Thursday, July 30, 2015

Meet the Bands: VOLUNTEER

This project would obviously not be possible without the amazing punk and indie bands contributing. So let's meet the bands of UNINTIMIDATED: Wisconsin Musicians Against Scott Walker, one by one.

Photo by Patrick Houdek

Milwaukee's Volunteer have been at it for a few years now, assembled from members of Milwaukee/Racine standouts like Stock Options, Forstella Ford, and Chicago's Gasoline Fight. Volunteer are straight-up LOUD, which is what noise-rock bands should be, so that works out well. The amphetamine-fueled rumble of bands like Unsane, Steel Pole Bathtub and Helmet inform the snarl that chugs and churns out of the wall of amps behind Francisco Ramirez's baritone guitar, Mark Sheppard's steel barrel Tamas, and Martin Defatte's meaty bass. On their latest, the Goner EP, you can almost see Defatte's bass strings swaying back and forth across the fretboard--they sound detuned to the point where it's shocking they still have tension. It lays a foundation of molasses that Ramirez's crushing riffs and throaty growl coalesce into a glacier of straight-up noise.

Ramirez happens to be an amazing poster artist, as well--he appeared in the excellent documentary Just Like Being There in the company of such gig poster legends as Jay Ryan, Erin Page and Daniel Danger. If you're in a band, you should seriously consider hooking up with the Bureau of Print Research & Design for your next poster. He'll kill it.

Check out Volunteer's sludgy awesome at, toss 'em a few bucks, and get ready for some straight-up volume--when we say we're gonna yell at Scott Walker through songs, this is what we're talking about.

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