Ex Medias Officially Launches & Drop 1st Compilation, ‘WE ARE EX MEDIAS VOL I ‘


Artist Collective Ex Medias just launched, embodying a powerful mission: to shine a light on underexposed artists and genres. Since its inception, it has expanded into a nation-wide collective with the mission of nurturing the growth of our artists to their fullest potential. They aim to foster community based on supporting one another, inspiring successful actions, and helping maintain the tried and true path each member is destined to be on with their career path. Founded by electronic music DJ/producer Able Grey, Ex Medias has made an exciting debut, showcasing 13 artists, with their first compilation album, ‘WE ARE EX MEDIAS VOL I’.

You may not have heard of any of the artists included, but the talent is unreal. Boasting ten tracks, the compilation album is powerful, emotive and truly sensational. A few stand out tracks include “See The Light” by JWILLI, a euphoric, melodic bass track that strikes perfection, balancing beautiful sounds and melodies with a blissful vocal. “Dream” by Meridian is future bass but with his own twist, entirely captivating with a futuristic vocal sample paired with a thundering drop.

Goast adds a break to the tension with a tranquil, acoustic intro for “Hold On“. Juxtaposing the ambient verses with a electrifying future-inspired drop that slides in suddenly, the process repeats again, a testament to the talent of Goast as he shows what is possible and workable in terms of extreme energy levels being a true fit into one song.

Overall, ‘WE ARE EX MEDIAS VOL I’ is a fascinating album that is sure to leave you speechless by the end. Listen below!



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Course Control & Kevon Tyrre Infuse “No Diggity” With Tropical House Vibes


No Diggity” is one of those tracks that is timeless through and through, the product of the iconic collaboration between Blackstreet, Dr. Dre, and Queen Pen. It’s received remix treatment through the years from all sorts of genres, and now, kicking off 2022, we have a fresh tropical house remix from Las Vegas duo Course Control, featuring the smooth vocals of Kevon Tyrre.

Imagine… what if Blackstreet’s 1990s hit went to Ibiza, dug it’s feet in the sand, ordered a round of pina coladas, and kicked back on the beach? The result is this infectious remix, the debut release from Course Control.

Course Control provide a blissful arrangement, paired perfectly with Tyrre’s vocals as trumpets and other tropical melodies glide throughout. The anthemically catchy lyrics along with the lush tropical R&B paradise vibes will make you forget it’s the dead of winter and have you pressing play over and over again.

Check out “No Diggity” by Course Control & Kevon Tyrre below!

 



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Course Control & Kevon Tyrre Flip “No Diggity” Into Tropical House Sensation


No Diggity” is one of those tracks that is timeless through and through, the product of the iconic collaboration between Blackstreet, Dr. Dre, and Queen Pen. It’s received remix treatment through the years from all sorts of genres, and now, kicking off 2022, we have a fresh tropical house remix from Las Vegas duo Course Control, featuring the smooth vocals of Kevon Tyrre.

Imagine… what if Blackstreet’s 1990s hit went to Ibiza, dug it’s feet in the sand, ordered a round of pina coladas, and kicked back on the beach? The result is this infectious remix, the debut release from Course Control.

Course Control provide a blissful arrangement, paired perfectly with Tyrre’s vocals as trumpets and other tropical melodies glide throughout. The anthemically catchy lyrics along with the lush tropical R&B paradise vibes will make you forget it’s the dead of winter and have you pressing play over and over again.

Check out “No Diggity” by Course Control & Kevon Tyrre below!

 



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SUICIDE SILENCE Signs To Century Media For “The Next Chapter” Of Their Career


Suicide Silence released their first three records – The Cleansing in 2007, No Time To Bleed in 2009, and The Black Crown in 2011 – on Century Media. Now over a decade later, they’re going back to the label for new music due out this year.

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“I can’t believe how far we’ve all come since the band began 20 years ago,” said guitarist Chris Garza. “Today we’re back where it all started — writing music together in the same room where the first three albums were created. We’re incredibly excited to be working with Century Media Records once again as we enter the next chapter of our career.”

Suicide Silence has long been an important band in heavy music, not only being the band that really put ‘Deathcore’ on the map but a band that has continued to redefine themselves and beat the odds at every turn,” added Mike Gitter, Century Media’s Vice President of A&R. “The new music I’ve heard from them has all the intensity and earmarks of their past while continuing to push into the proverbial red.”

