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The Ways of the Beard – Vol. 7

GAYTHEIST

HOLD ME_sm

Nick: I whacked Hold Me…But Not So Tight, the new Gaytheist album, on yesterday and was super stoked.
Jeff: You know, I listen to so much long and dark music that I often forget how great it can feel to be kicked in the dingle berries by a two-minute song and have sparkles and nails come flying out.
N: I love it! Lyrics that make you feel like, “Hey man, that’s a cool thing to say,” and great energy the whole album through. If only I could double track vocals that well.
J: You can double track vocals that well, Nick. You just have to put your mind to it.
N: Thanks, Dad! I’ll summon up all my pimply energy to schmooze out some haggard wails for you. Where’s this band from, exactly? I want to know so I can go shimmy shuffle with them there.
J: Somewhere in the Northwestern US, where the cold and clammy conditions breed beautiful metal.
N: Right, right. The drumming on this thing is a little bit outrageous. You think he’s just trying to keep warm, maybe?
J: His beard keeps him warm enough. Maybe he is part octopus?
N: I wasn’t aware that octopus could grow beards. It’d be killer if they could though.
J: Squid Beard. That would make a great name for a pirate.
N: That’s totally Geoffrey Rush’s character from Pirates of the Caribbean! Squid Beard as FUCK. He pianos with that shit.
J: And writes bawdy literature.
N: Does he? I don’t recall.
J: I am alluding to Quills because I assumed you were alluding to Shine. No?
N: Whhhaaaaaaaaaaa? Jefferson Airplane, what are you telling me?
J: Did you know that Grace Slick named her kid God? That’s so un-Gaytheist.
N: Totally a crappy thing to doom your kid to in high school.
J: Say no to drugs, kids.

Gaytheist

N: So, Hold Me…But Not So Tight gets a solid smooching in my books, I don’t care what it thinks.
J: I think it’s telling you what it thinks.
N: I think that stinks. We can work out the kinks…of this relationship…my rhyming scheme has gone wrong.
J: You like to get right up in there, huh?
N: I must.
J: Then what happens?
N: We conclude our embrace with a frosty beer.
J: You get it, man.
N: Do what you gotta do, man. Do you see these goons touring Australia or Canada any time soon?
J: Well they’re coming to Calgary in June to play Sled Island. That’s about an eight hour drive for me, so I won’t be going.
N: That’s POSER TALK! Quit your job, shoot meth into your balls, and have a great time for me!
J: Fine, but just for you.
N: HUH-YEEEAAAAAAAAAH.
J: And Gaytheist. But mostly you.
N: I appreciate it. Friends have to shoot their sack full of stimulant or they’re no friend of mine.

Gaytheist’s new album, Hold Me…But Not So Tight, is out now on Good To Die Records. We think you should hold it really tight. But that’s just us. Nick whacked it on. Or maybe he whacked on it. Either way, that’s got to tell you something.

POWER TRIP

manifest-decimation-cover

N: Mother. Fucking. POWER TRIP! WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO.
J: Are you okay?
N: No, I blew a foo foo valve. Those are fuck off expensive to replace, man.
J: I replaced mine long ago with inverted crosses. I listen to too much good stuff to always be replacing those expensive valves. The crosses are sturdy, cheap, and pretty.
N: I’m sure those will wear out soon or get infected with something exceptionally purulent. Or at least I hope so. That would give me satisfaction that my seemingly inferior pig foo foo valve replacement is a-okay.
J: No quality pig in Australia?
N: Our pigs will straight up murder yours at any given one-on-one event. They do not give a fuck. They are like oink punks.
J: Pig hockey?
N: Better be field hockey. Pigs are notoriously unstable on ice. Another thing you shouldn’t put on ice IS THIS MOTHERFUCKING ALBUM. SEGUE OF THE YEAR!
J: Speaking of segues…
N: …
J: …
N: …
J: No? Nothing?
N: Nope. Deal with that, maple monkey.
J: Boy, you sure are aggressive.
N: Must be all the horse steroids I’ve been shooting. Not surprised to be honest.
J: You must be itchin’ to go power trippin’.
N: You know I am! I gotta say, Manifest Decimation gets me juiced as fuck. Juiced. As. FUCK. This band takes everything I love about crossover-thrash and drowns it in a completely decadent amount of reverb. This is the sound of some heinous creature from beyond trying to stage dive into our dimension and I love it.

ptlive3

J: Will you catch it?
N: I’ll fuckin’ try. Eldritch mosh beasts from beyond aren’t known for having tangible limbs to hold on to though.
J: You just don’t know what you’re doing, that’s all. Maybe you should spend more time in some pits.
N: Hmmmm, interesting proposition. I’ll move all my stuff into the floorspace of some local thrasher venue and emerge only for bar snacks and circle pits. Would that satisfy you?
J: It might. The idea of you living like a rock n’ roll rat pleases me.
N: I might hold off on that for a while and have a few sets of spare clothes to soil, if that’s all right by you.
J: Figure it out, would ya.
N: Two flannel shirts should get me by for at least a year. Let’s go with that.
J: Not even extra briefs? Ballsy.
N: I wear undies three days in a row on the reg as is. No skin off my gooch.
J: Well, until you get into the pit with one of them Eldritch bastards. They’ll tear a strip off your dick.
N: Dang. I need that. Regardless, I would give that backwards DRI hat wearing bastard an 18 out of 21. Reverb for days and tentacles for weeks.
J: The album or the beast?
N: Yes.
J: All right.

