Osi and the Jupiter
Hailing from the shadowy forests of Ohio amongst the echoes of old songs dwell the haunting hymns of Osi and the Jupiter. Sean Deth (also the frontman/bassist of Burial Oath and Witchhelm) offers his multi-instrumental talent in honor to Northern pagan traditions and in worshipful tribute to the peaceful finaliy of death. From its birth in 2015, the focus of the project has been on the spiritual connection between nature and the will of the old Gods – channelled through various representations of life, death and rebirth, this connection speaks through these musical creations, resonating as wordless tributes to these nebulous yet fundamental concepts.
מזמור, or Mizmor, is a one-man heavy music exploration that began in 2012 as a way of processing the mental and spiritual anguish I, A.L.N., underwent through my loss of faith in Christianity. Over the course of the proceeding decade, I slowly changed from struggling Christian, to agnostic, and finally to atheist. During this evolution I used Mizmor, which means “psalm,” “prayer,” or “melody” in Hebrew, as a form of therapy. The songs literally started as prayers to God, grappling with doubt and depression, much like some of the darker chapters of the book of Psalms. After some time the songs became more existential - primal and innate musings about cause, purpose, self, and god (in a more universal sense). Eventually Mizmor became about the absence of god and the healing I’ve experienced through accepting this. Nowadays my songs are about consciousness, ideas, mankind, and the future to name a few things (and still depression and anxiety, which I continue to battle). Mizmor will always be about following the most reasonable path given the current evidence and processing grief through creating and sharing art so that others may be helped with similar struggles.
Mizmor appears live with the help of M.S.W., Andrew Black, and Nate Myers
Nothing's bigger than life. All vastnesses -- expanding space, infinite time -- crouch inside of consciousness. On a historical scale, to say nothing of a cosmic one, the individual human life vanishes, and yet it's the only aperture any of us get into reality. It's barely there, and it's all there is.
That's the paradox Bell Witch drives at. For more than a decade, the Pacific Northwestern doom metal band has sent tides surging over the seawalls of the song form, unraveling conventional expectations about the ways music stations itself in time to absorb a listener's attention. Rather than seek catharsis, the duo's songs heave themselves through time at a glacial pace, staving off resolution in favor of a trancelike capsule eternity. Invoking both boundlessness and claustrophobia in the same charged gesture, Bell Witch cultivates a sense of time outside of time, an oasis inside an increasingly frenetic media culture.
For their new album, The Clandestine Gate, bassist Dylan Desmond and drummer Jesse Shreibman exploded Bell Witch's bounds. Like 2017's lauded Mirror Reaper, The Clandestine Gate is a single 83-minute track -- a composition that pulses and breathes on a filmic timeframe. It constitutes the first chapter in a planned triptych of longform albums, collectively called Future's Shadow.
(This will be an acoustic set.)
Panopticon is an American black metal band founded by Austin Lunn in Louisville, Kentucky in 2007.
Aerial Ruin, based in Portland, Oregon is the primarily acoustic solo project of Erik Moggridge whose
“richly evocative dark folk style makes for a head-in-hand listening experience. Yes it’s dark and minimal, evoking solitude and loneliness but also magic and mesmerizing, soothing and restorative” *.
Moggridge also served as a long-time guest vocalist/collaborator with Seattle’s doom duo Bell Witch, performing and recording on select songs and occasions until 2020 when the two bands merged into the new fully collaborative entity Stygian Bough, and released their album “Volume I - A Bell witch and Aerial Ruin collaboration”, while simultaneously maintaining their individual musical paths. 2020 also saw the release of the Aerial Ruin’s split LP with Panopticon which led to Moggridge contributing a guest vocal on Panopticon’s much lauded 2021 album “...And again into the light”.
Aerial Ruin, whose “soothing acoustic folk often sounds like a sun-dappled blend of Agalloch, Nechochwen and Pink Floyd” ** released its newest album “Loss Seeking Flame” whose sonic journey may feel both different and familiar to those familiar with past releases on March 9, 2022. The first three movements witness the solitude of some terrestrial terrain, but the album’s 21 minute finale aspires to orbit and beyond, assisted by the often layered and otherworldly violin accompaniment of Andrea Morgan of Exulansis. This fully DIY album is available on Bandcamp on vinyl /CD/tape/digital.
Aerial Ruin has spent much of recent years engaged in extensive DIY touring in North America and Europe including festival appearances at Roadburn, Northwest Terror Fest, Shadow Woods Metal Fest, Fire in the Mountains, Litha Cascadia , 71 Grind and Stella Natura. More recently in December 2022 Aerial Ruin supported Pallbearer after a series of Stygian Bough tours earlier in the year.