Garza stated back in October that Suicide Silence was recording two new songs with producer Taylor Young (Nails, Twitching Tongues), and that the band was “very focused.”

“We’re all very focused. We’ve not been in the same room like this for the past 15 years. It’s taken us a long time for us to get to where we are now. We’re a band. We write music in the same room and we don’t have a laptop in front of us. Throughout pandemics and tragedies, money disappearing, girlfriends, wives, we still go here and get in a same room and do music together as a band. I can say straight up, we’re the only band in our genre that does that, and that’s not a good thing either.

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Suicide Silence and Carnifex will hit the road this Spring for their Chaos & Carnage Tour. The tour will also feature Lorna Shore, Upon A Burning Body, AngelMaker, and Distant.

5/6 Sacramento, CA – Ace of Spades
5/7 Portland, OR – Bossanova Ballroom
5/8 Seattle, WA – El Corazon
5/10 Grand Junction, CO – Mesa Theater
5/11 Denver, CO – Oriental Theater
5/13 Minneapolis, MN – Cabooze
5/14 Chicago, IL – WC Social Club
5/15 Pontiac, MI – Crofoot
5/17 Columbus, OH – King of Clubs
5/18 Pittsburgh, PA – Jergels
5/19 Boston, MA – Big Night Live
5/20 New York, NY – Gramercy Theatre
5/21 Reading, PA – Reverb
5/22 Baltimore, MD – Soundstage
5/24 Atlanta, GA – The Masquerade
5/25 Tampa, FL – Orpheum
5/27 Arlington, TX – Choctaw Stadium (‘So What?! Festival’)
5/28 Houston, TX – Warehouse Live
5/29 San Antonio, TX – Paper Tiger
5/31 Albuquerque, NM – El Rey Theatre
6/1 Mesa, AZ – Nile Theatre
6/2 Las Vegas, NV – 24 Oxford
6/3 Anaheim, CA – House of Blues
6/4 Los Angeles, CA – Regent Theater

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PELICAN To Reunite With Original Guitarist For Upcoming Shows, Announces Early Album Reissues


Pelican will return to action in 2022 after a few years of unintentional hiatus. The band has announced they’ll reissue their first three albums featuring “rarities, never-before-heard outtakes, demos, painstakingly remastered audio, and more” via Thrill Jockey, and will hit the stage with original guitarist Laurent Schoeder-Lebec.

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Schoeder-Lebec quit in 2012 and was replaced by Dallas Thomas, who recently left the band.

“Hey all – we hope you have been keeping as well as possible since our band slipped into unintended dormancy at the end of 2019. Though the world remains as erratic today as it was when we put our summer 2020 dates on ice, we’re thrilled (if a bit cautiously optimistic) to announce our intention to get back to work this year, including a slew of dates in Europe this Summer with a few more to come later in the year.

“The dates include our return to Dunk!Festival, rescheduled appearances at Hellfest and Freak Valley Festival, and a handful of headline shows. As with most everything these days, these performances are contingent on mitigation of the ongoing pandemic, so we urge everyone to continue to stay safe.

“Though supply chain woes render the timing somewhat unpredictable, the shows will roughly coincide with a the first phase of a thorough and long-gestating archival project we’ve been working on over the course of the pandemic: deluxe reissues of our first three albums via their new label home Thrill Jockey Records.

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“Details for these are still pending, but you can expect rarities, never-before-heard outtakes, demos, painstakingly remastered audio, and more. We are so excited for the opportunity to breathe new life into these formative works.

“The bittersweet aura hanging over these developments is that our longtime guitarist Dallas Thomas has parted ways with the band in favor of other pursuits. He’s been an intrinsic component of our live shows since 2011, joining in 2012 as a full fledged member in time for his integral and indispensable contributions to 2013’s Forever Becoming and 2019’s Nighttime Stories. The band will not be the same without him and we can’t thank him enough for the years of incredible shows, recordings, riffs, and wild stories he shared with us.

“We do have a solution in place for our 2022 dates which will hopefully allay concerns and come as a welcome development to longtime fans of the band: joining us for the upcoming shows will be founding guitarist Laurent Schoeder-Lebec. We haven’t had the opportunity to share a stage with him since 2011 and we couldn’t be more thrilled that he’s agreed to get back into the thick of it with us.

