Ghost Cult caught up with Oceans of Slumber’s frontwoman Cammie Gilbert recently to discuss their upcoming new album, Oceans of Slumber, due out September 4th via Century Media. We discussed the current state of affairs with both the coronavirus pandemic and the Black Lives Matter protests in their hometown of Houston, their new self-titled album, new sounds and styles the band felt emboldened to incorporate on the records, Cammie’s own background as a singer and her goals for the album, the influence of bands like Katatonia and Opeth, the bands phenomenal cover of Jazz legend Billie Holliday’s “Strange Fruit”, the bands’ Type O Negative cover of “Wolf Moon”, some love for Peter Steele, and much more. You can pre-order the album here! and check out our chat. Continue reading
You gotta face the facts, you will never be as cool as Ice-T. Never. He came from the streets of Los Angeles to become an iconic figure of Hip-Hop, movies and television, and Metal music. For some people, it seems like there is no mountain they can’t climb, and Ice is one of those guys. Sure, he could chill and sit back on the Law and Order: SVU Special Victims Unit money, and all those royalties. In actuality, he has been working harder than ever on music the last decade-plus, specifically for his groundbreaking band Body Count. All the evidence you need is on their new album, Carnivore. (Century Media). Continue reading
In a story that has made the rounds, Thomas Kanewakeron Gray and Skanahwati Gray, two brothers who belong to the Mohawk Native american tribe, were on a college visit to their”dream school” at Colorado State, when they were racially profiled, had the cops called on them and patted down for being “suspicious” and “too quiet” while on a tour of the school for prospectivce students. Much of the conjecture since the story broke has been one of the brothers wearing a death metal shirt, but Cattle Decapitation. Now the good dudes in that band have weighed in, and in a show of solidarity, they have offered them free tickets for life to any shows.
Phil Anselmo granted his first proper interview since his now infamous usage of racist gestures and phrases at this year’s ‘Dimebash‘ event to Decibel Magazine, and the entire chat is now online. Continue reading
Given that our current Republican presidential candidate regularly spews out racist bullshit about Mexico and the Alt-Right is a thing, I guess we were really due for a new Brujeria album. And on Pocho Aztlan (Nuclear Blast Entertainment), metal’s favorite Satanic drug lords are, for the most part, back to playing it fast and filthy. Continue reading
Machine Head debuted their brand new song, inspired by the Paris Terror Attacks of November 2015, ‘Is There Anybody Out There’. Ghost Cult first broke the story of the forthcoming single a few months ago. The track premiered at SiriusXM radio’s Octane channel 37 and can be streamed at this link:
Robb Flynn commented on the track:
“The song is about love, loneliness, racism, and not getting what is going on in the world/America. It’s very much about current events, but applies to a bigger picture.”
Set for release this Friday, June 3rd from Nuclear Blast ,’Is There Anybody Out There?’ will be made available for purchase on iTunes, Amazon and Google Play, Spotify, Apple Music, and all streaming services. The track was produced by Flynn and co-produced and mixed by Joel Wanasek.
The band continues to tour the world in support their last release, 2014’s Bloodstone & Diamonds album.
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Neill Jameson of Krieg is one of the more fascinating people you will ever come across. Outspoken, articulate, philosophical, funny, and mild-mannered could all describe the man based on meeting him say, if you bumped into him at the bookstore or record shop. However, anyone witnessing him perform or create music, has a very different image in their mind. As one of the most important figures in the USBM scene, he clearly is more about “the work” and not about the accolades. In an exclusive interview with Ghost Cult’s Hillarie Jason, Neill discusses some changes going on in his life, the next Krieg album due in 2016, his thoughts on coping with mental illness, and other topics.
Neill recently moved to Virginia from southern New Jersey, and we opened things up by discussing how that is affecting the creation of a next Krieg album.
“Virginia is a nice change from Jersey in a lot of ways but mostly it’s just been a much needed change in my life that I’m hoping continues to stay positive. Plus I’m fortunate to live in a city that has a good music scene so there’s always something to look forward to.”
“Having a different place to work through ideas always helps. I have a lot of different places I haven’t explored yet but I’m able to take long walks that ease my mind and let me think through the ideas I want to convey with this next record, both sonically and lyrically.”
