From The Horse’s Mouth: Alex Weinhardt (The Black Antler) on 100 Wolves

The Black Antler

The Black Antler

In mid-2009 a duo of musical veterans from Columbus, Ohio, teamed up to form The Black Antler, a return to their metal and hardcore roots.  And considerable roots they had, guitarist/vocalist Adam Lowe, and drummer Alex Weinhardt cut their teeth in a buttload of celebrated indie and underground bands including Six Gallery, The Phantods, Inept, To Dream of Autumn to name a few. 

You Indie caught up with drummer Alex Weinhardt to talk about their LP, 100 Wolves (which drops on February 28), a ferocious record that pushes their skills to the absolute limits. This is what he said about it…

When did you begin writing the material 100 Wolves?

We started writing the material for 100 Wolves immediately after recording our previous EP.  Ryan (bass) had just joined the band and although he tracked all the bass parts on the first EP, the songs had all been written, some for a few years.  We were anxious to get his input and start creating new material and wasted no time getting to it.

What was the most difficult song to take from the initial writing stage through recording and mixing?  Why was it so troublesome?

In some ways they were all difficult.  In the initial stages of writing the first few songs as a three piece we had a little trouble finding what direction to take our material.  I remember specifically working on a song and it turned into this psyched out six-minute slow jam, that although was awesome, wasn’t the sound we were going for.

As far as the studio goes, the drums were probably the most difficult aspect of the recording process.  Some of the songs push the limits of the speed and technicality that I’m capable of playing.  Although I intentionally challenged myself with this material, it made recording a difficult process.  I think I had to do like 10 takes of “Feathers” before getting a good take.

Which of the songs on the record is most different from your original concept for the song?

That’s a tough question to answer.  Most of our songs start off as a riff, or idea and generally speaking, we aren’t sure where the song is going to end up.  As I mentioned above, there were some bumps in the road while writing these songs.  We were getting used to writing with a new member and trying out new things, some that just didn’t work.  There were many instances where we would work on a part of a song, stew on it for a few days and then come to the conclusion that it just didn’t sound like The Black Antler and move on.

Did you have any guest musicians play or sing on the record?

Nope.  100 percent The Black Antler.

Who produced the record?  What input did that person have that changed the face of the record?

We didn’t have a ‘producer’ per se.  Ben Miller did the tracking at his parents’ house in Granville, Ohio.  He has a studio that mostly consists of the gear that made up Central City Studios.  His parents also have a beautiful pool, a fridge stocked with beer, gatorade and red bull and a closet filled with every size of swimming garment you could possibly need.  Needless to say we had a great recording experience!

The tracks were mixed by Bobby Leonard at Paper Tiger Studios in Columbus, Ohio.  It was a very straightforward process that only took a few days.  Both Bobby and Ben did a great job in helping to shape the sound of the record.

Is there an overarching concept behind your new album that ties the record together?

Lyrically the songs on 100 Wolves revolve around concepts like politics, nature and the human condition.  I don’t think there are any overarching concepts that tie everything together other than we write about things that effect us.

Have you begun playing these songs live and which songs have elicited the strongest reaction from your fans?

We have been playing some of these songs since the release show of our last EP.  The title track, “100 Wolves” was the first song we wrote with Ryan and since we started playing it, it has always elicited a positive reaction from audiences.  Currently we play all of the songs as part of our set along with some newer material that will eventually be a part of a full length to be release in the future.

(Listen to The Black Antler here: http://theblackantler.com/.)

 

Bane to tour with Backtrack and Malfunction (2015)

Bane will tour the U.S. this spring with Backtrack and Malfunction in tow. The four-week trek will commence in late-March, with dates as follows:

3/26 Providence, RI @ Simons 667
3/27 Danbury, CT @ Heirloom Art Space
3/28 Amityville, NY @ Spring Mixtape Festival @Revolution Music Hall
3/29 Syracuse, NY @ Saint Claire Theater
3/30 Cleveland, OH @ Now That’s Class
3/31 Columbus, OH @ Ace of Cups
4/1 Detroit, MI @ Magic Stick
4/2 Lansing, MI @ Mac’s Bar
4/3 Chicago, IL @ Beat Kitchen
4/4 Springfield, MO @ Outland Ballroom
4/5 Denver, CO @ Marquis Theatre
4/6 Salt Lake City, UT @ Loading Dock
4/8 Seattle, WA @ El Corazon
4/9 Portland, OR @ Star Theater
4/10 San Francisco, CA @ 924 Gilman Street
4/11 Anaheim, CA @ Chain Reaction
4/12 Anaheim, CA @ Chain Reaction
4/13 San Diego, CA @ Epicentre
4/14 Phoenix, AZ @ Underground
4/15 Abilene, TX @ Primal Skate Shop
4/16 Austin, TX @ Red 7
4/17 Houston, TX @ Walter’s Downtown
4/18 Dallas, TX @ Club Dada
4/19 Lawrence, KS @ Bottleneck
4/20 Nashville, TN @ The End
4/22 Baltimore, MD @ Otto Bar
4/23 Philadelphia, PA @ Voltage
4/24 Boston, MA @ Brighton Music Hall
4/25 New York City, NY @ Studio – Webster Hall

