2008 party james curcio

Solipsistic Nation: Karsh Kale, Ogre (Ohgr Skinny Puppy), Tim Skold (Manson KMFDM), Hoodoo Engine

From Solipsistic Nation:

In the last couple of weeks I learned that Karsh Kale, Tim Sköld, Nivek Ogre and HoodooEngine had released or were about to release new albums. I dig them all so I do what I do sent out the emails and made the phone calls. There were other musicians, labels and festivals I wanted to feature on the show as well but they didn’t happen due to availability and time constraints and before I knew it, this week’s show had been distilled into a gem of greatness.

I discovered Karsh Kale right about the same time I discovered the Asian Massive (or Asian Underground) scene. Over the years I watched the careers of Karsh Kale, Asian Dub Foundation and others grow over the years and it’s a wonder that I haven’t had someone like Karsh on the show earlier. Karsh has released six albums and recorded and performed with everyone from Zakir Hussain to Yoko Ono. Karsh’s latest album,Cinema, is his most ambitious album to date. It’s big, bold and melodramatic, and Karsh’s experience scoring films has had an impact on the scope of Cinema.

Tim Sköld was another surprise! Before I knew it, one night after work I found myself in front of a microphone talking to Tim about his long career, from his rock roots in bands like Kingpin and Shotgun Messiah and then later playing with the likes of KMFDM and Marilyn Manson. Tim also released a solo album back in 1996 and 15 years later he’s followed it up with Anomie, due out May 10th. Tim was great to talk with and I found that he’s as much an agent provocateur in person as he is in his music. I also had some great questions to ask him from folks like Jeremy and Royb0t from Twitter and Facebook.

Ogre’s is set to release a second album with ohGr called unDeveloped that also due to be released May 10th. Ogre and Skinny Puppy have scored the post apocalyptic soundtrack to our lives for nearly 30 years. While Skinny Puppy was my introduction into industrial music, there’s industrial music and then there’s Skinny Puppy. They’re in their own category and to call them industrial is kind of limiting. I was curious to see what directions Ogre would explore through ohGr and to be honest, I didn’t like unDeveloped at first. As Ogre mentions during our chat, people rarely give music full attention because they’re usually multitasking while they’re listening to music. I was doing the same thing with unDeveloped but one night while I was going out for a run I listened to unDeveloped and without being aware of it I found myself lost in the album and now I think it’s one of my favorite album of 2011.

Once I finally realized that Tim and Ogre were going to be guests on this week’s show I knew I had to include Hoodoo Engine. I’ve wanted to play tracks from their EgoWhore album since it was released in 2010 but it was just one of those scheduling things. Hoodoo Engine would be perfect for today’s show and to top it off, they’re gearing up to release their new album, Murder the World, and it’s more wretched and evil than EgoWhore, if such a thing is even possible. The core of Hoodoo Engine is Marz233, James Curcio and Johann Ess. Just to be above board, both James and I are on the Alterati Network, but I’ve known James long before Alterati when I interviewed him about his book, Join My Cult. While you anxiously wait for the release of Murder the World you can watch Clark, a gonzo mockumentary reality show art film surrounding the struggles of an independent artist in a capitalist world. 

Hoodoo Engine Primary Members

(Not pictured: Iron Will, Scott Landes, & The Illuminist)
Oh, special thanks to tricil for providing the incidental music during my interviews with Tim and Hoodoo Engine. While I was putting together today’s show I realized that I didn’t have any instrumental music from either of them and went on Twitter and asked if anyone had some tracks I could use for music beds. tricil stepped responded in minutes and generously let me use his tracks “rcc3″ and “conserve destroy.” There are links to download those two tracks below.

(Direct download

2008 party james curcio

Two Headed Monster

(Photo by Matthew Cooke.)

In my opinion, Collide’s recent release, Two Headed Monster, is both a culmination and a departure from their past work. Though it may remain in the same rack in the record store (those still exist, right?), you can feel that a maturation has taken place.

Contrary to opinion, maturation of this nature doesn’t simply come with time. As many artists prove, you can create and re-create the same thing for a lifetime, if you so choose. There is a deceptive, almost infinite freedom provided by working on projects exclusively in the studio, as much of Collide’s previous work has been. Sometimes those boundless 3 a.m.-in-the-studio possibilities can become a creatively stagnating trap. I’m happy they managed to avoid that trap, instead creating a thickly-textured, lively album that stands up to many listens.

