Rise Above | Old School Crossover Hardcore from the New Orleans Underground
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Rise Above News

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

First Katrina Aftermath Visit

This is going to be hard to put into words. Seeing what's left of New Orleans in person is really, really strange. Our band room is there exactly as we left it from the last time we practiced. We lucked out.

It's great to run into familiar faces...sadly, however, some of those familiar faces brought some incredibly bad news. A very good, old, friend and former bandmate, Glenn Rambo was drowned by the storm surge along with his mother in St. Bernard parish. He was a really good guy and I'm so sorry that we lost touch with each other in the past couple of years.

I'm hoping to do some kind of benefit show with some of the other original Soilent Green members to honor Glenn. I've spoken to Donavan Punch (he's in North Carolina) and we thought of some songs we could play.

A couple of priceless Rambo moments I remember:

We had a show in Chalmette that I believe was around Halloween. We kicked in to our intro (I think it was "Mad Scientist") and Glenn walks out in a Santa Claus costume, headbanding his ass off. Then he rips the Santa suite off and underneath he's wearing long, thermal underwear with tons of little ketchup covered tampons tied all over it. He was in heaven..he lived for that kind of stuff. He would have a little gleam in his Charlie Manson eyes like a kid about to see Star Wars or something. A couple of weeks later we played and he wore the same unwashed outfit. To add to the incredible stench of the crusty ketchup, a male cat had sprayed all over my gigbag so my strings, cord and everything smelled like male cat spray. I can truly say that we must have been the smelliest band in modern history. It made no difference to the crowd..they were right up front..jamming and moshing as always.

One other time, we were playing and before we go on, he's drinking a 40 of old english or something and hopping up and down with a really focused expression. I figured he was just getting psyched up but when we hit the stage his motives were made clear to me -- we jump out on stage and he spews the whole 40 out into the crowd. He had timed it perfectly. To my amazement, several people were loving it and rolling around and savoring the Glenn fluids they had just been hosed with.

He was a great performer. Always gung ho...Always getting into shit...saying crazy shit...never had an ego. He was mercilessly fucked with by St. Bernard Parish police, virtually daily because of the way he looked. He was totally harmless...I never saw him get belligerent with anyone, ever. He never had his just deserts or props in the history of the new orleans underground. I'd like to start a memorial website for him (I've been a professional web designer for several years), so if anyone has any content they would like to contribute toward that end, please email me with the subject line "Glenn Rambo" and I'll make sure it gets into the site.

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Goodbye, Piggy

One of the world's most innovative guitarists, Denis "Piggy" D'Amour of Voivod has passed away. His tritonal riffs, soulful blues phrasing and wide vibrato were incredibly inspiring. His style had a huge influence on me and can clearly be heard on my early work with Soilent Green. One of the first reviews we ever read about us complained that we werent original enough and went on to say that we sounded like a combination of Voivod and Napalm Death. We were all like..vod and napalm..sounds pretty fucking cool to us! Denis will be sorely missed. See you in Valhala, brother.