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Keil, Brad (The Gravetones)

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The GravetonesIt’s 1972…

You’re getting ready to head out to the grindhouse to catch the B-movie double bill of Russ Meyer’s Beyond the Valley of the Dolls and this new flick you’ve heard so much about, Last House on the Left, by some guy named Craven. You and your buddies just inhaled a bucket of fried chicken and whacked back a 12-pack of Schlitz. As you throw on your beat up black leather jacket and slick your hair back, you bob your head along to the Dick Dale surf sound, rockabilly grooves and punk rock attitude of The Gravetone’s new album, “Dig It.” It’s the perfect choice for a killer Saturday night.

Well, it would have been, had The Gravetone’s actually existed in 1972. While some aspects of the Chicago-based quartet’s sound harkens back to days gone by—their singer sounds like Elvis, after all—the band that would have provided a great soundtrack to a night of slasher and sexploitation flicks didn’t form until 1997, and didn’t record a full-length CD until 2006.

“Dig It,” which was released on—appropriately enough—October 13, 2006 (via Criminal IQ records), has 14 tracks that encompass and intermingle a variety of styles. Tunes like “On a Pale Horse” and “Seven Days” have a classic rockabilly swing; “Big Bad Whammy” and “Lovely Sinner” channel Dick Dale’s surf-rock vibe; “Merry Death” and “Creepy Girls” have a horror punk groove; and the band cranks it up a few notches on such rockin’ head bangers as “”Devil’s Rain” and CD standout, “Burn Baby Burn.” All the while, frontman Scary Larry’s vocal timbre is all Elvis—without sounding cheesy (and sans the sequined jump suit).

So if you dig a band whose sound is part Cramps, part Misfits, and part Motorhead, then 1972’s loss is your gain. I had a chance to catch up with Gravetone’s bassist Brad Keil about the band’s unique style, their newest CD, and the undeniable influence that “horror” has had on the band’s identity.

The Gravetones


DAVE MANACK: I read the lengthy history of the band on your website. But how would you describe the true history of The Gravetones?

BRAD KEIL: The current members are: Scary Larry, Joey Gravetone (guitar), Jimmy the Butcher (drums) and myself. Larry started the band about ten years ago. It’s only been the last three years or so (with that line-up) that the band started to get serious. It started as a surfy, Cramps-style thing, but Jimmy and I come from a very punk rock background; we’ve have been playing in bands together since we were 15. Joe and Larry were in the Gravetones for years before they had lineup problems and asked Jimmy and I to join. We have come together with all of our musical backgrounds to create something unique.

The Gravetones: Dig It CDDM: Upon listening to the CD, I hear such influences as the Cramps, rockabilly, a little bit of the Misfits and even Motorhead. What are the bands that you feel most influence the sound and style of The Gravetones?

BK: When people ask me, “What does your band sound like?” I always say, “Sort of like if you put the Cramps, The Damned and Motorhead together and had Elvis singing.” So those bands feature prominently in what we do. We will draw inspiration from anywhere, though. The song “In Cold Blood” began as a simple blues jam in practice one night. “Lovely Sinner” and “Big
Bad Whammy” I think reflect the strong influence that surf-rock still has on us. We all love Dick Dale. We are also fans of anything Danzig has ever done (sans the techno albums).

DM: When did The Gravetones hook up with Criminal IQ records? Did you put out any other recorded material before this CD?

BK: Larry has been in contact with Criminal IQ for a long time. We began talking with them about releasing the CD as soon as we were finished recording it in late May of 2006. We have had some smaller EPs out, most notably something we called “Good Enough To Eat,” that came out in the fall of 2005. We also had a short three-song EP that we gave out on Halloween of 2005 at a show that featured a cover of the Cramps’ “Human Fly” and Elvis’ “Little Sister.”

The GravetonesDM: Your band’s name, the new album’s artwork and the song titles give an obvious nod to horror. Who writes the lyrics? What songs (if any) are directly related to any specific horror movies or horror characters?

BK: Scary Larry writes all the lyrics, and I’m always impressed. He seems to come up with these great songs effortlessly. Joe, Larry or I will put music together, and Larry always has these great ideas for songs ready to go.

“Devil’s Rain” is influenced by the William Shatner film of the same name, and we even sampled a speech he gives in the song. “In Cold Blood” is based on both the novel by Truman Capote, as well as the Robert Blake film of the same name. The song “Seven Days” is influenced by the film “Cemetery Man” or “De La Amore De La Muerte,” which are about resurrection. The intro song, which is actually called “There Will Be Blood” (but there was a printing error), samples a brief clip from “Saw 2.” Horror definitely has a big influence on us. Scary Larry also painted the cover art for “Dig It” and designed the jacket and rear cover as well. As you can see, we like dark imagery.

DM: What are some of your favorite horror movies of all time?

BK: Personally I think the original “Texas Chainsaw Massacre” is the greatest horror movie of all time. It’s a great film in every respect. It starts with a red herring similar to the way “Psycho” does and gets so twisted and deranged. That movie did a great thing with sound manipulation. The sounds in that movie are very important. When the heroine is running from Leatherface, the sounds add to her terror and make the film intrusive toward the viewer. I’m also a big fan of “The Shining” and “Event Horizon.” And Freddy is much cooler than Jason.