Strange Lords (ex-Against Me!) ready 7-inch

Strange Lords, the band featuring Waylon Thornton and Andrew Seward, formerly of Against Me!, are going to release a new 7-inch. The release will be out in the spring on Housebreaker Records.

Marriages share “Skin,” tour (2015)

Listen to “Skin,” the first track to surface from Marriages’ debut full-length album Salome, now on Stereogum.com and via Soundcloud. The band is currently out on a co-headlining tour with label mates Helms Alee where they are playing new songs from Salome in a live setting before its release on April 7 via Sargent House.  Check out the full list of tour dates below.

January 23  Los Angeles, CA @ Jewels Catch One w/ Helms Alee

January 24  San Diego, CA @ The Hideout w/ Helms Alee

January 26  Phoenix, AZ @ Crescent Ballroom w/ Helms Alee

January 27  Las Vegas, NV @ Bunkhouse w/ Helms Alee

January 28  San Francisco, CA @ Hemlock Tavern w/ Helms Alee

January 30  Portland, OR @ Bunk Bar w/ Helms Alee

January 31  Seattle, WA @ Neumos w/ Helms Alee

Native Lights share “Blue Star,” tour (2015)

Tulsa, OK’s Native Lights will release their debut full-length on Passive Recordings this Spring. The self-titled album is now available for Pre-Order and is officially out March 3.

You can stream the first single right now. “Blue Star” is premiering exclusively on NPR.

Guitarist/Vocalist Bryce Chambers (Ester Drang) and Bassist Johnathon Ford (Unwed Sailor) form the core of Native Lights. The two musicians have contributed their fair share of captivating sounds in their various musical projects for 20+ years. Native Lights’ array of lush, hearty, sincere songs are indebted to the pioneering sounds of the infamous Slowdive, the 4AD instrumental outfit Dif Juz, shoegaze heavyweights My Bloody Valentine, and the dark, angular sounds of 90s rockers Codeine and The Jesus Lizard.

After releasing a 7” single titled “Blackwater,” featuring the self titled single and an Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark cover, the band recorded their debut album in the dark corridors of an abandoned cattle auction facility found somewhere in the outskirts of rural Hominy, Oklahoma. The facility’s worn facade, crumbling walls and caving ceiling felt like the perfect place to track the group’s vast, cinematic brand of shoegaze-bent discordant dream-pop.

The guerrilla approach of going into a dilapidated building and recording an album brought about untold options for cavernous untamed sounds. The band brought along a minimal recording setup, rigged up some electricity and adapted the old facility into a makeshift tracking room. For a long week in the dead of winter the band recorded by day and slept in the freezing compound at night, taking solace in the warmth of a bonfire on the front steps.

After the recording process was completed, the band travelled to Louisville, KY to mix the album with Kevin Ratterman (Young Widows, My Morning Jacket, Maserati) at his famed La La Land Studio. The end result is a hallowed somberness, painted by the sounds of Native Lights, expelled in the form of swooning leads, hollow resonance, shimmery beats, and a mournful medley of lost voices. Thus the first Native Lights full-length record was born.

MAR 03 – Wichita, KS @ Lucky’s Everyday
MAR 04 – Denver, CO @ The Walnut Room w/ Wray
MAR 05 – Ogden, UT @ ALLEGED w/ Wray
MAR 06 – Boise, ID @ Crazy Horse w/ Wray
MAR 07 – Portland, OR @ Kelly’s Olympian w/ Wray
MAR 09 – Seattle, WA @ The Rendezvous / Jewelbox Theater w/ Wray
MAR 13 – Los Angeles, CA @ The Handbag Factory w/ Wray
MAR 15 – El Paso, TX @ Lowbrow Palace w/ Wray

APR 02 – Three Links, Dallas, TX @ Three Links
APR 04 – San Antonio, TX @ The Korova w/ mewithoutYou
APR 07 – Omaha, NE @ The Waiting Room w/ mewithoutYou

Knifight cover David Bowie, tour (2015)

Austin heavy post-punk band Knifight premiere their take on a classic song from David Bowie’s Low album today via Brooklyn Vegan. Their cover of the song is a unique track not included on their forthcoming album, V. Listen to and share the track HERE. (Direct YouTube HERE.) Knifight also hit the road this month for a series of shows in the Southwest. Please see current dates below.

