1996: godheadSilo - Skyward In Triumph

I first heard about godheadSilo from a Kill Rock Stars catalogue included in a CD I bought from the label. In the description of their album The Scientific Supercake, it said that bassist Mike Kunka had gone deaf in one ear during its recording. It was somehow boastful and (I suspect) a little ironic, but it made a big impression on me, nonetheless.

Described in the same catalogue as “electronix junkies” and achievers of “distortion technology,” godheadSilo were somehow similar to bands like Karp (although less heroic-sounding than the Tumwater threesome). They were a bass & drums band that grooved in oceans of fuzz, a sound that was hurtful and percussive and massive by anyone’s standards. They also seemed to want the destruction of all human hearing through repetition. (This is not too much of an exaggeration — just listen to “Guardians of the Threshold”:

Like the early work of another Northwestern tonefucker machine (Earth), godheadSilo’s Sub Popl album Skyward In Triumph was recorded at Smegma’s studio by Mike Lastra with the assistance of former Melvins and future Sunn O))) member Joe Preston, who at the time was doing his own low-end experiments as Thrones. They were obvious inspirations for other compact death units to follow, like Lightning Bolt and Big Business, yet not only does their music still stand on its own, but it also sounds rightfully massive compared to newer bands. Their heavy, repetitive riffs can still obliterate ear canals. What most people overlook, though, is that they also possessed a unique melodicism. Their riffs, drenched in distortion as they were, were memorable, as exemplified by songs like “Booby Trap” and “Just Friends”.

godheadSilo were one of those acts that had an enormous impact, even if they are not widely recognized as such.

DeLorean

There’s a lot of good music out there, and it’s not all being released this year. With DeLorean, we aim to rediscover overlooked artists and genres, to listen to music historically and contextually, to underscore the fluidity of music. While we will cover reissues here, our focus will be on music that’s not being pushed by a PR firm.

Most Read