Sunday, May 27, 2012

OUTLAWS - the Greatest Comic Book Currently in Production UPDATE

Since I've moved everything related to my upcoming comic book series OUTLAWS to its own blog, you should head on over there to take a look at some final inked pages and a couple front cover designs. There's also a new-but-not-final OUTLAWS logo. A visual feast for all!

Come take a look at the greatest comic book this world will ever see. Feel free to become a "follower" of the page as well, for I'll post more snippets here and there as more artwork starts coming in.

Thank you.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Vinyl Friday! - New Vinyl, New Tapes

Hola my fellow Vintage Warriors. Today's edition of Vinyl Friday! gets its inspiration from last week's post, where I scored some good vinyl along with some classic VHS movies. Today was no different. Behold the score!

Jimi Hendrix - Rare Hendrix, Eric Burdon & The Animals - The Twain Shall Meet
Five Deadly Venoms, Superman: The Movie, Hellraiser I & II

One of the funny things about Atlanta, Georgia is that I run into Jimi Hendrix albums all the time, but NEVER the ones that people want to own (the first 3 albums). However, I've found some killer Jimi Hendrix albums that mainly feature his non-hits, and Rare Hendrix is no different. Recorded in 1966, Rare Hendrix features a lot of jams that any Jimi Hendrix fan would enjoy. I recommend hunting this album down!

"Voice in the Wind." (1966)

I've been a big Animals fan for quite some time now, so I was happy as hell to find The Twain Shall Meet. I almost passed it up, until that classic image of Eric Burdon's face caught the corner of my eye. There's some trippy works on this album. It has a very dark, moody feel to it at times. The Twain Shall Meet features some of The Animals' biggest hits, such as "Sky Pilot" and "Monterey." Here's an example of the weird trippiness that can be found on this album. You can get lost in its wall of sound.

"We Love You Lil." (1968)

On to the movies!

VHS is back on the upswing, and its not just myself and my friend with the Bedroom in the Basement that appreciates VHS culture. My favorite shop in town (where I get records, movies, comics and great conversations) still sells them often, and the shop owner told me he was surprised as any when the nostalgia for this classic format came roaring back. Some tapes he's able to sell for $5 a pop! 

Personally, I try not to pay over $2 for a VHS tape. Any more than that, and I may as well spend the extra couple of bucks for the DVD (depending on the movie). I was lucky today, as nothing I got was over $1.50.

The Greatest Superhero Movie Ever Made.

The main reason why I bought Superman: The Movie on VHS was simply for the packaging. Its got that great old-school plastic case that was popular for kids movies and anything Disney released before the VHS format died out. The case itself was in damn-near perfect condition. This movie will look great on display with all the other Superman crap I have.

Superman: The Movie trailer (1978)

Five Deadly Venoms is a movie I've never seen, but everyone says its the pinnacle of the kung-fu movie genre, and since it was only $1 I picked it up. One of my favorite martial arts films is Five Element Ninjas, which happens to be made by the same people (The Shaw Brothers) so we'll see how this one compares. Something tells me it won't be a dollar wasted.

Five Deadly Venoms trailer (1978)

I haven't seen the Hellraiser movies since I was a kid. Pinhead freaked me out as a lad, but I've had a hankering for classic horror flicks lately so I figured I'd get this 2-movie combo pack. Hell, for a $1.50 how can I go wrong? I got Hellraiser and Hellraiser II, so my Sunday viewing should be set!

Hellraiser trailer (1987)

And there you have it for this weeks installment of Vinyl Friday! I might have to change the name of this thread if I keep scoring good VHS tapes along with the vinyl. We'll see! Until next time, take us out Eric!

"Sky Pilot." (1968)

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Covet Corner: The New System

Welcome to my latest installment of Covet Corner. This week we're looking at something I've been saving up for, and finally decided to pull the trigger on. new system:

I'll get a proper station for this once I can, but for now you get the idea.

