Monthly Archives: February 2012

Days of the Doomed II to crush heartland this June


This news just in on Days of the Doomed 2 from Mercyful Mike Smith:

“Just so everyone is getting the info, here it is again! Update: DAYS OF THE DOOMED FEST II will be moving to the Milwuakee area this June, and is now scheduled to take place at The Blue Pig on June 15th and 16th!!! Please make a note of this. More details soon! I am forced to do this due to the fact that the new owners of the building that houses DOTD Fest are Jedi-Masters at blowing smoke up people’s asses. After constantly offering to pay for the hall since last NOVEMBER, the new owners (who own L&M Meats in Kenosha by the way) let me know that the hall will not be available just this past Thursday. They don’t even have occupancy, and now plan on remodeling. Uh, they didn’t know this back in November??? For those of you who have already booked rooms, purchased tickets, or scheduled flights, please feel free to contact me and I can help you out any way I can. The show will go on…”

I’d never thought of Kenosha, Wisconsin as a hub for doom and heavy metal music. When I think of Wisconsin I think of cheese and the cows that give the milk to make it. And when I think of Kenosha I think of my sister-in-law Kathy who grew up there. She’s pretty musical, so maybe she’s been hiding something from me.

However, it was through my associations with various Mid Atlantic doom bands that I learned about a fairly young metal festival called Days of the Doomed and “met” organizer Mercyful Mike Smith on Facebook.

This year’s Days of the Doomed (DODT II!) will be held June 22 and 23 at a place they are calling The Hall of Lore on 4902 7th Ave. in Kenosha.  Twenty doom metal bands are slated to play this two-day extravaganza, including some of my regional favorites War Injun, Beelzefuzz and Argus, as well as other favorite acts such as Earthen Grave, Blackfinger, Revelation, Solace, Earthride and many others. Tickets are only $50 for the weekend.  If I left from Baltimore on a Friday night and stopped over in Cleveland, Ohio and then continued on the next day, it would be totally possible to make it to Kenosha before the first band took the stage at 3 p.m.

I wanted to find out more about DOTD so I asked Mercyful Mike to grant me an interview. He showed “mercy” and did. Here is the result of that Q &A.
How did the festival get started? What’s the story behind that?

I had attended several shows and fests over the years, most notably Templars of Doom and Born to be Doomed, and I had always flirted with the idea of doing a fest of my own. After much discussion with the likes of Jason McCash (TGos) and John Brenner (Revelation), I decided to proceed! I got lots of encouragement from Ron Holzner, Tony Spillman, and Michael Lindenauer along the way as well. The rest is history.

What is your vision for the festival? What do you hope happens?

My vision is to have our own version of Roadburn  stateside. I’d really like to see Days Of The Doomed Fest grow considerably each year to the point where it sustains itself. This will take a lot of time and patience, and there are no guarantees. I am optimistic though!

How do you select who plays? Who would be your dream groups to come play?

Well, several bands contact me in regards to playing, so I consider who would work out the best and represent the scene, but I also tend to pick out whomever I would like to see as well. One of the selfish perks of being the promoter! Haha! Dream groups? Pagan Altar, Lord Vicar, Solitude Aeturnus, Candlemass, the list goes on…

Why Kenosha? 

Well, Kenosha is basically in the middle of Chicago and Milwaukee, so it geographically lends itself to two very good markets. Also, because Kenosha is my hometown, I like to give back to the community. Several local business located close to the Days Of The Doomed Fest venue did outstanding sales last year. I like to hear that.

What are the challenges of putting on a festival like this?

Wow… lots. Am I promoting enough? Are we advertising in the right places? Could I have cut costs here? Challenges are everywhere you look, but this being our second fest, I’ve learned from some mistakes I made last year. Slightly less stress this year. Slightly.

Who are you especially excited to have at DOTD II ?

I’m really, honestly excited about every single band on the roster this year. Seeing Revelation is going to be killer, as is While Heaven Wept and Blood Farmers. Having Ogre back on stage is going to be awesome as well. I can’t really name just one.

