Mayhem Festival Teases a Comeback in 2020

In a new post to social media today Mayhem Festival has teased a comeback in 2020. “Don’t call it a comeback.” reads the official Instagram page of Mayhem Fest, with the hashtag #mayhemfest2020 according to a report by Metal Injection. In a story Ghost Cult broke several months ago, Mayhem Fest co-founders Kevin Lyman and John Reece had been in talks about bringing the fest back. Reece even polled his fans to see if they wanted it back AFTER our news story broke. The final Mayhemfest wrapped in 2015 with Slayer and King Diamond co-headlining. Lyman’s Warped Tour celebrated 25 years this past summer with a final few all-day festival dates, but not a cross country tour. Perhaps Mayhem Festival will return as an all-dayer or an all-weekend destination fest like Lollapalooza did. Continue reading

CJ McMahon Quits Thy Art Is Murder

Chris "CJ" McMahon of Thy Art Is Murder. Photo Credit: Kevin Estrada.

Chris “CJ” McMahon of Thy Art Is Murder. Photo Credit: Kevin Estrada.com

In a post to Facebook, CJ McMahon has quit his band Thy Art Is Murder. Citing too much time spent away from his fiancee and money woes as the main reasons, McMahon wrote that he “won’t live this way anymore.” The band has announced Nick Arthur of Molotov Solution as their fill in vocalist for their upcoming tour with Parkway Drive. As part of TAIM, McMahon released Holy War (Nuclear Blast) earlier in 2015, toured the world, including this past summer’s Mayhem Festival.

 

With a mix of both negative and positive emotions, I inform you all that I have parted ways with my band Thy Art Is Murder. It has been a wild ride I have travelled to over 40 countries around the world and played alongside some of the worlds biggest and best bands, it brings me great sadness knowing I will never perform again for my amazing and supportive fans, this will be the hardest thing for me to deal with. My reasons for leaving: I spend too much time away from my fiancé , family and friends, touring has taken a massive mental, emotional and physical toll on me. One of the biggest reasons is money, I / we have been broke for years and being 32 years old I can’t live like this anymore. I am getting married next year and plan on having a family, these things cost money, to put the finances into perspective for you I /we have earned between $16k-$18k each over 6-7 years, I feel there is something massively wrong with this, I will not live like this anymore. I’m sorry to my fans that I have to go, I have loved you all and I thank you for believing in me supporting me. The money made from my closing down sale of my clothing label will be going to my wedding, I will also be selling my Northface stage jacket I have worn the last two years on stage via eBay soon to try to pay for my wedding for the people interested, again thank you for the love and support, Your Prince Of Darkness Cj 

 

The band offered their own take on CJ’s departure

After much conjecture and ambiguity on his behalf, it is with a heavy heart that we must announce today that CJ is no longer a part of Thy Art Is Murder. We have worked so hard from day one to make this band what it is now, and develop the reputation that we have and he had been there with us every step of the way. We like to think that even if someone doesn’t like our music that they can at least respect our work ethic. This band has taken us to places we never thought we would see and to share stages with many bands we never thought we would get to play with or meet, let alone call friends. It is unfortunate that with our best year to date and our biggest paved out before us that he has decided to leave.

All this being said, touring as hard as we do does take its toll on you physically, but more importantly mentally and emotionally. We are an underground metal band, and have been so fortunate over the last two years to carve out a small income thanks to so many dedicated and generous fans around the world. For some people, it comes to a turning point in their life where that income is no longer enough for their personal goals, and that point has come for CJ. We would like to wish him all our best as he leaves the band and moves onward to start a family and new life with his loving fiancée.

The four of us are continuing forward into 2016 for some of the biggest and best tours of our lives. We won’t be slowing down or missing any shows. We head back out next month with Parkway Drive and Architects throughout Europe and the UK and will be taking one of our favourite vocalists with us, Nick Arthur from Molotov Solution. Thy Art is what we have done with all of our adult lives and we have put absolutely everything we have into the band and the friendship between the four of us. That friendship and drive to create extreme music is what has kept us together through thick and thin. Unfortunately not everyone can share this fire.

