SARGENT HOUSE NEWS

BRUTUS SAINT VITUS SHOW REVIEW // BROOKLYN VEGAN 

Via Brookyln Vegan

Belgium’s Brutus released their excellent sophomore album Nest on Sargent House back in March, and they finally made it to NYC for a show at Saint Vitus last night (11/13), about seven and a half months after the album’s release. That’s probably not that long for an international band, but it feels like I’ve been waiting forever to finally see Brutus, and they delivered. 

Full review HERE

Tour dates below, with many more announcements for 2020!

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Chelsea Wolfe Acoustic Performance "6 BEST THINGS WE SAW AT LEVITATION 2019" 

Chelsea Wolfe at Central Presbyterian 

Focusing on her new Birth of Violence songs and other acoustic-leaning material, Chelsea Wolfe was backed by longtime collaborator Ben Chisholm, playing in the beautiful church located in downtown Austin. Wolfe's style and approach are ethereal and gothic enough as is; flanked with a otherworldly light show and framed by the venue's dramatic vaulted ceiling, her appearance at Levitation was nothing short of stunning.

Full feature HERE

Podcast Interview with Russian Circles' Dave Turncrantz // Crash Bang Boom Drumming 

Russian Circles drummer Dave Turncrantz talks the process of recording their amazing new record Blood Year, his work with Riddle of Steel and the small scene they operated in, how to describe your band to cops/border patrols, the unshakable John Stainer influence, knowing when to slow down parts for musical impact, Meshuggah ruling live, Dave's fascination with Black Metal, the specific room at Steve Albini's Electrical Audio Studio that Dave recorded drums in for BY, studio momentum and nailing songs in two takes, leaning on protools to minimize takes and how the first couple takes are always the best, copper, brass, steel, aluminum snares, and other gear nerdery, blast beats, bedroom kits, rehearsal spots in NY, Russian Circles experience opening for Tool, tune bots & more!! 
russiancirclesband.com
facebook.com/russiancirclesmusic
twitter.com/RussianCircles

Brutus On Taking The Next Step & Embracing Melody With Energy // INTERVIEW WITH MEDIUM 

Via Medium by Rob Duguay

Brutus are the kind of power trio that raises their emphasis and volume to incredible levels. They call the historic city of Leuven, Belgium home and they’ve already become a force in Europe over the latter half of the decade. With the release of their second full-length, Nest, via Sargent House Records on March 29, it seems like it’s only a matter of time until they make their mark across the Atlantic. Their intense sound melds the most amplified styles into one. It’s a fantastic experience for the senses and the likelihood of listening to them more than once is very high. 

Recently I had a talk with bassist Peter Mulders and drummer & vocalist Stefanie Mannaerts about the making of their latest album, doing two things at once, touring the United States and writing new material. 

Rob Duguay: Nest has been getting a ton of attention this year. What was the vision the three of you had going into the studio and did it change as each track got recorded? 

Peter Mulders: Our vision was kind of simple, we wanted to record a better album than our first album. We felt a need to take the next step as a band in discovery of both our identity and sound. That did not change while we were recording, but maybe a little bit when we were writing. When we started writing the songs, our first album, Burst, was just out. Then there was a lot of touring with our debut and this album is definitely about handling that period. We also think it’s an honest and pure album, it’s really about what was happening to us in that time frame of writing. 

The three of you have a sound that mixes the tone of black metal, the structure of progressive rock and the energy of hardcore punk into something extraordinary. What are some influences you bonded over when you started writing music together? 

PM: To be honest, I don’t think we really bonded (laughs). Especially with our first album, when we started writing it was more like a mix of all kinds of things each of us like. I think we all like melody and energy, so those are our most important influences. We have to feel it and we have to hear it, if you know what I mean. Don’t ask me what it is, it’s just something we connect about. If all that is in a song, we can move on to the next one. 

Stefanie, singing while playing drums can be a difficult thing to pull off. How long did it take for you to get comfortable doing it and are there any specific preparations you do before a show to get yourself in that zone? 

Stefanie Mannaerts: I’m still getting used to it and there is already a big difference for me between music that’s in Burst and and the music that’s in Nest. With Burst, there are almost no quiet vocal parts and every vocal line on the first record is at least doubled. It is a slow process but step by step I’ll get there. As it comes to the live shows, I warm up very well. I straight up don’t ever want to ever lose my voice again, it happened a lot in the first two years of Brutus. I just did what I knew but hadn’t any technical knowledge. 

What are some of the major differences you find between performing in the United States versus performing in Europe? 