“Seeing as the last two years of the band has been spent in a somewhat uncharacteristic mode of reflecting on our past, it feels like a synergistic development that we can now channel this same energy on stage, reflecting the past through the prism of the present.”

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BRUCE DICKINSON Names The Most Underrated IRON MAIDEN Song


Iron Maiden vocalist Bruce Dickinson is out on the road doing his spoken word tour and answering questions from fans. During a stop in Tampa, FL, Dickinson named “Total Eclipse” as the most underrated Iron Maiden song and talked about why it was a B-side.

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“Total Eclipse” was the B-side to Iron Maiden‘s 1982 “Run To The Hills” single, and was later included as a bonus track on the 1995 remaster of The Number Of The Beast (and then as track No. 8 on the 1998 remaster). Dickinson explained that “Gangland” was originally intended to be the “Run To The Hills” B-side, but the band decided the song was too good. He also mentioned that the song is devoid of guitar solos around the two minute thirty second mark because the band forgot to mix ’em in.

“‘Gangland’ went on the album, and we actually forgot to mix the guitar solos. There’s a bit in there, and there’s no guitar solo. To this day, I think we forgot!”

Catch Dickinson at one of the dates below.

1/23 – Atlanta, GA @ Tabernacle
1/24 – Raleigh, NC @ Meymandi Concert Hall at Duke Energy Center
1/26 – Nashville, TN @ Polk Theater
1/27 – Columbus, OH @ Jo Ann Davidson Theatre
1/29 – Pittsburgh, PA @ Carnegie Music Hall of Homestead
1/3 – Detroit, MI @ The Fillmore
2/1 – Buffalo, NY @ Buffalo State Performing Arts Center
2/2 – Albany, NY @ The Egg
2/4 – New York City, NY @ The Town Hall
2/5 – Boston, MA @ Schubert Theatre at the Boch Center
2/7 – Philadelphia, PA @ The Fillmore
2/8 – Washington, DC @ Warner Theatre
2/1 – Cleveland, OH @ MGM Northfield Park
2/11 – Chicago, IL @ Vic Theatre
2/13 – Minneapolis, MN @ Pantages Theatre
2/14 – Milwaukee, WI @ Pabst Theater
2/16 – Des Moines, IA @ Hoyt Sherman Place Theatre
2/17 – Oklahoma City, OK @ Rose State College Hudiburg Chevrolet Center
2/19 – Kansas City, MO @ Uptown Theater
2/2 – Denver, CO @ Paramount Theatre
2/22 – Dallas, TX @ Majestic Theatre
2/23 – Houston, TX @ Stafford Centre
2/24 – Austin, TX @ Paramount Theatre
2/26 – Phoenix, AZ @ Mesa Arts Center
2/28 – San Diego, CA @ Balboa Theatre
3/1 – Los Angeles, CA @ Orpheum Theatre
3/3 – San Francisco, CA @ Palace of Fine Arts
3/4 – Portland, OR @ Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall
3/6 – Seattle, WA @ The Moore Theatre
3/12 – Las Vegas, NV @ House Of Blues
3/14 – Vancouver, BC @ Massey Theatre
3/16 – Victoria, BC @ Royal Theatre
3/18 – Edmonton, AB @ Winspear Centre
3/2 – Winnipeg, MB @ Burton Cummings Theatre
3/21 – Calgary, AB @ Jack Singer Concert Hall
3/23 – Montreal, QC @ MTELUS
3/26 – Ottawa @ Algonquin Commons Theatre
3/27 – Quebec City, QC @ Palais Montcalm
3/29 – Hamilton, ON @ FirstOntario Concert Hall
3/3 – Kitchener, ON @ Centre in the Square

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[via EON Music]

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ROB ZOMBIE Shows Off New Filming Location For The Munsters


Rob Zombie is working on his reboot of The Munsters and has once again taken to Instagram to show off a new filming location in Budapest. Zombie doesn’t specify exactly where the creepy castle is in the city, but still – the man is dead on with saying there are “damn fine locations” around.

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In the latest Munsters reboot news, Zombie also unveiled Catherine Schell as Zoya Krupp. Schell originally retired from acting in the ’90s, though came out of retirement to play Grand Duchess Valeria in the 2020 series Dracula.

