48 Hours

September 25th, 2013

We have a lot of talented players on Figment who are just as talented outside of it.  formerwageslave is one such player.  He runs his own label, plays in several bands, is a club DJ, and hosts his own radio show on WMPG.

Clearly formerwageslave’s plate is full right?  Not quite.  Last winter he participated in Portland, MEs “48 Hour Music Festival” where 30 local musicians were randomly grouped together into “bands.”   These “bands” were given 48 hours to write a 25-minute set of material and then asked to perform the original songs they’d written live at a local venue.

formerwageslave’s band “The Body In The Kelp” recorded the four songs they wrote for the Festival and have just made them available via Bandcamp as a “Name Your Price” download or via CD for $7. As formerwageslave pointed out, “the songs have a stoner/doom/blues vibe… not heavy or psych enough to be Vorpal Queen, but there’s a little bit of that group hiding inside these songs…”

So support a fellow Figment player by downloading this incredible album – you can give it a listen here:

 

“Bands I Wish I’d Made Up” is a Figment News feature where I’ll highlight a real band that I wish I’d made up.  You know, as a fake band.  Make sense?  No?  That’s half the point.  Stop thinking and start rockin’!

Jason Isbell is an artist I’ve followed for some time, first as a member of the Southern Rock band the Drive-By Truckers and in the last few years as a solo artist and leader of Jason Isbell and the 440 Unit.  He’s a troubadour in the truest sense of the word, wrapping roots rock music around lyrics that touch on the human condition with an intelligence and street smart Southern wit that belie his age.  He’s a storyteller and damn good one at that.  I submit this recent performance of his song “Elephant” on Sirius XM’s “Outlaw Country” as proof positive.

This Space For Rent!

September 11th, 2013

When we launched our Rock ‘N’ Roll Billboard contest earlier this year we knew that it would strike a chord with our players because the grand prize included the ability to spotlight the winner’s band on the Figment home page in grand fashion.  At the time we promised to open the billboard up to all players in due course, and we’re happy to say that time is now!

Did your band or album get pushed out of the “New Stuff” chart by other releases before it charted?  Want to build anticipation with your fan base for an upcoming release by one of your established bands?  Need to get more fans out to your latest tour?

Whether you want to hype a new band, promote your latest album release or draw fans to a concert tour the Figment Billboard offers you the prime real estate to do it!  To find out more, check out the new “Billboard” page here on Figment News.

If you remember, Figment Challenge #4 was to create a self-titled album for either a new or existing fake band of your creation.  The self-titled albums would be judged on their cover design, album description and song titles, with the real test being whether the album you created best represented the band you created.  We were thrilled with the quality of the entries we received, and believe me it wasn’t an easy vote, but vote we did and here are the results!

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Winning Self-Titled EP!

“Pragmatica”

Design by humanblooper

Pragmatica’s self-titled EP is the epitome of duplicity. By employing a three part song structure, told in a continuing narrative, “Pragmatica” delves into mythical territory with their boldest release to date.

Recorded under the title, “Pragmatica: Ardens Apotheca”, the name was shortened during the mixing process at the behest of lead singer, Jed Lincoln. The first two tracks (chapters) are Latin in origin. “Omnia”, meaning, “Everything Is…”, opens with a lean & mean bass line from Xander Cook. “Ardens Apotheca”(“The Burning Store”), is a piano ballad that gives way to blistering guitar work from the mystifying, Scott Abbott.

The third and final segment of this musical saga carries the band’s name, “Pragmatica”. Spanning over seven minutes, the title track is worthy of its name. A chameleon of bounding rhythms and melodious lyrics, “Pragmatica” surges from one chorus to the next, combining what sounds like several songs into one. It’s the ultimate mash-up for any Pragmatica fan, and a track that won’t soon be forgotten.

When the EP is played from beginning to end, a sonic kaleidoscope is unfolded, and by the final note, the world becomes a more magical place, if only for a little while.

Tracks:

1. Omnia (3:48)

2. Ardens Apotheca (5:31)

3. Pragmatica (7:20)

Editor’s Note:  We selected Pragmatica’s self-titled EP, because it really was a complete statement about the band.  From the cover art to the concept behind the EP and even the songs, you really get a feel for the band, and better yet it’s an album we’d all buy in a heartbeat.  So well done humanblooper, you met the challenge and now you get to reap the rewards.  We’ll be depositing 5,000 pieces of Lucre in your account post haste!

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1st Runner Up


“Summer’s Passing”

Design by Tyman

Summer’s Passing has done a lot in their career so far. They became the first melodic deathcore band, and they became one of the most popular modern Norwegian bands (though they’re not black metal). But this time around, it was time to experiment. They’ve already done a metalcore album, so… why not a straight up, brutal deathcore album? They went back to their heavier roots, and decided to go from there. The result: a self-titled album like no other. Featuring new songs such as “Human to Lamb (Daily Sacrifice),” “Ritual,” and “Run While You Still Can.” This album is especially for death metal fans, and is a treat for deathcore fans.

