Ghost BC ticket give away

Ghost at the 9:30 Club

The mysterious Swedish band Ghost BC (they’ve been forced to add the BC for legal reasons) will be performing at the 9:30 Club on Monday, May 13th, 2013, in support of their new album, Infestissumam. Ghost is a very theatrical band live and wants to make sure as many of you get to see this show as possible so we’re giving away a pair of tickets to this show! To enter just tell me your favorite Ghost song in the comments section at the end of this post. If you need help, you can see the track listings of their two albums here and here. At 5pm EST on Friday, May 3rd, 2013, the contest will close and a winner will be chosen at random (using from all valid entries to get the free pair of tickets to the show. If I don’t hear from the winner within 24 hours then I’ll randomly pick another person to get the tickets. Be sure to enter with a valid email address you check regularly so I can contact you if you win. Don’t worry, I won’t add you to any email lists or anything like that, I hate spam too. If you enter more than once then all of your entries will be disqualified. If the contest is over when you read this or you simply can’t wait to find out if you win the contest you can buy tickets from Ticket Fly for $20 here.

Ghost made waves in the metal world when they released their debut album in 2010. Their sound is a throwback to acts of yore such as Blue Oyster Cult and Mercyful Fate. The band is completely anonymous and go on stage wearing costumes and masks that hide their identity. The Nameless Ghouls, as the band members are called, all dress the same except for their front man, Papa Emeritus II. His creepy stage presence is unmistakable and, combined with with Ghost’s music and imagery, conjures the feeling of some kind of evil church service. Their sophomore album was just released in early April and this will be the area’s first chance to see Ghost perform their catchy new material live. The supporting act on this tour is Ides Of Gemini, a haunting rock band from Los Angeles, California. This all adds up to a show that shouldn’t be missed! Now check out these recent Ghost videos below, as well as one from Ides Of Gemini, and enter the contest below!

Record Store Day 2013

Record Store Day 2013

Saturday, April 20th of 2013 is Record Store Day and that means that independent record stores around the country will be having all kinds of sales, extended hours, exclusive releases and in some cases special events at their locations as well. Not just vinyl will be on sale of course, there’s plenty of CDs and tapes too. There’s a good write up of what several of the DC area’s record stores are doing for Record Store Day in the City Paper and you can read that here. However in this post I wanted to focus on what the area’s three most “metal” record stores, Vienna Music Exchange, Shockwave Records and Black Mess, will be doing. In addition, the Sound Garden in Baltimore will have Clutch make an in store appearance where they’ll play some acoustic songs as well as sign autographs. I contacted each of these record stores and some gave me more info than others. Below is what info I’ve gathered on what each store is doing for RSD along with their addresses and links to their websites.

Vienna Music Exchange (websiteFacebook)
131 Church St NW, Vienna, VA 22124 (map)

For Record Store Day the Vienna Music Exchange will have extended hours, 11am to 7pm. This store is tiny but they’ve got a killer stock of metal, punk and other underground music. You can see a full list on their website here.

Shockwave Records (websiteFacebook)
7914 Harford Rd, Parkville, Maryland 21234 (map)

Shockwave is working hard to get the jump on other stores on Record Store Day by opening at mightnight Friday night/Saturday morning. They’ll be selling exclusive RSD merch from midnight until 2am Saturday morning and then closing only to reopen at 10am Saturday morning. You can see their list of RSD merch here

Black Mess Record Store Day

Black Mess (Facebook)
3853 Falls Rd, Baltimore, MD 21211 (map)

Black Mess specializes in extremely rare and underground metal and for Record Store Day they’ve really gone all out to bring their customers some rare and exclusive releases, some that no other store in the US will be selling for RSD. The store will be open from 12pm to 7pm Saturday, however from noon to 4pm all purchases over $100 will be 25% off and purchases of $50 or more will be 10% off. They’ll also be doing a raffle for a special exclusive gift. At about 8pm Black Mess will be vending their wares at the Sorcery show at Sergio’s Place in Silver Spring, Maryland. Details on that show are here. Black Mess has contacted many labels directly and managed to get some really amazing, limited edition test press releases. Many if not all of these items are not regularly available to the public and are limited to quantities of 10 to 20, of which Black Mess will probably only have 1 or 2 copies. These will not be available from Black Mess online, you have to buy them in person. The list of the rare and exclusive RSD merch at Black Mess follows below, I added links to the bands on the Metal Archives site so you can find more info on them if you’d like.

