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The Viscous Circle

an interview with vocalist Shawn Anthony Brown

Madison's The Viscous Circle CD: Escape Wormwood
Record Label: TVC Productions
by Troy Johnson
October 2010

Madison based band The Viscous Circle is releasing their debut album Escape Wormwood on their own label, TVC Productions October 30, 2010. The band formed in 2006 as a hobby between frontman Shawn Brown and lead guitarist Danny Davis. After composing for nearly a year Danny urged Shawn to bring rhythm guitarist and back up vocalist Jimmie Hill into the fold and then added vets Denny Carney on bass and Chris Sandoval on drums. 

Escape Wormwood is a dark and foreboding album throughout, and the end of October is a good time of year to let it rock your walls. Frontman Shawn Brown talked to me about his appreciation for bands like Led Zeppelin and Pink Floyd that have repeatedly put out albums that are conceptual all the way through.  Brown spoke on the new album, “As we went along with the recording of Escape Wormwood it slowly became a complete project rather than an album with random songs. It’s a dark introspective album with hope and beauty but definitely a lot of darkness.”

Brown played with popular Madison rock band Last Crack for a couple years in the mid 1990’s and was the vocalist on their 1994 album runheadstartscreaming. After the album and a short European tour Brown parted ways with Last Crack and formed the band Spiritus with Last Crack drummer Chris Havey. He is now exclusively with The Viscous Circle but remains in contact and friends with members of Last Crack who have a reunion show at Scatz in Middleton on Saturday, November 13th.

The Viscous Circle’s debut album has songs already getting air play on Madison’s hard rock station 94.1 JJO. ‘Overhead’ and ‘Wormwood’ are the first singles from The Viscous Circle and are deservedly getting air time. Brown told me, “Wormwood, it was a rainy early afternoon, when I got the idea to write a song about the impending apocalypse. I was watching a show about end times on the History channel and decided to write about it. We recorded it, it flowed, and then later on that very evening on coast to coast AM with George Noory I called in. I expressed to them how I had just written a song completely congenial with the topic for the evening. Jay Weidner, the guest was speaking on that same subject matter that I had written previously that day. It was a fateful phone call that caused a circle of feedback which eventually became the song Wormwood.” Brown told me that he expects to, “bring The Viscous Circle’s new music to the people at the Annex and to the next level, with heart and soul.”

The Viscous Circle is playing Max Ink’s Halloween Spooktakular and releasing their CD at the Annex on Saturday, October 30th with free Ale Asylum Hopalicious, a Yahara Bay Vodka tasting and other music from The Horrids, El Donk, the Pinch and Enemy Star. For more info go to Myspace.com/theviscouscircle


Download Escape Wormwood on Amazon.com

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