way through. From the first to the last, are referring to him spitting rhymes more
than singing, as he is best known for drix, The Doors, Zep
these tracks grab your attention like the rotted that new music was b
flesh, skeletal grip of a vengeful corpse risen dropping verses alongside Ice-T, House
of Pain and currently with his former same heart and passio
from the dead…. Or something along those the day, check out thi
lines. band mates in the Super-group La Coka
Nostra (including Ill Bill and Necro). band. Every song on
The opening track “Father of Lies” sets the nal, full of heavy gro
pace; no intro, no easing into it-fuck that-this Almost from out of nowhere he has resur-
faced with the Love, War and the Ghost style guitar solos, and
song is all about brutal riffs, drums that don’t let vocals that will have
up and vocals that alternate between extremely of Whitey Ford platter with his unique
stamp of backwoods blues influence, you’re caught in som
low, guttural growls and harsh, piercing demon inducing acid flashba
screams. That’s actually one of the immediately craftily combining rock and hip-hop.
Soulful and honest, this is what enables Mad Shadow consist
noticeable traits of This Is Exile; their vocalist (vocals), Danny Svei
Phil Bozeman is not only very versatile in his his natural ability to churn out a decent
hit track. Mcdonald (drums) an
screams, but even during his lowest vocals, you (bass). Originally for
can still make out what he’s saying, at least for Especially when you turnout a impec-
cable version of Johnny Cash’s “Folsom Sveinson (acclaimed
the most part. Another thing you’ll notice right who’s been playing g
away is the low, impenetrable wall of sound cre- Prison Blues,” plop it on top of Cypress
Hill’s “Insane In The Brain” and you ally since the age of 1
ated by Ben Savage (guitar), Alex Wade (guitar), moves beyond the hy
Zach Householder (guitar), Gabe Crisp (bass) my friend are prepared to start drinking
heavily. Danny (now 15) and
and Kevin Lane (drums). the exceptional talen
Yea, that’s right; the boys from Knoxville, Ten- Everlast’s own Martyr Inc. imprint has
more than likely given him the freedom young, up and comin
nessee are a six-piece. They’ve managed to pull like “White Lies,” “R
off what many bands attempt and fail miserably to write how he sees fit, not to mention
a proper direction. This will more than “Mad Shadow” soun
at; to incorporate three guitars and yet maintain a seasoned band of o
a clean sound that evolves and changes swiftly likely give the public an in depth under-
standing of him. In our recent interview roll veterans, not that
without ever sounding muddied or overdone. guys who have only
Throw Gabe and Kevin into the mix and you with Everlast in Issue 7, he talks about
doing little mash-ups here and there and barely over a year.
have an extremely dense yet unpredictable com- While they definitely
bination that is sure to make you shit your pants is now currently engaged in studio work
once again, with Soul Assassin # 1 - DJ classic, signature sou
and that is just the recorded version; imagine moments where thing
what these guys are like live. Muggs.
The Grammy winning singer songwriter familiar. For example
If you live in the States or Canada you will have in the song “Living i
a chance to catch Whitechapel on the Summer and multi–talented musician should be
able to keep his head well above water you swear Jim Morri
Slaughter tour. Be sure to visit their merch table grabbed the mic. Not
while you’re at it and pick up a copy of This Is with this album, from his legion of loyal
fans and hopefully some new ones. too much, Erik Olufs
Exile. You definitely won’t regret it!! vocalist whose unwa
By E.S. Day soulful voice is alrea
By Alxs Ness that would make man
vocalists more than j
There are times, how

CD REVIEWS
like he may be chann
ert Plant just a little t
all criticisms aside its
guys are staying true
they love and are not
it for the sake of selli
it up boys!

By Alxs Ness
92
Melvins Judas Priest
Nude With Boots Nostradamus
Ipecac Records Epic/SonyBMG
titled, full-length Kings of cerebral chaos-core (a.k.a the Bobby H. & The JP’s have gone and done
flashback into the Melvins) return to familiar “clothing op- the improbable: a 2-disc concept album.
, blues-influenced, tional” stomping grounds with their latest As you know, concept albums are for
at bands like Black release Nude With Boots. Sporting the musicians who cannot write a regular
lin and AC/DC same lineup as their previous album (A) album, thus blanketing the foul stench of
ack in the 60’s and Senile Animal (including Jared Warren un-originality and blatant laziness in the
still listen to Hen- and Coady Willis of Big Business), Nude songwriting department.
ppelin, etc and wish With Boots allows King Buzzo and Dale It seems Glen, K.K. and the rest of the
being made with the Crover to prove, beyond a shadow of a tribe have done the un-doable. They have
on like it was back in fucking doubt, that 20+ years into their set themselves up with a weak attempt
is young, B.C based amazing musical career, they still remain at drumming up enough sales to garner a
this album is origi- one of the most dynamic and unique call from every talent buyer in every mar-
oove riffs, old-school bands in existence. ket in North America, even before wav-
d raunchy blues style Bottom scraping bass, duel drums-a- ing a white flag at the European Festival
you feeling like gogo, guitars up to twelve (fuck eleven!) Producers for any and every available
me sort of time-travel and Buzzo’s stereophonic vocals will slot known to man and metal in 2008.
ack. pierce right to the very core of your jelly Ironically the Lita Ford track “Run With
ts of Erik Olufson spine, leaving you a puddle of goo large The $” was playing in the background
inson (guitars), Josh enough to piss your roommates off when after my third attempt at reviewing this
nd Tyler Lindgrin they attempt to stumble around you all monstrosity of a metal mess. Running
rmed around Danny hung-over the next morning. I mean this with it is exactly what they are doing and
d guitar prodigy shit is tight! I don’t expect to hear from Judas Priest
guitar profession- Like its predecessor, Nude With Boots for awhile after the touring season dies
10), Mad Shadow highlights the might and majesty that are down… along with the publics respect.
ype surrounding the Melvin’s trademarks. Eleven songs After throwing my copy of Nostradamus
truly encompasses of heavy fucking grooves that take the into our CD donation box (which we give
nt and skill of all four cookie cutter childishness of today’s to underprivileged kids in Vancouver), it
ng musicians. Tracks popular music, kick it square in the balls was decided that that was the right thing
Reflections” and and send it home to Mum with a note tell- to do and something good has to come
nd like the product of ing her to “STOP BREEDING!” out of this. Even the diehards are com-
old-school rock and Fitting Nude With Boots into the library plaining and hocking their CDs to put the
t of a group of young of Melvin’s recordings is no easy task. money behind some overpriced concert
been together just First there’s the sonic ramblings of “Dog tickets.
Island,” which would be just at home on Like one giant song that doesn’t know
y have established a Bullhead as it is here. Then there’s “Dies where its going, there is nothing even
und, there are some Iraea” (a famous thirteenth century Latin remotely close to the shivering up the
gs sound a little too hymn), which sounds like Ennio Mor- spine you can still find after a listen to
e, there’s a section ricone after too much mescaline. “Suicide “Exciter” from Stained Class, or the title
in the Past” where In Progress” is about as accessible as the track from Painkiller with Scott Travis
ison just broke in and Melvins get here, rivaling anything on going balls out. There’s not even a radio
t to harp on the guy Stoner Witch as far as pure discombobu- friendly track like half of British Steel to
son is a phenomenal lation and songwriting mayhem goes. complain about. It’s just that simple. This
avering, powerful yet Finally, the title track “Nude With Boots” release can only be summed up as the
ady at such a quality shows the boys in all their demented only legit reason to hit the road without
ny experienced rock glory, with two minutes of instrumental looking like you need to hit the road.
just a little envious. wanking before the vocals even kick in. Too bad Nostradamus did not predict that
wever when it seems Pumping them out faster than a barefoot as well.
neling his inner Rob- Catholic mother these days, the Melvins
too much. Anyways, have put together yet another disc worthy By E.S. Day
s great that these of your feeble pop encrusted eardrums.
e to the music that With the imminent release of Nude With
t trying to bastardize Boots only one question remains, are you
ing ‘records’. Keep worthy of the Melvins?