Acoustic Research XA (ARxa)
(George Harrison's "All Things Must Pass" on the table)

This thing has no bells or whistles, but its a great vintage player. Built-in suspension, belt-driven, double-platter and just plain cool. The whole thing is manual, so some aspects of it are a bit more archaic than I'm used to. However, it was fully refurbished 6 months ago and the needle only has approx. 50 hours on it, so hopefully this will be sounding excellent for quite some time to come.

NAD 7140
(came out sometime in the 1980's, but is fully equipped for everything)

I know nothing of what makes a good receiver a good receiver, or what the subtle differences are between Speaker A or Speaker B. Honestly, I just want something that sounds great. My old Crosley player is good, but it was a cheap system and sometimes it sounds like it. It also played the records at kind of an angle, which causes certain ones to scrape along the edge. This is what prompted the new system more than anything. A man takes pride in his vinyl, after all.

The above mixed with 2 vintage Grafyx speakers from the late '70's and my house is now a Wall of Sound. I'm hearing new twists and turns to almost everything I've been listening to.

Too bad you can't hear what I'm hearing, folks! Catch ya next time at Covet Corner, where I'll share something special from the long-boxes.

Until then, take us out George!

Monday, May 21, 2012

Awesome VHS Haul of Bad Movies!

The only "good" movie in this stack of Awful Awesome is The Day the Earth Stood Still. I should probably explain the other ones...

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II should be pretty self explanatory. It features a performance by Vanilla Ice. That made it worth the dollar alone. Its a pretty awful film. The Turtles definitely lost their charm without Corey Feldman doing the voice of Donatello, and the exclusion of Casey Jones and a different actress for April O'Neil certainly didn't help.

Cyborg is a guilty pleasure Jean Claude Van Damme movie. It was one of the first post-apocalypse movies I saw as a kid, and is partly responsible for my love of that genre. Its also famous for recycling the movie sets originally intended for the never-filmed sequel to Masters of the Universe (the He-Man movie).

Beastmaster 2 I bought for two reasons. One, its never been released on DVD or Blu-ray, so this is the only format its ever been available on, and probably always will be. Two, my woman HATES Beastmaster with a passion, and she hasn't even seen it. So as a joke, I bought Beastmaster 2. It was $1.50. Some jokes are worth it.

Judge Dredd I just bought because I'm a Judge Dredd fan (the comics) and the new Dredd film should be out this year. This is definitely one of the worst superhero movies ever made. I can only hope the new one will redeem the character in people's eyes.

Money well spent, wouldn't you agree? Catch ya on the next haul!

Friday, May 18, 2012

Vinyl Friday! - Total Score

I had a pretty good haul today at one of my favorite book stores/vinyl shops. I didn't go hog-wild or anything, but the albums I got definitely "filled a couple holes" in the collection.

The Doors - Strange Days (1967)

This was the win for the day, as Strange Days was the last Doors album I needed to make my collection complete. I now have the entire Doors discography in vinyl form (with the exception of Other Voices, a post-Morrison album. I'm sure I'll find it eventually.) I've always really liked the cover for this album. It's so happy and whimsical. I think it captures the "vibe on the street" very well for 1967. It shows me that life in 1967 was a total party, even with the weight of the world on our shoulders. Brilliant. My favorite song off this album is of course "People are Strange." Not only is it one of the best songs on the album, it's one of my favorite Doors songs of all time. I don't care if you've heard it a million times already. Here's a live version of it. Rock it loud and hard!

The only other album I picked up this week was Paul McCartney & WingsBand on the Run, another "must have" album for any vinyl enthusiast.

Paul McCartney & Wings - Band on the Run (1973)

Ever since picking up a Wings Greatest Hits album, I've been going back and looking for McCartney solo albums, as well as the stuff he did with Wings. I never really gave this band much of a chance back in the day, but that is something I try to forget. Wings sounds like a progressive step away from the Beatles and into a different pop band (gee, I wonder who's responsible for that!). Again, my favorite song off this album is the title track, but here's a live clip of "Band on the Run" to help mix it up from the version you've heard ad nauseum on the radio.