1. Scared Yet?

2. Ritual

3. The Flames Burn On

4. So I Hear You Like Horror Movies…

5. Sleep Forever, Die Temporarily

6. Human to Lamb (Daily Sacrifice)

7. Houston, We Have an Apocalypse

8. Run While You Still Can

9. Laser Dogs (WTF Is This I Don’t Even)

10. The Terror Never Ends

11. Deadly Thoughts

Producer: Haakon Johansen, Greg Hert
Engineer: DADARKLORD!!, P.F. Gunther

Editor’s Note:  We selected Summer’s Passing’s self-titled album because the band chose this album to experiment, a risky proposition to say the least, but one that they passed with flying colors in our opinion.  From the brutal cover art to the equally brutal song titles, this is a band that’s not afraid to show it’s audience a new dimension of it’s sound and we believe it would not only sell well, but would likely expand this band’s fan base.  So congrats Tyman, for taking Summer’s Passing to the next level you’ll be rewarded with 3,000 pieces of Lucre!

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2nd Runner Up

“Chad Phantom and the Nobody Panic”

Design by Raybo

Some people might wonder why a piping-hot band from across the pond, on the eve of launching their sophomore album, would decide to take acid during a live television broadcast. But that’s exactly what they did.

A Late Night legend was literally left speechless by the band’s destructive hijinx, and by the time they had finished their set (and thrashed a pop culture cathedral), the fire department and police were called.

Things went from bad to worse. Fast. Chad Phantom and his cohorts were arrested, but the charges were dropped by the network the following day.

Strangely, at an afternoon press release, Phantom acted as if the whole thing never happened. He continued pushing the new album, never missing a beat.

“We wanted to call the first album, CHAD PHANTOM AND THE NOBODY PANIC,” Chad recalls. “When it came time to press the covers, we took a band vote, spurned on by some label bullshit, and ultimately made the change. It was the right call, but for the second one, we always knew what we were gonna call it.”

When asked about his drug-fueled debacle the previous evening (and the world wide internet explosion that followed), Mr. Phantom shook his head and, without a hint of irony, replied:

“Some things are without rhyme or reason. This was one of those things.”

TRACK LISTING —

The Drop

Gypsy Flicker

Torch and a Pitchfork

Punk Redundancy

Mourning Star

Can of Hash

Tottenham

War Horn

The Cringe

Darlinghurst

An Inch of His Life

The Mark Street Prison Quartet

Black Eyelash

Unbred

The Drift

 

Editor’s Note:  We selected this self-titled album as the second runner up for obvious reasons, as befits their name nobody panicked.  Not many bands can release a self-titled record and then promote it by destroying a TV studio on live TV, but Chad Phantom and the Nobody Panic did.  In fact, their album description was so damn rock n’ roll we’ve decided to up their second runner up prize from 1,500 pieces of Lucre to 2,000.  After all, they’ll need the extra 500 Lucre to pay for all the damages.  Rock ‘N Roll!

So thanks to everyone who took the challenge!  And stay tuned for more!

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To see more releases from Pragmatica click here.

To see more releases from Summer’s Passing click here.

To see more releasese from Chad Phantom and the Nobody Panic click here.

 

 

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Road Stories is a new feature here on Figment News where Figment bands tell us their tales from the wide open road.  So get your motor runnin’!

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Judging Alice and Mary’s War just recently returned from the road where they were both on the bill of the No Turning Back Tour, and knowing both bands we figured they’d have their fair share of “Road Stories.”  So we asked them to wax poetic about their latest stint on the road, and they obliged.  No turning back now boys!

Judging Alice

Hello all! Daryl Pi here from Judging Alice. So, the band’s manager, Monte, approached me saying “so this website called Figment wants to hear one or more crazy tour stories.” At first I was a little confused, considering how we haven’t been around for that long, but I was still stoked nonetheless, and a lot of weird stuff has happened on this tour. The only flaw is we’re about to do a show, and all the other guys are warming up (and for all we know Niko is probably playing with himself; we haven’t seen him for 30 minutes), so I just figured I’d do it. Let’s get this show on the road, shall we? No pun intended…  