Andy, Kevin, Lee and Sean – Thy Art Is Murder

 

 

After much conjecture and ambiguity on his behalf, it is with a heavy heart that we must announce today that CJ is no…

Posted by Thy Art Is Murder on Monday, December 21, 2015

 

 

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With a mix of both negative and positive emotions, I inform you all that I have parted ways with my band Thy Art Is…

Posted by CJ McMahon on Monday, December 21, 2015

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UPDATED: Change.Org Petition For Pantera Reunion Presses On

Pantera

UPDATED: The Change.org petition demanding the return of Pantera is nearing its goal. The petition started by Pantera fan Kirsten Topperwein of San Antonio TX dubbed “The Pantera Project” surpassed 5000 signatures, its original stated goal. The new goal 7,500 signatures and now boasts a Facebook group to continue to drum up support. As previously reported by Ghost Cult the petition is calling for Pantera members Vinnie Paul Abbott and Philip H. Anselmo to reunite the band, along with bassist Rex Brown; and offering guitarist Zakk Wylde as a possible stand in for Dimebag Darrell Abbott, who was murdered on stage on December 8th 2004.

 

The statement from The Pantera Project:

For the past 12 years one of the most influential heavy metal bands in history has remained silent. After that horrific night where the metal community lost one of its most beloved guitarists – iconic guitarist Darryl “Dimebag” Abbott, Pantera has been relegated to “legendary” and “history”.

Aside from Dimes brilliance on stage, he loved his fans – and he showed it every time he was on stage. His passion for his craft, and his fans truly made him a metal guitar legend.
As fans first and foremost – and out of complete respect and love, our heart went out to the band with all they endured, especially to Vinnie his brother for his great loss.

But we are asking for what all true Pantera fans only wished could happen: To see Pantera live on stage again. We KNOW that no one could truly replace Dime. But his ‘brother’ in Metal Zakk Wylde could step into those shoes and make the universe right again. Dimebag and Zakk were close, if anyone could do this and have the big guy’s blessing, it would be Zakk Wylde.
So in a shout out to all the metal heads across the world: please sign our petition asking the band “With all due respect” to please consider a tribute tour to pay homage to Dime for his incredible life and all he stood for. Let us see the mighty Pantera take the stage and rock the world one more time. At the end of the tour, decide where it goes from there. As die-hard Pantera fans, this is what we are BEGGING for.

The Pantera Project greatly appreciates and thanks everyone for all your amazing support and efforts to truly honor an amazing person and musician who helped change heavy metal.
That is perfect!!!! Than

LETTER TO

Vinnie Paul

Philip Anselmo

Pantera Reunion/Tribute To Dime

 

Dimebag by Evil Robb Photography

Dimebag by Evil Robb Photography

The hope of many fans is that Pantera could someday reunite in some form or another. Wylde is often mentioned as possible member of such a reunion or tribute, volunteering himself to the band and his fallen best friend’s memory. While all the surviving members of the band have performed Pantera songs live, and Anselmo and Brown have gone on record promoting at least a tribute of sorts, Dimebag’s brother Vinnie Paul has repeatedly squashed any kind of talk of a reunion. At the same time a less vocal group of Pantera fans and artists prefer the band never reunite at all.

This past summer Mayhem Festival and Warped Tour co-founder Kevin Lyman went on record claiming he had a desire to make a significant offer to entice a version of Pantera to form and become one of the headliners for the currently defunct Mayhem Festival.

Change.Org Petition Demands Action On Pantera Reunion

Pantera, photo credit Phil Anselmo.com

Pantera, photo credit Phil Anselmo.com

Change.org, the web’s leading site for activism based petitions, has seen the launch of petition demanding the return of Pantera. Pantera fan Kirsten Topperwein of San Antonio TX launched “The Pantera Project” on October 2nd and it already has 2,627 supporters in 6 days. The petition is calling for Pantera members Vinnie Paul Abbott and Philip H. Anselmo to reunite the band, along with bassist Rex Brown; and offering guitarist Zakk Wylde as a possible stand in for Dimebag Darrell Abbott, who was murdered on stage on December 8th 2004.

zakk und phil

 

For the past 12 years one of the most influential heavy metal bands in history has remained silent. After that horrific night where the metal community lost one of its most beloved guitarists – iconic guitarist Darryl “Dimebag” Abbott, Pantera has been relegated to “legendary” and “history”.

Aside from Dimes brilliance on stage, he loved his fans – and he showed it every time he was on stage. His passion for his craft, and his fans truly made him a metal guitar legend.
As fans first and foremost – and out of complete respect and love, our heart went out to the band with all they endured, especially to Vinnie his brother for his great loss.

