Iwrestledabearonce + Steve Vai = fuck yes

IWABOc

As if Iwrestledabearonce didn’t make crazy enough music all by themselves, they just released a track called “Carnage Asada” that features a guitar solo by Steve fucking Vai. Right now you can only hear it over on the Guitar World website, so head over there now and crank it up. Don’t worry, we won’t feel abandoned.

“Carnage Asada” is off IWABO’s forthcoming album, Late for Nothing, which is coming out Aug. 6th on Century Media Records. Here’s a little infomercial for it…and yes, that phone number at the end really does work. You should call it and see what happens.

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Iwrestledabearonce release first studio track featuring Courtney LaPlante: “Thunder Chunky”

Iwrestledabearonce

I’m pretty sure everyone assumed by now that Krysta Cameron would not be singing on the new Iwrestledabearonce album, but in case anyone was still holding out, we can now officially dash your hopes: Late for Nothing, the grindcore mathcore metalcore experimental metal band’s third full-length album, will exclusively feature the vocals of Courtney LaPlante, who took over for Krysta last summer during the Warped Tour. Sorry, Krysta fans. For now, metal’s greatest girl death growler seems totally happy being a mom and selling stuff on Etsy.

To close the book on IWABO’s Krysta era once and for all, here’s the lead track from Late for Nothing, “Thunder Chunky.” It’s a bit more conventionally structured and—dare we use the “M” word?—mainstream than past IWABO offerings, but there are still some whiplash tempo changes, including a nifty little ska-like bridge, and LaPlante toggles between clean and dirty vocals almost as effortlessly as Krysta ever did. Have a listen.

Recorded in L.A. in guitarist Steven Bradley’s home studio, Late for Nothing is “our most diverse album to date,” according to Bradley. “It’s a more evolved version of the band.  We explored new styles and genres as well—especially in terms of the more spacey, epic, and beautiful parts. It’s got the most melodic moments of our career as well as the heaviest.”

Late for Nothing is due out August 6th on Century Media Records. You can pre-order it here.

Iwrestledabearonce are working on a new album. But who’s singing on it?

IWABO-2013

As the girl who had to replace Krysta Cameron on lead vocals for Iwrestledabearonce, Courtney LaPlante has one of the most thankless jobs in all of rock-dom. Months since LaPlante took over screaming/singing duties, IWABO fans still routinely post things like “the new vocalist sings like shit” and “When Krysta’s back????” on the band’s Facebook page. Because, y’know, Iwrestledabearonce is the FIRST BAND EVER IN HISTORY TO REPLACE THEIR LEAD SINGER. And all just because their former lead singer decided to have a baby. What-fucking-ever.

The dude members of IWABO aren’t really helping dampen the Courtney/Krysta controversy, either. Krysta’s still listed as the lead singer on the band’s official website. Cold, guys, cold.

Still, when IWABO announced this week on their Facebook page that they are “currently writing a new album,” LaPlante was the one in the accompanying photo. Presumably this means she’ll be the one singing on the new album, too…but who knows? So long as IWABO fans keep pouring on the haterade and the band doesn’t update their official bio to at least mention her, there’s always a chance she’ll finally just say “Fuck this shit” and walk.

But, if she doesn’t…expect new music from the Krysta-less version of Iwrestledabearonce later this year. And maybe a wacky cover or two.

Meanwhile, those still mourning the departure of Krysta should order a copy of A Beary Scary Movie, IWABO’s feature film debut. Not only does it feature Krysta doing her best scream-queen impersonation, it also boasts a “special appearance by Jake Busey.” Aren’t all appearances by Jake Busey special? Here’s the trailer:

Meet Iwrestledabearonce’s new singer, Courtney LaPlante

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Can this girl…
…replace this girl?

So apparently about two months ago, our favorite spazzy metalcore band Iwrestledabearonce got themselves a new lead singer. Who knew? Well, every other music blog on the planet, if you want to get all technical about it. We’re still getting the hang of this whole report-the-music-news thing, so “bear” with us, people. (And yes, we just made a “bear” pun. Do you forgive us now for reporting this story two months late?)

For the six of you that don’t already know this: IWABO’s original awesome singer Krysta Cameron abruptly went on hiatus from the group this summer when she decided she didn’t want to continue the Warped Tour while pregnant. On “literally a few minutes notice,” according to IWABO guitarist and abuser of the word “literally” Steven Bradley, she was replaced by Canadian singer/screamer Courtney LaPlante. LaPlante’s been on the road with the band ever since, including a current string of dates in Europe.

So what do we know about Ms. LaPlante? Well, she lives in British Columbia but, according to her Facebook page, she’s originally from Alabama. She’s in another band called Unicron who play a sort of pop/electronic/screamo mishmash that sounds like this. She plays the piano. And she’s apparently down with Die Antwoord, so we’ll forgive her for being involved with this abomination.

