Fifth member of the Elite Four. True story.

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 being that guy who replaces urinal cakes in public restrooms.

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.

Jesus, I really need to get a room with the letter M. This week: Mahumodo.

Another British band for you this week – Mahumodo, who were formed in the dark recesses of the last century – nay, the last millenium (that’s 1999 to you and I)! In describing their sound, I’d compare them to an awesome band you might be aware of. Deftones? Heard of them? Herd of cows? Don’t be silly, of course I’ve heard of cows.

I’m sorry. It’s Friday and I’m in a dumb mood. Deal with it.

01. April’s
02. Withme
03. *Waves
04. 4
05. California
06. Herparadise
07. Bythewaters

The band produced four EPs in their time, the best known of which is Waves, which is more like a short album. It’s a schooling in excellent hardcore-infused post-metal, combining the best elements of both genres. Like Deftones, they were capable of both heavy riffs and lush, soaring soundscapes. I think part of their appeal for me was the feeling of joyousness I get from it – sure it can be heavy, but it’s just fun to listen to.

They were something of a phenomenon in their own right, for good reason, gaining a cult underground following by the time of their demise. They were getting a lot of attention from labels, too, but it was just not meant to be. Vocalist Medhi Safa left to live in the States, and I guess they didn’t want to carry on without a founding member as influential as him (this is all postulation though. I don’t know the whole story). Sad, but we got some good stuff out of it.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8u6Aar0fNCA]

Apparently they liked Etnies.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FzS0yo5UzPc]

Since their split in 2003, Medhi (who is a top bloke; see below – he asked for the picture with ME!) and drummer Tom Harriman started a phenomenal band called *shels. Their mode of operation is similar, but with an even more atmospheric edge. Their album Sea of the Dying Dhow is amazing – for serious, got get it now.

Hey look, I’m from TNOTB! Naw, I had the eye AIDS and am feeling self-conscious. I look much fitter today.

Most of the rest of the band went on to form the oft-lauded Devil Sold is Soul. In fact, Tom Harriman was originally in DSHS, but left after the recording of their first EP. Talk about keeping it in the family. Anyway, you can read about them here, here and here, but if that’s a bit ‘tl;dr‘ for the three lazy bastards of you that are still reading this – ambient metal, passionate vocalist, fucking awesome.

Both bands are very much alive and kicking still, which is good news for us! See you next week, when I’ll try to pick a band that doesn’t being with the letter M. I’ll try.

– 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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