The band previously shared the lyric video for album track “Young Lovers”. Watch/share the video HERE. (Direct YouTube link HERE.)

will be available February 10th, 2015 on LP, CD and download via KnifightMusic.

01/29  San Antonio, TX @ Jack’s Patio Bar

02/06  Austin, TX @ Cheer Up Charlie’s

02/18  Austin, TX @ Andy’s

02/21  Conway, AR @ Bear’s Den

02/27  Beaumont, TX @ Boom Town Festival

03/26  Tulsa, OK @ SoundPony

03/27  Lawrence, KS @ Frank’s North Star

04/09  Austin, TX @ The North Door (noise set)

Hollow Sunshine readies Bring Gold for Iron Pier

Hollow Sunshine and Iron Pier (Self Defense Family, Weed Hounds) announce the upcoming release of BRING GOLD, the sophomore LP from the California shoegaze duo.

Hollow Sunshine is led by acclaimed multi-instrumentalist and visual artist Reuben Sawyer (Deafheaven, Chelsea Wolfe, Ascetic House) as well as vocalist / bassist Morgan Enos. Scheduled for an early Spring release on vinyl and digital formats, Bring Gold is the follow-up to the outfit’s 2013 debut LP, Held Above (Robotic Empire), which Pitchfork called “a sublime slice of downer pop.” Impose Magazine compared the band to “a cross-pollination between Sleep and Sunny Day Real Estate, a weird (and enjoyable) melodic take on stoner metal. ”

Integrating more harmonic song structures and guitar work than prior releases, these eight tracks are a radical jump in Hollow Sunshine’s evolution and a full realization of its thunderous shoegaze attack. Think Nothing and Jesu underpinned with sludgy, droney, post-rock guitar; Bring Gold is a fully realized artistic statement ready to take its place alongside other giants of the genre.

To be notified when pre-orders for Bring Gold launch, sign up here.

Stay tuned for more Hollow Sunshine news and song premieres from the LP in the coming months. You can follow the band on Facebook. Follow Iron Pier on Facebook and Twitter as well. For additional info, drop me a line here.

Doe ready First Four, tour (2015)

London’s Doe will release their debut LP, First Four, February 24 on Old Flame Records and Ten-Tents Records. Comprised of a handful of previously-released singles and EPs — the band’s first four releases — it features fuzzy guitars, boy/girl harmonies, and catchy pop choruses. For a taste of the record, you can stream “Julia Survived”  and “Oh, Nostalgia!,” which Impose praised for its “grungy start-and-stop melody” and “pleasantly furious chorus.”

Doe was born from a shared love of bands like Sleater-Kinney, The Breeders, and Weezer, whose influence can be heard in the trio’s own brand of hook-filled, ’90s-leaning indie-punk. Having played shows across the UK & Europe, Doe will make their US debut next month with a string of shows in NYC, including stops at Baby’s All Right, Shea Stadium, and Palisades — see below for a full list of live dates.

2/21: New York, NY @ Pianos – tickets
2/22: Brooklyn, NY @ Baby’s All Right
2/23: Brooklyn, NY @ Palisades
2/25: Brooklyn, NY @ The Grand Victory – tickets
2/26: New Brunswick, NJ @ The Court Tavern
2/27: Brooklyn, NY @ Shea Stadium (presented by Old Flame Records, w/ Radical Dads, Dead Stars, Life Size Maps, Left & Right – RSVP)

Annabel to release LP via Tiny Engines

Tiny Engines announced the release of Having It All, the third full-length from Kent, Ohio’s Annabel. The band recorded the new album with Evan Weiss of Into It. Over It. in the Summer of 2014. Tiny Engines will release the record in the Spring of 2015. Check out the video teaser for the album HERE.

The record follows up numerous releases from the band on the Count Your Lucky Stars label. Also, Annabel previously released their 2010 EP, Here We Are Tomorrow, on Tiny Engines. You can currently stream the entire Annabel discography on Bandcamp.

Also, check out an in-depth interview with Annabel from the Summer of 2014 on Half Cloth.

