Friday, July 9, 2010

SF on LA's "SF on SF"

Prologue: I know, I know. I asked you guys for suggestions a couple days ago, and so far I haven't addressed any of them. For this I apologize. But I HAVE been rather busy out here in the "real" world, and rest assured that I'll get to those requests soon enough. I've chosen my five, and research has begun. You will see said posts within the next week or so.
As for now, they've been pre-empted.
Sometimes, you see injustice, and you just need to act on it immediately. I have seen injustice, and today's post is about righting wrongs. Am I a vigilante? A hero? A fool? Read on and decide for yourself.


Those of you who have stuck around through the lean times (read as: the least three weeks or so) might have noticed a couple things: A) Posting has slowed down here at IC a little bit and B) The majority of posts in the last six or seven days have been part of Brother Seanford's 'SF on SF' series. The most diligent readers amongst you might have noticed a third thing, which we will refer to as "Thing C": Brother Seanford (right), author of said SF posts, lives in L.A.! What the heck makes him the authority on Bay Area metal?
OK, OK, Seanford, just calm down. I know what you're saying already: "Doode, I grew up in the Bay Area! C'mon Cobras, I'm 'hip' to the 'scene'! I'm totally qualified to write this series!" Sure, sure. But the truth is, you grew up in Pacifica (or "Malibu North", as I like to call it) or some shit, and, with all due respect, you've been hanging out with Dave Navarro a lot lately, and, well, let's just say your levels of "false" and "ungrim" have been extremely high lately. We're still Bros, Bro, don't get me wrong -- we'll still pound Nattys and Ice our dads together like we always have -- but maybe you should leave the 'SF on SF' posts to someone who actually lives here. Or at least use a more appropriate title, like 'LA on SF' (it's not my fault the scene sucks down there, dude).

(best thing ever?)

But hey, I'm not trying to be a dick here, man. I'd just like to take a few minutes to give a big shout-out to the "little guys" of the SF metal scene, bands that can't afford to tour, don't have huge label support, who don't spend all their time Tweeting all over everyone's Facebook about how "OMG RAD" their next show opening for some band on an off-date from Ozzfest is going to be. Sure, Greyceon, Saros, Walken, etc. are fucking great bands. But Cobras is about to drop a steaming hot pile of Bay Area metal knowledge right on your chest in a second. Brace yourself.


1) SERPENT CROWN

More observant readers may perhaps remember my brief mention of SF's own Serpent Crown in the tedious and overwrought GLOM post I published back in March. Serpent Crown, comprised of Dara Santhai (formerly of the aptly-named Santhai) on guitar and vocals and Will Carroll (of Scarecrow, Ulysses Siren, Old Grandad, Machine Head, and many others) on drums, experienced a brief lineup shuffle when Laurie (remember ORB OF CONFUSION?), bass player extraordinaire, departed for Los Angeles not long after the band's formation. Luckily, Dara and Will filled the vacant 4-string position with Dave Dinsmore (of late-era Bl'ast!) a couple months back and the shred-machine is back on track.

Above: Serpent Crown with She-Bro Laurie, rocking Thee Knockout 9/09.
Below: Serpent Crown, sans Laurie, plus Dave, laying waste to Thee Parkside 3/10.



Serpent Crown crank out some pretty damn tasty thrash'n'grind type stuff, but, if I'm not mistaken, have yet to tour. Definitely one of SF's better-kept metal secrets, sure to find a larger and more rabid audience in the near future. But you don't necessarily have to take my word for it, do you? Nahhh...

You should go download their 3 song demo over at Blog The Jerk! and decide for yourself.