Before Aerial Ruin Moggridge had an active past in the metal scene beginning with the bay area thrash/death metal band Epidemic. After garnering much attention from their demos in the pre-internet underground fanzine/tape-trading scene Epidemic released two albums on Metal Blade in the early-mid nineties. Later Moggridge went on to form Old Grandad with Will Carroll (Death Angel) and Max Barnett (ex-Hammers of Misfortune). The trio gained a sizable cult following in San Francisco in the mid-late nineties and into the 21st century and reformed and released a new album in 2019.
Aerial Ruin will continue to tour and record throughout 2023 and beyond, both solo and with Bell Witch as Stygian Bough.
* Vanessa Salvia, Invisible Oranges
** Kim Kelly, Noisey/Vice
Portland doombringers USNEA spawned in late 2011 from the cerebral minds of Justin Cory (Guitar & Vocals), Johnny Lovingood (Guitar), Zeke Rogers (Drums) and Joel Williams (Bass, Vocals). The quartet has proven to be a seismic level force of destructive creativity with a massive yet meditative sound, masterfully crafted songwriting, and a clear yet non-derivative influence from doom legends such as Disembowelment, My Dying Bride, Neurosis and YOB.
USNEA released their eponymous, self-titled debut album in February 2013 on Roger’s own label Orca Wolf Records. Following a 7” EP split with Ruins, USNEA signed to Relapse Records and released Random Cosmic Violence in November 2014. Random Cosmic Violence’s immense presence instantly elevated USNEA to the forefront of the blossoming American doom scene. Stereogum referred to Random Cosmic Violence as having a “Floydian vastness that both balances and amplifies the overwhelming, crushing heaviness. Like the night sky itself, it’s full of terror and awe and ice and fire. It is a massive, monumental thing.” USNEA spent the next couple years touring in support of the record alongside veteran acts such as Ufomammut and Inverloch plus appearances at notable festivals including Maryland Deathfest, Roadburn Festival, Psycho Las Vegas, Northwest Terror Fest, Up In Smoke, and Blow Up Fest.
USNEA returned with their third full-length album, Portals Into Futility, in September 2017. Inspired by dystopian science-fiction and the painful intersection of today’s crushing reality, Portals Into Futility is 5 songs and 56 minutes of expertly crafted and elegantly depressive doom/sludge. An array of sci-fi novels that are becoming more and more of a reality in these volatile times informed the band’s writing throughout the album, including “Shadow of the Torturer” by Gene Wolfe, “Lathe of Heaven” by Ursula K Le Guin, “Valis” by Philip K Dick, “Handmaid’s Tale” by Margaret Atwood, “Demon Haunted World” by Carl Sagan, and “Dune” by Frank Herbert. Portals Into Futility was recorded with Fester and assistant Andrew Grosse at Caravan Recordings and Haywire Studios in Portland, OR and mastered by Adam Gonsalvez at Telegraph Audio. With an evolved sound of strength and dynamism, USNEA delve more into the worlds of dissonant death metal, varied vocal structures and cinematic composition, all while maintaining the monumental heaviness, brutality, discord, anger, and mournful melodicism of their previous work. Across dark and brooding peaks and valleys, USNEA remind us that no matter how many doors are opened to the human species, our self-aggrandizement and hubris all lead to futility.
Sadhaka is a melodic black metal band from Portland, Oregon, formed in 2011. Their music interweaves elements of Scandinavian black metal, melodic death metal, doom, experimental and crust, evoking themes of grief and loss, primordial states of consciousness, and the living sentience of the nonhuman world.
Exulansis has become well known to the Pacific Northwest metal community and beyond after the release of their critically acclaimed LP Sequestered Sympathy in 2019 by Transylvanian Recordings and Alerta Antifascista Records. They combine elements of melodic crust with the most extreme sensibilities found in antifascist black metal and anarcho-doom delivered in both acoustic and electric form. Exulansis will be appearing at Cascadian Midsummer with new songs and an additional member on bass to bring you their fully formed sonic landscape.
Isenordal exists at the collision of antitheses. Ferocious and compassionate, despondent and hopeful, terrifying and soothing, Isenordal's music deals with the painful and cathartic. Formed in 2013, in Seattle, the band itself is a duality, writing and performing both as a metal outfit influenced by black metal and funeral doom, and also as a genre-defying acoustic ensemble, cinematic in scope, that draws from various folk traditions, chamber music, and more.
