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Hewn from Madison, WI - photo by Nick Berard

Hewn

by Andrew Frey
August 2012

Hewn. A short and simple name for a band that is neither simple nor small nor easily explained.

“When Sam Spotts (Acoustic Guitar, Growls & Such) and I first got together I had no idea what kind of music he was playing,” begins Ben Lisser (Pots and Pans, Piano, Guitar, Vocals, Head Chef). “All I knew was that I loved it and had to be a part of it. We both wrote a lot together and never really tried to produce a certain kind of music. Sam would present a song and I would record it and add drums, and piano and anything else we felt was necessary.”

However, the duo ran into a dilemma early on. Sam recalls, “When Ben and I started recording we quickly realized that unless we both grew four more arms and an extra head we couldn’t recreate the sound
that we made on the recording.”

Thus the ranks of Hewn swelled to 7 when Sam and Ben enlisted the aid of musical cohorts, Forrester Barry (Djembe, Vocals, Rabble Rouser), Nathan Bowie (Bass, Vocals, Cool Hand Luke), Jake Blumer (Electric Guitar, Plucko), Adam Bluhm (Pots and Pans, Accordion, Vocals, Whistles/Kazoo, Thrower of Stuffs) and Christian Lisser (Drums & percussion, Motor Man).


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2989 ViewsPermalinkHewn MySpace

Phox

An interview with the band PHOX
by Ryan Schremp
July 2012

PHOX is a new band who’s taking Madison by storm. A sea of sound that’s easy to get lost in, each individual part bending and forming to create one amazing whole. I got the opportunity to sit down with Monica, Matt Roberts, Dave, Cheston, Sean, and Matt Holmen recently to talk about how they came to be, their influences, and more.

Maximum Ink: How long have you guys been a band?
Matt Holmen: Well, we technically had our one year anniversary on May 5th, Cinco De Mayo. But we moved to Madison last fall, so we’ve really only been playing shows for about seven months here. We’re all from Baraboo.


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4383 ViewsPermalinkPhox Website
Dengue Fever

Dengue Fever

An interview with Ethan Holtzman from Dengue Fever
by Mike Huberty
June 2012

As an American band inspired by equally by Cambodian pop music as well as American 60’s bands (you can hear the Credence dripping out of each song), DENGUE FEVER, occupies a fascinating niche. While most of the band hails from LA, their songs didn’t even have any English until their third record. Formed by brothers Ethan and Zac Holtzman in 2001, they met up with Cambodian immigrant (and already a famous karaoke singer in her native country), Chhom Nimol, to fill out the sound of the band. Their latest full length is called Cannibal Courtship is their fifth and they’re touring to support it. We took some time to talk to DENGUE FEVER’s Ethan Holtzman about their upcoming Madison show.


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Ben Masel imagery by Dan Goodrich

Ben Masel Day

420 is Ben Masel Day
by Rökker
April 2012

Last May, Madison’s city council along with mayor Paul Soglin passed a resolution (legislative file #22458)  “honoring the life of Bennett “Ben” Masel, his contributions to our community and declaring April 20th as “Ben Masel Day” in the City of Madison”. Ben Masel, the iconic Madison civil rights defender, passed away last April after a battle with cancer.

Here is the full text of the resolution from the city’s website, CityOfMadison.com:

“WHEREAS,  Bennett “Ben” Masel was a fierce defender of personal and civil liberty, a champion of the Constitution, the rule of law and the founding faith that the freedoms outlined in the Bill of Rights were not just ideals, they were practical tools to be used on a daily basis to challenge power; and

WHEREAS, Ben Masel peacefully fought for his rights with courage, cleverness, and joy; and


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3558 ViewsPermalinkBen Masel Day Website
Jane's Addiction's Perry Farrel and Stephen Perkins, on the cover of Max Ink Mar/2012

Jane’s Addiction

An interview with drummer Stephen Perkins
by Dan "EJ" Schneiderman
March 2012

In 1985, the Los Angeles music scene was mostly hair metal bands trying to make it to super stardom. But a little known underground scene was being born with original bands playing new alternative music. One of those bands was Jane’s Addiction. Today, over 25 years later, Jane’s is still pumping out great music with an L.A. vibe. With their new album The Great Escape Artist finally out, and tons of 2012 tour dates booked, I spoke with Jane’s Addiction’s drummer, Stephen Perkins, about the new CD and tour and other good stuff.

Maximum Ink: Hi Stephen, my name is EJ, I’m with Maximum Ink Music Magazine and Maxinkradio, how are you doing today?
Stephen Perkins: I feel great man, it’s been a really good day,  I’ve got a 2 year old son, so I’ve spent the whole day with him, and now I’m on my way to rehearsal with the boys.

MI: What is the meaning behind the title The Great Escape Artist?
SP: It’s a personal thing like everybody, it really, with all the bullshit, no matter what year you look at, 2012 or 1812 there is always bullshit in the way of enjoying yourself. And what are we here for, I think we are here for art and sex. Let Jane’s Addiction be your art and sex, escape with us. Get away from everything else you’re fucking dealing with, put on this record, just like when we used to put on Sgt Peppers record, or I used to put on Physical Graffiti, which I still do and just get away from it all, let the music take you. Don’t let it do it 30 seconds at a time, go away for a half hour.


