Intronaut, Murder Construct
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Years back, Meinl Cymbal artist and Lamb of God drummer Chris Adler turned me on to a very cool artist by the name of Ben Sharp, a.k.a. Cloudkicker. I have not been able to stop listening to this guy since.
I remember years back reading an interview with Rob Halford, lead singer of metal legends Judas Priest, where he talked about the soothing qualities of listening to extreme metal. I'm only paraphrasing here, but he was basically saying that the droning quality of the music with its lack of dynamics literally calmed him and put him in a sort of trance. While I understood what he was saying, I certainly didn't have that same experience from listening to extreme metal. But when I first heard Cloudkicker, it all made sense.
Cloudkicker's music is the product of one guy from Columbus, Ohio. Ben Sharp has been releasing album after album of ethereal, ambient, and supremely heavy wall of sound music that has its roots in metal, but has lush textures and beauty laced within its framework. This is music for headphones.
Ben programmed all of the drums and played all of the guitar and bass parts on every release. And until now, he never attempted touring. What pulled him out of Columbus, I am not sure of. One of the coolest aspects of his touring, is that his backing band is the mighty prog-metal outfit, Intronaut, including Meinl Cymbal artist Danny Walker. I can't think of a more suitable band and drummer to back him up.
Check out this cool drum-cam rehearsal footage from Danny of one of my all-time favorite Cloudkicker songs, We're Goin' In, We're Going Down, from the album Beacons.
You owe it to yourself to check out Cloudkicker.
Also, check out Danny's artist page here.