The Ripple Effect Interview

Once again, The Ripple Effect music review blog-website has posted an article featuring yours truly. It's an interview which is part of their great series of interviews called, "Sunday Conversations With...". They ask the various artists questions about music, composing, their first songs, heroes, etc. Pretty cool stuff.

I'm still contemplating why anyone would want to read or write about me, let alone actually listen to my music. Bit I'm glad they did. Maybe I'm not as much of a hack as I think I am.

Many, many kudos to the folks at The Ripple Effect for continuing to feature such interesting and unique artists. I genuinely appreciate the support.



A new member of the family

My new baby...

A Schecter Omen 6 - Black Finish.
24 Frets. Stock Schecter Pickups.

This is the first 6-string guitar I have bought since 1988. It was time. My Yamaha is still in great condition, but I decided it was time for more of a "shredder" guitar, wide flat neck, big frets, high output pickups. This is a solid, well-constructed guitar that is made for heavy sounds. I have yet to do any recording or real playing with it yet, but I plan on running it through the full studio setup this week.

I tried about three other guitars before settling on this one. An ESP LTD EC100QM, which is similar to a Les Paul, but was just muddy-sounding, and I hated the neck. Felt like a baseball bat. Would not stay in tune at all, especially in Drop-D. Then I tried two other Schecter Omen 6 guitars. A Natural, dark red stain version, with major fret-buzz on the high E string, and a White version, that just didn't do it for me. Then I looked around and saw a Schecter Damien 6, which would have cost another $100, and then spotted a Black Omen 6, way back behind a bunch of cheap Jacksons. Plugged in, tried a bunch of tones through a Line 6 Spider amp. Yup. That was it. That's what came home with me.


Free Music Shout-Outs

I decided to give a few shout-outs to some other musicians like myself who create and distribute their music for FREE. Yep. We give it away. We're not whores, we're just a little slutty. That's better, right?

Inappropriate, I know. Sorry. I apologize to all the clean-minded, innocent young folks for my horridly "adult" language. Anyway - I'd simply like to recognize some interesting musicians who may not always be the most technically skilled, but are still creative and capable of making some interesting music that I guarantee you will never hear on the radio. They deserve our appreciation, so let's visit their various websites/pages and give 'em a try. You may find something you like, and it's FREE.

Vortech - now here is a guy that IS very technically accomplished. A one-man band with some guest vocals, Vortech create technical death-metal very inspired by Morbid Angel, but with an industrial undertone via some interesting synth backdrops and atmospheres. Heavy, fast riffage over blast-beats and deep-growl vocals. For fans of Morbid Angel, Zyklon, Deicide, Vader, etc.

Disciples of Zoldon - another tech-death one-man band. The lyrical themes revolve around the fictional God of Metal, Zoldon. I like when an artist uses their imagination to create a whole backdrop for their music, not just spew out violent, Satanic chants.

DIS - otherwise known as Aaron Schilling, from Nunya, Indiana, yet another one-man band with supreme technical mastery of his various instruments, played, programmed, or otherwise created. His project is reminiscent of a more death-metal oriented Emperor. Part Symphonic Black Metal, part Technical Death, always interesting, always heavy, and not at all cliche. I've been a fan for years, first finding his stuff at Soundclick (it's still there!) and now through Myspace and The Internet Archive.

David Fang - on a lighter note, how about some great symphonic classical music? David Fang composes soundtrack music for various video games, but his best work is composed in tribute to the TV Series, Andromeda. He has two different soundtracks available, both over an hour and a half long. You can find download links through his Myspace page, and his Soundclick page. You won't believe the great, full sounds he creates with a computer, some great orchestral sample sets, and super compositional skills.

Thulnar - still along the symphonic lines, but with some black metal mixed in, this Italian duo create an interesting mix of, well, symphonc black metal. Imagine a cross between Austria's Summoning and Italy's Rhapsody In Fire. Or if Rhapsody In Fire created a black metal album, this is probably what it would sound like.

Novistador - one-man band black metal from the frozen wastelands of Canada. Icy riffs played over blast-beats, the guitars feature a warmer, "woolier" tone than usually associated with most raw black metal. Some interesting harmonies greet us over spacey atmospheric backdrops. Harsh vocal screeches vomit forth from the glacial cavern-demons. The production on his self-titled full album is raw, yet clear, allowing us to hear every instrument. The linear song structures are just different enough from most "normal" metal to keep you listening. Highly recommended.

Jacker - here is a musician that does some great progressive-metal (in the vein of Dream Theater), without any real guitars or drums. You heard me, NO real guitars or drums (well, except for ONE guitar solo provided by the singer on one song, but THAT's ALL!). Actually very little is known about this artist. I discovered him through the Toontrack (makers of Drumkit From Hell) Forum, and didn't even realize there were no real guitars in his music until I had listened to most of his album, "The Devil Inside". He offered free downloads of the songs from this album, plus a bunch of other bonus songs at a French Music website called Audio Fanzine. I noticed that this page has recently disappeared, and his posts at the Toontrack Forum are no longer updated, so I uploaded the original album to the above link so that anyone willing would get a chance to hear his incredible music. I hope he hasn't vanished from the music scene, because it would truly be a great loss to us all.

That's all for now. Musicians like these are why I am still interested in music after 32 years of head-bangin'. And it's all FREE. Yep. These are not illegal downloads. They are authorized by the musicians themselves because they enjoy making music for people to hear. Like me.