As for Krysta: Officially, she’s still on temporary hiatus from IWABO, and still listed as vocalist on the band’s website. Unofficially, though, her return looks increasingly doubtful. In an interview with punk/metal site Property of Zack, bassist Mike “Ricky” Martin came out and said, “I’m going to say she’s permanently gone.” (“Fingers crossed though,” drummer Mikey Montgomery quickly added—but as we all know, no one really cares what the drummer thinks.) And then there’s the fact that Unicron recently announced “a hiatus for the foreseeable future,” which sure doesn’t sound like the words of a band that expects their lead singer to come back. (Best Unicron fan response in the comments: “Krysta, you’re ruining it for everybody.”)

While she waits for the arrival of her little bundle of joy, Krysta has turned her attention to crafting. You can buy yourself a Krysta-designed barrette, pouch or tote bag via her Etsy page, OffWithHerThreads,

Meanwhile, IWABO continue their epic, global string of tour dates, all with Courtney on the mic. Early fan feedback on her performances has been mixed, but judging from the video below, which was shot at an Iwrestledabearonce show in Belgium a couple of weeks ago, she’s settling into her new gig quite nicely. She’s no Krysta—who is?—but she does a pretty mean death growl and her clean vocals have an appealingly throaty, emotional quality. On the replacement lead singer scale, we’re gonna say she’s safely somewhere between Brian Johnson and Gary Cherone.

Related stories:

Got a question for Iwrestledabearonce? Hollywood Waste is here to help.

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Have you always wondered how those crazy kids in Iwrestledabearonce keep their skin looking so fresh and acne-free? Or which demon Krysta Cameron made a pact with to achieve her throat-shredding vocal prowess? Or perhaps you’d like to find out where they buy their shoes. Well, now’s your chance!

Tomorrow, some website we just found out about called Hollywood Waste is shooting a video interview with IWABO, and they want you, the fans, to do their work for them provide the questions. Just mosey on over to this page and leave a question in the comments section. (We’re pretty sure all you confused kids who left questions on IWABO’s Facebook page are shit outta luck, which is too bad, because “If you had to name your kid after an illegal drug, what would it be?” might be the greatest band interview question ever.)

Also, if you happen to be in L.A. tonight, swing by Soundcheck Hollywood for an in-store signing/ice cream party with the band. I really hope they have some special IWABO flavors there like “Tastes Like Kevin Bacon Chocolate Chip” or “Karate Nipple Ripple,” but I haven’t been able to confirm that.

Weirdify Playlist 5: Mental Metal

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What’s up, weirdos? Jake here, ready to melt your face off with our latest Spotify playlist. This week’s theme: Heavy metal, in all its skull-crushing, finger-tapping, demon-growling glory. Plus one sensitive grindcore piano ballad, because we know how those grindcore kids love the lighters-up moments.

Fire up your Spotify and strap in. It’s gonna be a bumpy ride.

1. Sleepytime Gorilla Museum, “Helpless Corpses Enactment.” I’m not letting you people off easy this week. I’m throwing you right into the deep end of weird metal with a track from this sadly defunct San Francisco outfit, who did things to heavy music only a pretentious bunch of Bay Area art freaks could do.

2. Demon Tool, “La Naissance du Mal.” I’ll be honest: I found this track when I was looking for something from Tool. But it turns out Tool has licensed exactly zero of its catalog to Spotify, so you’ll have to settle for this obscure band that just happens to have Tool in their name. Plus, they sing in French, which is kinda weird in this context. It’s hard to sound demonic when you’re growling in the language of love.

3. Mayhem, “Buried by Time and Dust.” The original and greatest Norwegian black metal band. This track is from their classic 1994 album, De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas, which means you’re hearing dead guitarist Euronymous playing alongside the man who murdered him, bassist Varg Vikernes. Creepy, huh?

4. Mr. Bungle, “Everyone I Went to High School With Is Dead.” Even when Mike Patton isn’t breaking out his operatic banshee shrieks, Mr. Bungle’s spin on heavy rock is still pretty out there.

5. Goblin Cock, “Kegrah the Dragon Killer.” Goblin Cock is what happens when indie rock nerds try to do a stoner metal band—they shred, kinda, but in case the band name didn’t tip you off, the whole thing’s pretty tongue-in-cheek. The head indie rock nerd is this case is Rob Crow from Pinback. I also had to include a Goblin Cock track because I ripped off one of their totally awesome album covers as the lead image for this playlist. Hail Satan! And/or the well-endowed, Satan-like figure seen in most Goblin Cock artwork!

