Sounds of A Generation – Ann chats to Jon Rossi of Pilgrim

Much of what’s toted today as rock music leaves much to be desired in my eyes. Hair gel’d fringes and indie rock sounds aren’t what I consider even remotely close to what rock music is and what it’s about, though most of the youngsters of today seem to dig it. A lot.

Mainstream rock music, let alone heavy metal, has mutated into a different beast altogether, which – though (sadly) inevitable – seems to build up ideas in many young people’s minds of what these genres are and where they’ve come from.

(Happily) inevitable, is that there are and will always be exceptions to this pattern, such as the three youngsters in the heavy rock/doom metal band Pilgrim, signed to Poison Tongue Records (founded and managed by Primordial’s Alan Averill; a man whom mainstream media has begun to recognise as an established name in the heavy metal underground).

It was refreshing in more ways than one when I sat down to talk to singer/guitarist Jon Rossi, otherwise known as “The Wizard”. How often do you come across musicians emerging into their twenties these days, who still revere the legacy and history of their favourite music these days? Well, I haven’t.

Continue reading

Carpathia – ‘To Forever Sleep’, Self-released; 2012


Due to the occasional tendency of modern music to portray a churning mix of various styles, the use of layers can make it difficult to sort out by ear what direction a musician is heading towards. Even in the modern-day face of “alternative” music styles which include the term “progressive” as a self-descriptor, this can be an issue for young bands like Carpathia. Continue reading

Video Killed the Live Music Scene?

Those who read my interviews on this blog (as well as other places) know that I always like to ask musicians about their experiences with music in the past and today. It’s a theme that I personally find interesting not only in regards to learning about the history of music and various scene traditions, but also because it gives an idea of what it was like in the past without the current, advanced technology of today. I enjoy hearing musicians and fans older than myself talk about the state of music in the past, and I find myself often drawn to reading about these people’s experiences in passing with the music scenes and fans of today.

Obviously, this means that a pattern of certain observations tends to appear:

1. There were no illegal file-sharing or mp3 downloads, which meant that the method of tape trading was limited and that to get the music you heard, you had to buy it

2. Lack of advanced mobile phones with videos, games and the Internet meant that people were engaging more often in conversation with one another.

3. Fans seem more invested in bringing out their cameras to film everything. In some cases, this means the whole show itself, from start to finish (as ludicrous as that sounds).

Continue reading

Steve Hughes ‘Big Issues’ tour, The Glee Club, Birmingham; March 28th 2012


Much hailed as a champion of sorts in the European metal community, Australian stand up comic Steve Hughes brought his brand of sharp, quick to the point comedy to Birmingham’s Glee Club on March 28th. However, while heavy metal is certainly a key part of the comedian’s identity (and thus routine), it tends to be overlooked how this is truly not the main, driving point of his act. There is always much more to a person than one asset of them on display, and the audience of the aforementioned night was treated to more than one side of Hughes as he shared his experiences as an Australian, music lover, colonial and occasional drug taker on a tour which looked at (and also bathed in) mocking the concept of political correctness. Continue reading