One of the cool things I noticed about DOTD is that you actually can participate in the festival without coming to the show through your Raffle of Doom.  (The raffle ends March 31 so buy your raffle tickets now!) What a great idea! Where did the raffle prizes come from?
All the prizes involved came from bands affiliated with the fest, as well as some not. The generosity displayed by these bands is beyond words. All of the items up for grabs are stellar, and the loot just keeps rolling in. So many signed LPs, and rare items. I hope the winner is happy!

Are their any raffle prizes that you want to draw attention to?

All of them! Photos of prizes so far can be seen at “Raffle of Doom” tickets can also be purchased there!

Anything else?

I encourage everyone planning on coming out to Days Of The Doomed Fest II to plan ahead!!! Tickets are moving along, so don’t be left out in Lake Michigan while the rest of us are getting our heads caved in by the DOOM! Visit for tickets, time slots, and lodging options! Hope to see you all in June!!! Thanks, Mæry! Really appreciate the interview!

Many thanks to Mercyful Mike Smith for taking the time out to answer my questions.  Below is the running order for the bands for DOTD II, although that is subject to change.
Bands/Time Slots
FRIDAY, JUNE 22nd, 2012     DOORS OPEN AT 2:00 PM

3:00 – 3:35      SNAKE DANCE
3:55 – 4:35      SUPER INVADER
4:55 – 5:35      SANCTUS BELLUM
5:55 – 6:35      WAR INJUN
6:55 – 7:40      RITUALS OF THE OAK
8:00 – 8:55      LAS CRUCES
9:15 – 10:15    EARTHEN GRAVE (featuring former Trouble bassist Ron Holzner)
10:35 – 11:35  BLACKFINGER (featuring former Trouble vocalist Eric Wagner)
11:55 – 1:00    REVELATION

SATURDAY, JUNE 23rd, 2012     DOORS OPEN AT 12:00 PM

1:00 – 1:40       CYRUS
2:00 – 2:45       BLIZARO
3:05 – 3:50       BEELZEFUZZ
4:10 – 4:55       APOSTLE OF SOLITUDE
5:15 – 6:00       ORODRUIN
6:20 – 7:05       ARGUS
7:25 – 8:10       BLOOD FARMERS
8:30 – 9:15       EARTHRIDE
9:35 – 10:20     OGRE
10:40 – 11:40   SOLACE
12:00 – 1:30     WHILE HEAVEN WEPT

Unable to attend the Days of the Doomed fest, but would still like to be included?  Leave your mark on the fest by helping us out with a donation!  Any amount will be greatly appreciated!  All of those who are kind enough to donate will have their names displayed at the days of the doomed fest on our “sponsor board.”  Donations of $25.00 or more will receive a special gift. 

Iron Man posts new song video on Facebook

Louis Strachan (left) and Alfred Morris III of Iron Man
Traditional doom metal aficionados will be happy to learn that the legendary group, Iron Man, is working on new material. Today on their Facebook page and YouTube channel, they released a video of a new song performed recently at a benefit show in Brunswick, MD.  The song, “A Whore in Confession,” is still a something of a work in progress, says original Iron Man Al Morris III. “What you hear in the video may not be exactly how it ends up sounding on the recording,” Morris says.  Even so, the band wanted to give its fan base something new since, their last recording, a self-released EP called Dominance, came out in January 2011.  Morris says 2012 looks like a busy year for the doom metal stalwarts. A new drummer, Jason “Mot” Waldmann, came on board in January 2012. The group is slated to perform with Blizaro, Blood Ceremony, Loviatar, Monobrow and Revelation at All That’s Heavy II festival in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada on May 12. They will be heading to the studio to record a full-length album and more extensive touring is in the works. Their next local show will be at Lallo’s in Brunswick, MD on March 3 with Trifecta and Children of the Grave.

I am a big metal fan

Do you have a vest as awesome as this? Do you show your devotion to metal in your clothing? This vest, made by Chris Woodford of Pittsburgh, is among the best I’ve ever seen anywhere. Can you beat it? Send me your photos and maybe I will feature it here.