Other choice nuggets I picked up today was the Exiled one-shot from Marvel (Disney) Comics. It's part-one of a 5-part crossover between New Mutants and Journey Into Mystery. I cannot tell you enough how much I've been enjoying Journey Into Mystery. The "Kid Loki" story has been an absolute joy. Its funny as hell, and you can't help but love the little shit. I recommend any fan of the comics, the movies or whatever to check it out. Kieron Gillen's run on the book picks up on a lot of things from the Thor book that Matt "suckass" Fraction has been ignoring. Journey Into Mystery is the best Asgardian book on the shelf!

I also picked up a couple of VHS classics, as they were a buck apiece. There's certain movies that just need to be watched on VHS, as the gritty nature of some films gets totally lost in a digital transfer. Sometimes, Blu-Ray just looks too real and makes the fakeness of certain '70's or '80's classics lose its charm. For that reason, I picked up Terminator and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. These movies are classics from my childhood, and are worthy additions to the Matt-Cave.

Terminator (1984)
I think I was 6 when I first watched this movie with my mom. Kinda explains a lot...

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (1990)
I was 10 years old when this came out. I can still hear the f.h.e. theme music in my head!

Enjoy a couple clips from the flicks. Nostalgia rules, and that's why I love Vinyl Friday! You never know what I'm going to get. :)

One of the most epic movie endings ever!

"Forgiveness is divine, but never pay full price for a late pizza."

I hope you enjoyed this week's Vinyl Friday! Until next time...take us out, Jim...

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Today's Tunes - Day 1

Here's a new semi-regular feature for the ol' blog here. I'll be calling this one "Today's Tunes."

I often work in front of a computer, and I like to listen/watch stuff on Youtube in-between phone calls and emails. Whenever I come across more than a couple of jams a day that make me go "my people must be forced to endure this," a new "Today's Tunes" will be unveiled.

On today's platter, we have Black Sabbath, Skrillex and Billy Idol.

Let's start with the Gods of Awesome...the mighty Black Sabbath. I have not talked enough about this band, and I criminally excluded them from the Temple of Doom series I wrote. This is something I may never forgive myself for. Regardless...On With The Show!!!

"Hard Road." from Never Say Die! (1978)

Never Say Die! is a Black Sabbath album that just never gets enough respect. It's famous for being the last to feature Ozzy Osbourne as their lead singer but that's about it. Other than the title track and "Junior's Eyes," there wasn't really a whole lot of push behind this album. "Hard Road" is one of my favorite songs off this extremely under-appreciated album. This album shows a potential future for Black Sabbath that never became realized. I think it would have been interesting to see what the next Black Sabbath album with Ozzy would have been like, rather than the extreme rejuvenation they got when Ronnie James Dio became their singer.

An excellent photo of Black Sabbath with Van Halen, circa 1978.
Van Halen was the opening act for Black Sabbath's final tour with Ozzy.

Time to take a completely different turn, and go into the realms of electronica...

Skrillex is a guy who fits the general mold of "make a kickass music video, and the fans will come." In my opinion, the music videos that Skrillex puts out are a million times better than the actual music. But damn him for actually getting those songs stuck in my head. There's quite a few Skrillex songs out there that I find enjoyable, and I'm not the only one. Have a look at his videos for "Bangarang," "First of the Year" and "Ruffneck." I find myself both watching these videos and listening to the songs often. Not sure why.

"Bangarang." from Bangarang EP (2011)

"First of the Year (Equinox)." from More Monsters and Sprites EP (2011)

"Ruffneck (Full Flex)" from More Monsters and Sprites EP (2011)

Despite the awesomeness of the videos and your opinion on the music, Skrillex looks like a complete and total dork. Even though looks don't make the music, just take a look at this guy:

Is it just me, or does this guy kinda look like Leonard from The Big Bang Theory?

And now it's time to get your IDOL on! That's right, it's time for Billy Idol. And not just the Billy Idol that you know. This is the Billy Idol that tried to stay relevant in the early 1990's and failed miserably. This is the "cyberpunk" version of Billy Idol!