By Grimm “Electroretard” Culhane


93
DVD REVIEWS (hed) p.e.
The D.I.Y. Guys Fan of the
Suburban Noize
Dead
Earache “My With the East Coast being
Directed by Nicolas
Eye” the predominate ruler of all things Rap-
Garreau
MVD Visual
Various Artists core, the crew at L.A. based Suburban
MVD Visual Fans of the Living
Noize Records have certainly found a
Earache’s re-release Dead series rejoice! Although this
way to keep the genre alive with a visual-
of their 1999 music video compila- hour long “documentary” by George A.
ly debauched compilation of live concert
tion My Eye could not have come at Romero enthusiast Nicolas Garreau
footage from crossover kings (hed) p.e.
a better time. With so many newer plays out like a French tourist video,
Captured live from Hollywood’s Key
metal bands around it’s nice to take a there is enough content and interesting
Club, we are treated to 13 tracks that
look at some old school heavy hitters “behind the Dead” stories here to satisfy
clearly shows their surroundings and why
who have had a major influence on all perambulatory postmortem puritans.
and how the ultimate mash up of Metal,
them. It is also a pretty smart move Garreau travels all the way from France
Punk Hip-Hop and Hardcore have come
on Earache’s part considering that with his trusty video camera to visit film-
together into a melting pot of aggressive
many of these artists have been dis- ing locations in the Pennsylvania coun-
and rebellious sub-genres.
banded for over a decade and some tryside where the legendary cult classic
Tracks from their current Insomnia album
of this material is considered rare. Living Dead series was shot. Meeting
are showcased, plus Singer/MC, activ-
Favorably, My Eye offers diversity original cast members at the Pittsburgh
ist and blunt-blazing ogre Jared sports a
in band styles and video content. Comic-Con and asking sophomoric
ghastly coat of face paint, coupled with
Despite the differences, the 90’s questions in broken English is done one
his angry verses and the bands more
vibe runs strong the entire way better with visits to shooting locations as
than competent ability to pound out the
through; repetitive, straightforward well as hands on training with original
old school beats, they throw in an Rob
riffs, industrial influences, Dr. Marten props from the Living Dead movies.
Zombie Clone on the “1’s & 2’s” and we
boots and low-budget video produc- A definite find for the comic book mind-
have one hell of a visual ride
tion. The only disclaimer I would offer ed, marvel as Nicolas and a large group
Could do without the “skits” mind you,
before viewing this compilation is not of “Dead” enthusiasts are taken on a
may appeal to some, but if album skits
to expect anything more then what guided tour of the basement featured in
drive you nuts a DVD version may have
it claims to be: a collection of music Night of the Living Dead. Ooo and awe
you fast forwarding to the meat of the
videos from the 90’s. That is to say, as your faithful narrator and videogra-
matter. Still worth purchasing for the live
there aren’t any special features or pher roams through the Monroeville Ma
footage and the bonus cuts.
reworkings to be found on this one. featured in Dawn of the Dead. Bust off
It’s a masochistic mash-up of L.A.
Arguably, the “low-budget” feel of the top of your head and spray blood
Hip-Hop Gangsters Vs. NYC Hardcore
the DVD stays true to the times and everywhere as bus load after bus load
punks, with a slight nod the dark side…
allows the videos and songs to stand of people who still live with their parents
and it feels just right
on their own. roam the military base where soldiers
For those of us who grew up in the and scientists hid out the zombie apoca
Tracklisting:
nineties, this compilation offers some lypse in Day of the Dead. Its all here, in
1. Madhouse
pretty intense flash-backs. Some glorious… colour?
2. Not Ded Yet
highlights include Godflesh’s “Crush Save yourself the cost of a stay in a
3. Game Over
My Soul” and At the Gates’ “Blinded Pittsburgh hostel and a potential nasty
4. Peer Pressure
by Fear.” “Crush my Soul” starts the death when the dead roam the Pennsyl
5. Sophia
compilation with scenes of roosters vania countryside once again by enjoy-
6. The Truth
being prepped for a cockfight. The ing this video in the comfort of your own
7. RTO
intensity of these scenes permeates home. Although there is no actual foot-
8. Niteclub In Bali
through the entire video and helps age from the Living Dead films them-
9. Get Em Up
to increase the intensity of the track selves, this is still a decent companion
10. War On The Middle Class*
itself. “Blinded by Fear,” in hindsight, to Mr. Romero’s masterworks even if Mr
11. Ordo Ab Chao*
seems like a strong precursor to Garreau’s English is hard to understand
12. Bloodfire*
where metal has gone within this at times.
13. Real Talk
decade. Plus, who does not love see- (Instrumental From DIY Guys DVD)
ing a woman grinding a power tool on *Previously Unreleased
her cod piece…seriously… By Grimm “Dead Looking” Culhane
By E.S. Day
By Alxs Ness
94
Lamb of God
Walk With Me In Hell
Epic/SonyBMG
Black and Gold
Directed by Rick Rowley
Big Noise Films
Lamb of God’s newest DVD release, Walk For all the strugglers and sufferers of
with Me in Hell is a straightforward, gritty portrayal of whatever origin, this film is an inspira-
the band after Sacrament (their newest CD released in tional kick in the ass to rise up and unify in the face
2006). This double-disc set contains two feature length of oppression. This is the story of the Latin Kings
documentaries as well as a complete performance from - who in 1994 made the transformation from NYC’s
the 2006 Download Festival. largest street gang, into the Latin King and Queen
Nation - a revolutionary socialist organization dedi-
Both discs delve into the mannerisms and personalities cated to uplifting community and influenced by the
of Randy, Chris, Willie, John and Mark and the contri- Black Panthers and the Young Lords.
butions that each member makes to the group. In true Through interviews with members and spokespeo-
Lamb of God fashion, the world is let in to see the many ple like King Tone and Puerto Rican revolutionary
setbacks that were encountered on tour as well as the Richie Perez, the word is made flesh - the story of
personal issues that they had to face while trying to work the marginalized Latin community in the US and
y together. What makes Walk With Me In Hell a standout the government approved program of self -destruc-
against similar band documentaries, besides the incred- tion through gang violence and internal conflict.
e ible live footage, is that you get a strong sense of the Most surprising is the local priest who, embracing
- reality of life in this band, as opposed to hyped up drama. the King and Queen Nation and casting it in a Bibli-
In addition, the editing and production of the DVD itself is cal perspective references Jesus - “who lived in the
professionally done. Much effort has been put in by the ghetto just as you all do for thirty years, and when
band and staff to give this DVD a professional, film-like he took his Nation downtown…they killed him in
feel. three weeks!”.
When minority people are engaged in a lethal
e Disc one reveals the grueling, two-year touring regimen struggle for survival that keeps them from mani-
s that L.O.G undertook in support of Sacrament. Crossing festing their own destiny, Uncle Sam is A-OK, but
the world three times over, we are given a behind the when the same community rallies around social-
scenes look at the blood, sweat and tears necessary to ist principles and restructures for autonomy, you
make a tour go smoothly (or not, in some cases). From know he’s bringing in the big guns - and thus the
p the excitement and adrenaline of the Unholy Alliance, Nation was subjected to one of the biggest round-
Megadeth and Ozzfest shows, to their not-so-exciting ups in American “history” - over ninety Latin Kings
n experience with the Heaven and Hell tour, it is a roller were arrested on various trumped up charges, with
coaster ride the whole way through and not a detail is founder King Blood given one of the most outra-
spared. As well, we get to see the lengths in which the geous sentences ever - life with no parole, with a
all boys must sometimes go in order to entertain themselves minimum of 45 years solitary confinement !
while on the road; some of this shit is downright hilarious! What is truly inspiring to me is that the Nation is
one of the most visibly multi-racial communities I’ve
The second disc starts off with a look at the writing pro- seen, with Kings and Queens ranging from black
s cess for Sacrament. In the beginning stages we’re able to to white to Hispanic to Asian looking (by American
witness ideas and riffs slowly coming together. For musi- visual race categorization standards anyway), with
a- cians, the opportunity to see how some of these killer the common bond of language, community and cul-
songs take shape is really interesting. Once the songs ture that bonds them as family and separates them
are basically formed, the camera then takes us into the from Anglo America’s self-righteous insanity.
studio for the pre-production sessions with Machine (who If you want to hear inspired and inspiring words
also produced Ashes of the Wake). Watching Machine from youth and elders in a community that has
- work with each member and sometimes seeing them more to say and more depth of feeling than can be
battle it out (not literally) over certain ideas is really cool. put in the dirty language of the English overlords,
n then watch Black and Gold, and watch it again.
All in all Walk With Me in Hell is very entertaining and Ultimately it’s all about Amor del Rei - King’s Love,
easy to watch. Whether you’re a die-hard L.O.G fan or the meaning of which is obvious in the eyes of all
just enjoy observing some crazy guys doing some crazy the King’s - men who have faced death, oppres-
r. shit, this DVD set is definitely a must have for any metal- sion, and destruction both internal and external,
d head. . and have used it to become something so much
greater.