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Bela Fleck and the Flecktones on the cover of Feb 2012 Maximum Ink

Bela Fleck and the Flecktones

An Interview with Banjo Banshee Bela Fleck
by John Noyd
February 2012

You have not heard the banjo until you’ve heard BELA FLECK play the banjo. Not just because of his jaw-dropping talent for lightning-fast runs and twisted knuckle-busting riffs but because he places the instrument in unusual settings and manages to make it sound perfectly natural. For decades, the FLECKTONES have found new ways to present musical conundrums that are easy to love. A Madison favorite, the band recently reunited their original line-up to produce last year’s awesome, “Rocket Science.” As the quartet prepares to swing by Madison’s Union Theater March 1st, MAXIMUM INK managed to snare Bela for some questions about the reunion, the new album and this year’s tour.

MAXIMUM INK: It’s great to hear the original line-up back together.  With everyone’s extremely busy schedule was it difficult for everyone to drop their other projects and concentrate on an album and tour?
BELA FLECK: There was a lot of enthusiasm for the idea of going back to the old sound. Victor, Future Man and I were ready to have a musical adventure again. When we contacted Howard Levy about filling the Jeff Coffin slot (which was Howard’s 17 years ago) he could see the potential for an interesting reunion as well. We decided on giving it a full year’s commitment, and doing new music together, and that combination of parameters gave it some heft. Having a planned ending has made every gig special.


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Anna Wang and the Oh Boys - Madison, Wisconsin - photo by Nick Berard

Anna Wang and The Oh Boys!

An interview with Madison's Anna Wang from Anna Wang and The Oh Boys!
by Mike Huberty
January 2012

With one foot in bubblegum and one foot in rock, ANNA WANG AND THE OH BOYS! is unabashed good-time music, straightforward, fun, and deliriously catchy. Lead vocalist and songwriter, Anna Wang, is a recent graduate from the University of Wisconsin and ready to take on the world with her “Oh Boys”- bassist Jeff Funk, guitarist Jeremy Van Mill, and (not so boyish) Nicky Sund on drums. They’re celebrating the release of a brand new EP, Drive Fast (currently available for listening on their website, www.annawangandtheohboys.com), with a big party at The Frequency in Madison on February 3rd.


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Tiger Clutch

Tiger Clutch

An interview with glam rock heroes, Tiger Clutch
by Mike Huberty
December 2011

Tiger Clutch might be the greatest glam rock band you’ve never heard. With influences based on Judas Priest, Nirvana, and Kick Axe, Tiger Clutch are five local musicians who play the part of grizzled hair metal veterans, having rocked, partied, and screwed their way through decades of music history. When it’s time to rock, they take the stage names of Thor (singer and local comedian David Leon), The Blast (guitarist Derek Reinfried), Brick Johnson (guitarist Joe Cushman), Shredderella (bassist Jennifer Reinfried), and Beatz “Off” McKenzie (drummer Riley Heninger). With a rock fist in the air and their tongue firmly in their cheek, they release their latest (in reality, first) album on Thursday December 1st. We took a few minutes to discuss the new record with them.


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4111 ViewsPermalinkTiger Clutch Website

Hank 3

An Interview with Hank 3
by Mike Huberty
November 2011

Shelton Hank Williams is the closest thing that country music has to a crown prince. The son of Bocephus himself, Hank Jr. (The Artist Formerly Known as the “Are You Ready For Some Football?” guy), and the grandson of one of the most popular country artists of all time, Hank3has charted a path entirely his own. Starting his career drumming for punk bands in the early 90’s, he’s spent his music career freely ignoring the genre lines of metal (he was in two bands with PANTERA’s Phil Anselmo, ARSON ANTHEM and SUPERJOINT RITUAL), cow-punk (he calls it “hellbilly” with his DAMN BAND), and punk (leading the band ASSJACK) After years of fighting with the Nashville country music system (just listen to “Dick in Dixie” or “Trashville” for his opinions on the current state of country music) as well as his record labels, Hank has just released three(!) new albums on his own, Hank3 label. Ghost to a Ghost/Guttertown is a double country-tinged album, Attention Deficit Domination is doom metal, and 3 Bar Ranch Cattle Callin’ is a mashup of speed metal and spoken word by cattle auctioneers that has to be heard to be believed!


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Lotus - photo by Tobin Voggesser

Lotus to make two-night tour stop at the Majestic

Electronic, instrumental foursome will help Madison fans get on their groove
by Emily Genco
October 2011

Electronic and instrumental hybrid group touring with their new self-titled album will play two consecutive nights at the Majestic Theater Nov. 4 and 5. Members Mike Greenfield, Jesse Miller, Luke Miller and Mike Rempel like to keep things fresh for audiences at shows through extended improvisation on already richly composed tunes.


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