Person or Persons Unknown: Six Questions with Slaves BC Bassist Jason Cantu

Hey there, folks! I hope your week is going well. If it’s not, I guess you can be glad that it’s almost over! Personally, I’m just about totally recovered from last weekend’s Winter’s Wake festival, and sometime soon I’ll probably even start writing again.

In the meantime, please enjoy this BRAND NEW feature which will be running periodically here on Valley of Steel — courtesy of the lovely and wonderful person to whom I am fortunate enough to be married!

 
Person or Persons Unknown

Six Questions with Slaves BC Bassist Jason Cantu

by Asya Yanyo

 
Greetings and salutations! Many of you know me, or have met me, or at least know of me. My name is Asya (aka “Mrs. Valley of Steel“). I’ve been married to Eric (aka “Mr. Valley of Steel“) for about five years now — tomorrow [01 March] is our five-year anniversary, in fact.

I’m sure most of you have seen Eric‘s many posts about shows that are occurring in the Pittsburgh area. Well, he doesn’t just post about them; he actually attends — we both do, actually. [Editor’s note: at least, as frequently as physically possible!] Well, through the course of attending these shows, we’ve met some great people and it occurred to me that you (the general public) might like to hear a little bit more about these interesting people, the bands that they are currently in, and what brought them to the musical path that they are traveling down.

I will be doing these on occasion: they will always be six questions, just enough to give you a sense of the person and their tastes (as opposed to the same old stale band questions you’re always reading). So I hope that you will join me on this new journey in getting to know these wonderful and unique people, and — who knows — maybe you’ll find a new band that may change your life, too!

My first “Person or Persons Unknown” interview is with Jason Cantu, the bassist for Slaves BC, whom Eric and I have already seen three times this year. Jason, while just one part of this great band, has an infectious enthusiasm that really enhances their live show. His love and support of music in general is also infectious, and it has inspired me to do these interviews.

Everyone should have a friend like this: someone who’s always posting about records you’ve forgotten about, or wearing t-shirts you would kill for (specifically, I am referring to the Ten Years After shirt he sometimes wears), and someone who is supportive of not only his own band but all local and non-local bands. He is the type of fan that makes you want to be a better fan, too.

Check out his band Slaves BC on Bandcamp, and then come out to see them FOR FREE this weekend [Saturday, 02 March] at Kopec’s Bar. You will not be disappointed.

 
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Winter’s Wake Winterview: Dream Death

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And here’s the moment you’ve all been eagerly anticipating. Following their triumphant return to the stage last year, the legendary Pittsburgh band is back for another show — their only scheduled appearance in this area this year — as well as a brand-new album and line of merchandise!

Without any further delay, here’s a series of questions and answers I exchanged with guitarist/vocalist Brian “Goodbread” Lawrence

 
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Winter’s Wake Winterview: Vattnet Viskar

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Hello once again. Winter’s Wake (day 2) is starting in less than six hours! If you haven’t noticed, I’m really excited about this. When the line-up for this show was first announced, there were so many bands I was really looking forward to seeing, I wasn’t even sure which one to get the most excited about. But if I had to pick one, there’s a chance it might have been this next band. Vattnet Viskar‘s self-titled album (Broken Limbs Recordings) was one of my absolute favorite releases of 2012, and in my opinion, one of the best examples of atmospheric black metal I’ve heard in a very long time.

So I am just thrilled that these guys will be in Pittsburgh later today, and I was also thrilled to get a chance to ask their guitarist Chris Alfieri a few questions about the band. Here’s what he had to say…

 
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Winter’s Wake Winterview: Molasses Barge

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Hello again! Here’s the next Winter’s Wake “Winterview” — one more time I had a little chat with Justin Gizzi, this time about his heavy doom band Molasses Barge.

I did an interview with that band’s drummer Wayne Massey several months ago, which covered a bit of their history and lots of other interesting information (check it out here), but in today’s post, Justin fills us in on all the latest Barge happenings.

 
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Winter’s Wake Winterview: Occultation

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Good morning!! Seriously, last night’s show (Winter’s Wake day one) was every bit as amazing as I could have hoped! Still shaking off some of the effects of being there til past 1 am after working all day yesterday, but I’m so excited about today it doesn’t even matter. I’ve got another few interviews to share with you with the last few bands that’ll be playing today…

As I’ve been saying all along, with so many people to talk to, I tried to keep these short and sweet. Just long enough for you (the reader) to get a bit of a lesson about each band’s history, to learn a little about where they came from and what they’re doing now, so that you can excited about seeing all of them, too!

This one was my discussion with “V”, drummer and vocalist for the band Occultation:

 
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Winter’s Wake Winterview: Meth Quarry

 
Hello, once more! Time keeps ticking away, it’s almost time to go to Winter’s Wake tonight!

Here’s another band interview! I talked to Adam Joseph Bailey, the vocalist from Meth Quarry, about what’s been happening with that band since I spoke with them back in December.

Admittedly, this interview was even more brief than most of them have been, but I already covered most of the topics — such as how the band formed and their entire history, all of their influences and how they molded their unique “Grim Dirge Hardcore” sound — in the much more in-depth interview from December. To learn everything there is to know about this band, go read it!

Here’s what Adam told me about the band’s latest developments:

 
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Winter’s Wake Winterview: Liquified Guts

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Hey, folks! The first night of Winter’s Wake 2013 is just a few more hours away! There are a ton of incredible bands (well, six) playing tonight, this is a show you will NOT want to miss.

Here’s another band interview for you, this time I spoke with the bassist from Liquified Guts, Justin Gizzi. In case you were wondering, yes that is the same person who plays bass for Nomad Queen. Here’s what he told me when we talked about this band:

 
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