PM: We have only played a few shows in the United States so far but we can say the welcome is overwhelming. People have beem super nice and we do feel a lot of energy coming back to the stage, it’s so cool. On stage we do create our own little world so between the three of us it almost feels the same, we always try to play our best show ever. In Europe we are spoiled a little bit, we always have our own stuff with us like amps and a drum kit. In the States we play with rented gear. To be honest, so far it has worked out perfectly because our crew has done a terrific job. 

It’s crazy to think, but 2019 is about to end. What are some plans that the band has for next year? 

PM: Playing shows and starting to write new songs (laughs). We’ve had a really busy 2019 so far, so we will start next year with some time off with our family while doing some writing at home. We’re also planning on jumping on a few festivals.

The universal vibrations of Earth: an interview with Dylan Carlson // NMTH 

Full interview via Never Mind The Hype

The 13th edition of Le Guess Who? Festival is coming up, featuring many wonderful artists with ringing names. One of those is the American band Earth. Originally the band hails from Seattle, the birthplace of grunge, where main man Dylan Carlson has many friends, including the late Kurt Cobain. But Carlson chose a different musical path than his fellow Seattleites with Earth, he chose drone. 

Carlson is often called the father of drone metal. Not a moniker he would pick, but one he gratefully accepts. Currently, as we talk over Skype with a bunch of disruptions on the line as friends try to reach him, he is staying in Los Angeles. For the film soundtrack he is making, but also because he will be moving there in December. It’s a lot more sunny in L.A. he concurs: “It’s way warmer up here, nicer weather for sure!”, he chuckles. 

We talk about the new album, Full Upon Her Burning Lips, which recently came out. But also about his solo record Conquistador, on which he collaborated with Emma Ruth Rundle. And Bagpipes. And Le Guess Who?, obviously. 

What do you think about the Le Guess Who? Festival yourself? 
“It’s one of my favorite festivals. I’m not crazy about festivals, but this one always has an interesting program and many people are there that I’d love to meet. Not that I get to usually, but last time I was there I saw jazz icon Pharaoh Sanders perform. That is really cool!” 

How does Earth fit within the confines of a festival like Le Guess Who? And how did you end up playing there this year? 
“Well, The Bug is one of the curators and we did an album together, so I think that’s how it went. But why we fit in is that even though people love boxing us into genres or microgenres, Earth has always tried to do something new, always pushed itself into new directions. That fits within the confines of this festival very well. As a musician, I don’t feel confined to microgenres. I make music, as best as I can, but I can’t affect the way people deal with that. But we play all sorts of festivals, because we are not limited to just heavy music. We’ve done Hellfest, Primavera, but also Le Guess Who? and Levitation festival. That’s a big range. Big Ears in Knoxville is another one of my favorites by the way. We’re not stuck in a corner, we can go many different ways with Earth.”

Text: Guido Segers 

LINGUA IGNOTA // LEVITATION INTERVIEW WITH AUSTIN CHRONICLE 

Via THE AUSTIN CHRONICLE

Read the full interview HERE

Lingua Ignota, making a Levitation appearance Friday at Empire, broke out in 2017 with All Bitches Die, a masterstroke of brutality and reprisal expounding on a justifiably vengeful concept: abusing your abuser. 

Lengthy movements entwine drone metal, power electronics, and classical music, while the LP includes tracks titled “Holy is the Name (of my ruthless axe)” and “Woe to All (on the day of my wrath”). You don’t need to speak English to feel the palpable rage emanating from composer/singer Kristin Hayter, an Ivy League-educated artist compelled to confront survivor violence as a voice-of-the-voiceless. She followed up her underground triumph in July with sophomore LP Caligula, issued by Canadian tastemakers Profound Lore. 

Hayter, whose intense performances typically find the San Diego native on the floor of a venue tangled in construction lights, spoke on the phone with the Chronicle in advance of her Austin Terror Fest performance in June, which ultimately cancelled. That discussion – touching on higher education, the concept of violence, and her roots in classical music and metal – remains potent six months later. 

Austin Chronicle: Have you had survivors reach out to you because they identify with All Bitches Die? 

Kristin Hayter: I have had that happen quite a bit and it means a lot. It’s very moving and touching for me. I’ve had a lot of people share their own stories or share how the music in some way helped them process what they’d been through. I can’t think of anything else I could accomplish with my music that would feel more fulfilling. 

AC: Did you see that coming? 

KH: I had no idea. When I put out All Bitches Die, I didn’t think anyone would hear it. It was really just meant for hanging out in the Providence scene, so it was totally unexpected that anyone cared. 

AC: You did graduate studies at Brown in Providence, Rhode Island, which is pretty prestigious. What were your experiences in academia? 