6. Powerglove, “Heffalumps and Woozles (Winnie the Pooh).” More nerd-metal, this time from a bunch of dudes from Boston who do heavy instrumental versions of songs from videogames and children’s cartoons. Yes, this really is based on the “Heffalumps” song from Winnie the Pooh—if you don’t believe me, here’s the original. Okay, it’s a loose interpretation, but still. Those Heffalumps will fuck your shit up.

7. Schwarzenator, “Predator.” This is slightly less nerdy than songs about Heffalumps and dragon killers, but not by much. Schwarzenator are one of three, count ’em, three metal bands whose songs are all based on Arnold Schwarzenegger movies. I would include tracks from ArnoCorps and Austrian Death Machine, too, but one Ahh-nuld-themed song per playlist is really my limit. Get to da choppuh!

8. Bang Camaro, “Swallow the Razor.” Pop-metal with a “dude choir” of about 15 singers. If more ’80s hair metal bands had employed dude choirs, maybe we’d all still be listening to Skid Row and Whitesnake to this day. Oh, wait, some of you are still listening to Skid Row and Whitesnake? Well, then maybe you wouldn’t be doing it in your parents’ basement.

9. Dir En Grey, “Lotus.” Japanese prog-metal. Any questions? No? Moving on…

10. Common Grackle, “At the Grindcore Show.” You know how some metal albums have a nice little ballad or acoustic interlude before they return to their regularly scheduled face-melting? This is sorta that track. It also nicely sets up our next few grindcore(ish) tracks.

11. Cattle Decapitation, “Gestation of Smegma.” Technically, I guess these San Diego dudes aren’t true grindcore, but a related genre called goregrind. Whatever. All I know is I’m really glad most of their songs are less than one minute long.

12. The Locust, “We Have Reached an Official Verdict: Nobody Gives a Shit.” Another San Diego band (featuring ex-Cattle Decap drummer Gabe Serbian), The Locust also aren’t technically grindcore, but an even more distantly related genre called powerviolence. And you thought the dance music kids liked to split hairs over genre distinctions.

13. Iwrestledabearonce, “Alaskan Flounder Basket.” Again, not really grindcore…they’re more screamo/experimental…oh, fuck it. Just prepare to be ear-raped.

14. Horse the Band, “A Million Exploding Suns.” I had to throw these guys in here because they play yet another obscure/bizarre subgenre called “nintendocore,” which is basically hardcore + videogame music. I couldn’t make this shit up if I tried, people!

15. GWAR, “Black and Huge.” This one needs no introduction. It’s fucking GWAR! Bow down, human scum.

16. Super Geek League, “Naked Machine.” These Seattle freaks call their very GWAR-like funk-thrash-punk sound “soul metal.” I just call it my soundtrack for breaking stuff.

17. Apocalyptica, “Enter Sandman.” Metallica, played by cellos. This shit cracks me up every time I hear it, but I’m pretty sure they’re serious. They’re from Finland, so it’s hard to tell.

Hope you dug this week’s playlist. Tune in next week (or the week after, we’re not really on any set schedule with these things), when my partner Andy returns with Music for Pussies.

Weirdest Band in the World on The Dinner Party Download

(Trippple Nippples photo by Rafael Rios, lifted from this Hearty Magazine feature)

Those Prairie Home Companion listeners won’t know what hit them. Yes, Weirdest Band in the World is about to become NPR-famous. My partner-in-crime Andy Hermann (formerly known as Eddie Argyle) is a guest on this week’s edition of The Dinner Party (formerly known as The Dinner Party Download). The Dinner Party is a popular public radio show and podcast that delivers an hour’s worth of news, pop culture, music, cocktail recipes (my favorite part) and foodie talk in the form of witty dinner party banter. And we’re crashing the party. Pass the irony, please!

Andy is featured in a segment called “The Guest List,” in which he talks about some of the past year’s weirdest bands: Hank3, Trippple Nippples, and Iwrestledabearonce. You can download the whole show (free!) in podcast form here (or get it from iTunes) and listen to Andy and samples from all three bands starting at around the 8:40 mark. But you should listen to the whole show, because it’s pretty great. Did I mention they talk about booze?

If you still live in the 20th century and happen to be in either Philadelphia or Los Angeles, you can also fire up your shortwave radio machine and catch The Dinner Party on WHYY-Philadelphia (90.9 FM) tonight (Saturday) at 9pm or tomorrow (Sunday) on KPCC-Los Angeles (89.3 FM) at 3pm. We’re told it’s also being broadcast in Seattle and “select cities in the Midwest,” which I’m gonna say means Dubuque, Fargo and Peoria, because those are my favorite Midwestern city names to say out loud. Oh, and Kalamazoo. We’re gonna be huge in Kalamazoo, bitches!

Andy tells me I should also mention that The Dinner Party is actually a production of American Public Media and not NPR, because they get touchy about that. Apparently those are two completely different organizations. Who knew?