Metal concert set for Feb 11 to benefit sick baby

Parents know that raising children presents challenges. But when your child has a chromosomal imbalance like 8-month old Delainie Simpson of Waynesboro, PA, every day can seem like a marathon with no finish line in sight.

It was a seemingly uneventful pregnancy. Yet within minutes of Delainie’s birth, her need for nearly constant medical care has kept her father Steve and mother Kelly guessing as to when they could stop running this dreadful race long enough to enjoy a few minutes with their little girl. Monitored-care in a neonatal intensive care unit, middle-of-the-night trips to the emergency rooms, and lengthy hospital stays have taxed the family emotionally and mentally, but also, obviously, financially.
To help the Simpson’s, Steve’s long-time friend, Matt Dayton, has gathered musicians from Maryland, Pennsylvania and North Carolina to put together the Delainie Simpson Benefit show. Festivities begin at 2 p.m. Saturday, February 11 at the Brunswick Fire Hall 223-225 West Potomac St., Brunswick, MD 21716. Admission is $15 at the door with 100 percent of the proceeds going to support little Delainie.  Brunswick is approximately 60 miles west of Baltimore.
Kelly explained that while chromosomal imbalances are not uncommon in humans, how they are expressed, if at all, varies greatly from person to person. For some children, a chromosomal imbalance results in an extra 21st chromosome and is expressed as Down syndrome.
In Delainie’s case, Kelly explained that many of her symptoms are similar to those found in premature infants. Delainie, for example, had trouble breathing in her first few weeks of life and needed surgery to open up her airway. She also has profound hearing loss. When she takes a bottle, she frequently aspirates (breathes in) a little bit of formula into her lungs.

It seemed like with every passing day, Delainie exhibited a new problem presumably associated with her genetic imbalance. In time, Delainie’s entire genetic makeup was mapped, Kelly said, and physicians now know exactly where the imbalance occurred.

Furthermore, Delainie has not reached many of her developmental milestones, such as sitting up. Kelly attributes some of this delay to her daughter’s genetic glitch, but also does not discount the fact that Delainie spent many weeks confined to hospital cribs attached to monitors. She basically has not had a chance to explore her world the way other children would.  Even so, Delainie now is at home full-time with her family and is improving daily. She coos sweetly and seems to be close to turning over, Kelly reports.
Meanwhile, initial response to the announcement of the benefit concert has been phenomenal, Matt explained. He reported that he had to turn bands away because so many were requesting to be on the bill. He added that this show has inspired him to become more active in the local music scene. He manages the band Trifecta, listed below, in addition to Earth Ride and Weed is Weed.
You can hear samples of many of the bands slated to play here.
If you can’t attend but want to make a donation, Paypal is accepted at the benefit’s website.

Acts scheduled to perform fall within the heavy metal subgenre of doom with some distinct variations. The bands in likely order of appearance include:

The Civil will kick start the show with funky rhythms and guitar jams distilled from the tie-dyed purple haze emanating of the summer of love.
This Too Shall Burn boasts clear vocals, straightforward melodies, and a relentless backbeat will propel this group through their early set.
Despite Charm should impress listeners with their modern spin on traditional rock and metal.
Trifecta will transport listeners to the British blues and rock origins of metal with their Zeppelin and Cream inspired melodies.
Akris defines experimental sludge musically with the voice of angel crying overhead.
Admiral Browning paints a cerebral landscape with their more progressive,  melodic approach to doom metal.
Ghost of War presents soaring vocals over a backdrop of traditional guitar driven heavy metal.
Doom legends Iron Man plan to assault the audience with grinding guitar riffs and a thunderous rhythm section, framed by thoughtful lyrics.
War Injun layers aggressive vocals upon a foundation of fuzzy guitars and thrashy downbeats.
Pale Divine closes the show with music that harkens back to psychedelic the days of Iron Butterfly and early Black Sabbath.

RSVP to the event of Facebook here.

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