Epic metal beard: check.

So. Bands break up. It sucks, but that’s the way of things. For most of them, the reason is pure and simple; on some level, they suck. Whether it’s only a little, or harder than a $20 hooker, it doesn’t matter; the world doesn’t lose a whole bunch. The members go on with their lives, and probably go on to make a greater impact in other areas of society. Like packing my groceries.

Then there are bands that are forced into submission for other reasons: money, conflict – both personal and artistic – or sometimes the fanbase only comes after they’re long gone.

This is a chronicle of those bands. Most you will not have heard of, for the very reason that they’re not even around to promote themselves any more. But trust me, they are bands that you really really should have heard of.

Aaaaand, we’re back to the letter ‘M’ with The Minor Times.

To my mind, Pennsylvania’s The Minor Times are the spiritual successors to hardcore legends Botch. Probably to yours too once you give them a listen to, which I am here to convince you to do. Even I don’t listen to thse guys enough, and that’s just criminal.

So where to start? It’s hardcore, which you may have already gathered from the Botch comparison, but it’s somehow tighter; ‘bigger’; better produced.It has that metal edge of having a fuller sound,whilst still retaining the dissonant sound of its hardcore bretheren.

01. +++
02. Casket City Lights
03. Van Zant
04. Ladder Devils
05. Blackhole Living
06. Amazing Grace
07. This Is the Blues
08. Bring In the Suit
09. This Is a Fine Life You’ve Made For Yourself
10. Fire Spitter
11. Disappear Here

Summer of Wolves is my favourite of their records, and it’s pretty much down to one track. You know those tracks that just hit a spot? The ones that you often skip to, just to hear once, before restarting the album in full to hear it in its place? This Is the Blues is one of those tunes.

But yeah, I’m not going to show you that one. I can’t find a decent version (Youtube the live version if you want – it’s good, but you can’t hear the true majesty of the song. Instead, hit up the tracks below, which are also pretty damn good.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uOl7Wc3nimE&feature=related]

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Yfdk9gVagI]

Up for something free too? Hit up their Last.fm page to download Casket City Lights.

I mentioned earlier in the week that brothers Matt and Tim Leo (bass and guitar respectively) are now part of Ladder Devils (which I’m ‘pretty’ sure was their idea). No info on the other two, but I hope they are doing something; the vocalist in particular – a regular Dave Verellen if you ask me.

In a final bit of news, the band offered the following vague quote with regard to the possibility of a final show, which they never technically had. I always thought that was a vital aprt of the grieving process.

“There may still be a FINAL Minor Times show, and we may put up the last 2 songs we recorded on ’07 sometime if anyone still cares.”

I do, Minor Times. I do.

– CG

If you have any suggestions for this column, please send them my way to chris(at)heavyblogisheavy(dot)com or leave a message in the comments section!
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