By Dave “Corvid” McCallum


By Alxs Ness

95
Heaven and Hell
Live From Radio City Music Hall
2007
Rhino Records
Onyx
Once upon a time (between the 15 Years of Videos, History
years of 1968 and 1979) there and Violence
was a little band called Black Sabbath, and it was
good. During this time fairies wore boots behind MVD Visual
the wall of sleep while sweet leaf was enjoyed un- The original hardcore of Fredro Starr, Sonny Seeza, Big
der the sun and every day came and went. A hole DS and Stick Fingaz bears little resemblance to this blinged
in the sky developed (due to the thrill of it all), and out era of fake gangster posturing and materialistic excess,
megalomania became a symptom of the universe. recalling a time of boots, fatigues, blunts and gats with nary
A rock ‘n roll doctor was called in amidst cries of a diamond in sight - the only gems being the lyrics screamed
“you won’t change me,” but the shockwave was too from the scorched throats of rappers whose every syllable
great and a hard road became almost impassible, counts. A time when hardcore meant both Metal and Hip
leaving the band to lament their situation at the Hop, and fans of both could “Slam” to the sounds of Onyx
cross roads between heaven and hell. Although and Biohazrd.
never say die was on everyone’s lips, the end This retrospective DVD features seventeen videos, with
seemed imminent. bonus commentary by Fredro and Sticky letting us know that
Fortunately an impish gnome by the name of Ron- those were real guns and real bottles breaking over Sticky’s
nie James Dio came along (between the years head (and which of the video vixens they bagged…). The
of 1979 and 1982) and breathed new life into the bonus documentary “Underground Funk” features a lot of real
band by successfully conjuring the children of the blunts, cameos from a very young Ja Rule, Biggie, Nas and
sea from the wishing well and convincing all that others, and enough behind the scenes footage to give a real
to die young was not an option. Although only two feel for the Queensbridge way of life in all it’s rugged, back-
albums were produced during this time, legions of woods flavoured beauty. These guys came up from the hood
loyal fans were transfixed by their voodoo and all for real - financing their early videos themselves and rolling in
doubt was removed from the minds of fools as to “real deep…no extras”, carefully tailoring a sound and image
the fact that the mob still rules! of relentless intensity.
Fast forward to 2007 and the Rhino Records DVD Later videos like “React” featuring Still Livin’, X-1 and a
release of Heaven and Hell - Live from Radio City young 50 Cent, and “The Worst” featuring the Wu Tang Clan
Music Hall. Like a step back in time through the get more creative and entertaining with the plotlines and
shadow of the wind, Ronnie James Dio, Tony Iom- stunts, and “Broke Willies” pushes the silliness a little too far
mi, Geezer Butler and Vinny Appice, re-assemble with the Onyx crew all pimped out 70’s style. At least they
(as Heaven and Hell) at New York’s most famous admit to not liking it themselves in the commentary.
theatre and collectively recreate some of the most Onyx represent a movement in Hip Hop that is street, and yet
memorable musical moments in Sabbath history. in their own words “conscious” - conscious of the realities of
Falling off the edge of the world never sounded ghetto life and willing to portray it honestly in their lyrics. The
(nor looked) so good, for this is one of the most video shoot footage proves that they had mad respect in the
impressive concert videos you’re ever likely to see. streets, and the fact that they refused to cater to the tastes of
Doubtlessly, the Devil cried under the sign of the their time has both kept them from mainstream success and
Southern cross as he watched these neon knights secured them a place in the underground pantheon. I mean,
go through their iconic paces, defying all naysayers can you imagine “Throw Ya Gunz” dropping in ‘08? People
and afore mentioned fools for whom lonely is the are in a coma these days, it’s probably the syzzurp.
“only” word. Bonus Materials:
Fans, roadies and band members themselves get * Photo Gallery
a chance to turn up the night in some informa- * Slam karaoke
tive, poignant and down right hilarious short films * Soul Train Awards footage
included in the DVD bonus material. As one ardent * Optional audio commentary on all seventeen Onyx music
and almost rabid fan (aka Lady Evil) succinctly videos.
puts it. “we can all relate to evil.” With evil looking * Exclusive behind the scenes documentary showcasing 15
and sounding this good, truer words have never years of insanity, live performances, music video shoots,
been spoken. interviews, studio sessions, personal moments and freestyles
www.onyxdomain.com
By Grimm Culhane
By Dave “Corvid” McCallum