We all know songs such as "Rebel Yell," "White Wedding," "Dancin' With Myself" and "Cradle of Love" by Billy Idol. But here's one that you may not remember. It wouldn't hurt my feelings if you didn't. But it might hurt Billy's...

"Shock to the System." from Cyberpunk (1993)

I've always loved both this song and the video, as it reminds me of old VHS culture. It plays out as something that could have been seen in Terminator or any of those mid-80's sci-fi flicks. Even though it was released in 1993 and didn't exactly put Billy Idol back on top of the charts...its still a damn fine jam and an entertaining video.

If I was Billy Idol, I wouldn't give a shit about anything either.

So there you have it! Hopefully you enjoyed some cool videos and a fine jam or two. You may see me again next week, or you may not. We'll see how it goes.

Keeping it eclectic as always, this is The Vintage Warrior signing out....

Sunday, May 13, 2012

My Unholy Night with GHOST

After a good long week of work in California, I came home with the excitement of knowing that on Saturday night I would see the greatest metal band that exists today. GHOST!!!

So, who is this band GHOST you may ask? They're a Swedish group who take a vintage 1970's rock sound and mix it with the theatrics of metal. Most people describe them as "Blue Oyster Cult meets Mercyful Fate." In my opinion, that description fits them pretty well. They only have one album out so far (Opus Eponymous) but a new album is supposed to be out later this year. Hopefully so!

GHOST was the opening act for Opeth and Mastodon on their "Heritage Hunter" tour for 2012. I took the ladyfriend with me as well for shits n' giggles. She may never admit it, but I saw her bobbing her head to a few of the songs. Busted, baby.

The show was at The Masquerade in Atlanta, Georgia. This place looked like it had caught on fire at least 17 times but was still standing. A frightful building indeed.

Metal venues are great, aren't they?
Note the cop sitting on the spool of electrical cable.

Thankfully the concert was outdoors. It was a beautiful day, not too hot and not too cold. Perfect for a night of theatrical blasphemy.

GHOST was the only band we were there to see. I haven't been impressed with anything Opeth has done since the early 2000's. We stayed for a few of their songs, but that was it. I'm not a big fan of Mastodon either. They've got some jams, but my current tastes in metal lie elsewhere right now. This night was all about GHOST. So, after our beers were done and my lower back started to hurt...we said 'fuck it' and left while Opeth was playing something slow and boring. 

It didn't seem like GHOST got to play for a very long time, but their performance alone was worth the price of admission. They played their entire album, with the exception of the final track (an instrumental) and their cover of "Here Comes the Sun" by the Beatles. If you've never heard this, do so now. It's probably the most haunting Beatles cover you'll ever hear.

This song is set to scenes from the Kenneth Anger film, Lucifer Rising.
Most likely done by a Youtube dude, rather than GHOST.
It has nothing to do with the song, but it does make for an interesting view.

Enjoy a few pics I took of the performance, and a video of the "Deuce Culpa" intro and "Con Clavi Con Dio." I would have recorded more, but I realized too late that I was holding my phone the wrong way while recording and my arm was getting sore anyway. I much rather wanted to throw up the "metal horns" more than I did the camera. 

The best part of the show was after they were done playing, the Ghostbusters song came blaring through the speakers. That was a big hit with the crowd!

There were a bunch of people there wearing Burger King hats.
I don't get it either.

GHOST had a lot of fans in the audience. You can't tell in this pic, but people were going nuts for them.

A close-up of the main Ghoul himself, Papa Emeritus. 

Trust me, next time I film a song live I'll flip the damn smartphone the right way.
Still, the sound quality of this is amazing.

"Ritual." from Opus Eponymous. (2010)

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Comic Book Man 3

Here's the latest list of all the reviews I've done so far for my buddy's website, Florida Geek Scene. The website is actually doing pretty well. Even if you're outside of Florida, check it out...there's some good articles and whatnot there.