When someone says, “Don’t mess with Texas,” they’re really referring to Power Trip. Don’t mess with Power Trip. If you need proof, listen to these two stabs of metal from their new full-length, Manifest Decimation, which will be out on June 11th on Southern Lord.

NAAM

VOW_COVER_LARGE

J: Do you believe in UFOs?
N: I can’t say that I do. I am a huge X-Files fan if that counts for anything?
J: You’re goddamn right it counts for something! I had a crush on Scully.
N: Had? Oh man. Gillian Anderson was, and still is, a total fox. She recently turned up in this show I watch called Hannibal and my heart skipped a lot of beats. Nearly died.
J: IMDB is telling me she’s going to be in something called Curse of the Buxom Strumpet. Holy shit. Although I doubt it’s going to be anything like I think it’s going to be. Or should be.
N: Based on the name alone they definitely have great artistic vision. And so it goes. This new Naam album, Vow, gives me visions something chronic. Do you think it’s the album or something else? I’m only very vaguely concerned you see.
J: Oh, it’s the album all right. What are you seeing, exactly?
N: An ancient warlock. He gives me a flower and from inside the flower comes a white tiger and I ride him through a vortex. Nothing exciting.
J: Or as it’s known around here: Saturday night.
N: You fuckin’ Canucks. You should share that shit around some more, come on!
J: Hey, that’s why bands like Naam do what they do, so everyone can enjoy the warlock/white tiger/vortex hallucinations.

Yep, that’s it. Conversation is over. Were you expecting more? What do you want from us!? Our minds are fried, man. Naam is exceptionally good at doing that. So grab a cup of black coffee and a roll of tin foil, and then open up and listen to the title track from Vow, which will be out on June 4th on Tee Pee.

Listen to “Vow” here.

Naam

NICK AT MARYLAND DEATHFEST

Nick flew to America to spend a few days at the Maryland Deathfest ingesting all kinds of extreme metal, terrible beer, and delicious vegan food. No one was certain Nick would make it back alive, but except for one concussion and a head full of crusty hair, he’s none the worse. In fact, he came back even better.

nick-ticketNick is stoked about MDF.

N: Okay, Jeff, I know you’re probably still mad from hockey but I need to get Deathfest off my chest before I die from stoked.
J: Mad from hockey? That was, like, four weeks ago. Pfft. I’ve moved on to being mad about other things. But go on…
N: Oh, I’m well aware, and also well aware of how much you love to watch armored dudes beat each other up at high speed on ice.
J: Exchange the word ‘armored’ for ‘shirtless’ and ‘ice’ for ‘metal show’ and you have your weekend in a sentence.
N: That’s true! There was a lot of shoulder barging and the security were up on, like, chair towers overseeing the circle pits. I don’t think referees are as likely to be so into it that they dive on to the players though. By which I mean that the security crowd-surfed quite a few times, which was so awesome.
J: Then you haven’t seen a donnybrook from the 70s!
N: Explain…
J: That was hockey’s hay day, when toothless bruisers would beat the piss out of each other and then go for beers afterward. So, pretty much like a metal show!
N: That sounds like my jam! I took a lot of knocks stage diving/circle-pitting, but every time there would be some hesher dude with a shit-eating grin right there to help me out.
J: The brotherhood. It’s why metal endures.
N: Exactly. I’ve never had a “SLAAAAYEEEER” moment ’til the Fest, where I had about four. It was cathartic. Speaking of sports/mosh, I concussed myself stage diving during Infest. That was pretty interesting. I’ve never been a sports dude but now I totally get the term punch-drunk. I was pretty silly for a while there.

nick-at-mdfThat’s Nick leaping off the stage into the waiting arms of a concussion.

