Exterminate All Rational Thought….please?

Written by Adam Schenkel. Posted in Local, Music

You know, once in a while I like my music to reach out of my Pioneer tower speakers and slap me around a bit. I want some music to violate my ears and pummel my soul. But it can’t just be loud and punishing for loud and punishing’s sake.

No way, Kojak.

There’s gotta be something behind the aural blitzkrieg. A lesson? Well, not a lesson. But definitely a purpose. I get this feeling everytime I put on King Crimson’s Red. There’s dissonance and ugliness. But there’s also a beauty in-between the lines. Just put on your headphones Nancy and crank it up to 11 when ‘Providence’ comes on. It’s like Dracula boogieing with Yo Yo Ma on acid. It’s a trip, let me just say that. Mars Volta has this gift, too. Abrasive, menacing, acid-tinged and also intellectual, deep and thought-provoking. You know, the good stuff.

So when I come across something as diverse as this I grab on and hold tight. If you were lucky enough to be at the Yellow Bird last Saturday night then you know a find such as the one I’ve described was there peeling the paint off the walls. Exterminate All Rational Thought is a four piece instrumental outfit out of the Fort(plus one Ohio transplant) that know how to rock socks off. They play a type of metal that seems to have gone by the wayside. A hybrid of progressive and speed metal, they write ‘parts’ not ‘songs’. They tell a story not with words but with music. They’re new e.p. Lining The Streets tells a story of sorts. Well, it’s more of a ‘Choose Your Own Adventure’ kind of story. One where they’ve created the soundtrack, and they leave the adventure up to you and your imagination. All that’s needed is a pair of headphones and a open mind.

Now, don’t get all weird on me Sally. This isn’t unicorns and rainbows. No, this is fist-pumping, nail-biting, pedal-to-the-metal rock ‘n roll. There’s shifts, turns, swerves and drops into the abyss. Lining The Streets starts out with ‘The Formula’ then goes into “Parts I, II and III’. It’s heady stuff, but you don’t have to be a scholar to get it. You just have to know good music, sunshine. Cody, Pete, Jamie and Lucas know how to make good music. All that’s left is for you to listen to their apocalyptic squall from the wastelands of your imagination.

Now go on over to http://www.earthought.com/ and see what these guys are up to next. And check out http://eart.bandcamp.com/ for your digital copy of their excellent e.p., Lining The Streets. Morrison might even have a copy of the vinyl version of this chunk of molten metal over at Neat Neat Neat Records still. Then again, he may not. What’s it gonna hurt to go check? If you’re too lazy to click on, EART are playing The Izaak Walton League in Huntertown on October 13th. Moser Woods and RP Wigs are gonna be joining them in scenic Huntertown as well.

Now you’re in the know. Get on out and check EART out live. And get a copy of this e.p., Pronto.




Kevin Hambrick’s Turtle Wagon

Written by Adam Schenkel. Posted in Local, Music

It’s been a few years since I hatched from my pod and found myself in the town known as Fort Wayne. At that time I was writing for several magazines and making enough money to where I could afford a couple cans of Van Camps Pork ‘n Beans and a 6pk of Miller High Life a week.

Living high on the hog, kiddos.

Don’t get me wrong, I felt pretty lucky. I had a studio apartment, a scratched-up copy of Pere Ubu’s The Modern Dance and a lousy turntable to play it on. Plus a weathered copy Henry Miller’s Tropic of Capricorn to keep me company in-between bouts of extreme stomach pain. When I could afford it, I’d head out and try and find this local music scene I’d heard so much about. The very first local show I ever saw in this town was at Mid City Grill back in 2007. The band was Orange Opera and talk about setting the bar high. Watching Kevin Hambrick and his O.O. compadres storm through a set of power pop charged rock ‘n roll was eye opening. It didn’t feel like I was watching a townie playing his fun little originals for his drinking buddies.

TIMBER!!! drops a post punk manifesto

Written by Adam Schenkel. Posted in Local, Music

So, I hear last Friday night the place to be was the Brass Rail. Why you say? A triple bill that when spoken out loud would surely cause any local music fan to choke on their PBR or finely fermented craft beer. Friday night the Brass Rail was the sight of a musical orgy that involved the well-oiled TIMBER!!!, House Of Bread and Heaven’s Gateway Drugs. We discussed House Of Bread a couple weeks ago on these pages(Hypnic Jerk gonna spank you like you know you deserve). We don’t know much about Heaven’s Gateway Drugs, other than “I am Heaven’s Gateway Drugs,” and there are  some very eerie band photos on their website. Looks like one of the Culkin brothers and a Soggy Bottom Boy are among the Gateway members. They rock some mean Black Angels, Brian Jonestown Massacre and BRMC-like drone blues garage rock gumbo….at least that’s what I could tell from the couple tunes I found while searching the web and a couple of the band members harddrives.

