Saturday, January 29, 2011


Been super busy working really hard over here in The Volcano. Things are kind of outta control. I've got a bunch of things on deck to post, business junk, new jams, and older jams that never made it up. For now here's this...

Cleveland's All Dinosaurs are putting out a record and playing a show to release it. Friends Trigger Effect, Hot Cha Cha and The Strutting Cocks will get ridic at The Beachland Tavern. You should go, buy the record, and you will have fun.

Out of curiosity, I just looked at the wikipedia entry for Dinosaurs, check this shit out:

The term "dinosaur" was coined in 1842 by the English paleontologist Richard Owen, and derives from Greek δεινός (deinos) "terrible, powerful, wondrous" + σαῦρος (sauros) "lizard".

Terrible, Powerful, and Wondrous... Lizard! What I like about that is how "Terrible" and "Wondrous" aren't mutually exclusive.

In informal speech, the word "dinosaur" is used to describe things that are impractically large, slow-moving, obsolete, or bound for extinction, reflecting the outdated view that dinosaurs were maladapted monsters of the ancient world.

Maladapted Monsters of The Ancient World! I dunno about you, but I don't think that view is outdated at all. I also like the part about things being bound for extinction. Pretty much everything falls into that category on some level.

Way back when, in July of 2009, I drew the poster for their first show. Then they put in an influential appearance on the old Gauntlet of Truth Jam. They were part of a triumvirate of bands that were a part of something I'm pretty proud of. Something New we had never tried before that turns out worked really well. Because we killed it. They were a part of the dark half of duality. Which is necessary, which is where we live. All Dinosaurs helped The Beachland celebrate Christmas that year. The Cleveland Bachelor and I helped promote it. They were here for friends, Trigger Effect on their birthdays last summer.

They played this insanely awesome show with Valient Thorr last fall. Alright, Let me tell you about Valient Thorr. This was easily one of the most fun shows I went to last year. All Dinosaurs opened it up and they completely rocked it. They sounded great and played hard but were having an absolute blast the entire time. I didn't get to all the shows I just listed above. Those links are just to posters I drew (this being their EIGHTH poster I've done with their name on it, in the hundreds of posters and fliers I've done- very few bands can claim that many). I did see them play at the Happy Dog on Sept. 12th, in 2009. I was paying attention that night, it was a pretty early show in their lifespan. They were good, but they were new. This time, a few scant days more than one year later, after they'd played probably close to, if not more than, a hundred shows in between, they were already seasoned veterans. They still burned with a youthful excited danger that takes itself very seriously. They still shot from their hip with mad confidence, and made a point to knock around a few heads, including mine. But they were obviously having a lot of fun, and it made them that much better than being just great, talented musicians that write good rock songs (which, clearly, they've nailed). Both Bo Bowersmith and Dave Gibian play guitar and sing and are tangibly serious about it. You can tell that they love what they're doing, that they work really hard. Drummer, Joe Willis, is an awesome percussionist, even if he loves Death Cab For Cutie (huge fan, really(?)). Their bassist, Gheramy Demery, is the goofballingest goofball to ever goofball a show, but that fact balances the band in an very evident way, which I think is one of the integral components that makes All Dinosaurs a great band to see.

After they played, there were two bands that were pretty standard fare, took themselves very seriously, and after half a song each- bored me to death.

Then Valient Thorr came on stage and turned the place into an ape-shit bonkers carnival of positive energy exploding out all over the place, complete with motivational hyperbole, masterful riffage and rhythms fueled by child-like exuberance, and I swear- a really weird moment where the entire audience(!) was sitting on the floor doing some crazy row-boat dance move initiated by the shirtless, sweaty, singer known as Valient Himself. I'm pretty sure his name is actually Herbie, but... either way, that dude totally ruled. He said some of the funniest and nicest shit between songs I think I've ever heard a dude say into a microphone. He was the physical embodiment of "having fucking fun" the entire time. It was a blast and I'm stoked I got to be there for it. At one point he said something about how they've been doing this a long time, how their beards are a little bit longer, about how they're all a little bit older, but that "you can't just Rip Van Winkle it, Man! You gotta get out there and do that shit!!" It kind of came out of the blue and caught be by surprise.

Actually, this kinda blew my mind. He was right. You can't just Rip Van Winkle it, Man! We've all just got this weird short moment, this stretch of time to do something with ourselves. You can take it seriously, and be focused, and bust your ass (it would be foolish not to). However, it's equally as important to not forget to make it fun, and have a good time. While you're killin' it, maybe crack a smile, say "hi" to your parents on stage, dance like a dummy, and laugh it off when you make a mistake. Then try it again. Do good things well, and honor them by enjoying it. You have to, because in the end... and maybe in the distant future we'll be considered maladapted monstres of the ancient world, but in the end... in here and now, we're all just bound for extinction. We are All Dinosaurs.

This is the original line art. Here, I was going to try and write something about how some dinosaurs grew feathers and evolved into birds, tie that to how some Native Americans tribes used eagle feathers in their headdresses to symbolize acts of bravery and honor. I drew this with a brush and ink, and used micron pens for details and splattered ink all over it with a toothbrush.

Then I took that toothbrush and splattered another sheet of 8.5" x 11" paper and when I scanned it, I set it to double the dpi and cut the sheet in half, layering them over the art, setting them to different reds. Works every time.

I laid this out in photoshop, it took me forever, then I pinted it out, and redrew it using micron pens making it look hand-drawn and making the letters of the band names all fucked up like that. It's fun but tedious and time consuming. It's worth it though.

Here's a close up of the lettering, I like to break up the letters. Originally, I think I was going for a crusted type look, like I was trying to replicate what text that had gotten worn and damaged over time would look like, or degenerated in a copying process, but after I had done this a buttload of times, I think I now just want to make the lettering look wicked and but cleanly crusty.

One last thing:

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