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Endeverafter's Michael Grant - photo by Sarah H. Grant

Endeverafter


by Sarah H. Grant
September 2006

Get up. Wipe off the eighteen layers of black eyeliner, stop whining about life, and F.Y.I., duct tape was not meant for clothes. It’s time to rock n’ roll.

Despite the assembly line of performing drones that are currently pervading the air waves, there is one band that has been stealthily building momentum in the background. Endeverafter holds the match to the gasoline of hard rock—and these boys are not afraid to ignite the fire.

The band Endeverafter was birthed two years ago in Sacramento, CA, where front man and lead guitarist Michael Grant, rhythm guitarist Kristan Mallory, bassist Tommi Andrews, and former drummer Austin Sinclaire decided that they wanted to go down in music history. However, the magic happened long before that, as Michael Grant explains, “I’ve been friends with Kristan for five years, with Tommi for three years, and [current drummer] Eric is one of my best friends.” Yet friendship is only part of the foundation that these band mates share. Perhaps learning a lesson from past legends, Endeverafter stands by similar musical fronts, “Our influences are in the deeper 60s, 70s hard rock,” Grant explicates the departure of former drummer Sinclaire, “We had a lot of creative differences, he was more into the glam aspects of rock. A band grows, and sometimes people don’t grow along with you, and you fall apart.”

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Milwaukee's Enemy Star

Enemy Star

An interview with Paris Ortiz and Kassy Gruszkowski
by Mike Huberty
October 2010

After the demise of the COCKSMITHS in 2009, Milwaukee guitar slinger Paris Ortiz (formerly of popular Brewcity rock bands like PSYCHADELICASI and BIG DUMB DICK) had a new sound in mind. Presumably, he was looking for a band that didn’t have a word for penis in the name, but also he was looking to create a more melodic kind of hard music. And ENEMY STAR, the band that eventually would come out of his idea, definitely has both the sweet-sounding and feminine element.

“I was on Myspace and saw an ad from the singer of 9MM SOLUTION.” Paris says. “It said, ‘My vocal teacher is looking for a band’ and I thought it was a gag. I mean, I was like, ‘Who’s your vocal teacher? Satan?’ But then I heard her [ENEMY STAR singer, Kassy Gruszkowski], and I knew it wasn’t a joke and I thought the voice was unique and refined.” A longtime Milwaukee singer, Kassy, was on the lookout for a new band as well. As she says, “The band I was in, THERESBEENAFIRE, broke up and I was out there kind of like ‘Will Rock For Gigs’. It was hard to find a good band at the time and Paris calling me was really, really awesome.”

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Enon in Maximum Ink on April 2008

Enon


by Kimberly E. McDaniel
April 2008

The name Enon has the Biblical meaning of “cloud” or “mass of darkness.” Now it also refers to a quirky trio situated in Philadelphia, although the band has been known as part of the New York music scene. Enon was formed by guitarist/vocalist John Schmersal in 1999, and was named not for its Biblical connotation, but for a small town in Ohio, near Schmersal’s hometown of Dayton.

Schmersal was originally part of the legendary 90’s experimental band, Brainiac, with Rick Lee and Steve Calhoun.  When singer Timmy Taylor died, Schmersal formed Enon with Lee and Calhoun. After the release of their first album in 1999, Believo!, Calhoun left the band and was replaced by Toko Yasuda on bass and Matt Schultz on drums. Lee followed Calhoun and left in 2002. The band has continued to make their unique sound heard by touring and releasing their fourth studio album, “Grass Geysers…Carbon Clouds” through Chicago-based Touch and Go Records.

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EOTO

EOTO


by Andrew Frey
April 2009

The legendary String Cheese Incident has spawned several side projects, but none more current and relevant than EOTO, which features and is comprised of SCI alumnists Michael Travis and Jason Hann. In a recent e-mail interview I was fortunate enough to have Jason explain some things about EOTO. We started with the name.

“EOTO used to be End Of Time Observatory,” begins Hann. “We sort of pronounced it E-O-T-O for a bit and then started saying it as a word: EeOhToe. When we did that, some Japanese fans told us that it means “good sound” in Japanese. Since then, we’ve been the word rather than the letters.”