So lets go back in time a little bit: The Unsilencing Begins World Tour, which was with Summer’s Passing, Empty Spaces, Sinthetic, SIX-66, and Cadem. This is one of my personal favorite tours, and the fact that it was worldwide made it all the better. But we didn’t know what to expect with Summer’s Passing. We knew they were crazy dudes, but we didn’t know what they were capable of, which was terrifying cause we shared a bus with them and the other bands. We had just gotten done with the Albany, NY show on the 18th of January, and next was Hartford, CT on the 20th. Around midnight, I was awaken by the words “These gray shadows make the world turn green, yet green is not a creative color!” I was wondering “what in the hell was that?” But it wasn’t over. A few of the other lines I heard was “the sun was pink as my dog turned yellow,” and “Harry Potter made the world explode secretly!” I immediately knew it was one of the guys from Summer’s Passing, because I heard a Norwegian accent. I got out of my bunk, and walked into the kitchen. SP frontman Haakon Johansen was butt ass naked, screaming what I assumed to be a form of abstract poetry, while Empty Spaces singer/rhythm guitarist Brady Knowles was staring, mortified. I asked Brady softly “dude… what the fuck is his problem?” His response was “…he may or may not be drunk, I have no clue.” Now the both of us were staring at him screaming at his dick, when all of a sudden he looked up, threw jalapeno peppers at us and proceeded to yell at us in Norwegian. Then he stopped talking and fell over. He passed out. We immediately checked to see if he was still alive. He was ok. But I had started asking many questions: “Did he have a rough night?” “Does he usually do this?” “How are other people still sleeping?” “Did they prepare for this?” Whatever it was I’ll never know.

Lets fast forward to the present. As many of you know, we’ve been on the No Turning Back Tour (which has just confirmed there will be more US dates in the fall), along with bands such as Mary’s War, Deathbed Confederates, Daisy May, and more. It’s been awesome! But lets see. Crazy stories… hmmm… oh I know! So Micheal Dexter of Angel of Death and I were hanging out on the streets of Baltimore, and all of a sudden this guy came up to us. He was wearing all black, and it looked like he had a gun. He said in a tough guy voice “give me all of your wallets! Oh wait… are you the singer of Angel of Death?” Micheal was absolutely terrified, but he managed to spit out the word “yes.” The robber began to profess his love for Angel of Death, and how they have gotten him through “all of the tough times.” Michael, still terrified, said “thank you very much. Means a lot.” Long story short, we didn’t get robbed, but the robber did get Micheal’s autograph and left us alone.

But that’s what life on the road with Judging Alice has been like so far. Thanks for reading, and we’ll see you all on the road soon.

Mary’s War:

Hey! My name is Jon Jefferson, I play bass for the prog-screamo group Mary’s War, and I’m here to tell you all some tour stories. As many of you know, the guys and I have been touring for a while. We got done with the Tour of Destruction back in April, and we spent the summer on the No Turning Back Tour, with bands such as Judging Alice, Murder13, Sex Metal, and more! And since we’ve been around for 2 years, we have quite the stories for you.  

So for those who aren’t aware, the Tour of Destruction was a year-long tour, going around the entire world (even to some of the small towns for acoustic shows), and though it was exhausting, it was the dream of a lifetime. And the best part was, we were all there for each other. I remember Riki Milligan’s dad passed away when the tour first started, and it was like a small community coming together. It was kind of beautiful. But of course, things got a little weird half way through the tour. I recall when Brady (Knowles, singer of Mary’s War), Greg (Hert, guitarist of Mary’s War), Ken (Jullen, ex-drummer of Mary’s War) and I were doing a meet and greet, when all of a sudden, some hot girl came up to me and said in the manliest voice “I want you to tattoo your signature on my dick,” and I was so weirded out, I called security. But the weirdness doesn’t stop there. After the show was over, the guys and I got back on the bus to grab some snacks and some beer, when we found that same shemale, naked in our bus. Greg fainted, Ken vomited, and Brady and I laughed our asses off before throwing he/she out. No offense to the shemales out there, we definitely honor and respect the people different from us, but this case was just… awkward. Everyone on the tour picked on us for that story ever since, but it was all in good fun.

And the fun/awkward/terrifying stories don’t stop there. On the same tour, during an acoustic show, a Jehovah’s Witness stood up in the crowd, and started screaming “Jesus can save you” and all this other religious stuff. Now, as someone who is Christian, I have already let Jesus in my life, so I didn’t want to hear this crap. Brady stopped us playing, stood up, and walked to the guy to say “I understand where you’re coming from, but dude… shut up. It’s a rock show, not a sermon.” He then proceeded to throw mini bibles at us and the crowd, before security took him away. I guess there’s a first for everything.

And so far on the No Turning Back Tour, the only thing that’s happened to us personally was getting chased down by fans in Worcester, MA. It was a sold out show, and we were there early, and we got bombarded. It was cool, but it was also kind of scary.

But anyways, that’s it for me. Thanks for reading!

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Check out Judging Alice’s latest release “Laserz!!” – EP”

Check out Mary’s War’s latest release “Tell No Soul”