Top Five Phoenix Music Stories of the Week
The news waits for no one -- at least that's what we read somewhere -- so it's perfectly understandable that you, the reader, might have missed out on a musical tidbit, breaking news about your favorite venue, or one of our rants.
So enjoy this digest-style sampling of some of our biggest stories from the week of October 29th to November 2nd.
Few bands can boast as impressive a second act as Seattle drone rockers Earth. Led by guitarist Dylan Carlson, the early discography for Sub Pop defined the distorted doom/drone metal sound that inspired Sunn O))) (named in relation to "Earth") and the Southern Lord label.
Following nearly a decade devoted to overcoming addiction and legal problems, Carlson returned with Hex; Or Printing in the Infernal Method in 2005. It marked a seismic shift in Earth's sound, embracing a distant, sunbaked tone that incorporated elements of country, blues, folk, and jazz. Carlson was afforded sure footing by methodical drummer Adrienne Davies, who's remained a constant since.
The band's maintained a steady clip: 2008's The Bees Made Honey in the Lion's Skull was a biblical masterpiece, and Angels of Darkness, Demons of Light Vol. 1 and 2 (released in 2011 and 2012, respectively) brought in elements of funk and English folk rock.
Up on the Sun spoke with Davies about the band's improvisational approach, and the unlikely introduction of swampy R&B into the band's arsenal.
--Jason P. Woodbury
Korn recently crashed through town, performing at the Arizona State Fair. I watched in glee. This is a band that truly contributed to opening the door to metal for me. Before that discovery, I was a sixth grader rocking out to Westside Connection, much to my Backstreet Boy-loving locker partner's dismay.
So imagine my excitement when Korn's 1998 album Follow the Leader connected hip-hop and heavy metal more seamlessly than any album before or after. I had the opportunity to interview the guitarist James "Munky" Schaffer.
Here's the full interview with Korn guitarist, Munky. --Lauren Wise
Oh, foolish, foolish record industry! You could've saved yourself once -- maybe twice over -- if only you had you listened to forward-thinkers like Otto D'Agnolo.
In 2005, the producer/owner of Chaton Recording Studios wrote a slim volume, The Music Business Is Burning Down, Thank God, in which he foreshadowed with Nostradamus-like accuracy the continued downward spiral of CD sales and major-label artists reclaiming their master recordings, cutting the labels out of the revenue stream completely, and their need to find cross-marketing platforms to give away music. Any of this sounding familiar to you? Every chicken-heart policy that you, the recording industry, instituted to maintain your greedy status quo has come home to roost. Even vinyl, that format you thought was left for dead in the '90s with the advent of the now-cratering compact disc, had an increase of 14 percent in 2010. Nice work, pally!
Though the calamity might have its roots in corporate avarice, the brave new world we're stuck with now is everybody's problem. The artist has to promote and record his music with no money, while labels make less money gambling on full-length albums and take fewer chances on new talent. The professional recording studios' troubles fall directly in between the two.
The Roots are scheduled to perform Friday, March 22, at Margaret T. Hance Park.
When The Compound Grill closed in April, 2012, it set the future of the McDowell Mountain Music Festival, which had taken place there since 2010, in uncertain light.
Of course, the festival (winner of our 2012 Best of Phoenix designation) existed for years pre-Compound -- it launched in 2004 -- and thankfully it looks like it will exist post-Compound, too. According to a tweet and link from @MMMF2013, McDowell Mountain Music Festival 2013 is scheduled to include performances from The Roots, Balkan Beat Box, Dr. Dog, The Heartless Bastards, and Yonder Mountain String Band, at Margaret T. Hance Park in downtown Phoenix, and it's scheduled to take place on Friday, March 22, Saturday March 23, and Sunday, March 24.
--Jason P. Woodbury
Officials from the Tempe Police Department recently arrested a second suspect in connection with the now-infamous shootings that took place outside of the Clubhouse Music Venue earlier this year.
According to documents from Maricopa County Superior Court obtained by Up on the Sun, Tempe cops apprehended Bryston Zavion Ware a few weeks back in connection with the gun battle that erupted in the parking lot outside of the now-closed East Valley concert hall and injured 16 people just prior to a Nipsey Hussle concert on March 2.
The 22-year-old was taken into custody on October 17 at his mother's home located near 16th Street and Roeser Road in South Phoenix.
Per court documents, Ware was indicted on October 12 by a grand jury on multiple counts of aggravated assault, endangerment, and assisting a criminal syndicate in connection with the Clubhouse Music Venue shooting.
Tempe Police previously arrested 19-year-old Raynon Keswun Jones in the hours following the shooting in March.
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