But we are asking for what all true Pantera fans only wished could happen: To see Pantera live on stage again. We KNOW that no one could truly replace Dime. But his ‘brother’ in Metal Zakk Wylde could step into those shoes and make the universe right again. Dimebag and Zakk were close, if anyone could do this and have the big guy’s blessing, it would be Zakk Wylde.
So in a shout out to all the metal heads across the world: please sign our petition asking the band “With all due respect” to please consider a tribute tour to pay homage to Dime for his incredible life and all he stood for. Let us see the mighty Pantera take the stage and rock the world one more time. At the end of the tour, decide where it goes from there. As die hard Pantera fans, this is what we are BEGGING for.

The Pantera Project greatly appreciates and thanks everyone for all your amazing support and efforts to truly honor an amazing person and musician who helped change heavy metal.
That is perfect!!!! Than

LETTER TO

Vinnie Paul

Philip Anselmo

Pantera Reunion/Tribute To Dime

This is the latest round of fan and media speculation that Pantera could someday reunite in the future. Wylde is often mentioned as possible member of such a reunion or tribute, volunteering himself to the great band and his fallen best friend. While all the surviving members of the band have performed Pantera songs live, and Anselmo and Brown have gone on record promoting at least a tribute of sorts, Dimebag’s brother Vinnie Paul has repeatedly squashed any kind of talk of a reunion. At the same time a less vocal group of Pantera fans and artists prefer the band never reunite at all.

This past summer Mayhem Festival and Warped Tour co-founder Kevin Lyman went on record claiming he had a desire to make a significant offer to entice a version of Pantera to form and become one of the headliners for the now defunct Mayhem Festival.

Dimebag Darrell, photo credit Evil Robb Photography

Kitchen Kvlt Part II – Chef Heather Feher of Black Cat Culinary

Chef Heather 4

In Part II of our Q & A with Chef Heather Feher of Black Cat Culinary she detailed for us what she teaches in her private cooking classes, what she thinks of “celebrity chefs”, her food and travel experiences, and her dream gig:

You teach some specialized cooking classes. What does that entail for you and depending on the class, what can I expect to walk away with skills-wise?

My cooking classes are all over the place! It’s all about the group and what they want to learn. The two that I’ve taught the most are basic butchery… and vegan menus. Haha. I’ve taught scavenger hunts as team building activities and I’ve taught ultra modern techniques like sous vide and spherification. I’m doing a really fun combination class next month for a group I’ve taught before – after we learn how to debone chickens, I’m organizing a Chopped style mystery basket competition. Each team is going to get a bunch of ingredients from the farm we’re staying on and have to work together to make a side dish for the meal. I get to offer pointers and tips about their processes, and then judge the final products. One thing every class I teach includes is a basic lesson in knife handling and safety, because that’s really the most fundamental skill you need in any kitchen. My goal is that with whatever we’re focusing on in the class, everyone walks away feeling a little more confident than they did when they walked in.

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Thanks to the Cable and YouTube, there are a ton of cooking shows and “experts” out there who are not actually chefs. What is the biggest misconceptions about being a chef?

Oh my god – you’ve hit a nerve! Almost everything, seriously. My biggest annoyance with YouTube/TV “chefs” is that SO MANY of them do things so fundamentally wrong – how they hold a knife incorrectly or hack apart an onion, or their cutting boards are so cluttered and filthy – stuff like that. I think one of the biggest misconceptions is that it’s glamorous and we’re all making tons of money. HA. I wish! The hours are long, the pay absolutely sucks most times, and you miss out on most social events because you’re always working – and if you do get out with enough time to make a party or a show on a weekend night, you always end up showing up smelling like food, haha. With catering, there’s this weird ebb and flow of business where you’re either working 100 hours a week… or you’re practically unemployed. It’s anything but steady, so you have to be really good at budgeting. In a lot of ways, I work freelance. I am constantly trying to get my name out there, contacting every tour I hear about, trying to hopefully get the right person on the right day. In the mean time, I’m also looking for local work to sustain myself – dinner parties, classes, etc. There’s also this weird misconception that anyone who cooks professionally is a “chef”. It’s nitpicky, but it’s an annoyance across the industry – you are not a chef unless you are running a kitchen. Period. “Chef” is a title of respect that is earned after proving yourself for years and years, after being promoted, or after taking the leap and branching out on your own. If you have a boss that is not the owner, you are a cook. Just because you have a show on YouTube doesn’t mean you’re a chef. It’s really obnoxious. I run a company and I still feel kinda weird referring to myself as “a chef”. For me, the transition from “cook” to “chef” was really just a LOT of paperwork! I cannot tell you how much I now loathe emails. It’s making list after list – shopping, delivery, prep, food cost, scheduling, invoicing… it’s maddening. I actually do more paperwork than I do cooking at this point in my career! Our diets are also really fucked up. Most cooks don’t eat actual meals – we have bites here and there. I recently had to keep a food diary for my allergist and it was a nightmare – did I taste the aioli for seasoning 3 or 4 times? How many bites of that braise did I have while it was cooking? It’s absurd. Most of us develop a really weird association with food because actual meals are so few and far between.