J: Probably helped enhance the experience. So, who’d ya see?
N: Here’s my favorites in no particular order: Bolt Thrower, Carcass, Weedeater, Sleep, Manilla Road, Infest, Anhedonist, Evoken, Convulse, Loss, Midnight, Repulsion, Tragedy, Weekend Nachos, Vitamin X, Kromosom, Massgrav, and Rotten Sound. I’m going to cop an earful for missing some crucial old school stuff but, hey, hanging out with my dudes and getting food has to happen sometime. My awesome friend Hasan also put on a bunch of side gigs at The Sidebar nearby, which were immense with great bands, especially Wolvhammer, Tragedy, Kromosom, Krieg, Rawradarwar, and Derketa.
J: Where did you sleep? How many showers did you not take? Did you get wasted on shitty American beer?
N: I slept in a good-ass bed at my aforementioned friend’s house, which was great! I had the pleasure of a shower each morning and slammed a bottle of travel conditioner over four days to try and get the crust out (didn’t work). Also, I was, like, kinda drunk a lot of the time, but on one occasion I saw a sign saying ‘beer and a shot — 8 bucks’ and I was all, “Hey, I can’t say no to that deal.” Turns out I really should have. I got a bit punk in drublic. My stomach now requires a litre or so of Yuengling or Natty Bo every day. I think I’ll have to order it in to sustain myself.
J: Nah, you just need all your goodies and trinkets you brought back with you. I’m surprised they let you through customs with so much evil swag.

nick-merch1Nick’s merch haul #1.

nick-merch2Nick’s merch haul #2.

N: Ha ha, right right. I only got frisked/had to take my shoes off….two or three times? Not bad! I got myself a shirt that the band Speedwolf were selling (sucks I missed them though) that says “FUCK CRAB” on it. I am so happy.
J: I dare say you probably got felt up more in the pit. I used to wear shirts with the word fuck on them, but, you know, not anymore.
N: I think it was Friedrich Nietzsche who once said, “Yo, fuck that, dog.” It was kind of odd to see the length of the line for Sleep merch. It was consistently, like, 40-60 people long even though it was all stuff they’ve had on their site for a long time. Weird.
J: Save on shipping, I guess. I mean…that’s the power of Sleep!
N: Oh, absolutely. They were transcendent. I got very high on riffs that day.
J: The noxious doom fumes permeated your very essence, did they?
N: Nothing noxious about it, my friend! It was a totally uplifting. Clean out the soul. I picked up Dopesmoker earlier in the week on double LP for twenty-five bucks too, so I get to re-live that gigantic religious experience whenever I want.
J: I meant it in a good way, like how bad means good. You know, how the kids say.
N: Oh, I gotcha.
J: Ugh, they would never let me into MDF.
N: Ha ha, on what grounds? Being too tubular groady to the max?
J: Certainly not for being gnarly and radical.
N: Do you even skate, Jeff? Jesus Christ.
J: On the ice! And thus the circle is complete.
N: Hi five, my dude. I do love me some repetition.
J: We ouroboros’d the shit outta that!
N: Yeah! I looked at my butt and I was all, “I could eat”?
J: Okay, you’ve cracked. It’s been a long weekend for you. I think you need to go get some sleep, my man. Or some Sleep.

WIZARD WATCH

Nick was summoned to MDF by his dear friend Hasan. Hasan is, of course, a wizard, and as true wizards are wont to do, he rose to the occasion in showing Nick gracious hospitality and brutally good times. Any wizard of Nick’s is a wizard to one and all, especially when he’s garbed in a Celtic Frost shirt and showing off some Evoken vinyl.

hasan

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Posted by Jeff on May 31 2013 in The Ways of the Beard


The Ways of the Beard – Vol. 6

KVELERTAK

kvelertak-meir

Jeff: You know who’s popular? Kvelertak, that’s who.
Nick: They totally are and they deserve it! They are pure goddamn rock n’ roll energy live and they pack a lotta stoked-out vibes into every song.
J: This new record, Meir, blew my expectations right out of the foamy water. And you’re spot on about the rock n’ roll energy. These guys will, and probably do, get labeled hardcore, but they are next-level rock n’ roll madness. Plain and simple. There as much catchy melody as there is biting fury. They are like Turbonegro if Turbonegro were into chewing glass instead of sailor cock.
N: It’s hard to avoid the Turbonegro comparisons, namely because these tunes are so goddamn fun and the choruses could make your 300-year-old dead grandma dance up a storm. This new guy is once again a totally enormous production just bursting with character. There’s much better use of the black metal and/or folk breaks, which slot in oh-so-nicely with the constant build-ups and pounding melodies these dudes juice like no other.
J: And also because they’re Norwegian. But yeah, everything you said and then some. I drink their juice.
N: Hey, you know what? They should market that juice. They certainly make enough of it every time they play.
J: I’ll take some chips, beef jerky, and a carton of Kvelertak.
N: Mmmm, it’s certainly a lotion I’d like to get all over me, that’s for sure.
J: Wait…is it lotion or juice? Either way, it’s all over us and it’s completely sexual.