96
Dead Boys
Joe Strummer Return Of The
The Living Dead
Future Is Boys: Hallow-
Gross Out Unwritten een Night 1986
Directed by Bill Osco Directed by Julien MVD Visual
Pipeline Productions Temple More of what you’ve come to expect
Written by Phillip P. Sony BMG from the people at MVD Visual with the
Pillsburry and directed After the fact that The Clash had taken release of Dead Boys - Return Of The
by Bill Osco, the 1991 film Gross its toll on Strummer (both through tour- Living Dead Boys: Halloween Night
Out is a painfully low-budget story ing and recording), his heart was ulti- 1986. These guys at MVD just don’t
of a disgusting family in California mately with music and his inert ability let up (and more power to them)! This
who collectively get off on all that is at touching peoples souls was some- time around Dead Boys Stiv, Cheetah,
horrendous or offensive in any way, thing that had to be cherished after in- Johnny, Jeff and Jimmy get the cameras
shape or form. The overall premise dulging is this; a lengthy documentary pointed at them in a live, rare Halloween
of this film is that a wealthy mother of the singer/songwriter’s journey. performance from 1986 (just like the title
challenges her three children to Taken back to his childhood in which says, go figure). Introduced by long time
make a film so disgusting that it his mother’s musical influence took fan and friend Joey Ramone, this live set
makes her vomit. Captivated yet? a grasp of his “unwritten future,” his captures the filth, fury and fascination the
If the idea of throwing 2 Girls 1 Cup attendance at a Mexican School and Dead Boys produced in their all too short
on a plate for dinner and serving the cultural meeting of the minds are career
up Booger from Nerds for dessert displayed as The Clash is formed, Filmed at The Ritz in New York City, this
makes you hungry, then maybe this chopped and processed by the North is a fitting tribute to the spectacle and tal-
is the film for you. Drink it down and American media and manipulated ent of one of punk’s true originators. With
enjoy every last putrid drop. I had by its greed for a new and satisfying power riff laden tracks like “High Tension
trouble appreciating the humour due market. Wire,” “Caught With The Meat In Your
to the fact that this film seemed to The Sex Pistols had died down and Mouth” and “Sonic Reducer” (which they
have been created by a couple of without a doubt The Clash and Strum- play twice no less) as well as a cover of
grade 6 drop-outs. Your eyes may mers’ attitude had indeed arrived in the Stooges track “Search and Destroy,”
well bleed for a week after dragging America, fed up with the mendacious the Dead Boys mean business and busi-
yourself through this film. media hype that shrouded the band ness is good.
For those of you that would like your themselves, Strummer had no inten- Wardrobe changes, stage diving, mullet
cake without having to eat the thing tion of letting the same happen to him headed bouncers strong arming cos-
too, I’ll gladly give you a brief char- nor The Clash with his public display of tumed fans, skinny white boys singing
acter description to chew on. The vituperation. about “food” (aka “I Need Lunch”), its
mother was an overweight Elvira, Celebrity thoughts around a campfire all here in glorious punk-a-delic colour
the daughter was Charles Man- are interwoven throughout, and of and slam-a-riffic sound. Cheetah rips
son’s failed lobotomy patient and course, some would have been better through his solos like this is his last gig
the two sons were the poster child off being stuck on the end of a twig ever while Stiv paces and addresses the
for Tourette’s and a whiner wearing and held over the open flame (Matt audience on topics ranging from Mama
90’s fluorescent plastic shades. Oh, Dillon, John Cusack). Martin Scorsese Cass to Johnny Wadd. Although his rants
and we can’t forget the guy who was pokes his head in to say hello, we date this video, Stiv is insightful, true and
painted up to be the early 1900’s are enlightened on his other pairings fucking hilarious not only onstage, but
racially stereotypical black guy. And including William Burroughs, Ginsberg in the rare 1980 TV interview included
there I was thinking this flick was et al. We’re also taken on a journey in the bonus features as well. Check out
shallow. were you see The Mescalero’s point of the super rare video for “Sonic Reducer”
I’m going to keep this review short entry, and of course his infamous radio too.
in hopes that you’ll get my point. show that ended up recruiting listen- Banging out 17 songs in less than 50
Don’t buy this film. Watch it if you ers in the millions which had become a minutes is an impressive task and the
are getting paid to do so. In which sport of turning people on to new and Dead Boys make it look effortless.
case, question whether it’d be more odd music Dead Boys - Return Of The Living Dead
productive to spend 82 minutes A music scholar in his own right, Boys: Halloween Night 1986 is definitely
pondering what the owner of the Strummer himself sums it up at the another DVD not only suited for punk
national chain of Osco Drug stores very end “It’s about finding strange re- rock enthusiasts, but any self respect-
was thinking when directing a piece cords and learning from them” and for ing musician who wants to know how its
of crap like this. music lovers everywhere, that alone done correctly
By Russ Foxx should be the greatest lesson of all .
russfoxx.com
By Grimm “Dead Boy” Culhane
By E.S. Day
97
Voivod Doomsday
D-V-O-D-1 (Unrated – Widescreen Ed.)
MVD Visual Directed by Neil Marshall
Voivod’s first official Universal Studios Home Entertainment
DVD features vid- “Mad Max: Beyond Sherwood Forest”
eos, live footage and
behind the scenes Monty Python should have had a hand
material from the in this as the Holy Grail theme is scat- Rock
original line-up period tered throughout this odd assortment of Stars
of 1983-1991. At just over eighty blatant attempts at sweeping some plot Directed By
minutes, this collection showcases thievery under the screenwriters (now) filthy little carpet. Anthony Quinn
Voivod’s development from sci-fi influ- We have all the makings of a Resident Evil scenario: Set 8-Ball Prod/MVD
enced thrash to the neo industrial 90’s in the future (2035), a virus for which there is no known A real tardy and blata
prog rock sounds of Nothingface. It is cure, a copy and paste female hero Rhona Mitra, (with addicted cocaine abu
also in a way a tribute to the late great the same attitude, stance and haircut as Milla Jovovich inhabit the backwood
Denis “Piggy” D’Amour (who passed in the Resident Evil series) ) she too- is the only savior of New Jersey. This “
away in 2005 after a long battle with and weapons expert, surviving grotesque inhuman beat- really does no justice
cancer), whose highly unique guitar ings, and all the while keeping enough energy, breath bastards as they pran
style (half Alex Lifeson, half Kerry and wit to spew out a few one-liners, while in captivity. and parade themselv
King) is clearly the driving force be- She was better off being animated in Beowulf the camera for nimble
hind both their live performance and who know nothing of
their intricate studio work. Toss in some rejects from the first round of the Sigue yond their own insecu
Voivod’s progression from straight Sigue Sputnik auditions and any surviving Plasmatic and everyone endures da
thrash to their 1989 cover of Syd Bar- you have your villains. Mel Gibson in not in this film, but Unlike the crack addi
rett era Pink Floyd classic “Astronomy should have been - since it really is Mad Max but set in Vancouver, these peo
Domine” recalls a time when heavy Glasgow, Scotland and an already infected, surrounding be throughly enjoying
music made forays into both “indus- England.. Not one to complain about the Brits and Scots, Not one to scatter up
trial” and “alternative” sounds, when they still somewhat pull this off better than it would camera in front of the
categories were fluid and bands as have been done had it been produced on U.S. soil. Bob ticipants involved are
diverse as Voivod, Soundgarden, and Hoskins makes a dim-witted Father figure appearance, happy to oblige.
Faith No More could play to audienc- as does Malcolm McDowell who should have pulled out “Dangerous , hilariou
es open to a wide range of sounds. a few war tactics from the Guccione version of Caligula geous ” are the appar
The “Astronomy Domine” video broke just for authenticity sake if anything. of crack use accordin
huge new ground for Voivod and was cover. Too bad the dir
in regular rotation on Much Music. It could be Underworld Part. 3 minus the werewolves ing this this as in the
Much of the aesthetic content of the and Vampires, (ironically, Ms. Mitra is actually star- Bumfights, Crackwho
videos is based on the drawings ring in the next installment of Underworld) but then the and more. This has a
of Michel “Away” Langevin, whose zombie-like mutants are too fast and dodgy like in the entertainment value w
cartoonishly creepy depictions of a “28 Days/Weeks” series. If you need some Hollywood nor does it inform the
world of nightmare technology and cheese spread on acrimoniously you can count on The insight into the realtie
“Ravenous Medicine” evolved from Descent director Neil Marshall having copped a feel off addiction.
his upbringing in the industrial town of of Walter Hill at a drive-in, as the boys gratuitously lift the Hit up the corner Colu
Longueuil, and which gave birth to the chase scene (complete with souped-up post- apocalyptic ings at anytime of the
very concept of the Voivod - a psychic bus) from The Warriors, after they are spotted by the Vancouver if you wan
vampire lurking in the wasteland of AC Turnbulls. Have 2 TV’s? Play them side by side and Just hide your camer
humanity’s soul. watch that in horror. what’s good for you.
Bonuses include two live demos So take it for what it may be worth. More satisfying to
- 1984’s “Morgoth Invasion” and watch the original five of the six films that this “borrows” By E.S. Day
’87’s Montreal Spectrum show, plus from.
behind the scenes footage - more Doomsday indeed.
than enough material to satiate even
the most devout fan. Look forward to BONUS FEATURES :
more collections of material from the • The Visual Effects of Doomsday
later incarnations of Voivod, when • Guns and Gadgets breakdown
Eric Forrest took over vocals and four- • Commentary
string for a time, and when Metallica’s • Surviving the Apocalypse: What to Wear?
Jason Newsted stepped up to bass. • How To Use this DVD as a coaster