As some of you probably already know, I’m not a fan of regurgitating the experience of listening to an album in an attempt to entice you into buying it. (Though as that goes, the Fearnet.com review was pretty good.) Rather, I leave it to you to check it out, and form your own opinion. The process that created a work is always most interesting to me, so I am happy that I had the chance to talk to kaRIN and statik about how this album came into being…

James Curcio: The first thing that stood out to me on this album was that it seemed to be more collaborative than your previous work. Correct me if I’m wrong on this, but it feels to me that Collide really took a step forward in that regard, and several others. After so many years with the two of you primarily working as a “two headed monster” (as it were), what was it like opening the songwriting process up to other band members and contributors?

kaRIN: The primary song writing for Collide is still primarily Statik and myself. Over the years, we are just trying to evolve as much as we can and not make the same songs over again. We were very lucky to have gathered up some great live players, so the live influence and the fact that all of our live members contributed to each of the songs is definitely evident on Two Headed Monster.

(Read the full interview on Alterati.com.)
2008 party james curcio

Scott Landes of Collide, a collaborative profile

Next week- supposing I can finally kick the plague that's been ravaging my innards- I'm going to be writing a review of Collide's recent release Two Headed Monster. It'll run both on Alterati.com and Greylodge.org. This album has been three years in the making, and as you may have already heard, showcases Danny Carey from Tool and Dean Garcia from Curve, as well as the members of the live band they assembled.

Video for Euphoria, off of Collide's previous album.

Before then, however, I wanted to give a shout out to an ex-bandmate and good friend of mine, who happens to be a member of that live band- Scott Landes. The fact of that matter is that oftentimes the headliners steal all the oxygen from the room- which isn't to say that it isn't warranted. (My respect for what kaRIN and statiK have done aside, I won't deny an almost fanboy-ish love for Danny Carey's drumming.)

However, in this case the other members, who often get referred to in the reviews as "the live band," are all talented musicians in their own right. Who knows the names of the band that played with Tori Amos when touring for Little Earthquakes, or PJ Harvey's bandmates on Rid of Me? (Don't check with Google. I'm just making a point.) This is a fault purely of the press- and the simple bottom line of what sells tickets and records.

I don't know the other members of Collide's band well enough to talk about them, though Kai Kurosawa's muscianship is clearly impressive. However, having known, worked with, and on several occasions lived with Scott, I wanted to share a little of that, and some reflections of my own work with him and how he influenced me- before jumping into a review of Collide's album on its own ground.

I first met Scott in 98 or 99 during my Sophomore year at Bard College. Our mutual friend Jim introduced us, and he promptly blew me away with the intensity of his playing- and in the process snapped at least one of the strings on the Mexican strat that I owned at the time.

From that point on, we began a many-year long collaboration which oftentimes veered into the obscure or plain bizarre. Scott got me to take music more seriously- it was hard not to, what with how passionate he is about it. He would literally stay up all night playing until his fingers bled. (And then keep playing.) One part of what motivated me to take Jazz harmony and music theory classes was so that I could keep up with him on my chosen instrument at the time, bass. On the other hand, I'd like to think that I helped him learn to take music a little less seriously. Oftentimes, we would have absurd jams so ridiculous that we'd fall over laughing. These first meanderings took the form of Bile Shower, a truly awful concoction which was a great deal of fun to create, and which wreaks pain and havoc upon whomever has the poor sense to subject themselves to it.

This did eventually lead to more serious projects, such as Babalon, but throughout I would say that there's always been an underlying comedy in most of the work we've done together, even those which got more production attention, like subQtaneous. (Here is a live recording of Waiting and a demo of Save The World, two of my favorites from what we recorded with Babalon).

After Babalon broke up, Scott joined forces with Collide, and a little while thereafter, with Mankind Is Obsolete. I had MKIO stay at my apartment several months back, when they were still on their colossal year+ tour, and got to briefly reconnect with him and meet some new faces. Here is a band operating completely without a label, living out of a van, playing gigs varying in size and grandiosity from Warp tour dates to some people in a corn field. (Read Part 1 and Part 2 of my review and interview with Mankind is Obsolete from last year before they hit the road.)

Living off of tuna and celery and playing music every night. It just goes to show that though the days of excess Guns N' Roses got to experience might be gone, if you are committed enough, you can hit the road and find an audience.

I've been involved in several musical projects since Babalon, and some studio work with Scott since. However, I've yet to meet someone with his singleminded passion, dedication and drive for the art. It is truly a rare thing. If you have the opportunity to see him perform with Collide, Mankind Is Obsolete, or any other bands that he chooses to work with, I highly suggest you take it. I always look forward to seeing him on stage, or having another opportunity to collaborate.

Look for a review of Two Headed Monster next week on Alterati.com & Greylodge.org.