stian_andersen_kvelertak_6338

N: No shame about it here! They’re rugged fellas. So, how about that artwork?
J: I haven’t met a Baizley drawing I didn’t like.
N: Amen to that! This one has a bunch of poopin’ butts too. At least I think it’s poop. I am, like, 75% sure it’s poop.
J: No penises? There’s gotta be a penis or seven. Baizley loves putting penises in there. And nipples.
N: There’s gotta be! Petition to have an alternate version with some long bird dongs.
J: I’m not sure I’d sign it.
N: FASCIST.
J: Am I trampling on your penis freedoms?
N: If not trampling then definitely impinging upon them. I can’t make it through the day without making a penis pun, Jeff. I just want to live!
J: Then Kvelertak is the band for you. Turn Meir all the way up and shake your cock like you’ve never shook it before.
N: “Manelyst” all week it is. That track is a definitive balls-emptier.
J: See, I keep picking out little bits and pieces from every song that make me pump and thrust, but “Spring Fra Livet” and “Undertro” really do it for me, especially the jean-creaming exit riff in the latter.
N: There is no possible way to play that riff without hip thrusts. That’s gotta be a hang-able offense.
J: That’s why they call it deathpunk.
N: The eponymous finish track is so, so, so joyous. This is a good-feelings burrito with extra guac.
J: A perfect way to end an august and addictive Norwegian rock fucking. It’s a goddamn burrito supreme smothered in oodles of thick cream!
N: God I’ve got the burrito-lust crazy bad right now. Thanks, Jeff. At least I have something to drive with and yell out my window in the meantime.
J: Go to Taco Bell with no pants on and tell ‘em Kvelertak sent ya.
N: I’m sure that’ll get my at least 30% off a family-sized ass-kicking.
J: Oh, it’ll do something to your ass all right…ok, I think we’ve made our point.
N: Yeah, I’m spent.

What at first glance appears to be bird poop on Baizley’s cover for Meir could, in fact, be semen and it does make a penis shape. We couldn’t be happier. Not just for that, but also because this album is simply amazing. Check out the video for “Manelyst” from Meir, out now on Roadrunner!

UNCLE ACID & THE DEADBEATS

UncleAcidAndTheDeadbeats-MindControl

N: I see there’s new Uncle Acid.
J:  Yes, but I’ve only heard a few songs.
N: I heard about them on the way to work. Can’t wait to get on to them!
J: You already know about them, don’t you?
N: I know about a 7″, but I think there’s more?
J: Uncle Acid?
N: Yeah! I will investigate further soon.
J: You know who Uncle Acid is! You have their first record!
N: Dude, I worship that record. They’re hella mysterious though.
J: It sounded to me like you were saying you didn’t know who Uncle Acid is.
N: I’m sure there’s someone out there called Uncle Acid who I don’t know, but the band is not one of them.
J: What the fuck are we talking about?
N: I’m going to let you puzzle that one out.

uncle-acid-and-the-deadbeats

J: It’s what happens when you dip your toes in The Deadbeats’ water.
N: That water is definitely not good for drinking.
J: Serve it in a red cup and I won’t leave the party.
N: Not without making out with a phantom beast and riding it to a higher way of life, no.
J: I’ve made out with my share of those, let me tell ya.
N: Here’s a question: Did you think that Aslan from the 80′s Narnia movie was cool or scary as hell? I ask because I don’t know whether I’d trust him if he wanted to hang out/make out, is all.
J: I never saw that movie. But I hope he was scary.
N: Scary in a bad way, I feel.
J: The nightmare movie characters from my childhood were the wheel hand dudes from the Wizard of Oz sequel, Return to Oz. In fact, that whole movie bugged me out.
N: Holy crap they’re awful. That movie left a goddamn bottomed-out hole in my soul that I haven’t been able to fill since. The people who gave that movie a kids rating should be tea bagged mercilessly.
J: Dorothy runs away from electroshock therapy and has a rooster for a pet. The witch has talking heads in glass cases. That movie was, as they say, ‘not in Kansas anymore’.
N: That movie was, as they say, ‘blowing my asshole but not nicely’. Three out of ten people hope to never see screenshots again.
J: So now is the perfect time to show one…

Wheelers

N: Fuckin’ kill me now. You ever see that movie The Holy Mountain? Fuck, there’s a trip.
J: No. Clearly I’ve got some Netflix-ing to do.
N: Definitely in your wheelhouse, man. I think it’s got a strong cult following. I heard about it through fan-made clips using footage from the film.
J: I’ll check it out…right after I listen to the new Uncle Acid!
N: Yes! Nothing in the past few years gets my blood up quite like that band.
J: Pumpin’ and bubblin’.
N: Saucy.

Although we had not heard Mind Control in its entirety at the time of this conversation, it still sucked us into a vortex of confusion and terror. It’s called Mind Control for a reason, ya know? Anyway, it’s out now on Rise Above. Here’s the cut “Mt. Abraxas”! 

