END HITS: NEUROSIS - EXCLUSIVE SWISS SHOW!
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NEUROSIS - It is said that great art has the power to take us outside of ourselves and bring us closer to ourselves simultaneously. Few bands have accomplished this rare feat on a more profound and consistent basis than NEUROSIS. For now three decades, their music has touched the hearts and minds of young men and women seeking contact with something beyond the physical world, something intangible, something that expresses the inner tumult of the human condition in a way that transcends time and space. Something that not only provokes questions, but maybe even hints at answers. It can seem like the trials and tribulations of mankind are being channeled through five individuals: Steve Von Till, Scott Kelly, Noah Landis, Jason Roeder and Dave Edwardson. And yet? They will be the first ones to tell you that they are just regular people trying to make sense of the world around them. The degree to which Neurosis allows them to step out of their everyday lives is the distance between one and zero, the distance between thinking and doing, the distance between this minute and the one that may or may not follow. Which is to say: NEUROSIS takes them outside of themselves and brings them closer to themselves.
Organized by: Dachstock
Descriptors fail in the same way that describing the shock of the sudden or new or subtle grace of magnitude fails. Each and every time. Because words are idea shorthand for experience and experience can only be transmitted, if you’re lucky or unlucky enough to miss it the first time, through comparative measures and means: a nightmare is an unhappy dream, death is like when life stops and the earth calls, and violent change is when everything is no longer the same but hurts because of it.
But here’s a shorthand: NEUROSIS is music. Music in the same way that Wagner is music. Or that it all comes down. Or the graying granite planet we call home is both the cradle and coffin of all desire and hopes and expression forces its way through us and into wires and out of speakers framing a journey from here to there and not back again. Ever. This is a one- way trip.
So keep the descriptors – the “crushes”, the “destroys”, “dark” and even “deep”. These are both all at once and again not enough, and not even too much. They’re products of lazy inquiry.
Keep them and let the real shoulder its way to the front. Like it did when the San Francisco Bay Area, forget that...when Oakland gave birth to this ride and the ticket for it in 1985 as NEUROSIS. Under the stewardship of Scott Kelly, Dave Edwardson, Jason Roeder and in 1989 spiritual heir Steve Von Till [and now Noah Landis and Josh Graham on visuals], NEUROSIS does only what the best art can: it crafts a sense world for those with sense and senses from the realm of eternal ideas and weaves it, whole cloth, into the audio, the visual, the powerful. A seamless melding and welding of elements that are not too wildly disparate: loss, gain, and eventually gaining through loss. And with a host of fellow travelers from STEVE ALBINI, JARBOE and a passel of solo and side projects that involve kindred spirits from THE MELVINS, SLEEP, ST. VITUS, a recorded output of 27-odd releases, and tours all over the lands known and unknown to try to capture them with a single descriptor, and many have tried – metal, doom, ambient hardcore – is misguided at worst and a waste of time at best.
So here it is again: NEUROSIS is music. And art. And a chilling testament to the glories of the briefest of times of our lives. And you not knowing this? Makes it no less true.
Epic, crushing, and heavy beyond words, YOB has achieved legendary status in recent years due to their unmatched aesthetic and incredible body of work. Formed in 1996 in Eugene, Oregon under the leadership of doom metal mastermind Mike Scheidt on guitars and vocals, the group initially released a three song demo tape in 2000 that garnered them international attention. Drawing comparisons to groups like Neurosis, Sleep and Electric Wizard, YOB succeeded in developing modern sounding doom metal that hearkened back to the classics.
In 2002, YOB released their debut album Elaborations of Carbon followed by Catharsis in 2003, a three song record that clocked in at a colossal 50 minutes. The buzz about YOB was beginning to grow and the trio began to tour more extensively. Remaining quite prolific during this period, YOB continued to release an album each year with The Illusion of Motion coming in 2004 followed by The Unreal Never Lived in 2005. Despite all the momentum, YOB disbanded in 2006.
In 2008 the band returned from hiatus and has remained strong ever since with Travis Foster on drums and Aaron Rieseberg on bass. Reinvigorated and reinspired, YOB released The Great Cessation in 2009. It was doom with a psychedelic twist, a sound that Pitchfork referred to as “cosmic doom.” At this point in their career, the band found increased exposure in the media, with The New York Times going so far as to call them “one of the best bands in North America” after a performance at Scion Rock Festival.
For 2011’s Atma, YOB took a more organic to recording. In Scheidt’s own words, he wanted the record to sound “grizzly, with hair on it.” Three years later, the group released Clearing the Path to Ascend, a record that upheld their legacy as a top notch doom metal act and was hailed by Rolling Stone as the #1 metal album of the year.
Fast forward to 2017 where YOB signed with Relapse Records for their incredible 8th full-length recording Our Raw Heart. The album was conceived amidst dire circumstances that nearly left frontman Mike Scheidt dead after suffering from an extremely painful and potentially fatal intestinal disease. Scheidt miraculously recovered and rallied the band together with a new sense of purpose for Our Raw Heart, an album informed by the will to survive. More exposed than ever both physically and emotionally, YOB bleed out seven riveting tracks of enormous volume and pensive, transcendental beauty across 75 minutes of ultimate doom. A brilliant musical progression in the YOB continuum, Our Raw Heart is the band at their most aggressive, impassioned and eclectic. The riffs are massive, the vocals captivating and the songwriting sublime. Existing in its own organic universe, Our Raw Heart is truly the band’s finest work to date and the apex achievement of what heavy music can accomplish. Our Raw Heart was co-produced by the band and longtime collaborator Billy Barnett at Gung Ho Studio in Eugene, Ore., with mastering handled by Heba Kadry (The Mars Volta, Diamanda Galas, Slowdive).