“MUNSTERS CASTING NEWS! I am thrilled to bring you the first photo from the set of CATHERINE SCHELL as Zoya Krupp. 🎥 I am sure you all remember Catherine as Maya from Space: 1999 or perhaps from Roy Ward Baker’s Moon Zero Two… or On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, the Dr. Who episode City of Death or her films with Peter Sellers The Return of the Pink Panther and The Prisoner of Zenda. 👍🏼 Catherine retired from acting in the 90’s , but now she is back and we are so happy to have her join us on THE MUNSTERS!”

Zombie recently revealed that Jeff Daniel Phillips will play Herman Munster, Sheri Moon Zombie will play Lily Munster, and Dan Roebuck will play Grandpa Munster. The Munsters movie is currently being filmed in Budapest. Jorge Garcia and Cassandra Peterson are rumored to be involved in the project as well, but Zombie hasn’t said anything yet.

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WARDRUNA Streams Hypnotizing Live Version Of “Solringen”


Wardruna will release a new live in-studio album Kvitravn – First Flight Of The White Raven on April 22, and is now streaming their performance of the 2013 track “Solringen.” The album was originally streamed under the First Flight Of The White Raven name on March 26, 2021.

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“‘Solringen’ is a song originally released on the album Runaljod – Yggdrasil. Even though it quickly became a popular track amongst our listeners, it wasn’t until late 2019 we first got around to performing it live,” said said Wardruna mastermind Einar Selvik. “When taking the song from the studio to the stage, I really felt it needed a slightly different approach, more specifically adapted for the concert format”

“In earlier tradition the women of the household on a farm had the task of going out into the fields around midsummer and wake up the elves dwelling there with rhymes and songs to encourage them to ensure growth and good crops. These songs and traditions have now mostly passed into oblivion. The initial idea behind ‘Solringen’ is that new songs might wake them once again.”

Pre-orders for Kvitravn – First Flight Of The White Raven are available here.

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SOULFLY Once Again Recruits FEAR FACTORY Guitarist For Upcoming Tour


Soulfly has recruited Fear Factory guitarist Dino Cazares as their live guitarist for the second tour in a row. Cazares continues to fill the shoes of ex-guitarist Marc Rizzo, who quit the band in August 2021 because he felt Soulfly management didn’t support him throughout the pandemic.

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Soulfly would like to welcome back our brother/legend Dino Cazares to share the stage once again with us! Round One was amazing!” said Soulfly guitarist and vocalist Dino Cazares. “The Tribe in other cities will now get the chance to see this epic lineup, playing classic trax and some surprises from our new record!”

“I will reenter the riff vortex with the Soulfly Tribe!” added Cazares. “I look forward to rejoining Max and La Familia on their U.S. tour, destroying stages with an avalanche of classic anthems and brand new songs.”

Soulfly began playing a new song called “Filth Upon Filth” on their last tour, so it’s probably safe to assume there’s a new record coming soon. Catch Soulfly on tour with 200 Stab Wounds and Short Fuse at one of the dates below.

w/ Short Fuse

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2/7 Las Vegas, NV – Rockstar Bar
2/8 Palmdale, CA – Transplants
2/9 Oxnard, CA – Oxnard PAC
2/10 Fresno, CA – Strummer’s
2/11 Santa Cruz, CA – Atrium
2/12 Reno, NV. – Virginia Street Brewhouse
2/14 Berkeley, CA – Cornerstone
2/15 Roseville, CA – Goldfield Trading Post
2/16 Eugene, OR – WOW Hall
2/17 Portland, OR – BossaNova Ballroom
2/18 Seattle, WA – El Corazon
2/19 Tacoma, WA – Fawcett Hall at Alma Mater
2/20 Spokane, WA – Big Dipper
2/21 Spokane, WA – Big Dipper

w/ 200 Stab Wounds

2/23 Great Falls, MT – The Newberry
2/24 Billings, MT – Pub Station
2/25 Casper, WY – Gaslight Social
2/26 Greeley, CO – Moxi Theater (no 200 Stab Wounds)
2/28 Fargo, ND – The Aquarium
3/1 Minneapolis, MN – Cabooze
3/2 Milwaukee, WI – Miramar Theater
3/3 Hobart, IN – Hobart Theater
3/4 Lombard, IL – Brauer House
3/5 Cincinnati, OH – Riverfront Live
3/6 Nashville, TN – Basement East
3/8 Memphis, TN – Growler’s
3/9 Little Rock, TX – Little Rock Music Hall

