Rhythmically Gifted: An Interview with Nick Yacyshyn

WFW; RUFUS DRUMS; nick yacyshyn; al; tiina liimu photo

I’ve recently had the pleasure of corresponding, mostly via Facebook messenger, with Canadian drummer Nick Yacyshyn.  Like a lot of metal heads I’ve met and/or talked to, Nick’s a genuinely friendly guy, and he has graciously agreed to be interviewed for the WOBC blog. On top of that, he’s a uniquely talented, creative drummer.

I first became aware of Nick as a result of his involvement in post-metal super group SUMAC, where he plays alongside Aaron Turner of Isis/Old Man Gloom and Brian Cook of Russian Circles/ex-Botch/ex-These Arms Are Snakes. As I’ve said many times to those who will listen, SUMAC’s inaugural album, The Deal, is hands down my favorite of 2015. Since its release, I’ve listened to it at least 10 times. As a drummer, I became fascinated by Nick’s complex texturing and unconventional rhythmic patterns. One song in particular, ‘Thorn in the Lion’s Paw’, had my mind warped. Rather than submitting to my utter confusion, I decided to reach out to Nick and ask him what the pattern was. Despite being on tour on the other side of the planet, Nick got back to me with an hour. He clearly explained the drumbeat, and demystified that which would have otherwise remained totally opaque and indecipherable.

Following this exchange, I dug into Nick’s back catalog, including (but not limited to) his two albums with British Columbia based hardcore act Baptists. Needless to say, I was blown away, not only by the band’s explosive sound but also by their—and in particular Nick’s—breakneck speed. And as I soon found out, I wasn’t the only person who was impressed. Ex-Nirvana drummer and Foo Fighter Dave Grohl had posted numerous videos of Nick playing with Baptists online, accompanied by messages like ‘My favorite drummer’ and ‘Drummers beware’.  Drummers beware, indeed.

But enough with the stunning praise and all-star endorsements, and onto the interview!

Continue reading Rhythmically Gifted: An Interview with Nick Yacyshyn

TONIGHT!!! R&B Workgroup Presents: Tell Me Something Good


via R&B workgroup:

There are so many amazing, soulful singers and musicians on this campus, it’s wild that DIY shows at Oberlin skip over the broad R&B genre completely for a scene of majority electronic and punk shows. Let’s revamp the presence of & support experimentalism by students in the r&b/funk/soul genres in the show-going experience in our lives & on our campus!


243 N Main St

9-11pm, FREE

End your last week of classes dancing & singing to renditions of Beyoncé, Stevie Wonder, Bilal & Chaka Khan by your amazing fellow Oberlin students.

Cassie Brown
Caylen Bryant
Ethan Cohen
Ben Cruz
David Diongue
Lawrence Galloway
Daniella Priutt
Nina Pulley
Kiela Nelson
Daniel Spearman

This is a show, not a rager, so please be respectful of the home
~ Brought to you by WOBC’s R&B Workgroup xoxo ~

An Interview With Christian Präauer of Krankheit!


Anna Rose Greenberg, Traffic Director and host of “Rock Front,” interviewed Christian Präauer, lead singer of Krankheit. Krankheit (which translates to ‘Disease’) is a dark industrial band based in Austria. Hear Präauer talk about the Krampus (both the new single and the legend), the Austrian music scene, corpse paint, and more!

The Best Shows Punk Workgroup Experienced This Past Summer 2015

Though it seems like too long ago to even recall, Summer 2015 was a thing. As some people are inclined to do, members of this semester’s Punk workgroup attended several live music shows during this period and experienced some things. More often than not these were good things. Here are the best of those things. And guess what! The shows were not strictly “punk”. There you have it. Also: Punk workgroup meets Mondays at 5pm in the station. Come!

Boredoms, courtesty of Ivan Krasnov
Boredoms, courtesty of Ivan Krasnov
Ivan Krasnov, Punk workgroup director, fourth year
Boredoms playing with 88 (!) cymbal players
as part of Doug Aitken’s Station to Station show at the Barbican Centre in London, England
27 June 2015
Yes, I will admit to dozing off during this Boredoms set. I was sweating and wriggling around in my seat in all kinds of bizarre ways, completely transfixed by the monster that was being birthed right in front of me, only to feel my eyes start to glaze over and blood rush away from my brain. This was not due to any sort of lack of sleep, however. No way. The Japanese noise-rock titans Boredoms, with the aid of eighty-eight (yes, 88) cymbal players surrounding them in a huge concentric circle, were pummeling each and every one of my senses. It became so exhausting that my body just gave in, I guess. Such was the visceral nature of this performance. Yamantaka Eye played the cult leader, conducting an orchestra of devoted cymbal players to create crescendos that felt like an ocean’s waves crashing right into you and sweeping you away. The 2 hour plus performance saw multiple guitars, drummers and noises enter in a most tasteful and surprisingly consonant fashion. The chords and short progressions they created together remain in my mind as bright, full-bodied pastel colors shining through the chaos. These were truly vital in grounding me, the listener and spectator, during an otherwise rhythmically heavy and thundering performance. Truly unlike anything I have ever experienced before.

Alex Chalmers, Punk workgroup devotee, fourth year
Numb Bats/Beat Awfuls 

at Bric-a-Brac Records in Chicago
Some time in July I think?
The opener was some Chicago band whose name I can’t recall – they weren’t all that good. Sort of off time and the levels were never quite right, so someone was always drowning out the rest of the band. But Beat Awfuls came on second and really blew me away. They played drone-y Southern garage rock with lots of reverb. Their songs are haunting and painfully beautiful, with heavy heavy lyrics (something along the lines of “I sold my little brother ecstasy, and now he takes it 5 times a week”). Their set paved the way for Numb Bats, a post-punk trio from Phoenix, Arizona. Like Beat Awfuls, their songs are big and reverb-y, but with more punk edge, wittier lyrics and a more driving rhythm. The bass player uses distortion a lot (so punk), their harmonies are on point, and they have an incredible energy on stage. Moments that stuck with me are basically just snatches of their songs: “You’re so pretty!”, “And he may walk with a grin, but he’ll shake you thin/his fits are so ugly, and his tummy so hungry/i keep waking up at night, and i feel like a child!”
Confession time: I bought their album Gentle Horror at the show, and have been listening to it on repeat in my car since. Definitely a band to listen to, watch, become obsessed with.

Tune in: Surcando El Terreno to interview ethnomusicologist John McDowell on October 28

maxresdefault (2)

On Wednesday, the 28th of October from 1-2pm, we will have the honor of interviewing John McDowell, the chair of the folklore department at the University of Indiana Bloomington and expert ethnomusicologist. We will discuss contemporary and classic corridos from Mexico. Professor McDowell, with his extensive knowledge of the corrido, will certainly have interesting insights to provide.

Below are a few examples of corridos that we play on our show, “Surcando El Terreno: En la Sierra y la Cuidad.”

Continue reading Tune in: Surcando El Terreno to interview ethnomusicologist John McDowell on October 28

91.5-MHz ◊ Oberlin College Community Freeform Radio ◊ Oberlin, Lorain County's Freeform Community Radio