You Blew It! share “Your Side,” ready EP, tour (2015)

You Blew It! have teamed with Entertainment Weekly to premiere another new track, “Your Side,” off their upcoming three-song EP Pioneer of Nothing, due out from Jade Tree on January 27.  ”Your Side” demonstrates a more restrained side of the band, with Entertainment Weekly calling it ”a track where the band sets aside the crunchy guitars for a tender, sugar-sweet ballad decorated with washes of cymbals and strings.”  The EP is now available for pre-order via Jade Tree.

Listen To “Your Side” Via Entertainment Weekly

In addition to their upcoming tour dates with Tiny Moving Parts, Rozwell Kid, and Sorority Noise, You Blew It! will be playing a number of in-store performances.  An exclusive retail-only variant (hand painted and numbered jackets with vellum overlay, limited to 100) of Pioneer of Nothing will be sold at the locations below, with more stores to be announced.

In-stores:
1/27 Orlando, FL @ Park Ave Records (Record Release Show)
2/14 Chicago, IL @ Reckless Records
2/22 Asbury Park, NJ @ Holdfast Records

Exclusive retail variant:

Park Ave Records (Orlando, FL)
http://www.parkavecds.com/

Reckless Records (Chicago, IL)
http://www.reckless.com/

Holdfast Records (Asbury Park, NJ)
http://www.holdfastasburypark.net/

Bull Moose Records (Portland, ME)
http://www.bullmoose.com/

Banquet Records (Kingston UK)
http://www.banquetrecords.com/

Looney Tunes (Long Island)
http://ltcds.com/

Arrows Aim (Gainesville, FL)
www.facebook.com/ArrowsAimRecords

Twist and Shout (Denver, CO)
http://www.twistandshout.com/

The past year has been a whirlwind for the Florida quintet who released their critically-acclaimed sophomore album Keep Doing What You’re Doing last January.  The past 12 months also saw the release of their Weezer cover EP You Blue It as well as tours across the globe with the likes of Say Anything, The Front Bottoms and Modern Baseball. Pioneer of Nothing shows a marked maturation from the band, who have very much maintained their anthemic rock sensibilities but have also added a new sense of intimacy and stripped-down immediacy to their songs.  The new EP has already won early praise from a wide variety of outlets including Pitchfork, Stereogum and Spin.

You Blew It! have also announced their first North American headlining tour, sponsored by Jukely, and will be bringing Tiny Moving Parts, Rozwell Kid and Sorority Noise along for the ride.  Kicking off January 29, the dates see the band traversing the continent for the following five weeks (all tour dates below).  Tickets for all shows are on-sale now at http://youblewitfl.com.

1/29/2015  -  San Antonio, TX @ Tequila Room^
1/30/2015  -  Austin, TX @ Mohawk^
1/31/2015  -  Dallas, TX @ Club Dada^
2/02/2015  -  Albuquerque, NM @ Duke City Sound Stage^
2/03/2015  -  Phoenix, AZ @ Underground^
2/04/2015  -  Los Angeles, CA @ The Echo^
2/05/2015  -  San Diego, CA  @ VooDoo Room^
2/06/2015  -  Anaheim, CA @ Chain Reaction^
2/07/2015  -  San Francisco, CA @ Bottom of the Hill^
2/08/2015  -  Sacramento, CA @ Cafe Colonial^
2/10/2015  -  Salt Lake City, UT @ The Loading Dock^
2/11/2015  -  Denver, CO @ Marquis Theatre^
2/12/2015  -  Lawrence, KS @ Jackpot Music Hall^
2/13/2015  -  St. Louis, MO @ The Demo^
2/14/2015  -  Chicago, IL @ Beat Kitchen^
2/15/2015  -  Lansing, MI @ Mac’s Bar^
2/16/2015  -  Toronto, ON @ Hard Luck^
2/17/2014  -  Buffalo, NY @ Waiting Room^
2/18/2014  -  Pittsburgh, PA @ The Smiling Moose^
2/19/2015  -  Philadelphia, PA @ The Barbary#
2/20/2015  -  New York, NY @ Webster Hall#
2/21/2015  -  Boston, MA @ Middle East Upstairs#
2/22/2015  -  Asbury Park, NJ @ Asbury Lanes^
2/23/2015  -  Washington, DC @ DC9^
2/24/2015  -  Richmond, VA @ Strange Matter^
2/25/2015  -  Charlotte, NC @ Tremont Music Hall^
2/26/2015  -  Atlanta, GA @ Masquerade – Purgatory^
2/27/2015  -  Orlando, FL @ Will’s Pub^
2/28/2015  -  Cape Coral, FL @ Nice Guys Pizza^
3/01/2015  -  Miami, FL @ TBA^

^ = w/ Tiny Moving Parts. Rozwell Kid
# = w/ Tiny Moving Parts, Rozwell Kid, Sorority Noise