The following titles are hand numbered, colored vinyl and feature a silk screened one of a kind record sleeve:

Mystifier – 7 LP Box Set includes 7 LP’s, a shirt, A2 poster, sticker, booklet and individual jackets for each LP, comes in a box.
Anatomia – Dismal Slow Death Metal DBL LP
Pseudogod – Illusion of Salvation LP
Pseudogod – Triumphus Serpentis Magni LP
Rotting Christ – Triple 7″ Box Set
Demoncy – Joined in Darkness DBL LP
Root – The Revelation LP
Abigail – Black Metal Yakuza DBL LP
Faustcoven – Hellfire and Funeral Bells LP
Blasphemophagher – The 3rd Command of Absolute Chaos DBL LP
Knelt Rote – Tresspass LP

The following titles are hand numbered, on black vinyl:

Father Befouled/Demonic Rage – 7 inch
Corpsessed – Self Titled 7 inch
Uncanny – The Path of Flesh 7 inch
Profana/Obscure Infinity – 7 inch
Unconsecrated – Slave to the Grave 7 inch

Wodensthrone – Curse DBL LP
Desolate Shrine – The Sanctum of Human Darkness DBL LP
Mitochondrion – Archaeon DBL LP
Eternal Solstice – The Wish is Father to the Thought LP
Maveth – Coils of the Black Earth DBL LP
Horrendous – The Chills Up LP
Grave Ritual – Euphoric Hymns From the Altar of Death LP
Imprecation – Satanae Tenebris Infinita LP
Anguish – Through the Archdemon’s Head DBL LP
Adversarial – Prophetic Plain of Abyssal Revelation
Father Befouled – Revulsion of Seraphic Grace LP
Lantern – Below LP

Clutch Record Store Day Exclusive Lithograph

The Sound Garden (websiteFacebook)
1616 Thames St, Baltimore, MD 21231 (map)

The Sound Garden doesn’t really specialize in heavy metal but they are one of Baltimore’s largest record stores. The reason I’m listing them here is because they’ll have Clutch in the store for Record Store Day. At 3pm Clutch will be performing 2 songs acoustically in the store and they’ll be hanging around until 5pm signing autographs. To my understanding you’re supposed to buy the new Clutch album Earth Rocker to be eligible for the autograph line, but they may let you buy other Clutch items as well instead. That killer Clutch image you see above will also be available at the store as a lithograph. Clutch’s show at Rams Head Live later that night is sold out, but you’ve still got a chance to catch them at the Sound Garden. I’ve heard that they often get long lines at the Sound Garden for RSD, sometimes taking over an hour to even get in, so I suggest showing up very early if you want to see the performance.

On the Record Store Day website they have a section that has many dozens of quotes about record stores from musicians of every genre. As an added bonus I’ve scoured through them and reposted the quotes from people metal heads might find interesting below, however you can read the lengthy full list of quotes here. I hope you go visit one of our local record stores on Saturday and if I haven’t convinced you to then maybe these musicians will!