Action Comics #9

Earth 2

FF #17

Demon Knights #8

Action Comics #8

Batman #7

Saga #1

John Carter (2012 Film)

Detective Comics #7

Fairest #1

Justice League #6

No need to write a review of the AVENGERS movie. It was badass. Go see it.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Vinyl Friday! - 9 Months In...

Nothing new to share with you this week for Vinyl Friday. But I thought showing my collection's progression since moving to Atlanta would be cool.

This was my collection about 3 months in:

...And this is the collection today:

I'd say its coming along nicely, eh? I'm starting to run out of room.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Temple of DOOM III

You have arrived my friends. This is the last batch of music I have to share from the genres of doom metal and "stoner" rock. This edition will focus on more stoner rock bands than doom bands, but in my opinion both scenes are forever intertwined. After reading through this blog series (3 total), you'll have been exposed to all the bands from this scene that I like. Hopefully I've been able to turn you on to some new bands thus far. Prepare yourself for the final push!


I'm going to start off a bit more "commercial" this time, with the bands that formed out of the ashes of Kyuss.

Kyuss was represented in the first Temple of DOOM. They were a very big band in the "desert rock" scene (what the non-stoners like to call "stoner" rock), and were one of the few bands from the scene that toured extensively outside of California. Even though the band unfortunately broke up in 1995, almost every member of the band went on to other respectable projects. The main bands to arise after the break-up of Kyuss are Queens of the Stone Age and Unida.

Queens of the Stone Age (circa 2007)

Queens of the Stone Age was formed by Josh Homme (guitarist from Kyuss) and is by far the most successful band to arise out of the desert/stoner rock scene. The band was originally exposed by Stone Gossard from Pearl Jam. Queens of the Stone Age's first album was released on Gossard's indie label Loosegroove Records, and they were instantly put on the path of success. By their second album (Rated R), they were signed to Interscope Records and touring extensively with bands like Foo Fighters. By their third album (Songs For The Deaf), Dave Grohl was playing drums for the band and they had a hit video on MTV ("Go With the Flow"). By their fourth album (Lullabies to Paralyze), Queens of the Stone Age were a platinum-selling band. Not too bad for a bunch of desert stoners, eh?

"Go With the Flow." from Songs For the Deaf. (2002)

"3's & 7's." from Era Vulgaris. (2007)

I've been a big Queens of the Stone Age fan pretty much since their inception. I was lucky enough to see them live in 2000 at Club Soda in Kalamazoo, Michigan when they did a one-off gig while on the Ozz-Fest tour. Despite their commercial success, I'm definitely more of a QOTSA fan than I am of Kyuss. They haven't released a new album since 2007, but hopefully something new will come along soon.

Unida (circa 2001)

Unida was a band fronted by the front-man of Kyuss, John Garcia. They weren't nearly as popular as Queens of the Stone Age, but it wasn't from a lack of trying. They released one full-length album (Coping With the Urban Coyote) and a couple of split-albums before getting signed to the major label American Records. Can you guess what happened next? American Records joined up with Def Jam Records, and Def Jam refused to release what was to be Unida's "breakthrough" album (The Great Divide). The album has never been officially released, but its available on the torrent sites and other places online I'm sure. Of course, Unida broke up shortly after. 

"Black Woman." from Coping With the Urban Coyote. (1999)

John Garcia has gone through a few bands since Kyuss broke up, but in my opinion Unida was his best one. Its a shame they never got a proper break. 

Electric Wizard (circa 2010)

This is Electric Wizard. Not only do they currently have a guy in the band with tattoos all over his face and a hot chick, but they're sometimes credited to creating the "stoner doom" genre (good grief, right?). Electric Wizard has a "bad" reputation of sorts, mainly dealing with the married duo of Jus Osborn (vocals, guitar) and Liz Buckingham (guitar). The only mainstay member in the band since its incarnation is Osborn. Every album has almost a completely different lineup, at least until Liz came into the band. Now its kind of like they're a husband-and-wife doom metal force with hired musicians.