The third band on that beer-soaked triple threat bill on Friday was TIMBER!!!. I was able to score a super secret copy of their upcoming full-length debut called Numbers, and this thing is insanely good! From the songwriting, to the Andy Gill-like guitar noise excursions, the tight, on-a-dime start stop rhythm section and the elegant time bomb vocal explosions, this album is a top notch post punk manifesto. Kendra Johnson, Ben Larson, Jason Williams and Jason Davis put out an e.p. back in 2011 called Twenty-Five Thirty-Five and gave the ears of the Fort a little preview of what TIMBER!!! was capable of laying down on tape. That e.p. was an ice-breaking of sorts. Numbers is the album they were meant to make.

All the stars were in alignment, me thinks.

‘Waste Away’ starts the album off with a Mission Of Burma angst and sense of urgency. Larson has the angular jaggedness of an in-his-prime Roger Miller. Davis and Williams are locked in keeping the rhythm section tight and solid, allowing Kendra Johnson the freedom to pull an emotional firestorm out out of her chest and onto our waiting ears. ‘Kaleidoscope’ sounds like Gang Of Four fronted by Debbie Harry. All angular guitar shards and pummeled drum toms elegantly held together by Johnson’s Siouxie Sioux vocal delivery. ‘Frisco Disco’ has a pop sensibility, but not in the usual pop sense. Pop music that Colin Newman and Graham Lewis gave us on albums like Chairs Missing and 154. TIMBER!!! leave us with the hazy, shoegazing ‘Lackluster’. A great tune that would’ve fit nicely on Lush’s masterpiece Spooky. 

TIMBER!!! are a true band. All four members bring something vital to the group. You’ll hear that when you get your first taste of Numbers as you can now pre-order it at their website. You’ll hear it when you check TIMBER!!! out at CS3 for their record release show on September 28th at 8pm. And you’ll hear it when TIMBER!!! come to your house and play in your living room for the mere price of a 12pk of Sierra Nevada and some chicken tacos.

Alright, they won’t come to your house. But they will blow your minds with their elegantly chaotic post punk. Do it!  And pre-order…now!


The Return of Vandolah

Written by Adam Schenkel. Posted in Local, Music

If you’re a townie, or have at least been ‘in the know’ within the local music community over the last 10 years or so in Fort Wayne, then the name Vandolah should mean something to you. If it doesn’t and you consider yourself as someone with their finger on the local music pulse, you are sorely mistaken. Because when you see the name Vandolah, you and that hipster beard of yours should set your 20oz can of PBR down and salute. Vandolah is/are the O.G.s of local indie music. Well guess what, the O.G.s are back in town and they’ve got a  seven-song e.p. called One More Minute ready to candy coat your ears with some jangly guitar rock.

For the uninitiated, Vandolah is fronted by Mark Hutchins. Yep, THAT Mark Hutchins. The guy behind 2010s classic Sleepy Furnace and 2011s bluegrass-tinged Liar’s Gift. On previous releases, like Please, Walk It Off and To The Moon, Vandolah was Hutchins, Dan Greunke and Kyle Stevenson. This time, though, Vandolah seems to be a one man show, with some piano and drum touches courtesy of Goodbyewave/Sunnydaymassacre hermit J. Hubner. And Al Gore. Yes, thanks to Al Gore and his creation, the internet, music files could be shared between midwest Republican strongholds and songs could be put together out of thin air. After much debate, hand wringing, happy thoughts, sad reflection and finally cathartic release we have a mid-year blessing in One More Minute.

House Of Bread is Rising

Written by Adam Schenkel. Posted in Local

Photo by John Hartman

Hey, Fort Wayne.

I’m sure you are all quite aware of the bounty we have in this landlocked town when it comes to original local music.  Sure, you’ve got your Ted Nugent tribute bands like Dave Mustaine’s Long Lost Dad, and the always classy rastafarian doom metal outfit Bob Snarling and the Impalers.  I won’t even attempt to explain the awesomeness of the underground nu metal scene.  What I’m here to talk about today dear readers is Fort Wayne’s own House of Bread.  No, this isn’t that tasty bakery on South Calhoun.  This is the alternative dream pop outfit that’s been laying their tasty baked goods on our starved, salivating ears for nearly 7 years now.  Omar Afzaal of All Nite Skate, Castles and

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