 

Chef Heather Feher of Black Cat Culinary

Chef Heather Feher of Black Cat Culinary

I know one of your passions is travel, so what are some of the cool places you have been to and what locales do you favor for amazing food experiences?

I am borderline obsessed with the city of Montreal! Honestly I’ve considered living there so many times. It’s the greatest. The metal scene is amazing, they have the best drunk food in the universe (poutine, omg) and the people are just so NICE. I’ve been to Norway twice now, and I love it there too – the scenery is ridiculous. I’m not sold on their food though, to be honest – though maybe I just haven’t found the right places! As far as amazing food experiences, I am all about trying the weirdest stuff from the most hole-in-the-wall places. My rule is that I’ll try anything twice – even Icelandic hakarl (fermented shark), which is honestly the worst thing I have ever put in my mouth. It’s cliché, but I didn’t have a bad meal when I was in Paris – one of the most memorable moments was eating a fresh savory crêpe from a cart vendor while walking through the side streets of Montmartre. Really, I think I love any type of food that makes me feel a connection to the place I’m in. I lived in South America for almost a year and worked at some of the best restaurants there were – but my most memorable meals were eating ceviche from this totally illegal back alley mom and pop operation, and eating a whole roasted guinea pig with my hands in the middle of the main square during a street festival in Cusco. I remember the experiences I can’t replicate at home the most.

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You have some appearances coming soon up on some pretty cool shows, so by all means please plug those!

Well, I was on the Halloween episode of Guy’s Grocery Games – it was entertaining for sure. Catch it on the Food Network if you feel like seeing me cry about my cat. There is more stuff working, but I can’t actually discuss any of it right now – ask me again in a few months!

Chef Heather Feher of Black Cat Culinary

Chef Heather Feher of Black Cat Culinary

 

What is your dream music gig to cater for?

I don’t know if I actually have a dream gig – really I just want to work for bands I like, because there’s nothing better after finishing a long day of work than to turn the corner and be surrounded by amazing music. I actually really like the festival atmosphere – whether it’s just a weekend thing or a multi-city thing – the people really make the gig for me. Though if I had to pick one coming up, it’d totally be the Black Metal Warfare tour. Good cities, good bands, and in my opinion it’s the best time of the year to tour. I think I could have a lot of fun with menus on that tour. 

Have an event or occasion to book Black Cat Culinary? Contact her here:

KEITH CHACHKES

 

Kitchen Kvlt – Chef Heather Feher of Black Cat Culinary

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Chef Heather Feher has a passion for all things that involve fine food and grim music. She has catered tours and all kinds of music festivals and has channeled her love of these things into her growing business, Black Cat Culinary. We caught up with the entrepreneur and Food Network alumnus via email about her business and how the music she loves has shaped everything from her menus to her path. Continue reading

On The Road… with Whitechapel

Whitechapel one off show Zydeco

Fresh off their stint on the Victory Records Stage of Mayhem Festival, Whitechapel played a one off headline show in Alabama, on their drive home to Tennessee. Whitechapel is always razor sharp live, with many years honing their deathcore meets death metal style in countless bars and clubs. Bringing with them their own full production, including strobe lights and vanity platforms, they brought a little “Mayhem” with them to the Zydeco club. Joined on this night by some fine local metal acts such as  Gatekeeper, Tempter, and OMAAF (not pictured) it was a fun night for an area does not get many headliners that play this heavy all that often. Captured here by Brent B Photos, for Ghost Cult, you can see why Whitechapel remains one of the best live bands and most in demand acts in the American music scene right now.

Whitechapel2

Whitechapel, by Brent B Photos

Whitechapel1

Whitechapel, by Brent B Photos

Whitechapel, by Brent B Photos

Whitechapel, by Brent B Photos

Gatekeeper, by Brent B Photos

Gatekeeper, by Brent B Photos

Gatekeeper, by Brent B Photos

Gatekeeper, by Brent B Photos

Tempter, by Brent B Photos

Tempter, by Brent B Photos

Tempter, by Brent B Photos

Tempter, by Brent B Photos