GHOST (or GHOST B.C. if you prefer)

Ghost-Infestissumam

J: So, Nick, is it true you think Ghost sounds like circus music?
N: Not usually, no. But the song “Secular Haze” from the new album Infestissumam sounds clowny clown clown as fuck.
J: I suppose the make-up isn’t helping either.
N: No, sir, it does not. I fuckin’ loved Opus Eponymous though.
J: Well, that’s something. What do you make of the B.C. business?
N: Meh, people getting mad about a generic band name. If I called my band Bread or House or something I wouldn’t get mad and sue people. I’d be all, “Fair enough, let’s play Mortal Kombat.”
J: There was a 70s soft rock band called Bread. So you’ll have to be Bread B.C. Or else get your thumbs ready!
N: I’ll win that wrestling match with relative ease. I am a professional thumbs upper.
J: And if the dudes in Bread are still alive, they’re probably not up for that kind of sportsmanship.
N: Their loss. A life without hand battles is no life worth living! So, how is Infestissumam grabbing you?
J: I like it, but then again, I’m partial to a good three ring show.
N: I’m not getting a long dong for the first few tracks. Track one had some real nice grandiose goings-on, but goddamn I disliked two, and three really drags.
J: Nick, I’m not sure you’re getting into the spirit of it. Or the anti-spirit, if you will. Are you wearing a papal robe?
N: I’m wearing a Morrissey t-shirt, jeans, and my favourite underwear, which remind me of Christmas pudding. Oh, track four is what it would sound like if I got super drunk with my friends and broke into a church to play Marco Polo.
J: Swimming in the holy water?
N: Churches are flooded with holy water in the off-times, right? Or is that an Australian thing?
J: I don’t know. I’ve never actually been in one. But if Papa Emeritus was the one giving sermons I might be inclined to show.

ghost_bc

N: I wonder what his speaking voice is like? I hope it’s so silly.
J: It’s likely clownish.
N: Fuck clowns. Not even funny, especially for kids, most of whom develop a super bad clown phobia for a reason. Now they’ll get Mercyful Fate phobia. For shame!
J: With some Blue Oyster Cult night terrors thrown in for good measure.
N: How could you even? BOC is pure as the driven snow! I have to go to the hospital because my blood just boiled over. Man, I am passionate today, huh? Must’ve been too many raisins in my high fiber cereal.
J: Get your ears checked while you’re there.
N: Hmmph! My deer are fine, thanks for asking. BADOOM TISH! Feel the cold steel of my toasty drunk dad joke.
J: Are you really drunk though?
N: About three-and-a-half out of ten. I’m also tired. And I was lying down sideways on the ground and feel kinda funny. So all that wrapped in a felafel. Hannibal Rising wasn’t good and now I’m sad.
J: Well at least you’re not thinking about Ghost anymore.
N: I’ll leave that lying in the rain at your front door ’til tomorrow at the least. When I don’t feel frown-y.

And so we left it there to soak even though I was hoping we’d get to talk about the Nameless Ghouls. Anyway, one thing’s for sure, whether you dig the spook or hate the spoof, Ghost will cast a wretched pallor over your otherwise sunny disposition, even if does contain a bit of big top bluster. Speaking of which, step right up and see the band with the Satanic shtick! Come one! Come all! Come close but beware the daze! Feast your eyes on the video for “Secular Haze” from Infestissumam, out now on Loma Vista Recordings!

AXE THROWING

Axe throwing is a sport. It exists. And in Toronto, there’s even a competitive league known as the Backyard Axe Throwing League, or B.A.T.L. if you prefer a quicker and stronger pronunciation. Naturally, we had to investigate, and it just so happens that we have a friend, Ryan Petrimoulx, who is a B.A.T.L. participant, so we lured him away from is axe sharpening and beard stroking to tell us all we desired to know about the league and the sport. It’s no surprise that we desired to know a great many things about the throwing of axes because the throwing of axes is completely awesome, and Ryan was gracious enough to lay it all out for us.

20130305axe1-640x426Photo snagged from here.

Jeff: We’ve recently learned of a sport where men with beards gather and throw axes at things. You are one such man. Tell me, how is it you came to partake in such a majestic hobby?
Ryan: Well, not to derail your initial statement but I was brought in by a friend of mine who happens to be the first ever female champion. Prior to moving into the city, I went and checked it out once with her and I knew that it was definitely something I’d like to get into.
J: So, the women-folk are allowed to throw. I guess having a beard is not a mandatory league rule.
R: Mandatory, no, but I do believe that every one of the four league nights have beard representation. I’d like to think I hold down Monday nights fairly well when it comes to beardedness.
J: Of that I have no doubt. So, what are you throwing your axes at, exactly? Unruly orcs? Mannequins wearing chain-mail? Each other?
Nick: Cats in trees?
R: While the mannequin/chain-mail combination sounds interesting (even though it’d probably ruin the blade) we’re throwing at targets made of two by fours with at a bulls-eye drawn in it. In that regard it’s similar to archery.
J: How, then, is a victor crowned?
R: Well, a season lasts eight weeks, and the eighth week is a playoff week where the top scorers from the season compete in a bracket. The overall victor is presented with a plaque and has their name written on the wall of champions.
J: Surely he/she deserves a sumptuous feast in their honour as well. For one must grow famished while besting others at battle.
R: As I have yet to be the ultimate victor, I’m not certain how draining it is to climb to the top. We usually just use beer to stave off famine.
J: Yes, I suppose a nice thick grog, bock, or mead could sustain a warrior during a tournament. However, one must be careful not to completely submit themselves to Bacchus’ whims lest one loses a finger, hand, or arm. Tell me, how much blood is shed during one of these tournaments?
R: Little to none. The only stories I’ve heard regarding the possible shedding of blood is someone took a stray bounce-back above the knee and another person took the non-sharpened end in the back after a freak ricochet.
J: Battle scars and nothing more. A noble sacrifice to be sure. And does all this actually take place in a backyard? An open field? Perhaps a basement or dungeon?
R: It originated, far before my time, in the backyard of a house off College St. (hence the league name), but now it’s in a loft/warehouse space off of Bloor St. by Dundas.

