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Pit Stories: Under The Stench Of Burning Hair

Another week has reached its Tuesday, and that means its time for yet another Pit Story!

This week we've got guitarist J. Bennett from the formidable and enigmatic Ides Of Gemini, sharing a story of a very strange show indeed.

In the tale below, you'll find everything from a black metal band's odd performance art (goats blood is old hat now - they had to try something different!) to a group experiencing a sudden on-stage breakup that would make Five Finger Death Punch proud!

We don’t see many mosh pits at our shows, but I do have a good story from a few years back. In 2013, we did a month-long North American tour with Ghost, which ended in Pittsburgh. From there, we did a handful of club shows on our way home to Los Angeles. The first three were in Cleveland, Chicago and Lincoln, Nebraska, opening for a band that shall remain nameless because some of the members are still friends of ours.

On the final day of the three-day stint we arrived in Lincoln to discover that we’d be playing at an old blues bar that our singer Sera’s dad had played 30 years earlier. Not only that, but the promoter had used a huge close-up of Sera’s face for the flyer, even though we weren’t headlining - or as we like to call it, “playing last.” This may or may not have caused some tension within the other band, but it was definitely good for a few laughs within our band because it was just so patently ridiculous.

The local opener that night was a three-piece black metal band. During their set, the singer produced a giant Ziploc bag full of human hair that he proceeded to burn in handfuls while the band played. The smell was so fucking horrible that everyone in the club - even the bartenders - left the venue and stood outside for the duration of their set. We set up our gear while the place was airing out and played an uneventful set to an audience that consisted of the other bands, the bartenders, and maybe eight other people.

While the last band (the one that shall remain nameless) set up, we made friends with the openers, who turned out to be super nice people. Their vocalist even gave Sera a Tibetan singing bowl as a gift. Then the band-that-cannot-be-named played about half a song before one of their guitar players walked offstage and left the venue. They spent the next hour or so looking for him, but by the time they found him we had already split. We later found out that they had just broken up onstage - under the lingering stench of burning hair.

Ides Of Gemini released latest album "Women" via Rise Above Records in late April - check out a song off the album below, and you can pick up your copy of the album here. More...

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Pit Stories: The Devil And The Dirty Deed

Tuesday again already? That means we've got more hilarious Pit Stories for you culled straight from the minds of the musicians themselves!

In recent weeks we've seen a show get tanked by a pretty smile and a very interesting way of expressing anger during a battle of the bands being judged by nuns.

Today we've got two stories from Annamaria Pinna and Dave Sussman of the New York based rock / gypsy metal Band Vajra. Both got a lot more than they bargained for at shows - but one of these endings is more enjoyable than the other!

First up is Annamaria, offering a story of a very unexpected encounter while waiting for the bathroom:

This actually just happened on our To The Ends Of The Earth tour. We were in Ohio. We had just played and I was waiting for the bathroom. I didn’t have my phone on me because it was charging so I basically looked around trying to waste time. The walls became so very interesting at that point.

I must have been waiting 5 minutes when all of a sudden, a woman sitting at the booth next to me leaps up, points in my direction and says “Either she goes, or I go!” And I looked at her intrigued by the drama unfolding before my eyes. It was like a juicy soap opera taking place right before my eyes. I looked behind me to see who she must have been referring to, but there was no one else there. The thought crossed my mind; was she talking about me? At that point, she glares at me and said “She’s the devil! Look at her, she’s evil!” So, naturally, I started laughing, which of course, freaked her out even more.

Her husband then jumps up, approaches me, apologizes and says she is really drunk. The whole situation amused me, so I smiled, looked at her, and told her husband not to worry and that this is clearly her issue. As I continued to smile and look at her, she continued to unravel and freak out more. I thought to myself that this experience paralleled a few chapters in The Master and Margarita.

Not sure why she thought I was the Devil, but I take it as a compliment. Bahahahhaha!

Dave meanwhile had this story to share about really "performing" well on stage: More...

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Sunday Old School: Decapitated

What were you up to as a teenager? For many of us, we were listening to music, dealing with school, day dreaming of a life to come and maybe playing in a band ourselves. The question is, how many of us in our teens got our bands signed? That's just what happened to a quartet of young lads in Poland back in the nineties, who went on to create a legacy of brutal and proficient death metal, going by the suitably grizzly name of, Decapitated.