The specter of black death looming over the Pacific Northwest, Drouth gathers influences from a range of heavy, tortured and ominous sounds and themes, weaving them into a shroud suitable for the demise of humanity. Initially formed as Contempt in 2012 and reborn as Drouth in 2014, the intervening years have seen a handful of lineup changes but a consistent creative core witnessed through an early EP and full-length albums "Knives, Labyrinths, Mirrors" (2017) and "Excerpts From a Dread Liturgy" (2020). They are currently aligned with Translation Loss Records (PA) and regularly tour the PNW and western United States. Drouth detests fascism and all its related forms of authoritarian sycophancy.
Wraith Knight is the newest innovation engine from Nick Superchi, our conductor from the PNW. It's a cleverly executed foray into the wilderness of synth, a genre dominated by sounds from artists whose name is synonymous with the phenomenon, such as Mortiis, Lord Wind, Pazuzu, and Wongraven. The difference in this exercise in acute transformation is how subtle and on-theme the album feels, because in the end, that's the key to how successful one's dungeon synth experience is; the artist must convince the listener that they're transported to an alien environment, a medieval one, that inspires visions of dragons, magic, swordfights, and monsters that lurk in the dark corners of the world.
Felsenmirror is a somber project out of Portland OR featuring members of Atriarch, and Usnea. Their name meaning "reflections of the earth". Felsenmirror decorates pieces of time with cathartic sounds, and soundscapes. Their aim is to create an intimate and thoughtful live performance inspiring the audience to reflect on the truth of what it is to be human, to feel, and to heal.
Based in Eugene, OR, Felled have created breathtaking music melding black metal with folk elements and lending to it rare depth and warmth. The inclusion of instruments such as violin and viola are masterfully done and is used almost as the main instrument. The soulful music emanating from them is truly heart-rending and enhances the expression of this kind of black metal without diminishing the intensity.
Latona Odola is a mother-daughter duo weaving lineal dirges through pathways of grief and mourning.
Mountain Holler is the deeply whimsical cavernous alt-folk project of Seattle, WA based musician Mark Etherington. Each song is a meditation on nature, the shadowed side of our human experience in this realm and the dream-music of Etherington’s explorations through his own mind. We must also mention the heavy influence from Tolkien lore. These explorations are transcribed and projected using acoustic guitars in unusual, alternate tunings, live-looped drones and haunting vocals layered that provides the listener an invitation to glimpse into one human’s experience of this world and our shared nature.
On its surface, Solace, the ambient harp project of Asia Kindred, intertwines harp and vocals through effect pedals and live-looped layers. But a Solace set is a deep dive into grief and enchantment—where blissful nostalgia, suffocating sorrow, and reverence for natural and maternal beauty are all found upon resurfacing.
Formed in 2017 by songwriter Sam Marandola, Oldest Sea began as one woman’s personal exploration of the darker side of experimental folk music.
Having newly expanded the project to a full band, Marandola and company now find themselves passing through ethereal corridors and liminal soundscapes with increasingly heavy steps. The enlarged sonic palette finds Oldest Sea deftly merging Marandola’s haunting solo musical passages with massive walls of grit and distortion.
Frigid riffs embedded into the barren hellscapes of Southern California, Woods Witch aims to be faster and slower, heavier, and more emotionally gripping than any sound before. The best parts of black metal; the best parts of doom- fused into an abomination of forest and sand, heat and cold, nature and civilization. Take the crushing weight of the pacific ocean and the oppressive despair of an unrelenting sun, invigorate it with freezing veins of a northern winter, and fuel it with the manic energy of skin blistering asphalt, and you have Woods Witch. If you’re not weeping, screaming, punching, or running in a circle, then we don’t play it. See you on the road.
Cedar Dreamer is the solo project of Alexander Freilich. Since 2014, Cedar Dreamer has been creating reverent ambient music that looks to the cycles, shapes, and sounds of the wild Earth for a never-ending well of inspiration.
Devoted to deepening human-nature connection through music, Cedar Dreamer strives to create spaces, both sonic and physical, for deep journeys of the heart and mind.
Drawing inspiration from a Norse-Gaelic heritage and a love of the natural world, "íosac" is the acoustic solo identity of Isaac McCormick (primarily of Orator).
River Irene is a vibrant and passionate acoustic solo artist. They weave emotional, intimate, healing witch songs for coaxing out what lays hidden in the heart.