By Dave “Corvid” McCallum By E.S. Day

98
Liberty in Restraint Lee “Scratch” Perry in
Directed by Michael Ney and
Frank Shields
Concert - The
MVD Visual Ultimate Alien
Liberty in Restraint is Mi- Live in Brighton, England
chael Ney and Frank Shields’ MVD Visual
intensely informative and il- From start to finish, this is a testa-
lustrative documentary on Noel ment to how truly strange (if not
Graydon, a photographer-turned-dungeon completely insane) Lee Perry is.
master-turned-family man. This film gener- With his diminutive frame be-
ously depicts Noel’s personal experiences decked in kingly garments and sporting a gold plated
as a professional photographer and carries cap (with various international currencies stuck
viewers alongside his journeys through inside), being led to the stage by his gorgeous as-
ant poke at Australia’s BDSM scene (BDSM - bond- sistant and fronting an all-white band of overly serious
users who age/discipline, dominance/submission, European rocksteady rockstars, Scratch is clearly in
ds communities sado-masochism), his drug addictions and a world of his own - a world thick with paradox and
“documentary” recovery as well as fatherhood. saturated with his infuriatingly wise yet totally schizo-
e to these poor In this film viewers will learn about a world phrenic ramblings.
nce around of rope artists, lapsed Catholics, pain At first glance this seems like a pick-up band provided
ves in front of sluts, adult babies, electro-torture, blood by the venue, but after seeing them tear through
e minded fucks and needle play. Activities such as these Perry’s tracks with ruthless discipline you’ll realize
addiction be- were Noel’s artistic influences and soon he must have chosen them for more than just visual
ure vices that led him to put a hold on his photography in irony, although the voluptuous twin blondes are clearly
aily order to fully indulge himself in his passion; there only for visual enhancement. Perry’s opener “I
icts here in dungeon life. These fetishes were not only Am a Madman” contains more esoteric logic and off
ople seem to extremely well-represented by the artists beat references than an Aesop Rock track, with one
g themselves. involved in this film, but also showed that of the best lines - “live inna de country, riding on de
pon seeing a these activities are not debilitating and donkey/ hee haw hee haw I’m a country boy.”
em the par- always practiced under safe, sane and Scratch treads the line between juvenile humour and
e more than consensual circumstances by experienced darker prophetic pronouncements from his Rasta
professionals. reasoning. The clearly repressed and jaded Eurotrash
us and outra- This is an extremely resourceful film for crowd are progressively moved to dancing by classics
rent effects both the fetish novice and extremist alike. like “Tighten Up” and are admonished to “save your
ng to the back It not only sheds light and entails many life” by not eating meat or smoking cigarettes. Some
rector is milk- different aspects and types of bondage and may have trouble deciphering Perry’s garbled vocal
tradition of fetishes, but it also explains the positive tone (half gargoyle/half leprechaun), and it’s often
ores Gone Wild reasons that these fetishes exist and are hard to tell whether he is improvising or not.
absolutely no practiced to this day. Liberty in Restraint will The extra features further substantiate a diagnosis of
whatsoever, surely delve you into depths of imagination full-blown psychosis, especially the ads he made for
e viewer or give and desires that you didn’t realize existed. Guinness - featuring Lee cavorting in Dublin with a
es of cocaine These fetishists will show you that BDSM statue of James Joyce, holding court in a pub with a
should be approached as “an advanced human brain and sitting in a bathtub in the desert. The
umbia & Hast- driving course in sex” rather than a stigmat- interview attests to his “extraterrestrial heart” as he
e day here in ic, freaky goth thing. smokes a king sized spliff and pontificates on growing
nt the real deal. If you are looking to spice things up in your up, music, herb and the meaning of life.
ra if you know sex life or to simply learn about what else Perhaps the depth and profundity of his knowledge is
is out there, this is a great documentary to too much for his elfin frame, but Lee “Scratch” Perry’s
check out. It definitely brought light to a few physical manifestation on this earth is very much out
ideas that I thought looked pretty fun, now of synch with the thought patterns of average hu-
I’m finding myself wanting to go out and mans. In him wisdom and insanity are one and the
learn the art of rope tying. All in all very in- Ultimate Alien confounds, confuses and inspires with
formative as well as explicit, so be advised his visionary sounds and lyrics. What else would you
that watching it with the volume turned up expect from the man who ran the infamous “Black
may turn some heads. Ark” studio in 1970’s Jamaica, recorded Bob Marley
More information, photos and video clips at and the Wailers, forged the sound and style of dub,
the official website:LibertyInRestraint.com and then burned his own studio to the ground before
throwing his mixer into a cesspool because they were
By Russ Foxx possessed by devils?