“Buy real records in real shops, or I’ll come round your house and scream at your mother.”
Ian Gillan (Deep Purple)

“I’ll never forget how I got into metal, it was a small indie record store in my home town. They had all the stuff the big guys were to afraid to stock.”
Ben Orum (All Shall Perish)

“I have watched independent record stores evaporate all over America and Europe. That’s why I go into as many as I can and buy records whenever possible. If we lose the independent record store, we lose big. Every time you buy your records at one of these places, it’s a blow to the empire.”
Henry Rollins

“Growing up, I couldn’t wait to go my local indie record store and be able to get something that no big chain store had. Whether it be an import or some kind or a rare black light poster, indie stores were way cooler.”
Jeremy Spencer (Five Finger Death Punch)

“I still find it most rewarding to go to my local record shop where I can talk to people who know all about the music they’re representing, and where I can get answers to my questions without spending 45 minutes trying to find a link to customer service which would send me an auto-reply in three days.
Support your local record shop to keep [the] musical environment vivid!”
Mikko Siren (Apocalyptica)

“Small record stores are the back bone of the indie music industry. A place where small bands and small labels can get their music into the hands of new listeners without the corporate filtration systems of mass distributors. Without small record stores, my band and label would’ve never become what they are today. I can only hope that the digital age doesn’t cause a mass-extinction of these excellent and resourceful businesses run by music fans, for music fans.”
Blake Judd (Nachtmystium)

“It was in a tiny little record store back in the early sixties in my hometown of Hannover, West Germany, where I put the headphones on to listen to a rare song that was really hard to find in those days. “My Bonnie” by Tony Sheridan & the Beat Brothers (later known as The Beatles) rocked my heart and started a passion that never left me….. RECORD STORE DAY FOREVER…….Cheers,”
Klaus Meine (Scorpions)

“I love indie record stores! My first job was working at a record store. While touring, I still always hit my favorite record stores. What is not to love about record stores? To be surrounded by millions of records, some that you know and love and others that are hidden treasures waiting to be discovered. Record stores are also a great social outing. You can meet and talk to other people that share your love for the art of music. The excitement of strolling the aisles of a cool record store will always excite me. It’s best to do it without knowing what you are looking for. I can spend hours in my favorite record store. Record stores are my candy shops!!!!”
Mike Patton (Faith No More, Fantömas, Tomahawk)

“Independent record stores are a vital source of the ever-changing cool. They respond to the street faster than the chains can. They help us telegraph to each other what’s “now” and what’s not, what we should be telling our friends and neighbors about, and what’s about to take off, or, no longer hot. Musical trends are confirmed at the local independent record store, by you and me. Hanging out, listening to something you’ve never heard before, being enlightened by the staff, getting into something new, finding that old recording you’ve been searching for, having your local band’s newest offering stocked right next to major label stuff, it all happens at the local indie shop. Why would we want to do away with all that?”
Joe Satriani

“As a band, our love of records and actual CDs has never waned. There’s something spiritual about holding an album in your hands, and reading through the lyrics while you are losing yourself in the music. I will pass my collection of records down to my kids and grand kids someday so that they can experience the magic that just CAN’T be downloaded. Record Store Day is our turn to show our appreciation for the people that allow us to live our dreams through music. There is nothing more powerful than possessing a piece of art that your favorite band has worked so hard to push into the world. Lets keep these stores alive… see you on Record Store Day!”
Lzzy Hale (Halestorm)

“Independent record stores have always been the only place to find great music that is off the mainstream radar. I used to love heading down to our local spot to sift through the new imports or albums from some small label I had never heard of. In the days before the internet the only way to find out about new underground bands was either a cool neighbor an older brother or the local independent record store. Luckily I had both and it lead to a record collection I am still very proud of. I still love that feeling of walking into a great independent store and having no idea what I might find. It’s like a treasure hunt. hahaha”
Brian Fair (Shadows Fall)

“I grew up in Ann Arbor, Michigan, which had no shortage of amazing record stores. The hours I spent wandering about one in particular, Encore Records, was all time well spent. Speaking with clerks and customers, being introduced to music I never knew existed, and sometimes just looking at record covers. I enjoyed every aspect of the record store ‘shopping’ experience. There’s a certain indescribable feeling that I was always left with; feeling motivated and like the world was so full of possibility. I love Newbury Comics! I remember the first time I entered the flagship store in Boston, right away I was struck by the beautiful aroma, it was the smell of music, books, and the people that love them!”
Andrew W.K.

