Blood Ceremony, White Hills, Lazer/Wulf
629 Cedar Ave S.
Minneapolis, MN, 55454
This event is 18 and over
Since this Savannah, Georgia quintet first formed in early 2001, worrying about genre limitations has never been a priority. Taking musical chances, however, always has been. While KYLESA are as heavy as any band out there, they are beholden to no one scene and no preconceived notions of what heavy music should be.
"Lots of people like to stick to one kind of music," guitarist/vocalist Philip Cope elaborates, "and even with the underground, lots of people segregate themselves into small little categories and place lots of imaginary rules on these scenes."
"We just like playing heavy music and we've always liked playing it regardless of what is popular or trendy," guitarist/vocalist Laura Pleasants adds. "It's most rewarding for us to try and push our own boundaries of what we can to do with our music and hopefully, in the end, offer something that is at least original."
Kylesa's third full-length, Time Will Fuse Its Worth, is the eagerly-awaited follow-up to 2005's To Walk A Middle Course, which topped many year end lists and landed the band in metal and mainstream press alike. After grabbing ink in Spin, the New York Times, and metal mainstays Revolver alike, Time Will Fuse Its Worth again showcases the band as the ultimate definition of do-it-yourself dedication. With Cope lending his ears and hands for production duties at The Jam Room, and featuring comprehensive artistic layout and packaging from Pleasants, the KYLESA of current day continues to put the band's future in their own hands by touring Europe and North America alike.
Time Will Fuse Its Worth sees the band continuing to evolve upon KYLESA's signature sound, seamlessly flowing from track to track encompassing listeners with sounds far and wide and an utter disregard for musical boundaries. Bringing together avant-garde experimentalism with the pure fury of dirty, sludgy riffs and raw, coexisting male and female vocals, KYLESA's ambient noise interludes, grimy rock riffs and impassioned, gruff vocals portray the doom-inspired punishment they are capable of dishing out through the power of the band's music.
Now adding to KYLESA's signature sound and trademark triple vocal attack is the recent addition of a second drummer. "When we first started the band, we had planned on having two drummers but it didn't work out, so now it feels like everything is coming together," Pleasants says. "There is definitely a new level of intensity to Kylesa now. Since the new lineup has gotten together we have felt the strongest creative spark yet."
The band's reluctance to attach itself to one sound or scene and to not play by conventional rules, along with that strong creative spark, has ultimately made KYLESA that much more versatile. With a constantly heavy touring schedule has found the band crossing boundaries, sharing bills with bands as diverse as High On Fire, Circle Takes the Square, Coliseum, Torche, Red Sparowes, Big Business, Baroness, The Sword, Disfear, and Darkest Hour both at home and abroad, as well as playing to enthusiastic crowds throughout Europe. "While we are no kings of one scene," says Cope, "we have, in a sense, just developed our own thing."
BLOOD CEREMONY's distinct style of flute-tinged witch rock evolves from an infernal marriage of occult-inspired acid folk and vintage hard-rock riffing. After a mind-numbing study of hundreds of trashy witchcraft films, the group began to pour their energies into crafting songs, transforming their fascination for horror into a profane musical vision.
Their sound bears witness to the heavy bands of yesteryear, fusing progressive rock elements with folk and an early '70s downer vibe. Invoking the mischievous Pipes of Pan, Blood Ceremony songs are distinguished by singer Alia O'Brien's flute solos - accenting an instrument long-associated with a list of devilish figures.
A celebration of Euro-horror, '60s saturnalia and occult miscellanea, BLOOD CEREMONY, their debut album, was mixed by Billy Anderson and released by Rise Above in 2008 to enthusiastic reviews. In 2009, Blood Ceremony completed a successful European tour supporting Brit doom legends Electric Wizard.
LIVING WITH THE ANCIENTS, Blood Ceremony's sophomore album, expands the group's dark and regal sound with a heavy dose of vintage organ, gritty guitars and stirring flute harmonies. The album was recorded in Chicago by Sanford Parker. With LIVING WITH THE ANCIENTS, the band continues its journey through the mire of ancient occultism and flute-infused downer rock. The album was released on March 1, 2011.
