Tuesday, November 24, 2009

A Grindcore Take on Shiro Ishii: 11.20.09.

Hailing from Brooklyn, New York, Shiro Ishii is comprised of a modest quadruplet: Julius, Kishor, Jason, and Forrest. Previously consisting of just three members, Forrest is the most recent addition to the band, having been assimilated into the lineup as their “Lakhdive Insurgent.” Paralleling this verbal reduction to primal form is their music: combining the visceral growls and pounding drum beats of grindcore, melodic touches of black metal, and abrasive technicality of death metal, to compose each short (the seeming trademark of modern grind) but musically deliberate track. Such was the case when the band paid a visit to WNYU Radio, 89.1 FM, playing a live-set for Hellhole, the station’s extreme metal show, which hits the airwaves every Friday night, from 9-10:30 p.m.

In the closet-sized performance room of our basement radio station, I got some one-on-one bonding time with the band, recording their 30 minutes on the air. Amidst the claustrophobia of four metal dudes (and their gear) in a small room, listeners were cast into the raw aggression and haunting ambiance of “Chapter Hell: Part II (Prisoner),” which, at the 1:45 mark, catapulted itself into complete rhythmic frenzy. With the wall of atonal guitar riffs, marked by the traces of minor melodies, the drum parts effectively established a rhythmic duet: delivering beats that were fast, without sounding triggered. The bass lines were prominent, bold yet well-complemented by the steady drum beats. All of these elements collided to form the sonic medium through which Forrest delivered his vocals: visceral growls that called to remembrance the horrors of warfare, zombies, and the human destructive impulse. Though a better part of their songs start with modest tempos, the band quickly shoves them into a furious pace that absolutely compels those listening to headbang.

Currently on hiatus writing new material, this is a group that keeps itself busy: saturating the New York metal scene with what’s fresh in grind and beyond, à la local hole-in-the-wall venues that permit. To hear their recorded in-studio performance, as well as brief post-set interview, visit the Hellhole archive at:


Saturday, November 14, 2009

...we're inching towards Thanksgiving, and if you're as nerdy about your music as I am, you're already thinking about what's gonna be on your year end list. I just threw together a play list of records to consider, and it's far from a top 10...

...58 artists, 64 releases, 226 tracks, 29 hours of music...

..looks like there's some fat yet to trim...

...who's on your short (long) list? throw your two cents in the comments. come on, we won't judge you...


Friday, November 13, 2009

Crystal Stilts Interview

Here's an interview Jonathan (Music Director) and I (Promotions Director) did a while ago. Better late than never. Learn here about alumni that are now in great bands. You, too, can be famous.

Frankie Rose, drummer: I'll interview you. So do you go to NYU then? 

Jonathan: ...Gallatin 

Andy Adler, bassist: I didn't go to Gallatin, but I took a lot of classes in Gallatin. And a lot of my friends were in Gallatin. And in the big graduation I sat with Gallatin because my friends were there. And my friend Kevin who was there left graduation to get soda and fries, it was cool. 

Frankie: So who are you here to see tonight, anyone in particular? 

Jonathan: I like Crystal Stilts.