Updated: Nov 1, 2021
It’s been a busy day. I wanted to talk a little about the “Stargazer” song and video as it’s almost ready to release. So, first off, the song was recorded in Gardena California at a place called the Media Kitchen. The Media Kitchen has some heavy metal history associated with it, I don’t know the details exactly… but I believe some pretty famous bands rehearsed there for some pretty famous recordings. So the ghosts are good. It’s a small place this Los Angeles is. Stargazer was recorded in 2020, It was engineered and mixed in early 2021 by Rob Black who happens to run the recording studio at the Media Kitchen. It was recorded as a B side track for a band called “TOR” in Los Angeles which I was a part of. TOR was an odd band in that we all decided from the very beginning that we wouldn’t promote anything about the band until we finished our first full length record. It went against the grain of social media, but, we thought it was a good thing to do at the time, to honor the past and make a record before we launched any media about the band. I enjoyed that notion actually as all my energy went into the vocals and lyrics and arrangements without any distractions. You have to understand we were doing this for the music after all. A crazy ship of fools in a frantic sea that tried desperately to sink us many times. We regularly rehearsed for 3 years, gathering in a dark industrial area of Gardena each week, through Covid, through Guitarist Arm Breaks, through changing times and changing lives. We were a family of brothers. We wrote, demoed and recorded a full record of 9 songs, written and recorded live as a band, with the B side “Stargazer” track included as a tribute to the sound we all loved. It’s wasn’t done for money or any other reason other than paying respect to the people and sound we all so admired, and to try to make a real record of course with good songs on it. The bass on the recording of "Stargazer" was done by James Staples of TOR, unfortunately he left the country just before we shot the video, so we had Kent Hiltz step in to shoot the video. Both Kent and James are amazing bass players and people and it was great to work with them both. Also in the Video is Doug Weiand on Guitar, Joey Mancaruso on Drums and Myself doing the singing… all of which are part of the TOR band. The song itself was recorded live musically, all members in a room isolated and recorded in one take. No click tracks. Vocals and solos and a few overdubs were recorded after. Originally the 5th member of TOR, Brent Woodward, was on the song as well but decided not to be part of the release. I think I can easily speak for all members of TOR in saying we wish he would have been part of it, but in the end we all respected his decisions and his reasons and left it at that. Vocally I cut all the tracks myself in my studio in Los Angeles as well as all the keyboards and we mixed back at the Media Kitchen in Gardena with Rob Black as the mixing engineer. The TOR band semi broke apart in early 2021, a few weeks before our first official release from the band, a song called ‘City of Fire”, actually on the day we received the “Artwork” cover to be precise. Bad timing, I suppose. For now, us 4 TOR members decided it was important to release what we could, how we could, as we had planned for the last 3 years while making the record together... starting with "Stargazer". I’ll talk in more detail about TOR some other time I’m sure, but, for now, back to the B Side. The stargazer video footage was shot by Rob Mestas who runs “Defiant Digital Productions”in Burbank California and myself in my rehearsal studio in Vernon Ca in early July, the same rehearsal building Dave Mustane of Megadeth was reported living in where “Peace Sells” was written. That’s the rumor anyway. So the building has good honest metal blood and a little attitude I'm sure. All the footage was recorded during 2 days of shooting and lots of Low-Lying Fog. I edited the video myself over about 3 weeks time and there you have it. That’s what it took to make “Stargazer”. The things we do.. for heavy metal. Much love and respect to everyone involved in this, it takes so many people to create something like this. We all did it for good and right reasons and I hope it comes across that way. We will release soon. Staying the course. Enjoy a few more stills before we release.
One final note, If you really care about something, you should prove it, try harder, words aligned with actions,.. most roads are created by people with an axe and the simple will and courage to swing it... even when its hard and no ones looking or seems to care. Just saying., in case you stayed the course and were looking for something a little bit deeper.
- evermore j (Axe Weilder)
Doug Weiand - Guitar
Joey Mancaruso - Drums
Kent Hiltz - Bass
John Evermore - Vocals
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