IIVII ‘Grinding Teeth/Zero Sleep’ (Guests From Soundgarden, Swans, SubRosa)

Article By: Pat ‘Riot’ Whitaker ‡ Edited By: Leanne Ridgeway

IIVII, the current project of former Neurosis visual artist Josh Graham (also of A Storm Of Light), has announced the March 20th arrival of a new double album via Consouling Sounds.

The immensely ambitious ‘Grinding Teeth / Zero Sleep‘ are individual recordings, yet together, they reveal a symbiotic-like union. This was expounded upon by Josh Graham in comments recently, where he stated:

Grinding Teeth and Zero Sleep are individual albums that work together, exploring the grey areas between black and white, light and dark, life and death, good and evil, truth and fiction.

These revelations unquestionably inspire intrigue about the albums, an interest that exponentially increases once the contributing guests are revealed. An impressive roster, to say the least, it includes Kim Thayil (Soundgarden), Sarah Pendleton (SubRosa), Jo Quail and Dana Schechter (Insect Ark, Swans), Benjamin Weinman (The Dillinger Escape Plan), and several more.

Accompanying today’s announcements are the artwork and credits for each of the albums, along with a visual presentation of the haunting “Sun And Solace” from ‘Zero Sleep‘. The following is extensive, further insight into the premises behind each individual album’s aural contents:

Grinding Teeth” – The inspired soundtrack to the true-life love story of Duane and Debra Johnson.

Battling multiple health and mental illness issues, Debra Johnson asked her husband, Duane, to remove her from a medical facility so she could die at home. Over the next 5 days, they had an extended “death party;” smoking methamphetamine, listening to Quiet Riot and having sex. After Debra died in Duane’s arms, he wrapped her in linen and called the police. When they arrived on scene, Duane was standing naked near the front door, screaming that his wife was dead. The words “Death Parde God Hell” were spray-painted across the door.

Touching on themes of love, death, drug use, sex and criminality, Grinding Teeth features guitars, drums, electric violin and cello, lap steel, and electronic instrumentation. The album cover for ‘Grinding Teeth’ uses “crystal meth” arranged in the form of Lucifer’s sigil. This imagery plays off of Duane’s spray-painted door and works as a contrast to the ‘Zero Sleep’ cross, while also referencing the surreal darkness of this story.

Zero Sleep – The adapted score from Thomas D. Rotenberg’s sci-fi short film, ‘Don’t Forget To Remember‘.

After humanity loses its ability to sleep, mass displacement ensues. Unnamed black pills are distributed to the people by governments at camps around the world. Highly controlled and coveted, these pills provide the only possibility of sleep; while an overdose of the pills opens up an unexpected path to salvation.

Touching on themes of hope, despair, love and liberation, ‘Zero Sleep’ features a live string trio, live vocals, and electronic instrumentation. The album cover for ‘Zero Sleep’ uses black capsules arranged to form a surrounded cross. The pills symbolize a path to sanity and salvation, huddled around their symbol of hope.”

Grinding Teeth / Zero Sleep‘ from IIVII is available on 2-LP vinyl pressing, CD, and 2-CD formats. It arrives March 20th from Consouling Sounds and pre-order is found [HERE].




01. Crystalline Beasts
02. Disappearing Self
03. Bell Ringer
04. Sing Your Death Song
05. Coda. Ascending Ardor
06. Wrapped In Linen
07. Afterglow (Little Black And White Things)


Mastered by James Plotkin
Mixed by Josh Graham

Composed by Josh Graham with special guests:

Kim Thayil – Guitar on Disappearing Self
Sarah Pendleton – Violin on Crystalline Beasts and Afterglow
Jo Quail – Cello on Disappearing Self, Sing Your Death Song, and Ascending Ardor
Dana Schechter – Lap steel guitar on Sing Your Death Song
Gregory Simons – Drums on Crystalline Beasts / Percussion on Bell Ringer and Afterglow / Keys on Afterglow
Billy Graves – Drums on Sing Your Death Song
Shane Ocell – Drums on Afterglow
Benjamin Weinman – Guitar on Afterglow




01. All Of Us Refugees
02. Mirrorlike
03. This Chrysalis
04. Sun And Solace
05. White Light
06. Beginning
07. Sleeping Dreaming
08. Coalescing Bodies
09. Bliss


Adaptations from the original score for Don’t Forget To Remember
Directed by Thomas D. Rotenberg
Mastered by James Plotkin
Mixed by Matt Labozza
Recorded at Amann Studios, Vienna, Austria
Engineered by Christoph Amann
Produced by Alfredo Ovalles

Composed by Josh Graham with special guests:

Vocals – Mathilde Smessaert
Violin – Dalina Ugarte
Cello – Loukia Loulaki
Contrabass – Rubén Sánchez
Strings Orchestrated by Hannes Vanlancker


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