In terms of power-driven stoner rock, The Holy Nothing are the measure of all things.
The local trio of drummer Austin Hammond, guitarist/vocalist Joey Kaufman, and bassist/vocalist Dan Kinnaley have been in existence only a little more than a year, but have kept the pedal to the metal with their audacious fusion of stoner metal, grunge, and desert rock.
The recipe has led to a couple single releases and a consistent gig schedule, locally and regionally. On Friday, Nov. 17, they will release their debut EP, Vol. I: A Profound and Nameless Fear, during a show at The Brass Rail with King’s Gambit and Best Sleep.
The Holy Nothing
w/King’s Gambit, Best Sleep
10 p.m. Friday, Nov. 17
The Brass Rail (+21)
1121 Broadway, Fort Wayne
$7 · (260) 267-5303
Time with friends
So, what’s their secret?
It started with a mutual admiration for the stoner metal/rock band Red Fang. Along with the music, their shared love for themes of cosmic horror, science-fiction, and apocalyptic scenarios proved to be the creative drive behind their unique sound. If you ever find yourself looking for a band to play the perfect score at your end-of-the-world party, these are your guys.
Nevertheless, it’s the close-knit connection of the band that serves as their driving force. Over the years, they have cut their teeth in other musical projects in town, but the bond of these three is sturdier than ever.
They can all attest that being comfortable and making music with buddies is a no-brainer.
“Austin and I work our crappy day jobs, often question our lives during the 30-minute drive to practice, complain about carrying our gear in, but when we all get plugged in, it’s on,” Kaufman said.
Their upcoming EP is a five-song triumph recorded and mixed at Kinnaley’s Chipped Tooth Audio and mastered by Paul Bennett Audio.
No matter who did what, it was a group effort.
“We started the EP back in March and really took our time with the whole process,” Kinnaley said. “With having our own studio, we weren’t pressed for time, and expenses weren’t piling up. So, that was a plus.
“We worked one song at a time, broke it up in chunks, experimented with different instruments and gear, moved mics around, etc. We would then take a listen and maybe by the end of the night or even the following week, we would come back and make necessary changes.”
One listen and the final project will pummel the bejesus out of you with its artistic adventurousness pulling from inspirations like Red Fang, Baroness, Converge, Queens of the Stone Age, and Every Time I Die.
On the single “Mondegreen,” they sing, “Wasting my time drinking with the demigods/Light a smoke, and I’m laughing with the saints/I can make it real if I think about it hard/Mondegreen in a cosmic sense.”
The track was inspired by misinterpreted lyrics and deals with disillusionment stemming from a religious upbringing. This barn-burner is accompanied by a clever video on YouTube, featuring everything from vampires to priests to pizza and a Bloody Mary served at The Brass Rail.
Another track, “Unending Death,” is a revenge narrative inspired by the work of author Donald Ray Polluck, touching upon the idea of intervening in the traumatic pasts of loved ones. Other tracks include, “Bathe Me,” “Bliss Trench,” and “Doom Church.”
Perhaps Kaufman sums the album up the best: “If John Carpenter wrote a Black Sabbath album that was also in the Top 40 in 1979.”
Big Show at the Rail
In honor of the release, the band promises a show you won’t want to miss at The Brass Rail.
“It’s going to be a night of debauchery,” Hammond said.
Let’s hope so.
Joining them will be King’s Gambit out of Lafayette and local standouts Best Sleep. King’s Gambit may ring a bell for some since they were openers, along with The Holy Nothing, for the He Is Legend show at Piere’s in July.
There will be a $7 cover charge, and be sure to bring some extra dough for some Holy Nothing swag that includes Vol I: A Profound and Nameless Fear on limited edition clear lathe-cut 12-inch vinyl along with some sweet new shirts.
If you are unable to attend, the EP will be available on your favorite streaming platform. Also, be on the lookout for a possible run of cassettes in the future.
As for what the future holds, the band plans to keep the train rolling in support of the new release with shows on the calendar for Fort Wayne and as far as Louisville. A couple videos will be released in the coming months as well, and there’s even talk of beginning work on another EP, so that’s something to look forward to.
Until then, give Vol 1: A Profound and Nameless Fear a spin. It’s a musical ride, intended to be experienced from start to finish.
At the heart of it all, the guys in The Holy Nothing yearn for their listeners to carve their own paths and find purpose. If their beats get you dancing and nodding, they believe their mission has been accomplished.