2) FELL VOICES


These guys have been getting a fair amount of hype recently, which is ironic, considering how much effort they put in to remaining "obscure". But unlike most over-hyped BM bands (ahemNachtmystiumcough) these dudes actually deserve it. Sure, Fell Voices come from the desolate and frostbitten Santa Cruz Mountains (not the "Bay Area" by a LONG SHOT, right Sean?), but they play SF often enough to be considered "SF Metal", right? Sure.
I'm not much into the whole ambient/drone black metal thing that the kids seem to enjoy so much these days (I blame my short attention sp- LET'S RIDE BIKES!), but FV pull it off with aplomb and I'll tell you why: Their live show is pure intensity, far from the boring shoegaze-y experiences I've suffered through at the hands of "drone metal" bands in the past. These three guys (all rather young and not very "metal" in appearance) enter some sort of Zen trance-like state onstage (or in a living room or bedroom, depending on the gig), with their drummer pulling off some of the most insane, extended 20-minute blastbeat runs I've ever witnessed. "Catharsis" is a word that comes quickly to mind at a Fell Voices show, as the band (who perform without the aid of vocal mics) shriek their vocals into the ether, sweat pouring and amps blaring. At times frightening, at times inspiring and oddly desperate, an FV show is one 100% endorsed by IC, check them out if you ever get a chance.


Oh yeah, you can get their self-titled EP (above) off of Cosmic Hearse. Read Aesop's writeup too, if you haven't already.


3) GENESIS CLIMBER


Get a load of that album cover, man. Fuck.

The Genesis Climber story starts with my Bro Clint, one of the busiest fucking drummers in the Bay Area and also one of the best. In addition to his work in Genesis Climber, Clint also plays in a thrash band with his two little brothers called Owl AND in a hardcore band called Acts of Sedition. But that's not all! He ALSO played in the previously-linked ORB OF CONFUSION, as well as playing in the current incarnation of ORB. But more on that later.
Genesis Climber, like spraying Windex on your weed, will majorly "enhance your stone". They do that whole epic doom/stoner/sludge thing, but with a weird, happy, major-key subtext that adds an extra dimension of 'WTF' to the whole thing. I hear Brainoil in there, but the prog flourishes, lengthy compositions, and outer-space keyboard interludes keep it from becoming too obvious of a comparison. Their double LP (pictured above - who still puts out a double LP? Bonus points!) is an epic journey into stony, stony, lands, a place where all Bros have beards and magical wizards cast lightning bolts into advancing hordes of angry orcs. I am very much enamored with Genesis Climber right now.
This band has no guitarist, just two bass players and a drummer. Although they've tried to remain internet-anonymous so far, traces of their existence can be found online, from the above-linked fan Myspace to their amazing merch page (where you can order the double LP or their 7") to another page listing tour dates (they're on the East Coast right now -- my apologies to anyone trying catch their show with BUTT PISS, it happened last month). Unfortunately, I don't have a demo or anything to upload, but you should take a minute to research Genesis Climber anyway. After you're sold (and you will be), go buy their records. And stone out on them. HARD.




4) HAZZARD'S CURE


Here's that "current incarnation" of Orb of Confusion I was referring to earlier. After Laurie (remember her?) left Orb, Shane from Walken (remember them?) joined on bass and vocals. Shane is a Bro among Bros, probably the stoniest dude I know, and also probably the only guy who could fill Laurie's shoes in this band. After a brief stint as "Waylin' Jenocide" (hyuck hyuck) these dudes settled on the name Hazzard's Cure and began writing some of the heaviest, weirdest, and most epic jams that SF has seen in a long time. Watch them performing "Great Dishonor" at a recent house show in Oakland. Epic:


Hazzard's Cure at Eric's B-day 2.7.2010 "Great Dishonor"



Hazzard's Cure haven't played much so far, but I see them doing big things in the future. Their sound incorporates the gruff riffadelia that made High on Fire great, without the polish or pretense that was their downfall. Oh, did I mention that I've been jamming with Hazzard's guitarist Chris? Because I have. Anyone know a good drummer?

You can download The Cure's first demo tape over at Clint's blog. When their full-length comes out, you better fucking buy it.




5) SOLAR STONER


Speaking of Shane from Walken/Hazzard's Cure, he is also the sole member of our final band today, the legendary SOLAR STONER. The screengrab from Solar's Myspace page shown above pretty much sums it up, but I would also add that his other interests involve space travel, smoking weed with Jesus, spaceships, and smoking weed in space.


You want "obscure"? Solar Stoner DOESN'T EVEN HAVE ANY SONGS RECORDED. SOLAR STONER ALMOST NEVER PLAYS LIVE.
But when he does, he rocks a cape, a bandanna, and his trusty bong. Solar Stoner came from Planet Stonertopia to share his message of peace and stoniness with the people of Earth. Maybe someday we will be ready to hear it.