Decapitated was formed in 1996 by vocalist vocalist Wojciech "Sauron" Wasowicz and brothers Waclaw "Vogg" and Witold "Vitek" Kieltyka on guitars and drums respectively at a time when Vitek was only 12 years old. A year later, they recruited bassist Marcin "Martin" Rygiel, who was the same age as Vitek. They recorded their first demo, "Cemeterial Gardens" that same year, followed in 1998 by a second recording, "The Eye of Horus," which gained the attention of several record labels, including Earache, who signed the group to their Wicked World subsidiary. More...

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Pit Stories: Balls Out For The Nuns

Another week, another Pit Story, this time coming from an absolutely furious thrash / death metal hybrid that grabs by the jugular and never lets go!

Today we've got a twosome of tales taking place in Rio de Janeiro, one set in a classic Motorhead pit, the other featuring a rather more odd location with a crowd who probably wasn't ready for what Siriun has to offer.

It’s all about the pit! I was once at a Motorhead gig in Rio de Janeiro and things got out of hand fast... it was extremely intense and loud! I believe they were hammering "Overkill" and I found myself, drunk, right in the middle of the pit and suddenly a friend that I hadn’t seen in ages went on a frenzy and tried to put me up on his shoulders, but the fact that I’m 6’1 and weigh 200lbs didn’t make things easy for him… we skidded from one side to another and ended up striking a whole bunch of people and eventually hitting the ground! Luckily no one got hurt (from what I can remember) but I managed to lose my house keys. The show was amazing and I will always miss how great Motorhead was. RIP.

Another funny story, happened to the band that would end up becoming Siriun. At that time, I was not the lead singer, the former bassist was. We were kids and we were going to play on a band contest. When we got there, the place was packed and the singer got stage fright.  The only way to get him to sing was getting him drunk! So we went to a skeevy bar and he drank several shots of Brazilian Cachaça! We came back, played the show, head banged a lot and in the middle of the songs the singer cursed at the crowd... only problem was that the contest was taking place in the auditorium of a college of nuns.

Then one of the judges came to tell him that he could not have said that. Instead of apologizing, he said OK, waited for the judge to turn his back and hang his balls towards him in front of the whole audience and the other judges! Long story short, it was pretty rock 'n' roll.. we were disqualified!

Brazilian outfit Siriun formed in 2014 and has already shared the stage with acts such as Black Dhalia Muder and Krisiun. At the end of the month, Siriun will introduce the world to first record, "In Chaos We Trust," with pre-orders online here.

The album was recorded by vocalist / guitarist Alexandre Castellan, his longtime friend Hugo Machado on bass, and renowned drummer Kevin Talley (Chimaira, Suffocation, Six Feet Under). Niklas Sundin from Dark Tranquillity helped the band produce artwork and also directed Siriun's first music video for the track "Transmutation." More...

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Sunday Old School: Hatebreed

The relationship between metal and hardcore is a funny one. Both the rivalry and the influences stem back to punk rock, which was initially something anti-heavy metal, before the likes of Motorhead showed both fan bases that common ground could be reached. To this day, both camps have fans that can't stand the other, as well as those who enjoy both genres. The two styles would combine a number of times to form such sub-genres as thrash metal, crossover and metalcore, the last of which was not always the easiest to define, but if ever one band could be described perfectly by the metalcore tag, it's today's featured group, Hatebreed.

Hatebreed began life in 1994 in New Haven, Connecticut, though some members hailed from Bridgeport, consisting of vocalist Jamey Jasta, guitarists Larry Dwyer, Jr. & Wayne Lozinak, bass player Chris Beattie and drummer Dave Russo. The quintet recorded three songs for a demo tape, which was handed out to members of the local hardcore scene before being included in a split release with Neglect. They followed this with an EP, "Under the Knife" in 1996 which included the three songs once more, as well as four other songs, all of which except the title track would later be re-recorded. More...

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Pit Stories: Tanked By A Smile

The ranks of our Tuesday Pit Stories ever grows longer, with another foray into the dank depths of metal shows arriving today.

