Sunday, July 31, 2011

List for the Insomniac

July 31, 2011 -- 12:50 A.M. 

1. The Conductor - Ume 
2. Separate Bodies - The Head
3. The Mayor - Stop The Presses
4. Eye for an Eye - Girl Vs Ghost
5. Pick Up the Phone - Chasing Morgan
6. Beautiful - Day Method
7. Get It Daddy- Sleeper Agent
8. I Didn't Know She Was 14 - BAMF!
9. Sick - Minds Without Purpose
10.Skop! - Scarcella 31

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Psychotic with Marion Crane

Like a scene right out of Hitchcock's thriller Psycho, Marion Crane burst onto the Florida stage with razor-sharp fangs bared and blood dripping down. A not-so-subtle mix of hard-rock grit and alternative-metal sneer, Marion Crane are just what summer called for: a hard-edged blade rusted over with the sonic samples of insanity.

Composed of S. Thomas Crane (lead vocals and guitar), Chris Stanton (lead guitar and vocals), Henry Black (bass and vocals), and Adam Tillis (drums), Marion Crane are a frost-bitten hand reaching up from beneath the bedrock of fear and darkness to grip your very soul before shaking you with a power and fury that seems won't be ignored. Metallic in their instrumental execution and grunge-laden in their vocal presentation, Marion Crane prove from the start that they have something to say as they open up every scar we have and show what lies just beneath the surface.
With guitar work by Jasper Judge, Marion Crane's debut album Kamikaze graced the sound systems of hard-rockers everywhere starting in April on last year. The 2010 release is something that floors me, because as I listen to tracks like "DNR," "Bullet" and the title-track, this sounds like a sophomore follow-up that was carefully crafted to blast the doors open after a debut got their foot just in the door. Both the instrumentation and the production on Kamikaze (courtesy of Stan Martell, who engineered the recording, mixing, and production of the album), are clean and clear, are hard-hitting in the best ways. Yet the track on the album that really stands out to me, besides the title-track, is "Illegitimate," a balls-gripping song that acts as dynamite stick in the nuclear reactor for Marion Crane's career.

Blasting forth in a brash firestorm of notes and chords, "Illegitimate" has clearly got to be Marion Crane's first single. A stew of S. Thomas Crane's serrated vocals and the blasting rhythm partnership of Henry Black's bass and Adam Tillis's drums, "Illegitimate" takes me to all-new heights when Judge's chords rip through the speakers to stab me through the heart with a force and power I can't help but embrace. If the sick music video isn't enough to convince you that these guys mean business, then Crane's half screaming/half growling vocals will prove that Marion Crane are on their way to the top of the post-grunge/alternative circuit. The best parts of "Illegitimate" are tied up together: as Crane's shakes all sense from my head with his fierce growls, Tillis is pounding that stake further through my heart with his bone-breaking beats as Black's bass crushes my head in a rusted vice. If there is one stand-out track on Kamikaze (and personally I think there are two, as the title-track is pretty core too), "Illegitimate" takes the cake in a fury that is frightening in power.
Kamikaze, though, is just Marion Crane's first number, as since its release, two more soul-crushing songs have appeared in the Crane catalog: "M.M.M." and "The New Religion." "M.M.M.," like "Illegitimate" and "Kamikaze," comes with its own stitch-splitting music video directed by S. Thomas Crane and filmed by Henry Black. One of the things that stands out on the two new tracks is the guitar work, now in the hands of Chris Stanton. Crystal clear on "M.M.M.," Stanton is determined to stamp his own mark on the already rising Marion Crane legacy. Relying on crunching chords and a biting note progression, Stanton drives Marion Crane's sound to new heights as Tillis goes apocalyptic on his drums with Black following suit on bass. Crane's vocals brush up against the walls, scraping for release from their insane asylum in a pseudo-whispered haunting tone that throws back to Marilyn Manson and Layne Staley from Alice in Chains. Perhaps more like Staley than Manson, though, Crane's vocal execution dances over the Pixies' loud-quiet-loud dynamic, growing from a creepy growl during the verses to a full-fledged roar at the beginning of each chorus. That roar launches Marion Crane into a stinging guitar solo played out by Stanton, and in a matter of mere minutes, "M.M.M." is solidified in the Marion Crane catalog forever after.
But Marion Crane have a couple more tricks up their sleeve, and one of the best ones is called "The New Religion." A slightly more driven track than "M.M.M.," Stanton handles guitar work on this one as well. From the start, one of the best things about this song is the dynamic between the vocals and rhythm section. Black's bass is on point, screwing nuts and bolts into my skull as Tillis pushes full-throttle on his kit and kicks me home with a simple, but oh-so-grinding beat. With Stanton and Crane (whose vocals are the epitome of post-grunge/alternative-metal choice) shredding up their frets and strings in hard-rock fashion, "The New Religion" is the new target for all aspiring alternative-metal bands (and is the music isn't enough to drive you over the edge, the lyrics will rip right through you).
Over and over again, Marion Crane have proved that they mean business, and with the singles "The New Religion," "M.M.M.," "Illegitimate,"  and "Kamikaze," (not to mention the hardcore music videos for the last three), it's clear that these guys are not ones you would wanna meet in a dark alley at night. Like the lines in "The New Religion" go, I've "found the new addiction," and that new addiction's name is Marion Crane. Insane and psychotic like only the best hard-rock bands can be, Marion Crane is completely unhinged, and I wouldn't have it any other way. I don't think they would either.

Sounds Like: Avenged Sevenfold, Disturbed, Three Days Grace, Staind, Chevelle

Key Tracks from Kamikaze, and Other Singles (Respectively): "Illegitimate," "Kamikaze," "M.M.M.," "The New Religion"

Check out Marion Crane more at:, and      

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