Soulfly only

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3/10 Oklahoma City, OK – Whiskey Nights
3/11 Baton Rouge, LA – Chelsea’s
3/12 Ft. Worth, TX – Rail Club
3/13 Shreveport, LA – The Sand Bar
3/15 Corpus Christi, TX – House of Rock
3/16 McAllen, TX – Cine El Rey Theatre
3/17 Laredo, TX – Cold Brew Rock Bar
3/19 Gallup, NM – The Juggernaut Music

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BLACK SABBATH Will Release A TONY MARTIN-Era Box Set This Year


Tony Martin sang for Black Sabbath between 1987 and 1991, and then again between 1993 and 1997. Martin sang on the albums The Eternal Idol, Headless Cross, Tyr, Cross Purposes, and Forbidden, all of which are largely unavailable. Martin recently revealed that Black Sabbath struck a record deal for his five albums with the band, and now he’s got some more details on what exactly that means.

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Martin said in an interview with The Ron Keel Podcast that there will be a box set of all his Black Sabbath material coming in 2022. Martin doesn’t elaborate on if that also means they’ll finally hit streaming services (only The Eternal Idol is currently available on all streaming services), but here’s hoping.

“I only found out [recently]. I had no idea. You don’t get information very much from the Sabbath camp, really; they’re very protective of their thing. So I only found out yesterday that they’ve now got a record deal for them. And I don’t know what date they’re planning on to release this stuff, but it’s this year. And what I do know is that it won’t be individual albums; it’ll be a box set of the Tony Martin era.

“But they’ve got a deal for it now, and that was always the problem before — it’s not out there and you can’t get it because it’s not on sale. And similarly, you don’t get royalties — I don’t get paid a penny from the sales ’cause it’s not on sale. So why would you? But now if that all changes and this year they manage to get that released, oh, man — there’s gonna be a lot of Tony Martin stuff out there.”

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got some money to put away from when this box set is announced.

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BLOODYWOOD Combines Nü-Grooves With Indian Folk On New Song “Aaj”


Bloodywood is now streaming their new single “Aaj.” The single combines some heavy nü-grooves with traditional Indian folk instruments like the dhol, a melancholic flute, and the single stringed tumbi. Bloodywood also employs English lyrics in the verses and Hindi/Punjabi lyrics in the choruses, making for an excellent bi-lingual banger.

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“The decision to be bilingual, vocally speaking, was a natural one that we didn’t really think about,” said Bloodywood on the bi-lingual approach. “It just felt like the way to go, and it definitely adds a different dimension to our sound. We’re happy to share that people feel the emotion and understand the sentiment even if they don’t speak the language (though we did get requests for translations and subtitles, which you’ll find in all our songs now).

“The moment we knew that beyond a doubt was when we played a sold out show in Paris and had an amazing audience of French people sing the chorus back at us in perfect Hindi. They were so loud and clear that we couldn’t hear Jayant!”

Bloodywood will release Rakshak on February 18. Pre-orders are available here in the US and here in Europe.

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MELVINS Recruits SOUNDGARDEN Drummer For “Spoonman” Cover


We’re not even one full month in 2022 and there’s already a brand new Melvins EP called Lord Of The Flies. The EP features two songs from the upcoming and unannounced Melvins album, a B-side, and a cover of Soundgarden‘s 1994 track “Spoonman” featuring Soundgarden drummer Matt Cameron. It’s a sludgy cover that feels more like ’90s Melvins than anything else, and that rules.

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“We recently recorded a cover of Soundgarden‘s song ‘Spoonman’ with Dale and Matt Cameron (Soundgarden, Pearl Jam, etc) on double-drum duty and Steven McDonald on bass, recorded by Toshi Kasai. Here’s the official video by Jesse Nieminen. Share it far and wide!”

Grab a copy of Lord Of The Flies here.