This week we've got vocalist / bassist Joshua Cayer from doom metal trio Longhouse, sharing his memory of the band's first show, which didn't quite go off as expected.

Our musician readers can probably identify with Cayer's nervousness, which featured one song tanked by nothing less than the smile from a pretty lady in a sea of sweaty, beer drinking dudes:

I don't think we have played enough to have any extravagant tales from the pit, but I can share a story about our very first show. I want to firstly fess up by stating that I get extremely nervous before each and every show. Not puke-nervous, but definitely queasy and tense-nervous.

So, we decided to start our set with one of our more complex songs, "Earth from Water." For us, "more complex" isn't saying a lot, but because I was so tense my fingers didn't want to work the way they're supposed to, so a simple root-fifth-seventh arpeggio felt like I was trying to play an Animals As Leaders tune! Now, let's add in poor stage lighting, and a drummer who was likely equally as nervous and kicked in at an extra 20-30 bpm's higher than we should've been. I'll say that I'm glad not too many people were there to see it. Luckily we managed to settle in to the next song, and had the growing crowd headbanging along with us by the end.

There was also another stand-out moment from that show: during one of our favourites, "Gehenna Gate," my eye caught glimpse of an exceptionally pretty lady in the crowd. She kind of really stood out in a room full of bearded, beer-slogging dudes. Now, don't tell my wife this, but just as I was about to deliver another line of hellish doom screams I saw her smile, and it actually caused me to forget the lyric, and almost stop playing my bass! It's a good thing that you can't typically understand what the heck U'm saying anyways, and I managed to recover. All in all, our first was a pretty fun show and we were pretty happy with getting that under our belt.

Below you can check out the track "No Name, No Marker" from Longhouse's sophomore album, "II: Vanishing," which was released via Bandcamp on April 14th, 2017. You can follow the latest on this Ottawa-based doom outfit via Facebook here. More...

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Sunday Old School: Witchery

Black metal is surely one of metal's most important sub-genres. While a hefty chunk of the attention it's received has been for its image and legacy of death and arson, the music itself changed the way a lot of musicians felt towards their own style, most notably the hybrid between black metal and death metal, two styles previously thought incompatible, performed by such artists as Behemoth. It's not just death metal that felt the frostbitten grimness creeping in, thrash metal was touched too, particularly in the case of Sweden's own, Witchery.

Witchery was formed in 1997 in the southern Swedish city of Linköping, following a massive split by the black metal band Satanic Slaughter. The four departing members included vocalist Tony Kampner, guitarists Patrik Jensen & Richard Corpse and drummer Micke Pettersson, who all formed Witchery along with Mercyful Fate and future Arch Enemy bass player Sharlee D'Angelo. In January the following year, the band spent a week recording their first album, "Restless & Dead," a pun of the Accept album, "Restless and Wild." Though recorded in January, it wouldn't be until October 1998 that it hit the shelves through Necropolis Records. While it retained elements of the black metal sound that the bulk of members had performed with Satanic Slaughter, it was more or less a thrash metal album. More...

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Pit Stories: Three Day Ear Ringing

Happy Tuesday my fellow heavy music lovers!

Today we've got a Pit Story that many of our regulars can relate to: getting older but still wanting to throw down at the front of the pit. What used to involve a couple of shots to rally and then going to work at 6 AM now involves days of recovery.

This week's Pit Story comes courtesy of guitarist and vocalist Tyson Wiebe of Lethbridge noise rock / punk duo Cope, who recalls the tale like this:

As I get older I somehow forget that my body/ears are not built for the pit anymore. The punishment I shrugged off as a teen and drank away in my early twenties now lingers well past what should be normal. I know better, yet I can still be found where the bodies are tightest and the music is loudest.

The most recent one came from a trip to Missoula to see my personal guitar hero Dean Ween. People always seem to write off Ween as a joke band, but they’ve always been dead serious to me. Mickey Melchiondo (aka Dean Ween, aka Deaner, aka Mickey Moist, etc.) is a shredder and I couldn’t wait to watch him and maybe steal some of his essence, so when we pulled into town for the show there was no doubt where we were going to stand: front stage, stage left. Where he has stood for the past 33 years as the other half of Ween.

