Nashville may never be the same! Last week, progressive heavy metal band MINDCAGE delivered a powerful performance at Nashville’s famed and iconic music venue, The Rutledge LMV, as part of 2014 Summer NAMM. The show also featured rising star rocker triplets “More Like Me” and fierce female-fronted rockers “Rearview Ghost”.
MINDCAGE took to the stage at this special engagement performing their acclaimed concept album Our Own Devices in its entirety. They were joined live for the very first time by Julie Westlake of HYDROGYN, who sang on the album. Her powerful voice introduced the world to the character Arabella Vash, a young woman in the story who uses the power of her dreams to transform the dystopian world she inhabits.
In another surprise twist, the band announced a line-up change and introduced the audience to the bass prowess of Gulf Coast pro-music scene veteran “Bobby B” Williamson. Bobby hails from the same NW Florida region as the rest of MINDCAGE and has played in progressive metal bands to rock and party cover bands and is a seasoned pro.
“It was very difficult to accept for all of us that our long time bassist and dear friend Brian Howell could not participate in MINDCAGEas things have began to ramp up. He has a very full life, career and a beautiful family and we could not ask him to disrupt that, it was not fair to ask any more of him,” says MINDCAGE Founder/Guitarist Dietrick Hardwick. “It seemed an impossible task to fill the void he left. The chemistry and bass prowess Brian had proved too difficult to replicate or even emulate for several talented players we auditioned. It’s an amazing story I will tell soon, but suffice it to say, “Bobby B” just showed up. He’d done the work, he learned the album as I asked and then made it his own. Painstaking hours, then he brought his foundational groove and within one rehearsal he had the album down and he and Craig brilliantly honed the songs for more live impact. Then he just showed up like a pro, walked in and kicked ass and was gone like the wind! We hope we see him again very soon!”
“The real treat for me was to sing these songs live with Julie. She’s phenomenal. We clicked in the studio effortlessly, and it was the same way at an impromptu rehearsal then even better live.” recalls singer Jeff Hignite. “She came out, and it was just there. We launched into “The Human Race” and I know everyone in the house was transfixed. When we sing together, as good as it sounds on the record, it just goes to a whole new level when we connect on that eye level live. It’s a very awe-inspiring, humbling thing even for me to experience that connection as the lead singer. I don’t know what else to say. She’s got “it”, and in spades!”
Just last year, MINDCAGE wrapped up the mixing process on Our Own Devices with triple-platinum and legendary producer Michael Wagener (Ozzy Osbourne, Accept, Megadeth, Alice Cooper, Helloween) at his acclaimed WireWorld Studio just outside of Nashville, TN.
MINDCAGE recently confirmed August 12th as the release date for a digital special edition release of Our Own Devices. Pre order it via Amazon now!
The new release will extend the story with two new songs that are an important interlude before they embark on recording Pt. 2 of this Dystopian trilogy concept derived from Hardwick’s prophetic Sci-fi literary work entitled “Earthchime”. The original version of Our Own Devices was self-produced by the band, and Wagener completed vocal and guitar solo overdubs as well as the mix.
MINDCAGE puts a fresh, conceptual spin on an internationally-embraced classic heavy metal sound, originally established by artists likeJudas Priest and Iron Maiden. Not unlike the aforementioned groups, MINDCAGE serves up a potent blend of heavy melodies mixed with progressive influences à la Rush, but offers a unique steampunk twist to the theme of the music.
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