batl-locationB.A.T.L. headquarters.

J: Are there B.A.T.L. chapters throughout the land?
R: Nope. This is the exclusive one and only.
J: I might have to change that.
R: I’ll see if there are franchising opportunities.
J: That’s very gracious of you.
N: Will there be international B.A.T.L.’s? I could definitely use that skill to nail big hairy spiders from across the room.
R: Only time will tell.
J: So, tell us about your axe. What’s its name?
R: To be honest, I haven’t pinned a name down yet. I’m stuck between Delilah and Jezebel.
J: Well, unless you are using your axe to cut people’s hair, I think the latter is a more apt moniker. You paint your whore steel with the blood of your enemies, aye? What kind of axe is she?
R: I’d call her more of a hatchet than an axe to be honest. Within normal league play, we’re throwing hatchets. Only when breaking a tie do we go to big axes. Personally, mine has red and gray duct tape around the handle but many people do some pretty crazy jobs decorating their axes.
J: What’s the craziest axe decoration you’ve seen?
R: Well, we actually have a cancer fundraiser planned this week and a number of axes have been given to local artists to be auctioned off. That kind of decorating isn’t the norm, however. There’s a bunch that have been done with powder-coating or that have been painted and such. There are a few people that are in the art space during their day-to-day so they do some simple but interesting things.

decorativeaxeOne of the decorative axes that was auctioned off for charity.

N: What is the best kind of axe to throw?
R: That’s a great question, and not something to which I have a definitive answer. I’ve only thrown my axe and the big axe so my knowledge of the “best” axe is a little limited. I’ve seen fiberglass axes and one’s made of composite and other types of metals online but never physically held them. I’d imagine any axe would be acceptable once you grow accustomed to its weight, center of gravity, etc.
J: Fiberglass? That just sounds blasphemous.
N: Do you see many axes from throughout the ages?
J: Yeah, anyone tossing a nice medieval axe?
R: Not really. We’re limited to the amount of time we can get into the space so the first half-hour prior to league play is for practice for those throwing that night. There isn’t a lot of time to play around with other things like trick throws and other types of axes. That being said, there’s a pretty sweet double-headed big axe mounted on the wall at B.A.T.L.
N: Do you and your backyard pals attempt to lob other edged weaponry to see if it’s any chop?
R: There is someone that throws with me on Mondays that sometimes brings in knives that he likes to throw but that’s pretty much it at the moment.
N: So I guess there’s no axe juggling either?
R: If there is I’ve never seen it.
J: That’s right. Keep your eyes on the prize. And with that we wish you all the best on your quest to capture the title, good sir. May your axe be light, your throws accurate, and your glory great. Praise Odin.
R: Thank you, good sirs. Next time you make it this way please let me know because it would be an honour to bring men of your bearded stature into our fold. Praise Odin.

WIZARD WATCH

Who else could be our wizard but the axe man himself, Ryan Petrimoulx! Born of the European lumberjack Petrimoulxs, this brawny huntsman is known to wield cunning, wit, stamina, a yeoman’s thirst, good dress, and the occasional funky haircut to turn the big city into his own personal concrete forest. Like a true wizard, he rules man and beast alike, and hopefully one day soon he’ll rule the B.A.T.L. ranks.

ryan

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Posted by Jeff on Apr 19 2013 in The Ways of the Beard

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The Ways of the Beard – Vol. 5

COUGH/WINDHAND

reflection_1400

Jeff: I was really expecting this Cough/Windhand split, Reflection of the Negative, to be much heavier.
Nick: Oh, maaaaaaaaan. I love the vibe on the Windhand songs. Total ritualistic naked moon magic stuff.
J: Yeah, I was being sarcastic. They both sound like Electric Wizard running low on batteries.
N: The doom-acell goat. Plays sets ten times longer than rival doom fauna.
J: It keeps dooming and dooming and dooming…

COUGHversion1Cough

N: I had the pleasure of seeing Cough a year or two ago, and they played even fucking slower than on record. It was a real trip, lemme tell you.
J: A descent into madness?
N: I felt like a tumbleweed bouncing home after, so it definitely does something…um, weird…to your mental state.
J: Such as make you use words like ‘fauna’?
N: Hey, man. Hey. That’s totally legit. David Attenborough drops that like it ain’t no thing, so I can too.
J: That guy narrates a mean nature documentary. What do you think Attenborough would say about this split?
N: He’d probably go into detail about the weed stalactites that form off the roofs of stoner caves. Those things are dangerous; if they fall on you, you will get high as shit and have a really good time.
J: Now I have the sudden urge to go spelunking.