We held our ground in that spot through the Meat Puppets (who still shred) and waited and waited. When the band came out and the first notes from his guitar rang out we realized we had made a huge, huge mistake. I have heard loud before, but this was deafening. His Fender Super-Sonic stack was cranked and pointing right at us. Plus, we were jammed up right by a monitor that was flipped to face the crowd for some reason. We knew we had to do something, so we started pushing the monitor further right. Security instantly came back and pushed it to its original position.

Then a cat-and-mouse game started.

When they would look away, we’d inch it further right, hoping they wouldn’t notice. They would notice eventually and push it back. We’d wait and move it over by inches again. We left the show with our ears ringing for three days afterward.

Worth it.

You can check out Cope's self-titled 7" release at Bandcamp here or stream the track "Mother Russia" below. For more info on this Alberta group, head over to the Cope Facebook profile. More...

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Sunday Old School: Deftones

It's very easy to categorise some bands. One can listen to Obituary for instance and say beyond any shadow of a doubt that they're a death metal band, or turn on a Forbidden song and immediately know that they're listening to thrash. Some groups however, defy definition, whether you love them or hate them. Say what you like, but no one else sounded like System of a Down and there wasn't a band like Primus before or since. Today's featured artists also have a sound instantly recognisable and like the three previously mentioned bands, also hail from California, namely; Deftones.

The seeds of Deftones can be traced to McClatchy High School in Sacramento, where future members Stephen Carpenter, Chino Moreno and Abe Cunningham were students and friends, a relationship which continued into the local skateboarding scene. They began jamming together in Carpenter's garage after Moreno found out that he played guitar, while Cunningham played drums. After a while, they brought in a bassist by the name of Dominic Garcia, who eventually switched to drums after Cunningham left to join Phallucy and as a result, the group found a new bassist named Chi Cheng. By 1993 and following another change in drummer, Cunningham returned to the fold once again, solidifying the familiar lineup of the band. More...

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Pit Stories: Curse Of The Soundboard

Alright metal heads, its Tuesday once more and that means its time for some new Pit Stories!

There's no crazy fan throw downs or quadruple conga lines this time around, and instead we're focusing on behind-the-scenes problems that cause bands grief, like malfunctioning (or non-existent) sound equipmment.

Guitarist Justin Krick of U.S. group Ascentia shared this tale of working under less than ideal sound conditions:

We opened a show in a small venue one night with touring bands Godmaker and Moon Tooth. The promoter was said to arrive soon with PA and speakers, but what he finally brought was a heap of gremlins! Finally, we decided to plug two mics into one of the powered speakers, for a hint of vocals, and start the show.

We kicked it off and gave it all we had, and by the end of our set, that speaker was pretty much shot. Nonetheless, Godmaker stepped up on stage and delivered an amazing set, though further crushing this poor speaker into oblivion. Pressing on, and eager to perform, Moon Tooth came to the stage and delivered one of the craziest and energetically mind blowing performances I'd ever seen at a venue like this. That speaker was cracking, clipping, distorting, and crapping itself, but Moon Tooth rolled with it, and raised the whole place to a new level of intensity.

Months later, Moon Tooth came back around to the same place, so we jumped on the bill. Determined to make the most of this one, we prepared to bring a backup PA system. However, days before the show, the venue went through some changes and had to cancel. So bummed, we scrambled to find a venue to make it happen, and on the day of, fortune smiled upon us with a bigger and better venue. All seemed to be looking up! The night was going great, and with pro sound and lighting amping the performances, we all anticipated our new touring friend's presence on stage. The moment was here, and the stage was set. Moon Tooth came out guns blazing and tearing up the stage! Until........... blackness. Lighting and soundboard went out. It seemed the gods were against us.

After an hour or so, the board was fixed. The band members were great sports about it, and performed a phenomenal short set to close out the night. Sound issues happen, but twice with the same band in this manner was crazy. We hope they'll return again soon though, and wreck the stage like they always do.

Founded in 2008, Ascentia is a five piece group based out of Greensboro, NC. You can check out the band's most recent EP "Pathways" below or follow the latest on Ascentia at Facebook here. More...