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Check Out MARTY FRIEDMAN Covering DAVID BOWIE With DEAFHEAVEN & KYLESA Members


Two Minutes To Late Night is now streaming their very shreddy cover of David Bowie‘s 1976 track “Station To Station.” The cover features the impressive lineup of guitarists Marty Friedman (ex-Megadeth), Laura Pleasents (ex-Kylesa, The Discussion), and Jordan “Gwarsenio Hall” Olds (Two Minutes To Late Night) alongside bassist Chris Johnson (Deafheaven, Doomriders), drummer John Rice (Uncle Acid & The Deadbeats, ex-Job For A Cowboy), and keyboardist Emily Lee (Shearwater, Loma, Snake Oil, Droneflower).

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“Next stop: four guitar solos. ALL ABOARD! Please enjoy our 53rd bedroom cover made with the support of Patreon. Become a Patreon patron today and get access to exclusive rewards like patches, t-shirts, even custom songs! Plus, you get to see every cover we make before it publicly premieres http://www.twominutestolatenight.com

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ANTHRAX’s SCOTT IAN Memorializes His Father-In-Law MEAT LOAF


Anthrax guitarist Scott Ian paid tribute to his father-in-law Meat Loaf in a new Instagram post. Ian said he feels confident that more great stories about Meat Loaf will surface over time, but for now he just wants to thank everyone for their well-wishes. Ian has been married to Meat Loaf‘s daughter Pearl Aday for 11 years.

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“There are so many stories to tell, and I know they will all be told over time. For now, what I know is that Meat’s legacy will live on through his family – Pearl, Amanda and Revel. Their forever love for their father/grandfather (Papa Meat) outweighs the heaviness of their hearts.

“Thank you to everyone for the outpouring of love, we feel it.

“I love you Meat.”

Meat Loaf passed away at 74 years old last week.

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ROADKILLER Streams “Slicker Than Oil” Featuring MUNICIPAL WASTE’s Drummer


Roadkiller is here to bring some high-speed, punk-infused heavy metal to your ears with “Slicker Than Oil” alongside legendary drummer Dave Witte (Municipal Waste, ex-Discordance Axis, ex-Human Remains). It also certainly doesn’t hurt that the drone-filmed music video for the single looks cool as hell!

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“This is the second single off of my upcoming record Pick Of The Litter, featuring the inimitable Dave Witte who nailed my song ‘Slicker than Oil.’ We shot down at Graffiti Pier, directed and filmed by my awesome crust-lord, drone pilot friend; Botgrinder.”

Pick Of The Litter will be out later this year.

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Your EDM Q&A: Chris Ianuzzi Talks Envelope Pushing and the Endless ‘Maze’ that Is Experimental Music [Video]


Her at Your EDM, we’ve long carried the belief that EDM and other forms of electronic music wouldn’t be where they are with experimental artists. Mechanizing audio was originally the discipline of scientists, after all, and experimental musicians always seem to have that mad scientist arc.

Whether we’re talking Philip Glass, Brian Eno, Musique Concrète or more contemporary curious artists like Hans Zimmer, Venetian Snares, Aphex Twin and even Noisia, tinkering with sounds, mods and recording techniques factors in just as much as composition, emotion and vibes. It’s just the way these artists’ brains work, and thank goodness they do. Who else is going to push the boundaries of EDM and continue to move it forward? You don’t progress genres by throwing cake and humping the decks, that’s for sure.

Because there are so many famous-cake throwers and deck-humpers around and also because of the slightly elusive and complex nature of the experimental electronic artist, there’s a bit of a dearth of interviews with these beautiful minds on Your EDM. Luckily, we’ve finally reeled one in.

YEDM has been following Chris Ianuzzi for some time now, since his days in the equally experimental but more rock-oriented band Sluka to his ultra-experimental solo project I, Synthesist to his recent releases under his given name, the Olga In a Black Hole EP and Planeteria LP. With those symbiotic releases somewhat categorizable as IDM, Ianuzzi has pulled out all the stops with his upcoming LP, Maze. Released slowly as singles over the past six months, the full and fully tweaked Maze will be out in March.

Maze Ianuzzi both returning to form and going fully formless, with some of the tracks almost having a full-on rock or pop structure and others being borderline chaotic. With an almost joyful shirking of genre and style, Maze does more than just push the limits of music and sound; it laughs in the face of those limits.