WindhandPressPicWindhand

N: I’m not going to read anything else into that than a love of subterranean exploration. How’s old-mate goat dude on the cover grab you?
J: An apt representation for the terror that’s within, I’d say.
N: I think he’s playing a rousing game of peek-a-boo.
J: Silly fauna.
N: “Teehee, I got you good! Now to rip out your kidneys as offering to Nyarlathotep.”
J: The Crawling Chaos loves baby innards.
N: Who doesn’t?
J: Squares, man. That’s who.
N: Kick ‘em inna teef with your hooves, that’s what I always say.
J: Eat goat feet, motherfucker!
N: So pointy, so dangerous. It behooves me to ask what your favorite track is.
J: Ooh, clever. Um, Windhand’s “Amaranth,” I suppose, but all three are pretty deadly.
N: I definitely feel the same way. The monumental drum intro for Cough’s “Athame” has me squeezing the sweet, sweet juice out of some invisible oranges. Overall, I’d definitely give this split the ol’ eldritch stamp of elder god approval.
J: Definitely four-and-a-half fauna.
N: Thirty-four tentacelephants out of forty from me.

Reflection of the Negative is set to be released on April 16 on Relapse Records. Here’s a teaser. If you’re eating something, put it down so you don’t choke.

HELL

N: So how does Hell’s latest, III, grab you, my friend?
J: This isn’t the same band from the 80s, is it?
N: I’m going to say no to that one. I have a nagging feeling that they’re a fairly recent two-piece from the States.
J: So this is a new kind of Hell then.
N: You bastard. You set me up!
J: I would never do such a thing.
N: I’m on high alert for future pun set-ups now, so watch your ass, sea bass. I know I’ve said this a lot to you, but goddamn I cannot get enough of this band and this record in particular. A seamless blend of black metal, sludge, and funeral doom that doesn’t drag in the slightest.
J: No drag? I’ve seen bloated corpses pulled through the woods with more get-up than this. This shit is a total drag, man.
N: Slab drag. The best drag. Stick-heroin-into-your-everywhere-drag! I’m just so sad/glad about this record, excuse my misnomer.
J: I gotcha. Well, despite the fact that these are two long motherfucking songs, I’m kind of into slab drag funeral doom.
N: I’m such a sucker for it. The ‘let me play you the smallest violin in the world’ riffs are strong in this one.

hell-iii-tape

J: It kind of reminds me of Agalloch but, you know, without the folk metal leanings.
N: It sounds like a lotta influences getting pumped at once. I feel the Loss/Worship/Corrupted/Accursed thing, and also the so-cool-right-now USBM stuff. And they slough together so nicely.
J: Oh, it doth slough. Slough and drag.
N: I’m really pleased I got to use those words today, Jeff. Definitely under-used all round.
J: I’m pleased you’re pleased, and really, I doubt anyone is ever pleased after listening to Hell.
N: Satisfied, maybe? Like a big, doomy meal, it fills you up and you can’t move for a while afterward.
J: That’s called gluttony and you go to hell for that. So, actually, that’s perfect!
N: Oof. I’m going to be puking riffs for days.

Hell’s III was actually released late last year on a black fucking cassette, but there’s no such thing as punctuality when dealing with this kind of laboring sorrow. Go ahead, listen to it yourself, and we’ll see how in tune with time you are when it’s over.

NAILS

NailsAbaondon300dpi

J: So, Nails. Is this what you kids call powerviolence?
N: Sure, sure! It’s hard, it’s fast, it’s got the gross breakdowns, and the record clocks in at under 20 minutes. I reckon that title suits fine.
J: Super. And does your mom let you listen to it?
N: She’s stoked. She definitely loves the, uh, raw energy.
J: Kid tested, mother approved. They should put that slogan on a sticker and slap it on the album cover.