The music of Electric Wizard is like Black Sabbath slowed way down and covering it with raspy vocals and bong-rips. They are one of the biggest bands in the doom metal scene, and I'm sure they'll be around for a while longer. I've posted a couple of tracks. This band might be a bit to "heavy" for some, but give it a chance!

"Barbarian." from Dopethrone. (2000)

"Satanic Rites of Drugula." from Witchcult Today. (2007)

Interesting side-note about the Witchcult Today album. It was recorded entirely on vintage 1970's equipment, from the guitars to the amps and recording equipment. Honestly, I can't tell that much of a difference but maybe an audiophile can.

Monster Magnet

Talk about a band that totally fucked themselves over. Monster Magnet is a sad story, and its not entirely their fault. Monster Magnet was one of the first bands from the stoner rock scene that gained indie success. Unfortunately, when they made it to MTV status the songs that became gigantic hits were two of the most annoying songs EVER ("Powertrip" and "Space Lord"). A bunch of people loved Monster Magnet for 15 minutes and their career was forever fucked ever since (at least here in the States. They still have a pretty good following in Europe). 

When it comes to Monster Magnet, its all about the first two albums: Spine of God and Superjudge. Forget anything you've ever heard from Monster Magnet on TV or the radio before. These two albums are stoner-rock masterpieces. They were highly influential for their time. Monster Magnet is to stoner rock as Metallica is to heavy metal. Early stuff, awesome. Everything else? Meh.

"Pill Shovel." from Spine of God. (1992)

"Cyclops Revolution." from Superjudge. (1993)

Monster Magnet became more of a straight up rock band in their later years. I haven't been a fan of their newer stuff. To me it just sounds boring and tired. Those first two albums are excellent though, and I can't recommend them enough.

The Sword

I've saved the best for last, the folks that are keeping vintage rock alive for the next decade or so. The Sword!

The Sword kick ass. They've only been around since 2003, and didn't release their first album until 2006. 
Age of Winters is a stunning achievement, and dare I say it competes with Sleep's Holy Mountain album as "best stoner metal album ever." They've released a couple albums since (Gods of the Earth and Warp Riders). I've included songs from each album here. You'll like this.

"Iron Swan." from Age of Winters. (2006)

"The Frost-Giant's Daughter." from Gods of the Earth. (2008)

"Tres Brujas." from Warp Riders. (2010)

And there you have it! That's the end! No more Temple of DOOM after this! Trust me, you're going to miss it. Doom metal and stoner rock is very emotional music. It evokes deep thought and rocks your ass off in the process. You don't have to be a weirdo or a druggie to enjoy this music. Basically, this music continues the spirit of 60's and 70's-era rock n' roll. Its vintage rock that's existed from the 80's to now. 

Fuzzed out guitars, darkness and classic nostalgia will always have a place in rock. I'm sure you agree. You might not have liked everything I've shared in the three Temple of DOOM blogs, but I hope you've got a nice little list of stuff to go explore on your own. 

Until next time......Take us out, Bobby...

"Under My Thumb (Rolling Stones cover)." from First Daze Here Too. (2006)

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Temple of DOOM II

All great movies have sequels (which always range in quality of course) so why should blogs be any different?

Welcome back to the TEMPLE OF DOOM.

There's only going to be three areas of discussion this time around. However, that doesn't mean that I'm not going to assault you with music videos to check out. Feel free to skip past the crap you don't like. I've tried to pick shorter songs to share, but that is sometimes difficult when dealing with doom music.

Candlemass is a band that was originally meant to be included in the first TEMPLE OF DOOM, but I cut them because that blog was getting a bit long. Candlemass is definitely more on the "doom metal" side than they are the "stoner rock" side. That's not to say that they don't have their melodic moments, though. Their second singer, Messiah Marcolin, is the singer most associated with the band. He was their singer for their most popular albums (Nightfall, Ancient Dreams, Tales of Creation). 