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Unearthing The New Band Underground

Man, this just always manages to happen. We get a couple of Unearthing The Metalunderground columns up and running and then somehow its been months again since the last one. That phenomena struck again as I look back and see it's been four months since the previous entry!

Back at the end of January we covered three bands with totally unexpected sounds, and now its time to get back into the swing of things with three groups still in their infancy, only having been around for a few years or even just getting started in 2017. These bands may be on the newish side, but they've all got a fabulous polished sound that belies that youth.

Below we cover three lesser known groups with a fairly broad range of sounds that are all worth your attention: young Norwegian project Korrupt, Russian outfit Dark Matter Secret, and finally Ursinne, a death metal supergroup that isn't going to be underground for long! More...

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Sunday Old School: God Dethroned

It's been noted several times throughout the history of Sunday Old School that the Netherlands has made its fair share of contributions to the world of heavy metal, from the Eindhoven Open Air festival to such groups as Pestilence, The Gathering and even the Van Halen brothers. The Netherlands seems to always have solid representatives at festivals, particularly in Europe and one which has done the country proud for over twenty five years would be one of their longest serving death metal outfits, God Dethroned.

God Dethroned was the brainchild of vocalist and guitarist Henri Sattler, who put the group together in 1991, along with Hans Leegstra on guitar and drummer Ard de Weerd. Leegstra wouldn't stay for long however and was quickly replaced by bass player Remco Hulst who performed on their "Christhunt" demo recorded the same year. The bassist's stay would also be short lived and soon his place was taken by Marco Arends, who joined in time for the band's signing with German label, Shark Records. Through the company, God Dethroned released their debut full length album, "The Christhunt," which was received very well by death metal fans, but with practically no promotion from Shark, who had refused the first album cover, the record sold very poorly and they were soon dropped, leading the group to disband. More...

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Pit Stories: Earth Hour SNAFU

Tuesday's regularly scheduled Pit Story time has returned!

Last week we had the craziness of ladder two-stepping on tables and a spontaneously forming quadruple conga line, while this week things don't go quite as well for the performing band, with an unscheduled holiday observance throwing a wrench in the works.

Russian alt rock band Remark shared this tale of a show gone dark without warning:

One of the most memorable stories that's firstly come to mind is about our first solo show. The club was small and old, that's why we brought a lot of additional lighting and sound rig. So much stuff, that we could hardly turn everything on.

During soundcheck and most of the show everything was OK, but suddenly the lights turned off. We have just finished a song, perhaps someone thought that it was planned. But we knew that it wasn't, cause the sound turned off too. People switched their phone lights, and our drummer, Timi, started playing some grove. Several minutes we were dancing and singing, trying to rock the crowd, while people were fixing the problems.

Then it turned out, that our show coincided with the Earth hour, and when everybody switched on the lights, the electric system of the club was overloaded.

You can follow the latest on Remark over at Facebook here or pick up the band's self-titled album via iTunes. Check out the band's music video for "Falling" below. More...

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Sunday Old School: Mercenary

Over the course of Sunday Old School, we've looked at groups from many countries, some more than others. The United States, Great Britain and Germany have all had quite a large number of bands featured throughout the history of this column, while Greece, Canada, Japan and Brazil have had a respectable number featured too. There are also countries which have only popped up once such as Turkey, Russia, Serbia and India. One country that has only had one of their native bands featured a small number of times is the northern European nation of Denmark, though their number will increase today as we take a look at their best known contribution to the power metal genre, Mercenary.

Mercenary began life in 1991, the brainchild of guitarist Hans Jørgen Andersen, who was joined in his musical endeavour by drummer Jakob Johnsen, singer Henrik "Kral" Andersen and Andreas W. Hansen on bass. The quartet recorded their first demo, "... Domicile" in 1993, with a second demo, "Gummizild" being released the next year, around the same time their song, "One Eyed Beast" appeared on the compilation, "Fuck You, We're From Denmark Vol.3." The demos garnered enough attention for the group to sign with Black Day Records, through whom they released their first EP, "Supremacy" in 1996, although by this point, Kral was the only original member left, taking up bass as well as holding his position as vocalist, with guitar and drum duties being handled by Nikolaj Brinkman, Jakob Mølbjerg and Rasmus Jacobsen respectively. More...