“One of the most amazing places in the world is a record store called either Liberty Street Recordings or Encore Records. It’s located in the great town of Ann Arbor, Michigan. Many of my friends worked there and I spent a lot of time there during high school. One time I went in, and this woman who I think owned the place was listening to Black Sabbath’s, “Sabbath Bloody Sabbath” very loudly. She was probably the same age as my Mom and looked like a librarian, and after the album side finished she said, “God, I just love what that man’s voice does to me.”
Andrew W.K.

“Independent record stores are one of the last surviving cornerstones of this business we call “The Music Industry.” Indie record stores represent everything that was and is music. To this day when you walk into an unknown store for the first time there is a certain musical mystique and warmth you can’t get at any corporate chain store. It feels like you’re about to discover music for the first time all over again. And just when you thought you knew everything there is to know about music or bands you always find one more album that blows your mind and for the life of you, you can’t figure out how this record ever slipped past your musical genius. Unlike today’s music world, indie stores have remained true to themselves, held on to their innocence, speak their own opinions and continue to believe that music will change the world.”
Sonny Sandoval (P.O.D.)

“It’s sad to see some of the developments in society, where everyday, more and more things conform toward a bland, non-diverse medium or “standard” if you will. The big, monetarily strong chain stores and companies are slowly burying the smaller, diverse (read: cool) indie ones!! No matter if it’s clothes, music or otherwise, this steady decline of uniqueness, diversity and “individual expression” is truly scary!!
In all honesty, how cool is it to have to go into a 100,000 Square ft, fluorescent lighted warehouse, where none of the ‘meek, perfect skin, fuckwhat’s – type employees’ know the first thing about any music outside of what’s on billboard’s top ten – only to find that the brand new Slayer album you so desire to own, is found on the “CD-pick-o-the-week” rack, right in between the spankingly fresh releases of Ms Aguilera and Dance Mania no. 987…!?!?… Honestly…
Support your local indie and underground stores! Seriously!! For the good of all!!”
Tomas Haake (Meshuggah)

Growing up a rock and metal fan on Long Island in the 70’s and 80’s was very different than it is today. There were no chain stores like Virgin and Tower and of course no internet mail order services like Amazon. The only way to pick up albums were to shop at your local “mom and pop” record stores…
In the late 70s, it was always easy to find the latest releases from my favorite bands… Led Zeppelin, The Who, Kiss, Pink Floyd, Queen, etc., were all readily available at any record store. But in the early 80’s, as I discovered more “underground” metal bands like Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, Motorhead, Accept, Mercyful Fate, Loudness and Raven (from reading my imported copies of Kerrang), there was no place in small town Long Beach, Long Island to find the latest records from these bands I was reading about. Then I discovered Slipped Disc Records in Valley Stream, Long Island. They not only carried the albums from these bands, but also the 12″ singles with bonus tracks, the t-shirts, the imported live videos and anything else that existed! When the American thrash scene was beginning to erupt around 1983, I could always count on Slipped Disc to carry anything I was looking for from bands like Metallica, Anthrax, Slayer, Exodus, Testament, Flotsam & Jetsam, Death Angel and Nuclear Assault.
Taking the train there every Saturday was the highlight of my week! And on the day I received my drivers license, the very first place I drove to was Slipped Disc to pick up Metallica’s Ride The Lightning album which was released that VERY day! (The imported version of course!) Now in 2008, the world is a very different place… the aforementioned chains and online stores have made it very difficult for the mom and pop stores to compete. In fact, my beloved Slipped Disc just announced it will be closing its doors for good. So let’s hear it for people like Mike from Slipped Disc and all of the independent store owners that have helped shape the metal scene for the past 25 years. Without them, a lot of us may not have existed… or at least have been as metal as we are!
Mike Portnoy (Adrenaline Mob, Dream Theater)

Death ticket give away

Death To All at the Fillmore Silver Spring

“…in this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.”