With Maze set to be one of those albums that pushes the electronic music universe to expand just a bit more, it seemed a prudent time to see if we could sit down and pick one of these magnificent experimental minds, and luckily Ianuzzi agreed to a Q&A. What follows is one of the most descriptive and entertaining descriptions of an artist’s process we’ve heretofore seen on YEDM. If you’ve ever wondered how these guys think, Chris Ianuzzi has provided an excellent window. Hold on tight, embrace the chaos and read on.

Why did you want to release Maze in a series of singles rather than all at once? Have you found it easier or more difficult to do it this way? How many tracks are left to go?

All the tracks have essentially been released in one way or another. I always think creating music is part of a period in time. Music can be presented like a book with chapters. When someone suggested that I try releasing singles before the full album, I thought it was a great idea.

Albums require a lot of time and getting singles out does a couple of good things. First, it’s harder for people to forget about you in this low attention span world. It also gives time to allow the bigger work to develop. Lastly, releasing in singles gives the composer/producer a chance to make different versions after getting audience reactions. It creates a lot of pressure getting the stuff in the system on time and I think that’s good for me. I liked getting audience reactions from live shows, but we have a pandemic and things are different with no shows, so this creates a similar effect.

What sort of modifications have you made based on the feedback and your own observations?

December was the last month and the Piece called Maze was released. Now before the album is released I am making some developmental changes. In some cases its like “the Demos are done, lets see what I have to do.” “Live in Today” gave way to a newer version called “Sweet Over Time.” “Fantastic Hellos” is a remix of some elements from “Hello” on the Planeteria album. Then I made a different version for the album called “Cosmic Hellos” which is a combination of the two. (Laughs) I have to stop with that piece now! I’m becoming a “Hello” psycho.

I am also making a slightly different version of “March of Madness” for the album. It will be processed using the (Dolby) Atmos system, which is a form of 360 spatial audio. I’m working with some great people in Turkey making an AI video for the song too. Its going to be fantastic.

Let’s talk style a bit: a lot of these tracks on Maze seem, to the casual listener, almost to be the antithesis to your previous ventures Olga In a Black Hole and Planeteria. You’ve said, however, around the time that Olga…was released, it was meant to be a prequel to Planeteria in terms of both style and substance. Now that it’s mostly done and out, how do you think Maze relates to these other works?

I set up a challenge for myself with Planeteria. I felt that I wanted to move beyond song structure and repetitive grooves. I have been working with songs for many years with my I, Synthesist project. so, I was like a teacher not allowing old habits to be there. I think I went too far. I didn’t feel comfortable being myself sometimes. I think it was a good work-though and I went through the process and learned. I also wanted to get better with my modular synth.

By contrast the original “Hello” for example, was created in a day, it was during album mastering time. I really was like a rebel using a drum & bass groove with that. I just let loose at the end.

On closer listen, there are a lot of elements that are similar between Olga…/Planeteria and Maze, but they almost seem reversed. The ambient sound design and general woo feel are still there, for example, but they take a backseat to more organized noise elements and post punk-style vocals. Was that a conscious decision or sort of just how it flowed as you were working? What do you think it means for your overall sound and style?

I definitely had a flow (this time around). I have always worked with sound design as the core and inspiration of work. I started making music and wasn’t thinking about songs. “Infinite Prize” was definitely a song stuck in my head as I got going and then the vision of what a video could be (came to me).

As I continued making more music, song (structures) were definitely present. I then went to “Saturday Night Confession.” That was originally made for the I, Synthesist project but it was left hanging and I decided to finish it. “So Far, So Near” was originally meant to be instrumental. This new stuff was started before the release of Planeteria.

Tech talk time! The other thing that’s quite noticeable on the new tracks is the experimental side of things has been ramped up and thus the composition must have been a different process. Did you still work scoring-style due to wanting to cram all those different elements in or was it more mad scientist in the studio this time? Or both?

Both. The Mad Scientist is always there. I mean, take a look at the I, Synthesist pictures. Maze could be looked at as the fourth I, Synthesist album but I really felt the need to continue using my name and being comfortable with that.

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You’ve got a healthy dose of drone going in these tracks, but it sounds quite different than in previous work. Did you do anything differently or come up with new techniques? How big was the Moog element this time around?