I've always been a bigger fan of the first Candlemass album (Epicus Doomicus Metallicus) than I ever was of the Messiah-era. Its all good, though. Candlemass was like a slower Swedish Black Sabbath, with monster solos and melodic meanderings. Candlemass was very influential to the doom metal scene. Below I have one track with their original singer Johan Langqvist from the Epicus Doomicus Metallicus album, and a music video from the Messiah Marcolin era (taken from the Nightfall album). The singers sounded very similar, but they have subtle differences. 

"Solitude." from Epicus Doomicus Metallicus. (1986)

"Bewitched." from Nightfall. (1987)
Probably one of the silliest music videos ever made. Please don't judge.

Messiah Marcolin was one hell of a front-man. I mean, just look at this guy:

Of course, Messiah Marcolin is no longer the singer for Candlemass. He left the band in 1991, only to return in 2002. He came back later and toured with the band for a few years, but since 2006 Robert Lowe (of Solitude Aeturnus) has been their singer. Other than the first album, the Messiah era and their 1999 album From the 13th Sun (with vocalist Bjorn Flodkvist), I don't really dig the other Candlemass stuff. 

"Elephant Star." from From the 13th Sun. (1999)

Ok, on to the harder stuff to categorize. The many, many, MANY bands of Scott "Wino" Weinrich.

Wino may be a somewhat familiar name. It should be. The fucking guy has popped up everywhere. If there was anyone from the underground rock/metal world that deserves to be a millionaire just from street cred alone...its Wino. 

Have a look at this list of band's he's been a major part of: War Horse, Saint Vitus, The Obsessed, Bullring Brummies (as heard on Nativity in Black: A Tribute to Black Sabbath), Spirit Caravan, The Hidden Hand, Place of Skulls, Probot (Dave Grohl's metal side-project), Shrinebuilder, and most recently...Premonition 13

Now, I don't listen to all of Wino's bands. The only ones that I'm going to give examples of are the ones that I like best...Saint Vitus, The Obsessed and Probot.

Saint Vitus was an early doom band from the late-70's/early-80's. Funny enough, they were signed to SST Records for a while, which is a record label known for mainly signing hardcore and punk bands. To have the slow, brutal doom of Saint Vitus on deck must have made tour arrangements difficult!

This track below isn't the best representation of Saint Vitus, as many of their songs average between 7 and 9 minutes long. If you're curious to hear more...head on over to Youtube yourself!

"Clear Windowpane." from Born Too Late. (1986)

The Obsessed was the band that should have made Wino a legendary rock star, but didn't. Its the sad old tale of rock n' roll: A local band makes good with a couple of indie releases and gets major label interest (Columbia Records). They record an album that is awesome but the record label doesn't think its "commercial" enough. Instead of changing their sound, The Obsessed broke up instead.

The Obsessed.
If I had kept my long hair, I would look like the guy on the left right now.

Still, the album that was released by Colombia Records is held high on the pedestal of not only doom, but heavy metal in general. The Church Within should be in everyone's collection.

"To Protect and Serve." from The Church Within. (1994)

Last up on the Wino playlist isn't a Wino band per se, but its one that he contributed to. And that of course would be Dave Grohl's Probot.

Dave Grohl, Lemmy, Wino. Fucking awesome.

I'm a big fan of that Probot CD. I really wish Dave Grohl would get some metal up his ass again and record another one. The great thing about Probot was that every song featured a different singer (all of which were Grohl's favorite metal vocalists). Chronos from Venom, Tom G. Warrior from Celtic Frost, Max Cavalera from Sepultura, Lemmy from Motorhead, King Diamond and more all appeared on this album. And what metal project of this capacity would be complete without Wino?

This is not only one of my favorite Wino songs, but its one of my favorite metal songs of all time. The riffs on this track are really fuzzed out and heavy. It's definitely a major accomplishment. Who would have thought that Dave Grohl was metal as fuck?