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Pit Stories: Ladder Two Stepping

We're going to keep up the recent trend of dual Pit Stories every Tuesday, so after Trollfest's quadruple conga line earlier, now we've got a tale from the U.S. deep south.

Chase Davis of Terminal Nation recalls a show from last year when the crowd went absolutely nuts in the most unlikely of places: a middle-of-nowhere location in Alabama.

Davis tells the story like this:

This was last summer when we did a short week run with New Heart. Our second show was in Athens, Alabama at a place called El Opry and no one knew what to expect. We eventually arrived and were a little concerned to see that it was a big metal building in the middle of a field. Inside there was a stage, tables everywhere, and a lot of chairs lined up in rows. It felt like it was frequently used for a service or meeting of some sort. On the floor between the stage and chairs there was a space surrounded by tables for us to play in and for people to mosh.

This awesome local punk band Slam Brigade just finished playing and New Heart was getting ready to set up. We weren’t really sure what the reaction was going to be but figured it would be good just from seeing how they reacted to the other bands. Once New Heart started playing everyone really got into it by moshing and singing along. Everything was going great and then New Heart started their final song.

Right before they started playing their last song people started looking around and grabbing whatever was closest to them. People were picking up chairs, pool sticks, and trashcans while we were all looking around wondering what was about to happen. As soon as they started this place went fucking crazy. People were hitting each other with chairs, breaking pool cues and throwing them everywhere, there was even a guy two stepping on top of a table and with a ladder.

While everyone in the pit was going crazy the guy with the ladder set it up in the middle of the pit. At the bottom of the ladder lay a guy who was moshing but soon got hit with a chair and ended up on the ground. The guy who set up the ladder was now at the top but not for long. He jumped off the top of the ladder and gave the guy on the ground a flying elbow to the stomach. After that everyone got even crazier and started flipping and throwing tables and chairs. It was an awesome, crazy, and unexpected show in Alabama.

Terminal Nation will release new album "Absolute Control" via Deep Six Records on June 9th, 2017. You can follow the latest on the band at Facebook here. More...

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Pit Stories: Quadruple Conga Line

Tuesday has arrived and its time for another bout of heavy metal Pit Stories!

This time around we're going to hit the high seas for a tale from infamous floating festival 70,000 Tons Of Metal. Anyone who was at this show should give us a shout-out in the comments below.

The Norwegian folk metal maestros from Trollfest offer up our first Pit Story this week, with Dr. Leif recalling this tale of a quadruple conga line spontaneously forming across the ship:

Trollfest has had some pretty unorthodox pit action going. In addition to the classic wall of death and circle pit we have induced wall of hugs, circle of eight pit etc. The best story so far is what we experienced on the 70,000 Tons Of Metal cruise this year. We played two shows, and we have the tradition of a conga line for the song "Solskinnsmedisin." During the second show, in the filled-to-the brim ice rink, four separate conga lines formed, all independent from each other.

The idea of a conga line is that you walk around, and eventually all these lines of people found in each. We were amazed as we witnessed this congregation of happy party people joining forces! The combined conga line went upstairs, downstairs, to the balconies, everywhere! Best conga line ever. Period. It will definitely go down in history, both with Trollfest and 70000 Tons Of Metal. Cheers.

Trollfest released latest album "Helluva" earlier this year, and you can check out two videos from the release below. More...

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Sunday Old School: Metal Duck

If there's one thing the English has a history of doing well, it's taking the piss out of things. Pretty much anything is fair game to be ridiculed in Britain, from politicians to sports and even comedy itself (as brilliantly displayed by Not The Nine O'Clock News in their Life Of Brian/Fawlty Towers sketch.) Likewise, there's been a long record of British musicians whose coming together was to make people laugh more than it was to showcase musicianship and song writing, from the Barron Knights to The Divine Comedy to Kunt and the Gang, Britain has always liked to see the funny side of music. Of course, metal music is no exception and today we'll be looking at a short lived group from the north of England who may not have become one of Britain's best thrash exports, but delivered plenty of laughter, Metal Duck.

