Jack Flannigan, Guitarist for The Mob, Manager of GWAR and Clutch Has Passed Away

One of the good guys of the music industry is being remembered today by bands he worked with, peers and friends. Jack Flannigan died yesterday (10/12/2019). Jack’s career in music started as the guitarist in the 1980s in the NYHC band The Mob. Later he went on to manage GWAR for the last 25 years as well as a long term stint on Clutch’s management team. Both penned loving tributes to Jack over social media, as well as sharing the outpouring of support and love many names in the industry shared in tribute. We send our condolences to Jack’s family, friends, and fans at this difficult time Continue reading

ALBUM REVIEW: Life of Agony – The Sound of Scars

Older, wiser, better, stronger. That could very well be the 2019 tag line for Life of Agony. Since the bands’ return a full-time band from their hiatus, the have continued to evolve and improve, year over year. Anybody can get on stage, take a paycheck for nostalgia’s sake. No, not this band. Their approach to new music has been inspired. Their comeback album, 2017’s A Place Where There’s No More Pain (Napalm Records) was a powerful reminder of what made this band vital in the first place. Now on The Sound of Scars (also Napalm), the band returns to the scene of their original triumph, to continue the tale. Continue reading

Clutch – Killswitch Engage – – Cro-Mags JM Live at The Capitol Theatre

In one of the killer tours of late summer, Killswitch Engage armed with their new album and Clutch riding high on a series of new covers/singles totally lit up the night at The Capitol Theatre. The quaint and historic theater in sleepy Port Chester, New York has been around forever. It’s known as “The Original Rock Palace” for a reason.  When a co-headline tour like this comes around the place fills up and the pit jumps off! Opening the show on this tour was Cro-Mags JM (as in John Joseph and Mackie Jason). The band played their hits, and considering they were both early influences on both bill toppers, this pairing is a great fit! Clutch has been on fire the last few years and are a must-see band live! Few frontmen can command a crowd as Neal Fallon can. Lastly, KsE came armed to the teeth with new music to play. The crushing ‘Unleashed’, and the soulful Punk energy of ‘I Am Broken Too’ are straight-up face-melters from their new album Atonement (Metal Blade) which was not quite out at the time of this show. Check out Rosa Miller’s photos from the night and do not miss these bands when they hit your town for a show!

Continue reading

BACON BLOODY BACON: Matt Bacon on Respecting Your Scene Elders

Here’s something that I often see a lot of people dropping the ball on – respecting your scene elders. They’re the people you see at shows in 2019 who have literally been going to shows since the 70s. It’s still relatively easy to meet people who saw The Ramones back in the day. There are a ton of living people out there who saw all your favorite hardcore bands, back in their heyday. Hell, an even greater number have probably seen the full range of predecessors to today’s modern metal bands. Yet, so often I see people ignore them or try to mine them for personal gain. Here’s the thing though – paying attention to scene elders, giving them their due respect and coordinating with them over the long term is not only going to teach you about our community and lead to rewarding friendships, it will also help grow your own projects. In this article, I want to shine a spotlight on the importance of scene elders and share some insights they’ve taught me over the years. Continue reading

BACON BLOODY BACON: Matt Bacon on How To Get Good Opening Slots for Bands

So, a question I’m often asked is “How do we secure support slots for bigger bands?” Well, a lot of this ties back to the core thesis of pretty much everything I do, which is “reach out to your community and see what happens.” As you can probably tell, I think this is obviously the best and most effective way to connect with people and make friends. Yet beyond that, there’s another secret to securing your first few good support slot dates on a tour. It involves growing in your region, and using that to show that you’re a band worthy of opening slots. Essentially, what I’m trying to push is that if you spend time growing your draw in the six markets closest to you then you’ll be able to secure — with greater ease — invitations to play regional dates. If you show that you’re pro on that level, then maybe someone will take a chance on you for a set of national dates. Again – it’s about immersing yourself in the community so that people can start to see you are a band worth taking out. Continue reading

BACON BLOODY BACON: Matt Bacon on How To Get A Manager

I get asked all the time “how do I get a manager for my band?” The goal, of course, is not to get someone’s girlfriend to manage the band. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. The goal is to get a manager who is going to go to bat for you and get you cool opening slots and tours all around the country. People in metal have increasingly realized that the managers and booking agents are really the people who can give you those opportunities – not so many labels any more. Sure, a label might get you some introductions and help you get the connects you need but that’s not really their focus these days. So, the point being – the way to get a real manager is very simple. You need to show that you are pros who work your faces off and you need to show that you are going to be financially soluble – that it will make sense for these crazy busy people to want to invest some of their very valuable time in what you are trying to do. Continue reading

BACON BLOODY BACON: Matt Bacon on Connecting with People

You attract what you put out. It’s as simple as that. If you’re out there exuding love and positivity, you’ll generally get that back. If you’re trying to pick fights and be grouchy to people, then you will get that. Ultimately, it’s your choice which approach you will embrace. Here’s the thing though – by picking one over the other, you’re significantly more likely to get your band somewhere meaningful. At the end of the day, it’s not about being right, it’s about trying to sell some goddamn records and make this entire endeavor a little less pointless. How do you do this? Embrace the world with a focus on what you enjoy. The reason for this is, quite frankly, entirely selfish — it allows you to connect with people on a more meaningful level. It’s all strategy — you need to meet people who can help your band grow, and open the sorts of doors that you are going to need opened as you attempt to push your brand in 2019. I know how these people work, so here is how you connect with them. Continue reading