Nails_Promo_2bw [photo by Vanessa Harder]

N: How’s it grabbing your scrotum so far?
J: Well, since I don’t consider myself particularly violent or powerful (aside from the wizardly power my beard affords me), I’m afraid I’m clenching rather tight.
N: Don’t bring ‘em in too hard or you’ll sprain something down there. I love that on Abandon All Life the band continued the ethos of Unsilent Death by packing every kind of heavy into your ears. That’s a testament to some well-directed rage right there.
J: Is there an orifice of mine they’re not aiming to claim by sheer amplified force?
N: Straight up: No. Your prior claims of ownership on any and all holes are now null and void.
J: Will this album at least buy me breakfast the next morning?
N: Oh, absolutely. You’ll have a great time and lots of meaningful conversation. Then you’ll blow chunks straight down your flannel as you’re leaving from how intense it was.
J: Well, you see, that’s nice. I would probably listen to it again then if it wanted me to.
N: You’re accustomed to blowing chunks down your flannel?
J: I don’t know anymore.
N: So many fluids, so little time. Life’s hard like that.
J: Yeah, hard as NAILS.

Say a final goodbye to your ear, ass, and mouth-holes and then listen to “God’s Cold Hands” from Abandon All Life by Nails, out now on Southern Lord.

DENIM VESTS AND PATCHES

J: So I decided the other day that it was time to re-patch the denim.
N: Yes! What kind of bands are you going to put on, hombre?
J: Well, I decided the centerpiece would be the Broken Beard logo I cut off a shirt. I mean, fuck, I’ve got a box of ‘em, so I was willing to sacrifice one for the good of the denim. As for bands, I’ve got 3 Inches of Blood, Nashville Pussy, Bad Dream, The Bronx, Trigger Effect, and Stubb. But plenty of room for more, man.

jeff-vest-front
jeff-vest-backJeff’s vest

N: That sounds great, definitely a ‘drink-til-you-die’ rock n’ roll thing going on. I like it! People get way too caught up in buying obscure asshole nothing black metal patches to look cool for obscure asshole people. This is definitely the opposite of that. Are you keeping the sleeves on?
J: Those black metal logos are so indecipherable and I prefer patches people can read, that way I know that they know that they don’t know what I know. You know? And no, no sleeves. This bitch is all vest.
N: Oh, don’t I know. I have a lot of colours on my vest with big-ass clear font. My favourite is probably the green Doomriders one. That thing is bad-ass. And as my friend Graham says, “Sleeveless isn’t a fashion, it’s a way of life.”
J: Graham’s got it dialed in. So, do you prefer the crowded, top-to-bottom, front-to-back, denim-can’t-breathe patching, or do you go for a more loose, spaced-out devil-may-care approach?
N: I want each guy to have it’s own little snug bit to live in, and that so happens to be pretty square, so it’s pretty even, but there’s a fair few patches at this stage. So I won’t be doin’ patches-on-patches like I see gets done. I don’t play that, no sir.

nick-vest-front
nick-vest-backNick’s vest

J: Yeah, I can’t get down with the mosaic look. I mean, I don’t have anything against anyone that prefers their denim to look like the telephone pole with three years of show flyers stapled to it, but it’s casual patching for this guy. Plus, that leaves room for buttons. Buttons are key.
N: Dude, buttons…can’t get enough. I buy like three to four buttons when I see people selling that shit. Accessorize!
J: Yes, my vest even comes adorned with a few metal studs across the shoulders. Gotta stick some metal up your ass accessories amongst the drink ’til you puke vibe.
N: That way when you’re stumbling around hurling BOC lyrics at passers-by they give you a lotta room to avoid getting tetanus.
J: They fear the reaper, and rightly so.
N: Because the reaper is drunk and lecherous and, like, five seconds away from taking his clothes off because he thinks he’s at home.
J: Quick, someone slap a vest on Death!
N: Do we have a size XXXS? Fuck. He’s the opposite of ‘youth’ large, I suppose.
J: I bet he’s itching to wear something other than that robe.
N: I just know he’d look so good in 80s skater-thrash kid gear.
J: Skate or…well, you know.
N: Skate or sit at home and have a lovely wank?
J: Skate or sit at home and sew patches on to your denim.
N: Very similar in my mind.
J: Is it sacrilegious to say I don’t do my own sewing? I let the old lady handle it. I tried once and it was a disaster.
N: You’re DEAD to me, Warren! Actually, that seems to be what people do regularly; it’s a niche skill to carry around. I do my stitches badly by pushing the pin through with my teeth. So there’s that.
J: I hope you can forgive me. I promise that I’ll do the next patch I get myself. With my teeth.
N: Next time I see a picture of you you better have some bloody gums, mate. Also a vest. A NICE ONE.
J: All right, sir.

Yeah, just because.

WIZARD WATCH

Louisiana’s Hart Fortenbery describes himself as a “dynamic individual tearing down the runway.” Believe it. A recent interview with him by friend of the Beard, Dege Legg, in The Independent, suggests that he’s just an eccentric old man to the Lafayette locals, but the truth is he’s a sagely Southern wizard who must fight the evils of “all the girlies and their moms who can’t keep their fingers out of (his beard).”

hart-fortenbery

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Posted by Jeff on Mar 20 2013 in The Ways of the Beard

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