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Chicago's Blackdog

Blackdog

by Mike Huberty
October 2008

Hailing from Chicago after forming in Madison from two musical soulmates, guitarists Anthony Alban and Sammy Reicher, BLACKDOG fuses influences of early 20th Century Delta Blues, 50’s rock n’ roll, and the Classic Rock Pantheon. Andrew Elbert, their drummer says, “ We all love roots music and have a foundation in blues and rock n’ roll. Our heroes are Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin, Dire Straits, BB King, and Buddy Guy.” After earning their undergraduate degrees from the University of Wisconsin, they decided to take the band to the big city and almost the whole band moved to Chicago (they found a new bassplayer,  Jason Segal, when they got there.)


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Madison's Birth Of Tragedy, a two piece metal band, Cory Divine (left) Ryan (right)

Birth Of Tragedy - 2008

by Mack Dreyfuss
September 2008

In 2003, scientists from the Institute of Astronomy in Cambridge, England, were studying a supermassive black hole located 250 million light years from earth. They discovered that it was producing sound waves.  These sound waves translate into B-flat, 57 octaves below middle C on the common household piano.  This pitch, inaudible to the human ear, is the sound of the slaughter of light.

Addiction is much like a black hole that crushes the light of those enslaved by it.  A local counselor and musician named Cory Divine works to alter the trajectory of youth who have found themselves in the vacuum of addiction by producing his own yawp of sound. 

His band is called Birth of Tragedy and consists of only two members: Divine on guitar and vocals + Ryan Peterson, percussionist.  To call Peterson a percussionist is to call the Sears Tower a building.  Upon experiencing the colossal sound of Birth of Tragedy, one is certain that continental drift progresses significantly with every set.


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Madison's Patchwork - photo by The Canopy Agency

Patchwork

by Dan Vierck
September 2008

Jeremiah Nelson named his dog after Bob Dylan. Influences aren’t nearly as direct when it comes to Nelson’s band, Patchwork - which released its new full length, “Take Me Down the Interstate” on Aug. 15 at the Frequency in Madison, WI.

“You draw from enough sources that it becomes unrecognizable,” he says over a bagel and cream cheese while Zim, the black lab, explores the sunny porch of Nelson’s Williamson-area house. “A lot of the time it’s my friends,” he says. We talk about Oskosh fav Attack Octopus - who seemingly couldn’t be more dissimilar with its busy, sparkling, crackling, tangy arrangements, odd time signatures and overall challenging sound. In this context, Patchwork is definitely roaming Dylan-esque territory.


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Robstock 2008 in Whitewater, Wisconsin

Robstock 2008

by Dan Vierck
September 2008

Whitewater’s Robstock 2008 is showing all of Wisconsin that worthwhile music festivals are not just for bigger cities like Madison or Milwaukee. The event, boasting 5 music stages, 3 beer tents, a mini petting zoo, magic, psychics, face painters, a bonfire and “mad jugglers” is going down Sept. 20 at The Fuzzy Pig, N8660 Clover Valley Rd., Whitewater.


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Twin Citie's Down Lo on the cover of Maximum Ink September 2008 - Artwork by Cory Harrison

Down Lo

by Mike Huberty
September 2008

Funky, melodic, and heartfelt, DOWN LO from The Twin Cities is combining traditional (and not so traditional) jam band music with hip-hop and traveling all around the country with their latest record, In Our World. Guitarist and vocalist, Mark Grundhoefer, describes it as “a blend of a number of different genres. Passion’s the name of the game. Bluegrass to reggae, jazz, funk, we try to throw a little bit of everything that influences us in there. Plus, we do a lot of improvisation with jams where each musician steps up to take his role, so we try to keep it interesting that way.”


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Ha Ha Tonka

Ha Ha Tonka

by Kristen Winiarski
September 2008

A keen move on their part, the once Amsterband from Missouri is now known as Ha Ha Tonka. The band is made up of Brian Roberts on lead vocals and guitar, Lucas Long on bass and vocals, Brett Anderson on keyboard, guitar, and vocals and Lennon Bone on drums and vocals. This indie rock band combines religious undertones, life, love, hometown pride and rockin guitar riffs. I had the opportunity to talk with Brian Roberts about their past, present, and future projects.


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Czech Republic's Plastic People of the Universe to play the Madison World Music festival

Madison World Music Festival 2008

by John Noyd
September 2008

Spread over two consecutive weekends in mid-September, Madison’s global gathering touches every point on the compass across Madison in every creative fashion imaginable. Syrian singer GAIDA, Indian guitarist PRASANNA and the psychedelic dub of Turkey’s BABA ZULA perform, dance, lead workshops and colorfully flavor UW’s campus, the Annex and the Willy Street Fair.


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Madison's Droids Attack Vs. Chicago's Imperial Battlesnake on the cover of Maximum Ink - photo by Brad Van (drawing)

Droids Attack

by Kristen Winiarski
August 2008

Once fronted by a robot, Droids Attack is now focusing more on their music and getting their name further into the music world. Brad Van on guitar and vocals, Nate Bush on bass, and Tony Brungraber on drums, align this trio of hard stoner rock. With a CD release, vinyl, and radio campaign in the works, this band certainly has been busy since the story we did on them back in 2006. I had the opportunity to speak with Brad Van who told me a little bit about their past and the many, many projects that the band has for their future.


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Droids Attack Vs. Imperial Battlesnake

Imperial Battlesnake

by Andrew Frey
August 2008

Firmly seizing upon the bombastic hammer of thundering metal, comes Imperial Battlesnake. This Chicago-land experience consists of King James and his aggressive drum beating, Doom Wop Costanza hopping up the explosive bass playing with intestinal fortitude, Greazy Dave Reece augmenting the relentless guitar killing with powerful staring and tongue tornados, Ronnie James Theo exemplifying skin-scaring guitar riffing with quicksilver solos, and Wes Nile spewing forth a mouth-warping vocal rampage while sporting a Napoleon Complex. 

With so many colorful characters to choose from, one can hardly go wrong! Recently I touched base with the Imperial Battlesnake troupe for a quick e-interview.


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English band Spiritualized

Spiritualized

by John Noyd
August 2008

As spokesman and songwriter for Spiritualized, Jason Pierce a.k.a. J. Spaceman, has no answers – which makes for a difficult subject to interview but a great artist to follow. Hard to pin down but happy to chat, a half hour on the phone with him brings a renewed enthusiasm for music’s power. He said, “You need to drag the music you love kicking and screaming into your life.” Believing simple is best and talent may well get in the way of good music, Pierce also claims there is no bag of tricks or formula to what he does. Relying on what he calls, “the meter in my head,” Pierce likes to see where things go in his attempts to write music that, “his band can’t hide behind.”


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