KH: Academia was an interesting place to be a woman, particularly one making music. I know a lot of women of color who find it extremely frustrating to try to work in that world. When I first went to art school for undergrad, it was a way for me to think about how to make things. The way that I learned to think about art [at School of the Art Institute of Chicago] is still a big part of my practice today. 

By the time I got to Brown, I think the work became too confrontational for academia and they didn’t like it very much. I actually wanted to get a Ph.D. and submitted some of the work that I did in graduate school and I didn’t get accepted anywhere. I heard the reason was it was too angry and confrontational. 

AC: Is that in regard to your thesis, Burn Everything Trust No One Kill Yourself? 

KH: Yeah. Parts of that and other work as well, but that was a main piece of the portfolio that went into applications for Ph.D.’s. So it didn’t go over very well, but that’s okay. I don’t know where I reside right now. It’s not academia and it’s not DIY anymore really, but it works okay right now. 

AC: In my mind, when something’s working, that means you have creative freedom. 

KH: I totally agree with that. At this point, I get to make things how I want to make them and I don’t have to worry if it sounds academic or not, or if it has a more cerebral angle, or if it’s not punk enough, or if it’s not heavy enough. Now, I’m doing my own thing with no structures or binding, so it feels good right now.

Saudade New Track "Sanctuary Dub" (Feat. Ho99o9) // Revolver 

Via REVOLVER

Los Angeles–based collective Saudade have been slow-trickling out a stream of music created in collaboration with an array of talented artists, starting with the gorgeous "Shadows & Light" with Chelsea Wolfe and Chino Moreno way back in March, followed by September's "Crisis." Their latest offering sees the Chuck Doom–spearheaded project join forces with genre-busting hip-hop punks Ho99o9 for the avant cacophony of "Sanctuary Dub." 

Dark and moody, but with the irresistible backbeat of a chill reggae foundation, the song sounds deeply fresh among the landslide of heavy music rearing its head in the underground. Ho99o9 are no stranger to challenging the status quo and refusing simple classifications, as they once said on Twitter, "Trap metal - Eh, not sure how I feel about that title, kinda cringy but I get it, kinda .. we gonna keep it grimey, punk, scummy, and vile," in response to a fan's categorization of their output. 

Ho99o9's Yeti Bones and theOGM commented on the single in a joint statement: "There's no boundaries in music, it comes from all angles, places and people, especially if you grew up listening to various genres along with being inspired by the greats that came before you." On "Sanctuary Dub," the duo worked alongside Dr. Know, David Torn, John Medeski, Robert Thomas Jr., Gil Sharone and, of course, Chuck Doom, a group of musicians they say they're "honored" to be featured alongside. 

The track will be featured with the aforementioned "Shadows & Light" and "Crisis" on the forthcoming Shadows & Light / Sanctuary Dub 12-inch, due out this Friday, November 6th, via Sargent House. The EP will also feature yet another track, the instrumental "MyGoalsBeyond," and the group plan to continue adding to their roster of guest stars in the lead-up to the release of a full-length work sometime in 2020.

text by Kelsey Chapstick

CHELSEA WOLFE // LIVE REVIEW AND PHOTOS FROM BROOKLYN STEEL 

Full feature on Consequence Of Sound

Photos: Jon Hadusek 

Setting the stage: The warehouse venue Brooklyn Steel is usually reserved for loud rock shows, but it became a cold chamber of intimacy for Chelsea Wolfe’s acoustic “American Darkness Tour” on Friday. The singer-songwriter is out in support of her latest album, Birth of Violence, a downbeat doom folk record befitting of a sparser, minimalist live interpretation. Wolfe usually tours with a full band, but for her current run of dates, she brought only her acoustic guitar and one side-musician, relying on the strength of her compositions and voice to carry the songs. Wolfe’s Sargent House labelmate Ioanna Gika provided support, conjuring a similarly brooding atmosphere. 

Taking the stage: Gika opened the concert performing selections from her debut album, Thalassa, which came out in April. Under dim lights, her blonde hair and white dress shined through the darkness of the stage. A cellist and keyboardist flanked her on each side, creating cascading drones over which Gika sang brittle melodies in the high register of a mythical siren. Glitch percussion and gentle pulses of noise paced the songs with the unexpected. She appeared comfortable amidst the shadows, projecting the beauty of her voice in contrast with the sorrowful tones of the cello and the minor keys of her compositions. 