"The Emerald Law." from Probot. (2004)

Wino is still out there kicking ass today. He currently plays with both Saint Vitus and Premonition 13 (as well as his own solo project, Wino), and will do just about any side project you bring to him. One might wonder how he has all this time to take part in these bands. Well, as explained in the 2008 Such Hawks Such Hounds documentary (why have you not watched that yet?!), Wino is lucky enough to be a stay-at-home dad. He raises the kids during the day and rocks at night while the wifey brings home the bacon. Livin' the life!

Wino and Kids (guitar included).'ve made it this far. That is good, for we are now in the final stretch. I've only got one more block for you to enjoy, so hopefully I've saved the best for last. 

You may remember the epic stoner metal band Sleep from the previous TEMPLE OF DOOM. Sleep unfortunately suffered from a fate eerily similar to what The Obsessed went through. Sleep broke up due to record label pressures over their album Dopesmoker (also known as Jerusalem), which subsequently went unreleased for years.

Dopesmoker was an epic one-hour long song. London Records had no idea what to do with it. The album was eventually released by Tee Pee Records in 2003. The "remixed" version of the album that London Records was considering releasing (Jerusalem) is the same album, just cut into individual songs and about 10 minutes shorter. This version of the album was released by Rise Above Records in 1999. Both versions of the album are worth checking out, depending on your preference. I don't expect anyone to actually sit here for an hour to listen to this album, so I'm not posting it. But if you're ever curious, both Dopesmoker and Jerusalem are on Youtube. I recommend the Dopesmoker version. Its a good jam for a long road-trip.

There were two main bands that sprang out of Sleep. The guitarist (Matt Pike) went on to form the uncompromising heavy metal behemoth High On Fire, while singer/bassist Al Cisnero and drummer Chris Hakius formed the more calm, psychedelic band Om.

High On Fire isn't quite "doom," but you can definitely hear the echoes of Sleep in the music. Matt Pike also "sings" if you can call it that. He's got a real gravel-voice, most likely due to years of smoking and hard living. When he talks in interviews, he sounds pretty much the same as he does here:

"Hung, Drawn and Quartered." from Surrounded By Thieves. (2002)

"Rumors of War." from Death Is This Communion. (2007)

Remember that "hard living" I mentioned earlier? Take a look at these photos of the band. The first is from 2007, and the second one is from last year. It's pretty clear that Matt Pike lives the rock n' roll lifestyle to the extreme!

High On Fire, 2007. (Matt Pike in the center)

High On Fire, 2011. (Matt Pike in the center). 
Funny what a few years on the road can do to a person!

I've always liked High On Fire, but I do wish that Matt Pike had more of a vocal range. I kinda get bored listening to them after awhile. No matter how badass their songs are, Matt Pike sounds exactly the same on every song. Some people really dig that, but not me. However, that doesn't keep High On Fire out of my stereo. They just aren't a band I could listen to every day.

Chris Hakius (drums) & Al Cisneros (bass/vocals)

Now that you've been assaulted by metal, lets slow things down a bit with Om. This is a very spiritual band, with many of the lyrics dealing with God and Self. Front-man Al Cisneros is not only the former singer/bassist for Sleep, but he's also a big-time marijuana activist in addition to playing with Om. It really shows in his music, too. Many of Om's songs are 15 to 20 minutes long. Their first album only had 3 songs (each were like 20 minutes long, though!). These days, Om sticks to doing split 7"'s and singles for the most part, but they do have a few full-lengths out there.

Om is far less metal and much more...I don't even know what to call it. I've picked a couple shorter songs to sample, but feel free to indulge in the longer songs at your leisure on Youtube. All of their albums can be heard there (much like everything else).

"Gebel Barkal." from Gebel Barkal 7". (2008)

"To the Shrinebuilder." from Current 93/Om Split 7". (2006)

And that's a wrap for the sequel to TEMPLE OF DOOM. I have just one more story I feel that can be told from this well, so prepare yourselves for TEMPLE OF DOOM III, coming to a blog url near you soon. This one will be much more relaxed, and will hopefully turn you on to a few more sounds to dig.

Until then, keep it dooooooooooomy.