Since the release of LIVING WITH THE ANCIENTS, Blood Ceremony have performed at the prestigious Roadburn Festival in Tilburg, Holland. In the fall of 2011, they completed their first headline tour of Europe culminating in a performance at the Hammer of Doom VI Festival in Wurzburg, Germany. In 2012 they supported Sweden's GHOST on the "13 Dates of Doom" North American tour. Currently, the band have enclosed themselves within a dank, tomb-like chamber to begin preparations for a third Blood Ceremony album.
Musically, H-p1, White Hills second full-length for Thrill Jockey, expands on the explorations of previous albums in ambience, noise, and space rock all led by guitarist Dave W.'s blistering guitar solos. This is the most fully realized White Hills album to date and the one that takes them furthest from their pure space rock roots. It is also their most angry record. It is a reaction to what White Hills sees as government co-opted and controlled by corporations.
"A perfect space-rock storm of drone, mind-melting psychedelia, overdriven guitars and heavy bass, White Hills is the rightful heir to Hawkwind's massive legacy." – Goldmine
"Heads On Fire throws down grungy distorted layers of sludge that relentlessly churn along. It's neither subtle nor pretty, but god damn it rocks. They take the space rock template and inject it with a battered fucked-up New York punk spirit." --Drowned In Sound
Formed in Athens, GA in 2006, the wulves began as a five-piece, including vocalist Jimmy Baldwin and guitarist Robert Sullivan. After recording and self-releasing their 2006 debut demo, "Demo-Lition!," the band enjoyed local success as a gleefully violent metal band in a skeptical microcosm of indie rock. The band's reputation as Athens' most fun, irreverent and evil circus had earned the nomination of "Best Up & Coming Band" by the city's Flagpole Magazine.
But L/W's buzz of positive critical reception was stricken by the departure of founding member Sullivan and the increasingly bleak prognosis of Baldwin's health. The vocalist's throat had become pocked with polyps, and while the looming reparative surgery saved his vocal cords, it effectively ended his tenure as the band's frontman. Thus, the ranks of L/W rapidly dwindled to three, leaving Aiken, Peiffer and then-drummer Mathius to fend for themselves without their chosen genre's staples of harsh vocals and dual guitars.
Ironically, this new instrumental approach to their existing material and to the writing process of their forthcoming full-length, "The Void That Isn't," added exciting new layers to their already diverse sound. Less had, essentially, become more. What could have been a void, wasn't, and made the remaining parts that much more substantial.
This trimmed lineup allows for a heartier imagination, better communication between its members, and more confident stints into uncomfortable stylistic territory. The lack of a regular vocal crutch opens the band's instrumentation to more diverse audiences and breaks previously troublesome language barriers, while allows for more abstract arrangements overall. In June of 2008, Lazer/Wulf's new identity was named "Band of the Year" by Athens' Flagpole Magazine, topping the reigning indie-rock and pop incumbents.
Once "The Void" had been released, however, the Lazer/Wulf ranks dwindled again, this time in a way that couldn't be ignored: they needed a new drummer, and the Void's advertorial cycle must fall aside while the line-up is secured. After two years (!) of active searching, jazz drummer Brad Rice was finally found and inducted in 2011.
Now, Lazer/Wulf has shed the security of genre conventions in favor of creative curiosity and more honest and emotional song-writing, growing increasingly toward the likes of Dysrhythmia, Don Caballero and Battles, while firmly rooted and informed by its thrash and prog-metal origins. Its music continues to expand in every direction, heavier and lighter, wider but more focused. The machine is varied, vicious and endlessly willing.
Lazer/Wulf's first recording with this new line-up, the vinyl/cassette/downloadable EP "There Was A Hole Here. It's Gone Now," will see independent and digital release on 4/24/2012.
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