Archive for Psycho Las Vegas

Creeping Death: Psycho Las Vegas Preview

Posted in Interviews with tags , , on 08/09/2022 by kurtorzeck

It was 3 p.m. on a Sunday afternoon, the last day of Psycho Las Vegas 2021, at the House of Blues. Day Three of America’s best heavy-rock event (Day Four if you include Thursday’s kick-off pool party) often finds festival-goers picking crust out of their eyes and sipping beers with shaky hands as they brave through the finale.

Such was the case on this day — but, with the venue full to the brim, astute patrons noticed an undercurrent of anticipation that signals something special is about to go down.

Any music fan who has witnessed a show that puts over a band knows this sensation. Like an aroma guaranteeing a meal is going to deliver even before the first bite, the feeling of a band about to break is as tangible as it is undeniable.

With that, a band from Dallas called Creeping Death tore it up at the House of Blues, spewing forth a concoction of death and thrash metal that left the bleary-eyed attendees shellshocked and hungry for more.

Continue reading

Marissa Nadler: Psycho Las Vegas Preview

Posted in Interviews with tags , , , on 08/03/2022 by kurtorzeck

“Heavy music can be soft too, and that’s where I come in.”

With that succinct sentence, Marissa Nadler summed up to The Bad Penny what attendees of Psycho Las Vegas 2022 should expect from her Friday performance at the festival. While set times are not yet publicly available, her celestial singing is sure to provide respite to those who risk going deaf at the ear-shattering performances by Emperor, Carcass and Mayhem. And yet, she is a logical fit for a festival featuring artists who challenges themselves and their audiences alike.

Mind you, Nadler is so much more than just an anomalous addition to a festival geared toward music of … let’s say, “the heavier variety.” As she explained in an interview last week, the dark themes in her songs have a great deal in common with those topics upon by most bands on Psycho’s bill. If that weren’t enough, Nadler — who is probably too humble to admit it herself — carries more collaborative bonafides than arguably about any other participating artist. To name just a few, she has teamed with Xasthur, Mercury Rev, Emily Jane White, Okkervil River, Ben Watt, Lushlife … and if you think that short list is impressive, take a gander at the litany of tribute albums on which she has appeared.

As gracious, kind and joyful as they come, Nadler carved out some time to talk with us about her long-awaited, very first appearance at Psycho Las Vegas in just over a couple of weeks. The conversation went a little something like this.

Continue reading

Whores: Psycho Las Vegas Preview

Posted in Interviews with tags , , , on 08/02/2022 by kurtorzeck

Originating in the ATL in 2010, Whores’ inclusion in Psycho Las Vegas 2022 is a long time in the waiting. The trio are not as devoted to metal as most of Psycho’s crowd — they’re proud of their punk-rock bonafides — but they’ll fit in quite nicely.

Continue reading

Rifflord: Psycho Las Vegas Preview

Posted in Interviews with tags , , , , on 08/01/2022 by kurtorzeck

Everyone planning to attend Psycho Las Vegas later this month is, naturally, expecting to swelter in the desert heat. But festival goers seeking one of the most scorching but under-the-radar sets would be remiss to miss the almighty Rifflord, the ultimate “band’s band.”

With their four band members living in three states, most of them many hours away from each other, they were accustomed to surviving as a band without the luxury of meeting up at a rehearsal space in the same city. By the time COVID hit, Rifflord had already mastered the ability to work remotely.

Rifflord’s show will be unique in that the members of the blistering heavy-rock gang reside in three states. Even more outlandish (pun intended), guitarist/vocalist Wyatt Bartlett lives in a teeny-tiny town in rural South Dakota, where he owns a successful painting business and enjoys a simple life. From that small town, Bartlett has successfully managed to keep Rifflord afloat since 2007.

After years of pining to participate at Psycho Las Vegas 2022, Rifflord will play at the festival’s kickoff pool party on Thursday, August 18, then again on Saturday two days later. You can probably infer what they sound like, at least to a degree, simply from the band’s overtly descriptive name. But theirs won’t be a run-of-the-mill desert-rock shows … Bartlett recently told The Bad Penny exactly why.

Continue reading

Mizmor: Psycho Las Vegas Preview

Posted in Interviews with tags , , , , on 07/31/2022 by kurtorzeck

Anniversaries will abound at Psycho Las Vegas 2022 when it upends the city next month. But one of the quieter celebrations will be the 10-year birthday of Mizmor, a one-man black-metal project that multi-instrumentalist A.L.N. founded in Portland, Oregon, well … 10 years ago.

