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Filter in Maximum Ink in June 2008

Filter

by Mike Huberty
June 2008

Coming back onto the scene after a six-year hiatus, Richard Patrick (Nine Inch Nails’ original guitarist) has reformed FILTER, who blazed through the late Nineties with hits like “Hey Man, Nice Shot” and “Take a Picture.” They’re back with a new record, Anthems for the Damned and its lead single, “Soldiers of Misfortune,” about the Iraq War. While Patrick plays most the instruments on the new album, bassist John Spiker (Steve Earle, Tenacious D, and Beck) was recruited to join the band in March of 2008. As he puts it, “When I got the audition, I had to do a double take. One of the craziest parts is that Filter’s sort of been disbanded for about six years. I definitely listened to Filter in high school and even covered Filter songs in bands that I’d played in. I’m really excited to be part of this group. We’re kind of calling this tour the ‘Re-Education Tour.’ There’s a whole new generation of fans that don’t know about Filter. We’re getting out to the streets to get the word out again.”


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Slightly Stoopid in Maximum Ink in June 2008

Slightly Stoopid

by Mike Huberty
June 2008

With a laidback attitude and stoner swagger, SLIGHTLY STOOPID, is set to release their seventh album of party music July 22nd with Slightly Not Stoned Enough To Eat Breakfast Yet Stoopid. Hailing from Ocean Beach (a gorgeous surfer enclave near San Diego that perfectly fits their music) and formed in the early Nineties, the band’s two front men, Miles Doughty and Kyle McDonald, have been playing together since their early teens. Discovered by Sublime’s Brad Nowell and signed to his Skunk Records label, the band released their first record in 1996 (a highly sought after collector’s item by Sublime fans because of Nowell’s appearance on a hidden track) and while the duo at the core hasn’t changed, their lineup has shifted in and out over the years. This latest incarnation is the most solid according to drummer, Ryan Moran (affectionately known as RyMo to fans), adding horns and congas to the mix. With diverse instrumentation like that, they fit their music to whatever suits their mood, according to Moran, “We play a lot of different styles and throw them into the pot. We might play 3 or 4 punk tunes, 5 or 6 reggae tunes, blues-rock, 1 or 2 hip-hop feel or ska feel. We just kind of wing it; don’t write a set list or anything, we just go with the moment and the energy of the crowd.


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Russell Hall of the United Sons of Toil from Madison

The United Sons Of Toil

by Mike Huberty
May 2008

Describing themselves as “noisy Midwestern math-rock delivered by populist theoreticians,” THE UNITED SONS OF TOIL blend hyper-literate lyrics with pounding instrumentation on their upcoming record. A veritable Madison super-group (even though they’d most definitely hate that appellation), their lineup consists of guitarist/singer, Russell Hall (of POUND WI and P’ELVIS), bassist Bill Borowski (from THE ARGE, ATALANTA, and gorilla-suit wearing surf-rock masters, KNUCKELDRAGER) and drummer Chad Burnett (who doubles in guitar for COLONY OF WATTS.)

According to Hall, it started because he “was a huge fan of Colony of Watts and would go to all the shows”, he says. “With their guitarist, I found a shared love of mid-to-late 90’s Touch and Go, AmRep, and Dischord bands.” He describes their influences as “Stripped-down, aggressive, indie-rock post-punk Chicago sound. Like a Big Black, Jesus Lizard and Tar vibe. Chad and I became friends because we shared similar aesthetics. I asked him if he was interested in playing in a noisy, math-rock band”.


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Detroit's Von Bondies in Maximum Ink in May 2008

The Von Bondies

by Mike Huberty
May 2008

Hitting the mainstream with their single, “C’mon C’mon” in 2004 (used as the theme to Denis Leary’s popular TV show, Rescue Me.) They also appeared in the popular and controversial (due to the actors’ naughty and real sex scenes in a love story set between live-music performances) 9 Songs. THE VON BONDIES rode the Detroit garage rock wave (even getting their first record, Lack of Communication, produced by The White Stripes’ Jack White) to success in the early part of the century. On the way, they lost a few members (the only original ones being vocalist/guitarist Jason Stollsteimer and drummer Don Blum.)  Stollsteimer got in a highly-publicized fistfight with the aforementioned White, and the band went into hibernation. In 2008, with a sans record label they are getting back into touring. They’re self-releasing two EPs in preparation for a full album in the fall. The first, We Are Kamikazes, is only available from the band at their shows.


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Milwaukee's Big Dumb Dick in Maximum Ink in April 2008

Big Dumb Dick

by Mike Huberty
April 2008

Milwaukee hard rockers who’ve shared the stage with metal and heavy bands from Saliva to Disturbed to Motley Crue, BIG DUMB DICK was one of the Brew City’s most reliable rock acts through the late 90’s and early Aughts. They would perform regularly at events like Summerfest and Harley Fest as well as touring nationally. Their shows were known for body-passing, moshing, dancing girls, and pyrotechnics, making them one of the city’s best draws. This also garnered them representation from big players like Kid Rock’s management company and serious interest from major record labels. After being at the center of the maelstrom, lead singer and founding member, Travis Mantsch decided to take some time off from BIG DUMB DICK to clear his head and start a family. Three years later, the songs he had created in his home studio took on a familiar tone and now the band is back and releasing a new record, See You In Hell.


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The Mekons in Maximum Ink in March 2008 - photo by Derrick Santini

Mekons

by Mike Huberty
March 2008

From straightforward rock and loud punk to reggae and alt-country, UK band, The Mekons, have been kicking out the jams almost as long as this phrase has been around. Formed in Leeds by art students in 1977 (and named after a villain in the popular British comic, Dan Dare), they’ve existed as a loosely-knit group of musicians, almost a collective, for over thirty years. These years have included taking time off and reforming whenever the mood called. While they’ve been popular with critics and hipsters forever (including rock uber-critic, Lester Bangs, who wrote that they were “better than The Beatles” on the liner notes of their 1982 album, The Story of The Mekons), their sometimes awkwardly eclectic mix of music has brought them near to commercial success (as well as high profile releases on A&M Records in the 1990’s) but never brought them completely over into the pop world.


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Blind Melon in Maximum Ink in March 2008

Blind Melon

by Mike Huberty
March 2008

The two associations that Blind Melon will always have are with the girl in the yellow and black bee costume from the video for their 90’s alternative chestnut, “No Rain” (a tune which reached #20 on the Pop Charts and even earned a Weird Al parody), and the drug overdose of their original lead singer, Shannon Hoon, in 1995. Indeed, when I met him as a underager in 1993 after sneaking into Marquette University in Milwaukee to see them, drugs was a subject he mentioned almost immediately. Although an album of outtakes and live performances followed (named Nico after the newborn daughter Hoon left behind) and the band went on a search for a new singer, the public would not accept them and the band broke up before the end of the decade.


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Five Finger Death Punch

Five Finger Death Punch

by Mike Huberty
February 2008

Mike catches up with FFDP drummer Jeremy Spencer talks about meeting singer Ivan Moody and the recent pull out from a tour with Chimaira and All That Remains


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Beatallica on the cover of Maximum Ink January 2008

Beatallica

by Mike Huberty
January 2008

an interview with Beatallica singer Jaymz Lennfield as the band headed to Europe for their fifth Euro-tour.


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Madison's The Ottomon Empire on the cover of Maximum Ink December 2007

The Ottoman Empire

by Mike Huberty
December 2007

An interview with Madison shredders The Ottomon Empire‘s Mary Zimmer


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