MARYLAND DOOM FEST 2017 Day Three 6/25 – Must-See Spotlight [Leanne] #4

Article By: Leanne Ridgeway

We covered the Pre-Fest. We covered Days One and Two. Guess what? Day Three! Wrapping up Part Four of my series on The Maryland Doom Fest 2017, let’s get this party train through the final stretch of tracks…

In case you haven’t been paying attention (assuming someone actually is), we’ve been rather excited here at Riff Relevant about our heading to the state of Maryland for this week’s MD Doom Fest. This will be Pat Riot’s third attendance and my first. I promised myself in early 2016 that I would not miss the 2017 event, once again at Cafe 611 in Frederick, MD.

If you have missed my three earlier articles about all the happenings and the bands in this year’s lineup, you can catch the whole series here:

#1 MD Doom Fest Pre-Fest June 22nd

#2 MD Doom Fest Day One June 23rd

#3 MD Doom Fest Day Two June 24th

If you’re able, you really should hit the road and attend at least one day of this fest. There are SO many heavy bands, damned near 50 overall.

FORTY+ bands. Four Days. $69. For fuck’s sake, GET A TICKET.

Pat Riot was able to narrow down his ‘must-sees’ to a Top 5 acts of MDDF 2017, but I couldn’t come close to even a Top 25. No favorite DAY, for that matter. Instead, I’ve given an overview of each day’s lineup and band’s info. You can choose your own favorites since they are all my favorites at the moment!

Here is each band performing on MDDF Day Three, with a sample track stream where available (get a Bandcamp page, c’mon), by order of the day’s lineup, confirmed as of June 14th.

(*Note, last-minute lineup changes can always happen. If any band mentioned in the lineup plays a different time slot or cancels an appearance and you’re pissed about it – yell at the sky. Better yet, buy some merch, watch another awesome band and get over it.)

MDDF Day 3  – Sunday, June 25:
• Black Pyramid 11:40 – 12:45
• The Atomic Bitchwax 10:45 -11:30
• Freedom Hawk 9:55 – 10:35
• Lightning Born 9:05 – 9:45
• Lifetime Shitlist 8:15 – 8:55
• Akris 7:30 – 8:05
• Burn Thee Insects 6:45 – 7:20
• Thonian Horde 6:00 – 6:35
• Cavern 5:15 – 5:50
• Old Blood 4:30 – 5:05
• Horehound 3:45 – 4:20

BLACK PYRAMID: (11:40pm-12:45am) One of two bands appearing at MDDF from Massachusetts, Black Pyramid is from West Mass. Andy Beresky (guitar, vocals), Eric Beaudry (bass), and Clay Neely (drums) encompass damned near every heavy genre into their arrangements. Old school doom marinated in heavy stoner rock, slathered with progressive melody, spiced with traditional heavy metal, peppered in psychedelia, and seared in desert riffs. What a way to close out the Maryland Doom Fest. How in hell can you go wrong? You can’t. Period.


THE ATOMIC BITCHWAX: (9:55-10:35pm) ‘SUPER STONER ROCK’. This sums it up nicely. This Jersey trio has been in it for the long haul and is legends in the heavy music underground. They’re heavy, loud, fun, fast, and fuzzy. Just how stoner rock/metal is supposed to sound. They are a must-see-set.


FREEDOM HAWK: (9:55-10:35pm) From Virginia Beach, Virginia, comprised of Lenny Hines (drums), T.R. Morton (vocals, guitar), and Mark Cave (bass). Freedom Hawk’s ‘Sunlight’ release has spun on my turntable for many months since Ripple Music issued the vinyl pressing. Tons of riffs, a bit of southern soul, melodic grooves, and, of course, fuzz. Gloriously heavy stoner rock n’ roll.


LIGHTNING BORN: (9:05-9:45pm) Crackling out of a Raleigh, North Carolina sky, the likes of Brenna Leath on vocals (The Hell No), Mike Dean on bass (Yes, that Mike Dean from Corrosion of Conformity), Erik Sugg on guitars (Sound familiar? Check out Demon Eye from earlier in the fest), and Doza Hawes on drums (Colossus, ex-Bloody Hammers; ex-Hour of 13). Firey, traditional heavy proto-metal, and holy hell in a bucket, does Brenna have one powerful voice! Can’t wait to witness this, I get chills listening to a mere demo track.