After breaking free from the shackles of religious confinement he found in the state’s capitol of Salem, A.L.N. set up camp about an hour north. Currently, he records in a studio located in a house he bought last year with his partner. While he enjoys the comfort and solitude of creating his art at home, he is — like the myriad bands with which The Bad Penny is chatting lately — gearing up for the mecca of overstimulation and debauchery that is Psycho Las Vegas.

Continue reading

ASG: Psycho Las Vegas Preview

Posted in Interviews with tags , , , on 07/30/2022 by kurtorzeck

If you’re a) Going to Psycho Las Vegas 2022; b) Wanna witness a guaranteed, badass rock and roll set; and c) Need to bathe yourself in melodious singing after too many hours of screaming vocals … well, make it a point to see ASG on Sunday (August 21).

Hailing from Wilmington, North Carolina, the lovable-but-lethal Psycho vets deliver about as reliably righteous a show as they come. Thanks to tautly written songs that drill into the brain like the Bugs in Starship Troopers, the Relapse Records band never disappoints.

That’s not to say ASG haven’t faced their fair share of hardships, however. The Bad Penny caught up with frontman Jason Shi on Thursday, and he opened up about some of them. Oh, and his love of Blind Melon, too.

Continue reading

Frozen Soul: Psycho Las Vegas Preview

Posted in Interviews with tags , , , on 07/28/2022 by kurtorzeck

Among the 100 or so bands set for Psycho Las Vegas 2022, few of the young ones — if any — are bringing more hype than Frozen Soul. With thumbs-up from legends like Dying Fetus and Jungle Rot, the old-school death-metal revivalists have written, recorded and toured relentlessly since their founding just four years ago.

The band consists of three members formerly of Dallas thrash band End Times — vocalist Chad Green, guitarist Michael Munday and drummer Matt Dennard — plus bassist Samantha Mobley (ex-Vermiculated) and guitarist Chris Bonner, also of Steel Bearing Hand.

The Fort Worth, Texas-based Frozen Soul released their Crypt of Ice debut last year to so much acclaim that it landed them a spot on this year’s Psycho lineup. That’s an exceptionally rare honor for a band with just one album to its name.

Continue reading

Cirith Ungol: Psycho Las Vegas Preview

Posted in Interviews with tags , , , , on 07/25/2022 by kurtorzeck

Mercyful Fate might be the biggest draw at Psycho Las Vegas 2022 — but they can’t claim the thrown as the festival’s elder statesmen. In fact, a full decade before King Diamond and his cohorts jelled as a band, Cirith Ungol originated in Ventura, California.

To give you a clearer idea of how far Cirith Ungol to back, they played their first gig at anti-war rally during Vietnam. Thus, the band finds itself among Psycho royalty that also includes Alice Cooper, Arthur Brown, Blue Öyster Cult and … well, not many other festival alums. Even Goblin formed a year after Cirith Ungol.

Continue reading

Mothership: Psycho Las Vegas Preview

Posted in Interviews with tags , , , , on 07/24/2022 by kurtorzeck

Ladies and gentlemen, this is your captain speaking. We have begun our descent and will arrive at the terminal shortly. In the meantime, please keep your seatbelt fastened. That last instruction applies to attendees of this year’s Psycho Las Vegas festival as well.

Mothership are soaring. The so-called “supersonic intergalactic heavy-rock trio” from Dallas, led by brothers Kyle and Kelley Juett, are riding the wave of ever-growing crowds at their shows. They band is drawing cheers from its peers in the world of hard rock and, with new material on the way, Mothership’s fuel gauge is about to explode.

Continue reading

Belzebong: Psycho Las Vegas Preview

Posted in Interviews with tags , , , , on 07/23/2022 by kurtorzeck

For obvious reasons, most “desert rock” bands shun the phrase “stoner rock.” Even though many musicians overindulge from time to time, the phrase itself can be confining for any band that wants to grow.

Poland’s Belzebong — due to play Saturday, August 20 — are a red-eyed exception to this rule. Not only did the band members incorporate a pot reference into their moniker, but guitarist Alky Dude openly talked about his infatuation with pot (almost as much as he enjoys talking about music).

Continue reading