From Gika’s set onward, the venue was permeated with a hazy melancholy. Perhaps it was the Halloween hangovers of the audience members or the droning melodies of the performers, warranting a theater setting rather than the standing-room cavern of Brooklyn Steel. As Wolfe began her set, one member of the audience collapsed and had to be carried out. Plumes from the fog machine filled the air, cut through by a decadent light show that kept the eye moving despite Wolfe’s static pose mid-stage, surrounded by a ritualistic crown of antlers, designed by artists Ceremonia and Jean-Michael Barbe. She donned a white Victorian gown, shoulders exposed. 

From the opening notes of “Flatlands”, it became immediately apparent that the acoustic treatment suited Wolfe’s songs perfectly. Stripped down to their core element of chords and voice, the songs bloomed under Wolfe’s power as a gifted singer-songwriter. “Birth of Violence” and “Be All Things” revealed themselves as plaintive slowcore ballads, as Wolfe’s lyrics become the primary focus. Her recorded output is often steeped in sonic aesthetics that lend to gothic rock and dream-pop comparisons, but like the acoustic music of Neil Young, when stripped to its musical base, Wolfe’s songs gained an added emotional weight through the directness of the no-frills delivery. “Deranged for Rock & Roll” took on a country tone when stripped bare, and “Boyfriend” put its poignant pleas to the forefront. 

Although longtime collaborator Ben Chisholm was onstage providing textural guitar and backing keys, his contributions were restrained, coloring the empty spaces between Wolfe’s notes rather than dictating the perception of the music. A highlight of the set was the serene cover of Joni Mitchell’s “Woodstock”, as Wolfe moved from her perch center-stage to sing next to Chisholm. Wolfe delivered a flawless vocal performance throughout the 17-song set, aided by a touch of compression and EQ to give her voice a studio-like sheen over the concert PA. 

Wolfe closed the night with her voice alone, performing an a capella rendition of “The Way We Used To” for the encore. A circle of fog spiraled around her as the crowd stood transfixed. Nobody moved, nobody pulled out their phone to film. They watched, and they listened.

Catch Chelsea Wolfe on the rest of the "American Darkness" tour with Ioanna Gika, tickets available HERE.

NOV 04 Charlotte, NC @ McGlohon Theater 
NOV 05 Atlanta, GA @ Terminal West 
NOV 06 Nashville, TN @ Mercy Lounge 
NOV 08 Dallas, TX @ Texas Theatre 
NOV 09 Austin, TX @ Levitation - early show 
NOV 09 Austin, TX @ Levitation (SOLD OUT) 
NOV 10 Houston, TX @ White Oak Music Hall 
NOV 12 Santa Fe, NM @ Meow Wolf 
NOV 13 Tucson, AZ @ Club Congress 
NOV 15 Los Angeles, CA @ The Palace Theatre 
NOV 16 San Francisco, CA @ Regency Ballroom 
NOV 18 Portland, OR @ Wonder Ballroom 
NOV 20 Seattle, WA @ The Showbox 
NOV 21 Vancouver, BC @ Vogue Theatre 

EU/UK 2020 w/ Jonathan Hultén 
MAR 11 Prague, CZ @ Archa Theatre 
MAR 12 Berlin, DE @ Sendesaal 
MAR 13 Leipzig, DE @ UT Connewitz 
MAR 14 Bochum, DE @ Christus Kirche 
MAR 16 Utrecht, NL @ TivoliVredenburg - Cloud9 
MAR 17 Paris, FR @ La Gaité Lyrique 
MAR 19 Manchester, UK @ Stoller Hall 
MAR 20 Glasgow, UK @ Saint Luke’s 
MAR 21 Coventry, UK @ Coventry Cathedral 
MAR 22 London, UK @ Alexandra Palace Theatre 
MAR 23 Antwerp, BE @ Bourla Theatre 
MAR 25 Lyon, FR @ Chapelle De La Trinité (SOLD OUT) 
MAR 26 Pully, CH @ Theatre de L'Octogone 
MAR 28 Munich, DE @ Kammerspiele 
MAR 29 Hamburg, DE @ Gruenspan 
MAR 30 Copenhagen, DK @ Koncerthuset - Studio 2 
MAR 31 Oslo, NO @ Kulturkirken Jakob 
APR 01 Stockholm, SE @ Nalen

Chelsea Wolfe Podcast Interview // The Witch Wave 

Listen to the podcast interview on The Witch Wave

Chelsea Wolfe is a musician with six critically acclaimed full-length albums under her belt. Though her sound spans various genres from goth rock to electronica to folk melancholia, what remains consistent is her romantically dark, witchy vibe and lyrics that seem sprouted from a surreal and mysterious mindscape. 

On this episode, Chelsea talks about her technique of channeling songs, the ways she uses place as muse, and the part witchcraft plays in her creative practice both onstage and off. 

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