LIFETIME SHITLIST: (8:15-8:55pm) Hailing from Baltimore, Maryland, I’d never heard Lifetime Shitlist before. I’ve had one of my own, but so does everyone. Current members are shown as Ned Westrick (vocals), Matt Crocco (Les Paulocaust), Corey Fleming (guitar), Ryan Larken (bass), and Bryan Glaiser (drums). Their description of themselves is ‘Hardcore Metallic Doom Punk Thrash’. Well, damn! That’s going to wake our asses up on a Sunday evening, now isn’t it? I have a feeling I’m going to enjoy the hell out of this…


AKRIS: (7:30-8:05pm) Akris is a noise rock sludge trio from the Mid-Atlantic and West Virginia areas. With Helena Goldberg on bass and vocals, Tim Otis on drums, and Paul Cogle on guitar and vocals. Helena has a powerful, lilting, gut-twisting, and rather beautiful vocal ability. The combination of her range and the downtrodden sludge coming through their amps is something we should all be looking forward to on MDDF Day Three.


BURN THEE INSECTS: (6:45-7:20pm) DoomPop. That’s what they say they play. It’s not wrong. It’s heavy, dark, fuzzed stoner rock that’s also catchy, grooving, and… somewhat creepy as fuck. I like them more each time I listen. Currently on tour all around the U.S., they’ve a nice spot to land their buzz on Sunday’s MDDF stage.


THONIAN HORDE: (6:00-6:35pm) Local Maryland gents from Boonsboro, this quartet is Ron “FeZZ” McGinnis on bass and vocals, Dan “D-mize” on guitar, Darren “Dirty Waters” on guitar, and Tyler “The Beast” Lee on drums. Thonian Horde is ‘black n’ roll’ – it’s thrashy, heavy, searing guitar licks, fast pummeling beats, and dark as night vocals coming out of Fezz’s throat that border on death in a meat grinder. This Horde adds a nice variety to the mix and fits snugly in Day Three’s list.


CAVERN: (5:15-5:50pm) Cavern is the Oakland, Maryland trio of Stephen Schrock on drums, Zach Harkins on guitar, and Mike Lorenzen on bass. A post-rock/metal instrumental jam band. I just saw them perform on June 3rd in Baltimore and they blew my doors off. These are three highly skilled players performing some phenomenal music arrangements, with songwriting that seems built with an open door for vocals to be invited in. To be honest, no vocals are even necessary. It stands superbly on its own. I, for one, am thrilled to see them perform live again on MDDF Day Three. (I developed somewhat of a habit of buying merch from Mike right out of the van, but I’ll look inside for a table this time, I swear…)


OLD BLOOD: (4:30-5:05pm) Old Blood is coming to Maryland all the way from the West Coast of California. This quintet is Gunner on guitar, Octopus on bass, Diesel on drums, Feathers on vocals, and Stone on synthesizer. It’s heavy, dynamic, bluesy, psychedelic, soulful, a little spooky, and a whole lot of sexy. Acid doom at it’s most primed. Old Blood is bringing their desert doom show to the Mid-Atlantic seaboard and everyone better get ready…


HOREHOUND: (3:45-4:20pm) For a return performance at MDDF, raining down out of the Steel City of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Horehound will start off Day Three. Horehound is heavy melodic doom and stoner rock, with ethereal vocals out of Shy Kennedy, Brendan Parrish’s aggressive guitar riffing, JD Dauer slamming the drums, and Nick Kopco throttling the bass. I’ve seen them before, and cannot wait to see them again. Perfect start to our worship at Sunday’s Church of Doom.

Want tickets just for Sunday, Day Three? CLICK HERE.

That’s all of my must-see bands for Maryland Doom Fest 2017, as well as being the entire lineup. With zero days left until MDDF Pre-Fest, and having not slept yet at 5:11am, I’ll definitely be lead-footing through the four states of highways in the next few hours… so stay outta my way!

You can find all you need right here: Maryland Doom Fest 2017 bands, venue, hotel info, tickets, merch, and more.

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