By Dave “Corvid” McCallum

99
FILM R EVIEWS
Just Buried Meditate and Destroy
Directed by Chaz Thorne Directed by Sarah Fisher
Seville Pictures Blue Lotus Films
Many Canadian films wear their *PLUS* Afterparty featuring 49th
nationality on their sleeve to their Peril, The Easy Brothers and The
detriment (Bon Cop, Bad Cop I Mags
am looking at you). This is not Sunday, July 6, 2008
to say that is shameful to be a Canadian film, Lucky Bar - Victoria, BC.
or an inherently bad thing to be proud of it, but According to author, teacher, coun-
those that go out of their way to be recognized as selor and ex-reprobate Noah Levine,
one usually do so in ways which detract from the Buddhism is the most punk rock thing there is. This
charms of the movie. is a bold statement from someone who’s done time
Just Buried is not one of those films. Writer/Direc- as a teenager for drugs and violence, attempted
tor Chaz Thorne revels in the freedom of being suicide multiple times and identifies with the “punk”
a film-maker unshackled by the constraints of lifestyle for his sense of self. Although the prac-
Hollywood expectations and does so to great tice of Buddhism is against the stream to some,
effect, winning the best director prize at the At- in Sarah Fisher’s new documentary Meditate and
lantic Film Festival in the process. He is content Destroy, Noah gets the chance to discuss living a
to simply allow his film to be Canadian. Attentive hard, fast life, hitting rock bottom and how he found
eyes will identify Nove Scotia license plates and Buddha there waiting for him.
familiar bank logos, but no self-conscious beavers, As the best selling author of Dharma Punx: A
toques, or hockey sticks. Memoir and Against the Stream, Noah has forged
Just Buried follows the life of Oliver Whynaught himself quite an interesting niche, helping disen-
following his inheritance of the least of two funeral franchised youth and spiritual seekers by translat-
homes in ‘a town where no one is dying.’ To say ing ancient cultural beliefs into modern spirituality.
more would be to ruin 90 minutes of delightfully Even if your father is an American poet, author and
and increasingly black surprises. While one scene teacher like Noah’s is, we must all suffer to know
goes beyond the call of duty for unnecessary what suffering is.
gross-out effect, the comic complications of Just Presented in a “talking heads” style (with a rather
Buried stack one on top of each other like stiffs in unique animated portion), director Fisher lets Noah,
(uh, a ‘very funny’) morgue. his friends and colleagues and the people involved
As Oliver, Jay Baruchel (notably seen all ‘pink- with the Buddha Revolution tell it as it is from the
eyed’ in Knocked Up) is as fantastically weird a inside out. Noah’s insights into how we are condi-
hero as has been seen in Canadian cinema since tioned by consumerism to avoid spirituality and how
Don McKellar in Highway 61 and the rest of the unwise it is to “furnish a burning house” are both
film is populated by a host of quirky maritime char- refreshing and thought provoking and make sense
acters who each walk right up to the limit of believ- of the plethora of accolades he receives throughout
ability for admirable comic effect. the film from fans and followers.
Canada needs more films like this. Go see Just From crack-head kid to Dharma punk, Meditate
Buried and encourage Canadian film makers to and Destroy delves into existential conundrums
express their voices with subtlety and impunity the and shows that finding peace within one’s self isn’t
same way Chaz Thorne boldly does. always easy. This film may not answer everyone’s
existential queries, but it’ll sure make you think.
By Kennedy Goodkey
by Grimm “Kismet” Culhane

100
Jack Brooks: Monster Slayer
Directed by Jon Knautz Expelled:
Brookstreet Pictures No Intelligence Allowed
Regardless of how fucked up we Directed by Nathan Frankowski
become in this life, eventually we Rampant Films
all have to face our demons. Some Ben Stein narrates and investigates
demons are easier to deal with than in director Nathan Frankowski’s self
others however, but none are worse than those described controversial new “satiri-
faced by the title character in director Jon Knautz’s cal documentary” called Expelled: No
new film, Jack Brooks: Monster Slayer. Intelligence Allowed. With half truths,
After watching his family slaughtered by a monster outlandish claims and modified quotes, this film
as a child, Jack Brooks (Trevor Matthews) has investigates the division between evolution and
grown into a bitter, resentful young plumber who creation in the modern scientific community and
visits a shrink in hopes of coming to terms with the barriers to intelligent design being accepted as
his anger issues. As if that weren’t challenging science. In the film Ben talks to scientists, profes-
enough, Jack’s high pitched girlfriend Eve (Ra- sors, psychiatrists and mathematical biologists in
chel Skarsten) treats him like dirt, his night-school the hopes of uncovering why modern science ridi-
classmates regard him as nothing more than a cules and ignores the theories of intelligent design.
short fuse and his chemistry professor (Robert En- To the uneducated, this film is an interesting look at
glund) is more likely to reward Jack for his plumb- the theories and divisions between Darwin’s evo-
ing skills than he is for his school work. What is a lutionary postulations and ardent preponderants of
poor plumber besot upon by demons left and right intelligent design. To the educated, the film’s lack
likely to do? Well, in Jack’s case, slay them… and of focus and misleading use of quotes will leave
slay them well. you a bit puzzled as to what exactly the filmmakers
Trevor Matthews as Jack Brooks is the per- are trying to convey with this effort.
fect reluctant hero, working out his angst in the Is there room for God, Allah, Ishvara, Yahweh
shrink’s office as much as he does on demons or any of the other intelligent design delineated
themselves. Robert Englund gives one of his best deities inside the classrooms and laboratories?
comedic performances as the demon heart finding Certainly intelligent design has been much ma-
(and ingesting) Professor Crowley, whose transfor- ligned and suppressed by the scientific community
mation into the “Prof Monster” is truly remarkable. for being “a fantasy” in their eyes (especially in
Another stand out role here is the ancient hard- America), but as an explanation of origin and its
ware store clerk Howard, played by celebrated questioning nature of Darwinism, intelligent design
Canadian actor David Fox. His slow delivery and is no replacement for calculated theory.
sleepy foreboding is both fucking creepy and fuck- For every argument there is a counter argument…
ing hilarious! isn’t there? Not when educators and scientists are
Not since Shaun of the Dead has horror/com- being ridiculed, denied tenure and even fired for
edy gotten such a much-needed shot in the arm, believing there might be an “intelligent design” to
face, solar plexus and genitals. The first episode nature and that life isn’t just a random accident.
of what will prove to be the next big horror fran- Darwin would roll in his grave if he heard quotes
chise is, in Robert Englund’s own words, “a party from his passages misused and manipulated as
movie.” With humor reminiscent of the Evil Dead they are here.
trilogy and horror much akin to Dario Argento, this Although I can appreciate what the film makers are
film works by remaining an unpretentious homage trying to do, with Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed
to 80’s gross-out horror, a decade when they still the film makers use of such misleading, dishonest
knew how to scare as much as they knew how to and manipulative tactics is unforgivable and really
party. harms this film’s credibility.