Metal Duck was formed in the city of Manchester in 1987 by drummer David Burton, guitar player Fozzy and a vocalist who went by the name, "Arse." The three recorded their first demo, "Quackcore" that same year, showcasing a thrash metal sound typical of the time, but included some humourous intros and a particularly memorable song title, "The March of the Metal Duck to the Ponds of Hell." This was to be their only recording with "Arse," or indeed as a trio, as they replaced their vocalist with Paul "Huttie" and recruited a bass player named Keith after the release of the demo. More...

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Pit Stories: Scrotum To Scrotum Stapling

We're doing two Pit Stories today because some incompetent moron by the name of xFiruath couldn't get his shit together and post one up when it was supposed to go live yesterday.

This is part two of those stories, and oh guys, oh, oh guys, have we got a tale for you today. It's got everything: bat wing action, stapled scrotums, and a whole different, hairy kind of moshing than you'd ever imagine to see.

Canadian group Slagduster offered up the following baffling description of a show that will never, ever be forgotten by anyone who attended:

So, a few years back we were touring with Expain, and they brought themselves a camera along to record any ridiculous footage they could capture. After a show in Edmonton, they convinced at least two guys to staple gun their scrotums not only to bar stools and tables, but also apexing on each other’s legs and finally scrotum to scrotum stapling action. Side note, possibly inspired by the band intermission blood-soaked gorelesque performers.

Flash forward one year, we return to the same venue with Expain again. Our between song banter often gets out of hand, and obviously it was hard not to bring up the previous year’s events… long story short, during the next song, a group of guys had been unintentionally persuaded to pull out their man bags in a circle scrotum pulling mosh pit. We’re talking a half dozen burly grown males minimum, stretching their bat wings through their jean holes at each other. All the while headbanging like their lives depended on it. Cheers, Edmonton.

Slagduster's new album "Deadweight" is coming out on May 5th, 2017 - check out two tracks from the album below, and follow the latest on the 'duster at Facebook here. More...

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Pit Stories: Circle Pit For The Rock Band

Which dumb ass didn't get a Pit Story up yesterday during its normal Tuesday slot? That would be this dumb ass, right here. Sorry everyone, and to make it up to you, we're doing double Pit Story duty today!

First up we have a tale from Brandon Saller of rock group Hell Or Highwater, and who just happens to handle drum duties for a little band called Atreyu.

Saller had this tale to share of getting the metal fans into a less heavy group on tour:

Years back Atreyu where on a headlining tour with a band called Endless Hallway. They where a rock band on a metal tour so the crowd took some time to receive them. They where friends of ours so I wanted to do what I could to make the set great. Every night they would cover Nirvana's "Breed" and I would go in the crowd and start a circle pit. From that point on the set would go off. The funny part was when people realized it was me starting a pit. It was a fun face to face hang with our fans. I could only hope someone would do that for Hell Or Highwater if we got put in that situation.

Hell Or Hightwater's new album "Vista" will be released on May 19th, 2017. Check out advance song "Walk Out In The Rain" below, followed by a complete list of upcoming tour dates. More...

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Sunday Old School: Witchfynde

It's been a while since we've dug into the vaults of the New Wave Of British Heavy Metal, the movement in the late seventies/early eighties that was credited with taking heavy metal and rock music away from the stadiums and back to the streets. While it gave the world such big names as Iron Maiden, Saxon and Def Leppard, it also contained a number of influential groups such as Venom, Raven and Witchfinder General, as well as some cult favourites like Tygers Of Pan Tang, Jaguar and Tank. This week we'll be looking at a band which probably belongs in the third category, who may not be the first name on everybody's lips when discussing the scene, but certainly rank up there as one of the heavy hitters, Witchfynde.

Witchfynde began life in 1973 either in the town of Mansfield, or the county of Derbyshire (sources differ,) the brainchild of schoolmates Richard Blower and Neil Harvey, who assumed the positions of bass player and vocalist respectively, before adding guitarist Trevor "Montalo" Taylor to the fold. Neither Blower or Harvey stayed for too long and by 1975, the lineup comprised of Montalo, bassist Andro Coulton, drummer Gra Scoresby and singer Steve Bridges. They slogged it out in the clubs for four years before they released their first single, "Give 'em Hell" in 1979, through Round Records, the only release from the company. More...

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