–Benjamin Franklin in a letter to Jean-Baptiste Leroy, 1789

Today is April 15th, the dreaded day taxes are due and along with taxes comes the certainty of death. I’d like to make certain that one of you readers gets the chance to experience Death when they come to the Fillmore Silver Spring on Friday, April 26th! This incarnation of the band will be playing songs from the first four Death albums, Scream Bloody Gore, Leprosy, Spiritual Healing and Human.
To enter this contest leave a comment on this post telling me which Death song from any of those four albums you want to hear them play the most at this show. You can click their names to see their track listings if you need a refresher. At 5pm EST on Friday, April 19th I’ll pick a winner at random (using from all valid entries to win a free pair of tickets to this show. If I haven’t heard back from the winner in 24 hours another winner will be chosen. Be sure to enter with a valid email address you check regularly so I can contact you when you win. Don’t worry, I won’t add you to any email lists or anything like that, I hate spam too. If you enter more than once then all of your entries will be disqualified. If the contest is over when you read this or you simply can’t wait to find out if you win the contest you can buy tickets from Live Nation for $28 here.

The Death To All Tour is a tribute to the the life and music of Chuck Schuldiner, lead guitarist and vocalist of the highly influential band Death. This version of the band is made up of former Death Human-era members Paul Masvidal and Sean Reinert (both are members of Cynic) and Steve DiGiorgio (of Sadus and countless other bands). The vocals will be performed by Max Phelps of the Maryland based band Exist. There will probably be some surprise guests who come out for a song or two as well. They will be performing only material from the first four Death albums on this tour so this might be your last chance to ever hear some of those old classics from the early albums played live. In addition, part of the proceeds will be going to benefit Sweet Relief, which is a foundation that helps musicians that are struggling with health issues and their costs. The opening band is going to be Anciients, a new band from Vancouver who just put out their debut full length album, Heart Of Oak, this month. Now listen to some classic Death songs below, along with a new track from openers Anciients, as you decide which song you want to pick to enter the contest. Good luck and keep it heavy everyone!

Death – Zombie Ritual – 1987 from Scream Bloody Gore

Death – Pull The Plug – 1988 from Leprosy

Death – Suicide Machine – 1991 from Human

Anciients – Giants – 2013 from Heart Of Oak

Metal Night III at Port City Brewery

Metal Night III at Port City Brewery

This Sunday, April 7th, 2013, I’ll be co-hosting the third metal night at Port City Brewery in Alexandria from 5 to 9pm! I’ve got over 15 tickets to give away at Metal Night III to see upcoming shows by Anthrax, Death, Suffocation, Ghost and Mayhem Fest! And while there won’t be any bands playing live there will be metal played throughout the brewery all during the event. In fact, you can send in your own song requests ahead of time to get them added to the set list by emailing Port City brewer and metal head Will at Requests can be any sub-genre of metal, even the extreme ones are ok. If you’ve got a classic metal favorite, some weird underground metal band’s song you never thought you’d hear in public or just want to promote your own local metal band, then send in your request to hear it at Metal Night!

And did I mention the beer? Port City makes some damn fine beer and in their tasting room. They sell it by the glass (or growler if you want to take it home) for cheaper than most bars sell their crappy mass produced beer for (more on that here in my previous post about beer and metal). You can even get a “flight” of smaller glasses to sample several of the beers to help you figure out what you like. Since the event ends at 9pm you can still get home before it gets too late, we gotta work Mondays too. There isn’t a kitchen at Port City Brewery but there will be a food truck on site. Also, the local power metal band A Sound Of Thunder will be there to raise money for the local fests Flight Of The Valkyries and Metal Quest so keep an eye out for them as well.

Admission is free to Metal Night and I encourage you to share this post or the Facebook event page (here) with your metal head friends. You don’t have to be 21 to attend but you must be 21 to drink. Designated drivers of all legal driving ages are welcome! If you’ve never been to Port City Brewing Company before, the address is 3950 Wheeler Ave, Alexandria, VA 22304 (map).

It will be a great night of sampling some excellent craft beer while listening to some killer metal tunes with friends new and old. Now think up which songs you want to hear at Metal Night III and get ready to win some prizes!