Before we get into this post, I'd like to apologize for a missed concert, as local classic/hard rock quartet Mourning Wood apparently played at the opening night party for the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds' season opener last night before the game against Windsor at The Essar Centre. The team's own advertising never specified the band(s?), and Mourning Wood never plugged the set online, but guitarist Steven Flint mentioned it on his personal Facebook page shortly before showtime. Hopefully it was a blast on a big stage, and apologies again for missing it, we'd have plugged it had their set gotten advance word!
Now, this post features recent updates & media, but first, here's a LOCAL CONCERT ALERT, as the third and likely final local battle of the bands of 2015 goes down on Thursday, November 19th, that being the previously teased second Speak Easy Battle of the Bands! After a successful first installment in March at Algoma University's campus bar, the same promoters (including ex-Haggith bassist Jordan Leach) are hosting the same style of battle once again for the fall season, so what should you know this time around? Like in March, the battle will be a fan voted event with no judges, with cash prizes awaiting winning bands (no word yet on if they'll remain $400, $200, and $100 for the top 3 bands.) Sets will again be 15 minutes in length, but this time, promoters are hoping for 8 acts, one more than in March, with no genre restrictions. Four acts (including two returnees) are now signed for the second Speak Easy Battle, but who will you be able to see?
The returning bands will be local alternative/hard rock trio Mike Haggith & The Din (in their first announced concert with their yet-to-be-revealed new guitarist), and in a mild surprise, solo indie/folk musician Jesse Merineau, whose battle set in March was his last before moving to Toronto. Good to see him back home, even if only for one gig, and hopefully he and The Din put on good sets! The other two announced bands include the returning local death/thrash metal band Pillory, in their Speak Easy and battle debut, and first concert in over a year & a half! Great to have them back as well, but given that the aforementioned co-promoter Jordan Leach is their new bassist, is there a conflict of interest worry here? As it's fan voted, I doubt it, but it's worth noting! The another announced band is Eclypse, who have yet to publically unveil their identity, sound, or online presence yet. I do know one band member, but I'll wait for public confirmation before getting into any details.
For reference, March's battle was won by Gnaeus with Long Shot and The Bear Hunters finishing second and third, and Infinity Grinder & Project 421 were the other competing bands, though no word on if any of them will be back. Four more bands are being sought for November's second battle, so if you're interested in signing up or getting more info, message Jordan (a.k.a. Whate Ver) at this link or via his Musicians Wanted Facebook group post from Sunday! While I'd rather see a judges panel than a fan vote to avoid a popularity contest, it's great to see a second Speak Easy Battle, and so soon from the first, so check the above links for more details, and stay tuned for more as we approach November 19th!
Next up, here's some long overdue updates from Blood Shed Productions, so what's been going on with their some of their grind and death metal bands? In terms of solo act Crucify The Whore, the Tyler Gibson-led one man band posted 8 older songs on Bandcamp as the digital compilation "Old Stuff", possibly as a way to reintroduce fans to material not in current print, such as "I Like Shepherds Pie". Similarly, C.T.W.'s eight songs from the planned split release with Ohio "pornogrind" band Menstrual Munchies can be checked out at this link (no word on the other band's half of things), with some of those songs planned for a future full length-release. Lastly for new Bandcamp media, Tyler's "cybergrind" project Malignant Neoplasm posted a short 3 song digital EP named "Kittens Have Crustys" there as well featuring three short and peculiarly named songs. All three are available under "name your price" models, so you can have them for free or for any price.
Lastly, while Tyler's grind duo band Rotopsy have been quiet (outside of scattered private & house shows) since June, they revealed on their Facebook page yesterday that they're working on new studio material and will be playing at a yet-identified Halloween show (possibly meaning another Devil's Night Oddfellows concert?) Sounds like the Blood Shed is staying busy, and the new material will definitely appeal to grind lovers, so check everything out above, and stay tuned for more from them!
Finally, here's another cryptic recent video from AlgomA guitarist Boyd Rendell's YouTube channel, this time of him and ex-Rising Tide drummer Frank McCormick jamming in April! Called "OUT of the ether DOWN in das Bunker", it's credited to "two thirds of the rock group OAT", though I'm not sure if OAT were/are a functioning band or if this is just the chosen label for the video. Credited under false names, this is 8 minutes of improvised bass & drum jamming, and visually striking by the use of lens flares on Boyd's face, arms, and bass. Interesting listen, and it's nice to see Frank drumming again, so give this one a look below!
That's all for today, but stay tuned for this month's Saultites In Out Of Town Bands Profile next! Thanks everyone!