The forthcoming new Krieg album, entitled Guilt is due in 2016. It promises the progression of Krieg’s growth from Transient (Candlelight), which was definitely a different animal sonically than Isolationist (also Candlelight) was. So should we assume that Guilt will be just as different? “Yeah, we’re going to get together to start putting it together after the new year. There’s been less time between the two so I imagine there’s going to be more similarities between those two than there was between Isolationist and Transient. But I’m more inspired this time around by hardcore and crust than even the last one so there’s probably going to be a strong emphasis on that, without the shitty tough guy posturing.”
Speaking of shitty tough guys, Neill has commentated on the foibles of such men in the metal scene in his occasional op-ed series for Decibel Magazine. He was equally praised and condemned by keyboard warriors regarding his past observations on bigotry, chauvinism, and elitism in metal. We asked how he dealt with the praise and backlash:
“I’m happy to have some kind of platform to speak out about stupidity in general, be it about stupid shit like horse masks and chicken costumes or the heavier stuff I’ve dealt with the last few columns. I’m also very used to people talking shit about me on the internet so this isn’t anything new nor will it be something that goes away. So I don’t particularly care one way or the other. I’m not interested in being a social justice warrior nor do I think censorship in case someone’s fucking feelings get hurt is a good idea. I’m all in favor of freedom of speech and expression but I’m also aware those come with consequences, an idea not a lot of these dry dicks hollering at me while their mothers are upstairs drinking away the memory of having a failure of a child can seem to grasp. But I’ve spent long enough being a shithead myself so now’s my chance to atone a bit I guess.”
Neill has been candid about his struggles with mental illness publicly and in past interviews. So much so that it may have paved the way for a public discussion in the music community on these topics, since a lot of heavy music imagery and lyrics focuses on madness. We asked what, if anything if the underground music community can do to break the stigmas attached to mental illness, bipolar disorder, etc.?
“Odd you bring that up right now. Yesterday I made the decision after five years off to go back on meds to treat my bi-polar depression and anxiety. I was going to try to use my writing to document the experience and try to follow in a lot of people’s footsteps and keep the dialogue about mental illness in music and art in general open and flowing. There’s less of a stigma to it now than ten years ago, but also everyone’s doctor has them on something for shit they probably don’t even need treatment for and that’s what kept me from being on them for so long, it had stopped making a difference and I felt the whole thing was a fucking sham, I still do for the most part, but I’m also at a place in my life where I know I need help otherwise I’m going to fucking ruin things for myself which I almost did when I did Blue Miasma and again after The Isolationist and I want to see if exploring this will somehow be beneficial to myself and maybe others through sharing the experience.”
Neil is well known for a slew of collaborative projects and split releases. We wondered if it’s easier to run your own band with no interference: “I don’t just have myself to think about anymore, that’s a big part of it. A lot of people who suffer from these conditions aren’t aware how it affects those close to them, I have been aware for a long time and that’s where the “guilt complex” comes in but it’s been recently that I’ve decided it’s not a cycle I want to keep reliving. It doesn’t add to my “creativity” or anything positive.”
“The collaborations I do have each been so entirely different that I focus on them more as a way to learn new methods and techniques from other artists and how to incorporate them into my own music. So they’re entirely different experiences to me so I can’t say if one is necessarily easier than the other.”
On working with working with Thurston Moore (in Twilight):
“One of the most valuable learning experiences I’ve ever had. Plus he’s such an open and excited collaborator that it made what we were doing all the more vivid and dynamic. I would love for the chance to work with him again on something.”
“As opposed to other previous Twilight members, two in particular, who just dialed it in and sat back to collect praise and whatever money was available.”
Krieg recently left Candlelight Records and signed with Profound Lore Records: “Jef Whitehead brought up that we were about to be released from our Candlelight contract to Chris Bruni and it went from there. I’ve had contact with Chris since he wrote for Metal Maniacs and I’m a big fan of some of the bands on his label, and also just how he has built an empire with his own two hands in the image of exactly how he wants it to go. I look forward to causing the label to lose a lot of money and respect worldwide with this next record.”
In general Neill has had a fairly prolific couple of years. What is his regular creative process like or does he prefer to work project to project?
“It’s sporadic. For most of this year I barely picked up a guitar or wrote any lyrics. Other times it’s like I can’t turn it off. I don’t know what causes this to happen, it’s like the seasons change. It’s always been like this.”
“I could sit and force it but you can tell when I do that. I’d rather just let it come naturally.”
Commenting further on the release date: “Sometime next year. Same with the split with Integrity.
The split’s been recorded for about a year and is the best song we’ve ever recorded and the general basis for the next record so they tie in nicely with each other.”
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