I am really into my modular synthesizers and always exploring. I don’t think of trying to make drone or anything. I find things that are telling me something. Funny, I didn’t have a Moog on Planeteria. I had a modular Moog a long time ago. I did recently get a Moog Subharmonicon and I used it for some elements in “So Far So Near.” The big use of it is in the end of “Infinite Prize.” The patterns developing and changing are all done with the Sub Harmonicon’s sequencer. I hope to add a Moog with the original Moog oscillators and filters later this year.

Even with the rock-style vocals and what pop fans might call more structured track formats, the Maze tracks seem to still be pushing the boundaries of experimental electronica. What new methods or arrangements did you use to get your results? How much was programmed with modern/digital methods and how much was analog/modulators?

I spent a lot of time in my life working in rock-oriented bands, using that song structure, so some elements are part of my vocabulary. I spent a lot of time doing scoring and working with classical as well as experimental. I have a (diverse) vocabulary.

I’ve also always been known for pushing envelopes. I am not consciously here trying to be a conquistador, it just happens. I have always loved analog synthesizers as well as some digital synths, et cetera. Combining these elements can be beautiful. I think certain elements have their place the way an orchestra has instruments.

How does the experimental/sound design end of things figure in?

The Maze track “Setagaya” is a good thing to talk about (to explain how I work). It’s not a song; it is more sound design-oriented but it does have melodic and rhythmic elements that a person can latch onto. I was in a band called Sluka that was signed with a Japanese label. After the second album was finished, I was making comments about how the sounds of Tokyo were inspiring to me. I started a project that was recording sounds of Tokyo on DAT and then sampling them and making the music that it inspired with the samples. Nobody knew what in the world I was talking about then. The project was televised in Japan showing how I made the recordings and worked through it. Still no one really got it. (laughs) This was 1990, the world has changed a lot since then. OK, (maybe I am a) conquistador. Or at least an envelope pusher.

(Flash forward to “Setagaya”) and I still had some of the sounds that I recorded and decided to make something current that used them. The sounds that I recorded were from an area of Tokyo called Setagaya. The train and any things about Setagaya are a great thing (to sample even now).

What, if any, are the more philosophical or story-telling themes of Olga…/Planeteria and Maze? What do you want listeners to take away from the overall experience of these three releases?

I would like people to go on a journey within themselves to find what the pieces and songs inspire. Olga In a Black Hole began by me using a Russian soft synth called Olga. I had a reverb plugin called the Black Hole made by Eventide. So, my Olga was being played through The Black Hole. This created a vision for me to latch onto for my own creative story.

Which track or tracks on the album do you think would be best for audiences to listen to in order to get a snapshot of what the album’s about? Best track for EDM crossover fans? Experimental fans?

I think that “Hunger” is definitely an EDM crossover thing, Some even find industrial elements in it. It is very danceable an I want to hear it loud in a club. Any of the “Hellos” could fit into an EDM/drum & bass type as well. “March of Madness” also has points that could fit into the EDM crossover. I am putting that song through developments right now. As I mentioned, song inspired a fantastic computer artist and sculptor in Istanbul, Turkey. He is making an AI video for it. It’s amazing to see this develop. It is very similar in approach to what Duran Duran did with “Invisible.”

Last week we entered my lyrics into his computer and we watched paintings develop from the computer’s dream state. This is going to be a very special work. We are working over Zoom. The video for “Infinite Prize” also was created through Zoom work as everyone was in a different location.
Pandemic production,

(On the experimental/post rock end of things), I think “So Far So Near” is a great example of using song structure in development but it really expanded with the three minutes of modular world at the end as well as internal stuff. The intro has some good analog stuff. The whole song is a little over ten minutes and I will keep it like that for the album. The single was split into Side 1 and Side 2.

Of course this project is still going and not totally finished yet, but what else is on the horizon for you? Do you plan to continue this series or go in a totally different direction?

I am very interested in performing. I want to dive deeper into the analog modular synth and digital modular synths. I want to make video and music. I make video backdrops for performances.
I don’t see (Maze or anything I do) as a series but just what I do, I want to make an invitation to go on a journey. No restrictions.

Aside from that, my daughter Nina started making the Maze track “Shuttles” and I helped her finish it. She is 13 now and a fantastic pianist so I hope to work with her more in the future.

Maze will release in full in March. The singles released thus far can be steamed on Spotify and Apple Music or purchased on Bandcamp. Stay tuned to Ianuzzi’s YouTube channel for the upcoming videos mentioned in the interview.



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