CHECK BACK FOR GRIMM CULHANE’S By Grimm “Question Everything” Culhane


EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW WITH ROBERT
ENGLUND, TREVOR MATTHEWS AND
DIRECTOR JON KNAUTZ

By Grimm “Party Monster” Culhane

101
book reviews
Rex Tabloid Prodigy
By Marlise Kast
By Danijel Zezelj
Running Press
Optimum Wounds Comics
In true tabloid style, Marlise Kast
Comic books have come a long
shares her years of experience at
way since I was a kid, sitting
Globe Magazine in her very readable
in the back seat of the family
but hardly edifying first novel Tabloid
Oldsmobile on long summer
Prodigy. Anecdotal experiences
vacations reading Spiderman
merge inorganically with personal
for the umpteenth time so’s
struggles as Cher and Demi become
not to plow my sister in the head for hogging
the backdrop for the author’s religious guilt and
all the jujubes. Once artists like Will Eisner, Bill
adrenaline addictions.
Sienkiewicz, Alan Moore and Frank Miller got their
hands on them, comic books became graphic novels The book is undoubtedly interesting, even a guilty
and migrated from the newsstands to the bookstores pleasure akin to those flashy headlines one sees at
and specialty shops, implying subjective distinctions the grocery check-out. Kast’s writing style has not
in artistic quality and more mature content between grown out of the formulaic tabloid technique, made
graphic novels and other kinds of comics. most apparent in the poor analogies; “There were
distinct levels of seniority on the tabloid pen…the rest
Croatian born cartoonist Danijel Zezelj is no
of us clung to the sides of the pocket clasp for fear of
stranger to graphic novels. For the past 20 years
sliding onto the page and smudging the ink.” That said,
he has been producing some of the most detailed
Kast’s off-handed narrative feels like a conversation
and intense stories and images you’re likely to
with a friend and the words flow easily.
experience for the likes of DC Comics/Vertigo and
Marvel Comics. His latest title, Rex, is no exception. Kast’s work with the magazine is grueling and
exciting; car chases, late nights at clubs, and multiple
Rex tells the story of Bill Orlowski, former hero
personas add some glitz to the long stake-outs and
cop who is framed for a crime he didn’t commit.
office hours. Interactions with various celebrities
After breaking out of jail, he embarks on a personal
and the consequent reflections on celebrity life add
vendetta against those who set him up. Calling
some depth to the stories and provide a little insight
himself the more ferocious and primal name of
into humanity. Kast writes, “we take a demented
Rex, our hero sets out to right the wrongs that have
satisfaction when [celebrities] fail…Globe’s cover price
befallen him, even if it means hunting down and
is an inexpensive way to feel better about ourselves.”
eliminating the most powerful man in the city.
Some of the more interesting stories include William
Dark, violent and smart, with Rex author Zezelj
Shatner’s wedding, a stint in an Egyptian prison and
creates tension by shifting from longer shots to
getting down with Bobby Brown. The process of
extreme close-ups and back again, all with stylish
tabloid journalism is broken down for the layperson,
aplomb and exceptional detail. Combining amazing
from the chase to the source-checking to the office
visual style with superlative storytelling, his detailed
politics. Some of the stigma surrounding the tabloids
and emotionally charged black and white images
is removed as Kast reveals her own guilt issues about
make each ferocious frame a truly unique work
exploiting people; celebrities and paparazzi alike are
of art. Definitely not for the timid, Rex will suck
shown to be people trying to make a living.
you in with its imagery and keep you there with its
plot, something not all graphic novels are able to Although Tabloid Prodigy is a little tacky in its writing
accomplish even half of. style, it is comprehensible for the same reason. Kast
adds a human element to the entertainment industry
A special shout must go out to Optimum Wounds
by being generous with her own feelings and honest in
Comics (operating out of Vancouver, BC.) for having
her depictions. She uses celebrity anecdotes to reflect
the courage and wisdom to print high quality black &
on what is true and false in the tabloid market and
white dark crime and horror graphic novels such as
question the boundaries of privacy. Tabloid Prodigy is
this.
to the literary canon what Globe is to journalism; easy
By Grimm “Jujube” Culhane to read, fun, but ultimately inconsequential.

By Amalia Nickel

102
Stalefish - Skateboard
Culture from the Rejects
Who Made It
By Sean Mortimer (Forward by Tony
Hawk)
Chronicle Books

Skateboards, shady friends and punk


rock are all any self-respecting twelve
year old needs. Parental units will
undoubtedly pitch a fit about how you’re “wasting your life”
on a “toy,” but don’t let this deter you and your buddies from
building ramp after shitty ramp in the back yard. Whether it’s
“going to” or “escaping from,” what “toy” can possibly take
you to where a skateboard can?

The “toy” that created a revolution, a cultural movement


and endless hours of parental angst is examined in Sean
Mortimer’s new book, Stalefish - Skateboard Culture from
the Rejects Who Made It. Sponsored skater himself in the
80’s, this former editor of SkateBoarder Magazine and co-
author of HAWK - Occupation Skateboarder and The Mutt
- How to Skateboard and not Kill Yourself (with Tony Hawk
and Rodney Mullen respectively), brings together stories and
perspectives from those who’s love of skateboarding helped
shape a cultural phenomenon unique from any other.

This fascinating look at over 50 years of skateboarding


comes right from the mouths and pens of skateboard’s elite.
Lance Mountain, Daewon Song, Stacy Peralta, Rodney
Mullen, and Richmond, BC’s own Kevin Harris are only a few
of the four-wheeled fanatics who share stories of life, ulcers
and punk rock as seen through the eyes of professional
skateboarders.

Sean Mortimer’s dedication and perseverance in collecting


these stories and photos are what really makes Stalefish
exceptional. Tracking down elusive skaters and getting them
to open up about personal victories and all too personal
defeats couldn’t have been easy, but Sean succeeds
brilliantly and brings together skateboard’s past, present and
future in this one amazing book.

Insights into the hierarchy of skate parks, crazy neighbours


setting ramps on fire and stories of fame won and lost
share equal time with a vast assortment of jaw dropping
photographs. Throw in a forward by Tony Hawk, a
skateboarding timeline, plenty of history and humour and
Stalefish - Skateboard Culture from the Rejects Who
Made It has all the makings of one classic and extremely
compulsive read.