Mommy, where do unicorns come from?

Go ahead, look up "Bro" in the dictionary.

So there you have it: SF on SF. What's REALLY going on. Now go buy stuff, and check these bands out when they go on tour.

BYE!

Epilogue: Of course all the shit-talking amongst staffers here at IllCon is in good fun. I'd like to thank the crew here (especially Seanford, Aylmer, and Manslaughter) for keeping it real while I've been absent, and keeping the sweet tunes flowing. You guys rule drool!

20 comments:

Hansonicus said...

Genesis Climber just played in Milwaukee for Quest For Fire's LP release and ruled yet again. I was actually wondering why you hadn't mentioned them before, but wonder no more do I.

SEANFORD said...

Me and some bros were actually pounding some natty last night. Your mom’s natty.

SEANFORD said...

Also, this is a much more appropriate picture of us.

Sensual fist-bump.

Manslaughter said...

Dude. OWL was the best band I've seen in like, YEARS. Those brothers have a gene to shred.

Aylmer said...

Since the days of yore, the SF/Bay area (or whatever you damn hippies call it) has always produced my favourite music. I don't know why. But I guess it's why I gravitated to this here blog.

But if a dude in LA who grew up in SF has no business writing about it, WHAT ABOUT SOMEONE WHO LIVES 7,500 MILES AWAY ON ANOTHER FUCKING CONTINENT??! (but I will anyway)

abdul alhazred said...

Hup, Genesis Climber's here in a matter of days and there's no fliers nor word of mouth! I was prepared to make some smart-ass comment but now I've got shit to figure out, and I'd better go buy some weed. Good looking out, Cobras.

Manslaughter said...

I SMOKED WEED WITH GHANDI... THAT MOTHER FUCKER STILL WASN'T HUUUNGGRRRYYY....

Shelby Cobras said...

Solar really needs to put out a 7" or something. That should would go platinum in like 2 minutes.

The Thing That Should Not Be said...

Genesis Climber sound AMAZING. Thanks for hipping me to 'em. Any chance you guys could put up a link to some Owl stuff? I'm intrigued....

Shelby Cobras said...

I don't think they've "officially" released anything, but you can check out their tunes here:

http://www.myspace.com/owldeathlife

The Thing That Should Not Be said...

Splendid work m'boy! I'm checkin' 'em out right......NOW.

The Thing That Should Not Be said...

Checked 'em. They rip. As does Golden Axe. You rule.

Manslaughter said...

I bought Clint's lil bro (he's 15) a 40 and watched in amazment as he went off talking about dragon slaying and shit while climbing on top of his marshall stack in a crowded living room shredding so hard it made my eyeballs spin. Then me and Clint's gf took him to Vitus and he hit on all our friends!!! HAHAHAHAHAHAH i love kids. I'm such a PUMA.

gooniestorm said...

this list sucks because it does not include THRIPS, FLOOD or PIGS, my favorite relatively-unknown-heavy-as-fuck-bay-area-bands, who all happen to be total bros as well. GENESIS CLIMBER are really fucking good, though.

Shelby Cobras said...

Quit making up band names Jason

gooniestorm said...

i make up better band names than those, and then i make the mistake of going on the internet and finding out there's a hippy jam band called ERGOT and a pop-punk band called DOLLAR MENU and a hipster band called THE TENDERLOINS. so i'll just give up and keep singing in a band called GO LIKE THIS. uhg. anyway, all those bands i mentioned in my last comment rule, go see them. THRIPS will even get you stoned.

Shelby Cobras said...

Word. I've heard Pig and Flood are great, never seen 'em live. This is the first I've heard of Thrips, I'll ahve to investigate...

Bruce said...

Clint and Leo were also in Hotblack Desiato with me and Bryce (from Hollow Mirrors). Clint and I have been working on a blog that will eventually have all our recordings available for download.

http://deadfortaxpurposes.blogspot.com/

Shelby Cobras said...

Indeed it was remiss for me not to mention Hotblack Desiato. I linked to Boca de Fuma in the Hazzard's Cure section, permanent link on the way...

Manslaughter said...

Yeah I posted a link to Hotblack Desiato's blog a while back, although the full length link no worky. Need to fix it yo.