I like silly horror movies too, like “Killer Klowns From Outer Space.” “The Toolbox Murders” and the first “Sleepaway Camp” are good, disturbing movies. Finally, this is more of a suspense movie, but I consider “The Silence of the Lambs” to be one of the greatest films ever made; easily in the top five, right up there with “M” which is also a brilliant film.


For more information on The Gravetones and their CD “Dig It,” please visit their websites at GraveTones.com and on MySpace, or email them here. To listen to and/or order the “Dig It,” just click the link below!

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The Duffer Brothers Have Begun Working on Stranger Things 3

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I wasn’t the world’s biggest fan of the first season of Netflix and The Duffer Brothers’ “Stranger Things” to tell you the truth. That said, I absolutely loved the second season (read out reviews HERE).

It is with his in mind that we are all looking forward to “Stranger Things 3”.

Recently Deadline reported that at Vulture Festival LA, the Duffer Brothers, producer Shawn Levy, Finn Wolfhard, Paul Reiser, and Linnea Berthelsen talked about season two and tease season three.

“We are [in] very early days on season three and we’re still figuring it out,” Ross Duffer said, before taking a beat, then adding: “I probably wasn’t supposed to say that. That’s not official, that wasn’t an official announcement — we’re just working on it, just for our own amusement…for fun!”

Whatever.

We all know at this point that there is going to be a “Stranger Things 3” and that The Duffer Brothers will one day begin working on it. Don’t worry so much, Ross Duffer.

After all, your brother already let us know that season three will begin after a time jump:

“Even if we wanted to hop into the action faster, we couldn’t,” says Matt Duffer. “Our kids are aging. We can only write and produce the show so fast. They’re going to be almost a year older by the time we start shooting season three. It provides certain challenges. You can’t start right after season two ended. It forces you to do a time jump. It’s a long way of saying that yeah, we’re going to do a time jump.”

What did you think of “Stranger Things 2”? Did you dig it more (or less) than season one? Make sure to hit us up and let us know in the comments below or on social media!

“Stranger Things 2” is currently streaming on Netflix.

Synopsis:

It’s 1984 and the citizens of Hawkins, Indiana are still reeling from the horrors of the Demogorgon and the secrets of Hawkins Lab. Will Byers has been rescued from the Upside Down but a bigger, sinister entity still threatens those who survived.

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James Cameron’s Terminator Reboot/Sequel Hires Screenwriter

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The last word we brought you guys on producer James Cameron and Deadpool-director Tim Miller’s new Terminator film was when we let you know that Paramount had set the film’s release date for July 26, 2019.

Today we have news via The Wrap that the studio is bringing in screenwriter Billy Ray (Captain Phillips) to pen the movie’s script based on a story crafted by Cameron.

You may remember that Cameron and Miller created a writers room a while back to plan out an all-new trilogy of films, but while that writer’s room included David Goyer, Charles Eglee, and Josh Friedman, it seems like Ray will be the first film’s sole writer. For now.

Story details are, of course, being kept under wraps, but Cameron and Miller are treating the new movie as a direct sequel to Cameron’s T2: Judgment Day.

“This is a continuation of the story from ‘Terminator 1’ and ‘Terminator 2.’ And we’re pretending the other films were a bad dream,” Cameron told THR. “Or an alternate timeline, which is permissible in our multi-verse.”

We also know that Cameron plans to center the new film/trilogy around a new group of younger characters, who will eventually carry on the baton as it were.

“A lot of this is handing off the baton to a new generation of characters,” Cameron said. “We’re starting a search for an 18-something young woman to essentially be the new centerpiece of these stories. And then a number of other characters around her and characters from the future. We still fold time in the story in intriguing ways. But we have Arnold’s character and Linda’s character to anchor it.”

How excited are you for James Cameron’s new Terminator flick? Make sure to hit us up and let us know in the comments below or on social mdeia!

The new Terminator film is produced by James Cameron and will be directed by Tim Miller (Deadpool). The film stars Arnold Schwarzenegger and Linda Hamilton.

Terminator 2.5 is expected to hit July 26, 2019.

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The Strangers: Prey at Night Official Site is Live and Waiting

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It was just last week that we shared the all-new trailer and poster for the upcoming sequel to writer-director Bryan Bertino’s home-invasion thriller The Strangers.

If that trailer for The Strangers: Prey at Night wasn’t interactive enough for you then you’re in luck – the film’s official site has just gone live.

The site starts off playing the film’s trailer but you can click that shite off asap and get to the other goodies.

From there the site tells you that “They’re only Strangers until you tell them your name” and then asks you for your name, your email address, and your phone number.

Yeah. Right.

That’s how they get you.

Truthfully, I’m not brave enough to put my info on the site. Not that I’m scared of, you know, a knock at the door late at night or anything… Just… I don’t feel like it is all.

If you are brave enough to give the site your info, make sure to hit us up and let us know how it goes in the comments below or on social media! If you can… Moo-haha.

Visit the site HERE.

The Stranger: Prey at Night is directed by Johannes Roberts (47 Meters Down) from a script by Bryan Bertino and Ben Ketai. It stars Martin Henderson, Christina Hendricks, Bailee Madison, and Lewis Pullman.

The film hits March 9, 2018.

Synopsis:
A family’s road trip takes a dangerous turn when they arrive at a secluded mobile home park to stay with some relatives and find it mysteriously deserted. Under the cover of darkness, three masked psychopaths pay them a visit to test the family’s every limit as they struggle to survive. Johannes Roberts directs this horror film inspired by the 2008 smash hit THE STRANGERS.

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