By Grimm “Goofy Foot” Culhane


Black Velvet
Masterpieces The Evolution of
Carl Baldwin & Caren Anderson a Cro-Magnon
Chronicle Books By John Joseph
PUNKHouse Books
Finally. Satan taking a shit,
sweaty Elvis, Jesus posing According to Norman
with a semi-truck, and Kiss Mailer, “Tough Guys Don’t
painted up to look like they Dance.” Fortunately, for us
are in a marching band have tough guys do write books
been brought together in however and thankfully so
one publication: Black Velvet as N.Y.H.C. legend John
Masterpieces. “Bloodclot” Joseph proves
with his new opus The
One book that features the very best black velvet paintings Evolution of a Cro-Magnon.
from the Velveteria Museum in Portland, Oregon.
From hard times experienced as a kid on New
For those of you who are too busy getting HJ’s from your York’s unforgiving streets and foster homes right
sister to know anything about Velveteria, painting on black up to his spiritual redemption, Joseph takes a no
velvet dates back to the 1800’s in Japan. It was brought nonsense approach to his writing, telling it like it is
to the US in the early 1920’s and instantly became the and drawing the reader into his world with his gifted
underdog of the art world - many art snobs refused to even story telling abilities. Garnering a degree from “the
call it art because the paintings were not done on canvas. University of the Streets” is never easy, but Joseph
And so Velveteria was reduced to kitsch. presents it in a hilarious and heartfelt way that will
draw you in and keep you reading
Black Velvet Masterpieces gives the history of the
paintings and presents the works so any fool can see that Coping a feel during the opening act of a ’77 Black
black velvet painting is an art form. Aside from breaking Sabbath concert (AC/DC no less), neighbourhood
convention and not painting on canvas, the artists’ paintings junkie invasions, serving time in jail, serving food
tell stories plus the technique and skill required to paint to the poor with the Hare Krishna’s and serving
some of these masterpieces is truly remarkable. But I’ll Marines their own teeth while in the Navy, there is
admit that a few of the paintings are down right goofy. very little this man has not done. “Bloodclot” also
takes the reader through a veritable who’s who of
Chalk this up to the fact that many artists who were painting the punk/thrash scene in the 70’s and 80’s with
on black velvet would do almost anything to sell their pieces style, insight and a great deal of humour.
and during war time it was mostly soldiers who were getting
regular pay cheques so it should be no surprise that many With excerpts like sitting in a wheelchair in 70
of the velvet paintings were of war heroes, dead celebrities degree heat in a Santa suit, sweating like a
and naked women. pig outside a Brooklyn Hare Krishna temple
panhandling (and how to do it well), the three laws
The naked Polynesian woman motif was perfected by the of the street hustle (learned from junkie, street
father of black velvet paintings, Edgar Leeteg. But he wasn’t urchin and motherfucker Mikey Debris) and just
trying to sell his paintings to soldiers, he was trying to meet how “punk rock” John Belushi really was (and the
women and just down right loved Polynesian women. The riot on the set of Saturday Night Live), no one has
book is true to black velvet’s history and includes many full the unique experiences and observation that John
nudes of the velvet masters though sadly there are very few Joseph displays here.
Leeteg’s in the book. God only knows why, seeing as the
man did over 200 over a period of 20 years plus all of the Norman Mailer also once said, “Hip is the
other paintings he did for advertising companies and for the sophistication of the wise primitive in a giant
other greedy bastards who were lurking in Tahiti, making jungle.” With The Evolution of a Cro-Magnon,
butt loads of money off of his under paid efforts. John Joseph proves that in today’s “giant jungle” he
is by far one of the hippest and wisest primitives to
But the lack of Leeteg’s in the book can be forgiven ever put pen to paper.
because the book is soft and feels good in your hands (the
cover is velvety), it’s intelligent and entertaining, in fact I By Grimm “The Age of Quarrel” Culhane
think I’ll take the book out for dinner and see what happens.

By Christina Thiele

104
BAND ID
Best Music Writing Bodhi Oser & Art Chandry
2007 Chronicle Books
Edited by Robert Christgau and A merch mongers dream
Daphne Carr come true, a young musicians
Da Capo Press postered wall of hope, the
bands, brands and logos
You know the old Frank Zappa
contained in Bodhi Oser’s
saying that “writing about music is
BAND ID has pretty much
like dancing about architecture”?
summed up how modern day
Now I know not all musicians
corporations thrive on the unique connection between the buyer
appreciate journalists equally,
and the bedazzled music loving public.
but it’s better than no-one talking
about you at all… so fuck you! From the Stones “Tongue” to indecipherable Black Metal
hieroglyphics, we are treated to a condign collection of rock, rap,
This best of collection from last year is pretty damn
metal, reggae, country and punk logos from the famous to the
entertaining. You’ll laugh insanely at the antics of Dr.
unbearable.
Weezy F. Baby acting the shrink with his mantra of
“get money, fuck bitches,” pondering the story of “the Over 1000 logos spanning over 4 decades have been mulled
Countess” of Jazz who attended Charlie Parker’s together, the book delves into the origins of classics such as
death, half caring about the trajectory of Mariah Carey’s Slayer, Wu-Tang Clan, The Grateful Dead, Spinal Tap, Led
career or Beyonce’s “politics” and even chortling at
Zeppelin, Public Enemy, AC/DC and many of the iconic
the descriptions of lifelong “Bahbra” Streisand fans
trademarks that have served more purpose on a T-shirt than on
enraptured in their extremities of fanaticism. Stand out the desk of any record label exec.
material also includes the James Brown piece he wrote
for Rolling Stone just months before his death - an Created by California artist Bodhi Oser known for his skate and
object lesson in success and insanity that takes on mythic surf work in the corporate world, he and Tacoma, WA. artist Art
dimensions - artist as living God kinda shit. Chandry, have struck gold with an incurably simplistic approach.
Big, bold and brazenly in-your-face, the genres flow from page
Actually, the piece on Israeli/Palestinian Hip Hop was the to page and no reader over 21 could possibly not connect with at
bomb (yeah, I said it…), contrasting the hate-filled sellouts
least one childhood memory in the form of one band’s identity.
in Israel with their embittered, long suffering Palestinian
counterparts and then balancing it off with the true school A coffee table book for musicians and industry folk alike, it even
Israeli’s who see through their country’s lies. This article is has a giant raised guitar pick, that one cannot help but caress for
very reminiscient of a similar scene in the new film Global hours on end.
Metal by Sam Dunn and Scot McFadyen.
Oh yes, I am having sex with this book in case you are
The point is that good music writing makes even botoxed wondering, and I don’t care who knows it.
corporate shills sound interesting, even though we know
that these mutant cannibals are actually forming taste By E.S. Day
and popular opinion (hell - even whole lives) out of the
contents of their regurgitated souls, because music has
always been the most powerful force on the planet…
period!

On the other hand, upon reading this one realizes the


integrity and calibre of some of our own writers here
at ABORT is comparable, nay, even rivals that of the
corporate shills on the other side of the speaker (meaning
real journalists…), the difference being that we not only
say what we want, but that we then have to face up to the
people we said it to without a team of lawyers to back us.
(So far - ed)

In other words…a good entertaining, lite read. Good to


keep up with the journalistic Joneses (God knows there’s
a lot of them out there). American media journalism has
always been shallow and if this is the “best of” then stick

book reviews
to ABORT - we got you covered.

By Dave “Corvid” McCallum


ABORTIST Exclusive: The Legendary Ralph Bakshi takes us back to his
childhood and gives us some dirt on Coonskin, Fritz The Cat, American Pop
and Wizards 2?

Then it’s off to The Pits of Hell with Freddy Krueger’s alter ego,
Robert Englund.

We take on Revolutionary/Rapper, Immortal Technique — ‘nuff said.

Estevan Oriol, the man behind the photos and artwork for Cypress Hill, House
of Pain, Linkin Park.

Taime Down of Faster Pussycat keeps us up to date on his latest ventures as


well a few eyeliner secrets.

Rapcore king Ill Bill gets sick on our pages and we refuse to clean it up.

Tales from The Eastside: Can Radio survive in the Eastside?


(especially at Hastings & Columbia).

Behind the Boards - Grammy winning producer Diamond D. (The Fugees,


Gang Starr, KRS-ONE) gives you up and coming producers some tips.

SHOOTING GALLERY EXCLUSIVES: HOW THE FEST WAS WON:


Mayhem Fest, Rock The Bells, Summer Slaughter Tour, The Masters of Metal,
and more!

ABORT Magazine…Because Everyone has a Dark Side.


photo by David Shankbone