(As a final note to the Fallen Nation readers out there- yes, the character of Cody was based- in part - on Scott.)
2008 party james curcio

Light to Darkness / Darkness to Light

This is a sneak peek at the soundtrack that will be used in a performance at Terra Extremitas, put on by the Foolish People. The script and soundtrack are based on some of the eschatological themes in Fallen Nation, and will serve as a bridge between that and a future project with the Foolish People, and many other creatives you may or may not have heard of...

The voices you will hear in this soundtrack will be the voices inside the actor's head. The rest you will just have to imagine- or better yet, get your ass to the event.

Also, after the Terra Extremitas event in Amsterdam, we will be providing you with a version of this soundtrack with the actors lines added- which may or may not have video, depending on how the filming at the event goes. Enjoy!

Soundtrack Credits:

Writing: James Curcio, Jason Stackhouse.

Production & Art Direction: James Curcio.

Music: P. Emerson Williams (Choronzon, Veil of Thorns), James Curcio, Scott Landes (Collide, Mankind is Obsolete), Jon Siren (Mankind is Obsolete, Hate Dept).

(Built in player should stream the mp3, it is also available for free download on this page.)
2008 party james curcio

Mankind Is Obsolete - Fresh Out Of The Studio

I just received Trapped Inside premasters from Scott Landes, a past musical collaborator and bandmate. He’s been in the studio this summer with Mankind Is Obsolete in Weed, California (I kid you not), working under the guiding hand of Sylvia Massy. (You may recognize her the producer of TOOL’s seminal albums, Opiate and Undertow, though that’s far from her only work). I’m more than happy to be able to share some of this music with you, hot off the presses, before they hit the road for a massive twelve month tour. I also managed to put some questions to the band about where they’ve been, and where they’re going.

(Part 1, on Alterati.com - intro & track "Trapped Inside.")

(Part 2, on Alterati.com - interview transcript & track "Passing Through.")
2008 party james curcio

G-spot Episode 10: Interview with kaRIN and Statik (Secret Meeting, Collide)

This episode of the G Spot (#10) Wes Unruh discusses The Secret Meeting’s new album with Noiseplus Music. Statik and kaRIN of Collide discuss Ultrashiver, the album they collaborated with along with David Garcia. This is a followup to the earlier interview, and includes the song Beautiful Noise Machine by The Secret Meeting and the song Wings of Steel, from Collide’s 2005 Album Chasing the Ghost. You might remember this interview or this review. Now here’s the real story behind The Secret Meeting. Enjoy!
2008 party james curcio

Collide interview

"Recently I reviewed Ultrashiver, the new album from The Secret Meeting. As you can no doubt tell from my review, I loved it, and I was able to arrange for an interview with kaRIN and Statik who, along with Dean Garcia, created the album. But The Secret Meeting didn’t come out of nowhere, Statik and kaRIN have been creating some of the most incredible musical works of any genre for years now, and the list of people that they’ve worked with is incredible and includes musicians from Tool, Nine Inch Nails, and Skinny Puppy. I’ve included some of their music videos so you can check out the music, style, and energy that Statik and kaRIN have been putting out there from their own label since the early nineties. What follows is only part of the interview… on my next G-Spot segment we’ll talk more about this new album and how it came together. For now, I present the first part of our conversation about Noiseplus Music, Saints & Sinners, and Collide..."

Read the full article on Alterati.com.
2008 party james curcio

Ultrashiver by The Secret Meeting.

"So, needless to say I’ve been hooked on the incredible fusion of styles that Collide weaves together on their past releases, otherwise I wouldn’t have pre-ordered Ultrashiver. kaRIN and Statik of Collide have teamed up with musician Dean Garcia of Curve to produce the line-up named ‘The Secret Meeting,’ and I’ve got the album right here. I fully expected to love it, and I am not disappointed. This is gothic music without the self-indulgence and I’ve been a fan of Statik and kaRIN for years, their release Vortex from 2005 cinched it for me. That albums massive amount of tracks across a two disk compilation still stays in heavy rotation on my hard drive. And I just love the overall aesthetic that Noiseplus Studios appears determined to inject into the music industry as it brings a much needed sense of soul to the gothic/elctro/industrial genre as a whole, so I fully expected this side project to be a complex and engaging composition."

Read the full article on Alterati.com.

A cry for help

I was hoping you guys could help me out.
If this is against the rules I'm sorry, and I'll delete it, but...
can anyone send me an .mp3 of the song Slither Thing?

I'm making a fanmix, and I'd really like this on it.
Thanks very much in advance for anyone who can help.
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