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Eskimeaux's Gabrielle Smitth

Eskimeaux

Chillin' with Eskimeaux's Gabrielle Smith
by John Noyd
March 2016

Wrapped around unstoppable rock and unraveled in homespun dream-pop, lo-fi hospitality greets intimate whimsy in GABRIELLE SMITH’s approachable folk poetry. Her solo project ESKIMEAUX gently mesmerizes in coy joyrides whose occasionally dark detours shake one awake to face forked roads, close calls and near misses. Joining FRANKIE COSMO and YOWLER at Madison’s High Noon Saloon April 26th, the refreshingly perceptive chronicler took time from a busy SXSW schedule to answer a few questions about her songwriting process and her latest release, “Year of the Rabbit.”

MAXIMUM INK: What made you decide on an EP rather than hold off and release a full-length?

GABRIELLE SMITH: All of the songs on “Year of the Rabbit” were written during the recording process of our previous album “O.K.” So we (Double Double Whammy and I) figured by the time I had enough songs to broaden the collection into a full-length album and went through a whole album cycle (plus, at the time vinyl records were taking 8-12 months to get back from pressing plants), these songs, which felt really nice and fresh, would be pretty old! Instead, we thought it would be nice to make a short record, or an EP with no filler material. Plus, it gave us a chance to try a new release medium - a CD inside of a full-color photograph, hardcover book. So, that’s what went into the decision to make this specific EP.

MI: Did last year’s O.K.‘s critical acclaim shape the Year of the Rabbit at all?

GS: Not really! I mean, maybe it gave us the confidence to try out a new kind of release format.

MI: When you write a song, how much comes from the gut and how much from the head?

GS: I’m not really sure…I mean, it all comes from the head, maybe, and then the gut gets put into the performance of each song!

MI: I really like that. What part of the creative process is the most challenging for you?

GS: Having time to record. Most of my time is dedicated to having band practices, traveling to and playing shows, and writing emails. Lately, as well, I’ve added making a few music videos, making show posters, and being on the hunt for a new amp to the mix. So having time to record is definitely the most challenging part.

MI: Is there any artist or musical hero by which you judge your own writing?

GS: No way, that’s a terrible way to go about being an artist. My own art is the standard by which I judge my writing and that’s the way it should be!

MI: Will this be your first time playing Madison WI?

GS: Nope! One time, in 2013, we played at Bright Red Studios.

MI: What’s usually the first thing you do when you get a chance to take in a city you’re playing?

GS: Find tasty donuts grin

There you have it, tweet, Facebook and Instagram Eskimeaux your favorite place for tasty donuts in Madison.

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Evanescence on the Cover of Maximum Ink in February 2004

Evanescence


by Brett Lemke
February 2004

As the constrictive walls between orchestrated classical music and modern metal have been hazily blurring, few have stepped through the sea of fog to challenge the listeners yearning ear. In dictionary terms, Evanescence is the act or state of vanishing away; the disappearance of vapor(s), of a dream, or of earthly plants or hopes. The solid reality, however, is a group concluding their second world tour in support of their quadruple-platinum album “Fallen”.

Frontwoman Amy Lee spoke with Maximum Ink from a bar in Tokyo about the recent lineup change, their worldwide notoriety, and Ludwig Van Beethoven.

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Everclear circa 2009

Everclear


by Mike Huberty
January 2010

The album that finally broke EVERCLEAR (and made them the vanguard of first post-Nirvana alternative generation), Sparkle and Fade, is actually part of Wisconsin music history. It was recorded right in Madison at Smart Studios and the band has great memories of the city. “I love Madison,” Art Alexakis (founder, lead singer, guitarist, and songwriter for the band) starts saying, “I love the sound of that record. I got to know State Street pretty well. It was a while ago and we made friends. The kids that graduated are probably professors now.”, he laughs. “I remember during the making of that, that was in ‘94. MTV was big at the time and one of the big videos on MTV at the time was ‘Black Hole Sun’ by Soundgarden. It was really funny because there was a hurricane warning.” Then he realizes that he’s talking about the Midwest and chuckles a little. “Wait, not a hurricane warning, but a tornado warning!  It was the summertime. We were up at the top of Smart and the smoking guys in the band were smoking cigarettes and we’re watching this cloud up above us swirling toward us. There’s no sound, the air was totally dead, and it totally looked like Black Hole Sun. And people were like ‘get inside, idiots!’ And we’re like ‘Wow, that’s really cool’. Because we’re from the West coast, man, we don’t know about tornadoes.”

16 years later, Art is the only original member still with EVERCLEAR. In August of 2009, the band signed with 429 Records and by October released an album of re-interpretations of their older material called In A Different Light.

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