Saturday, April 30, 2011


Light the 13 candles of doom, brothers and sisters! For this 13th installment of Gross Anatomy we herald the arrival of Sweden's Saturnalia Temple with their debut full length recording Aion of Drakon. These invokers of psychedoomic Black Magic Metal reaffirmed my faith in the majesty of electric amplification and all things heavy. I am honored to be involved in the manifestation of their latest hypnotic masterpiece and delighted to announce its official release at the strike of midnight...TONIGHT! The evil seed bears its wicked fruit...

"Enlightenment consists not merely in the seeing of luminous shapes and visions, but in making the darkness visible." ~Carl Jung

I worked out the symmetry with this very loose pencil sketch. In many ways Aion of Drakon is a gateway for the listener and was very much a threshold for me as well. It will be most of the world's introduction to the band since their previous recordings were available in relatively limited pressings so I was conscious to arrange the central imagery within a portal of sorts. I also wanted to convey the seductive foreboding and transcendental awe that Saturnalia Temple inspires at their heaviest.

I started with the red ink to reduce smudging...

Many hours and several spent ballpoint pens later, I emerged from the dungeon with a nearly completed creation. My lady snapped this photo on her "smart phone", which is so damn clever I imagine it will be doing the actual drawing in a few years. As Fenriz recently remarked, "It's the best of both worlds, hand drawn covers and mobile phone photographs!"

The drawing is now desaturated for pure blacks and rich grey tones.

"....Cut the silver cord with the Scythe of Thantifaxath..."

The CD version of Aion of Drakon is available NOW from the AJNA OFFENSIVE and in Europe from NUCLEAR WINTER. Vinyl pressing to be unleashed on the coming Solstice!

Until next time....
Shine on, you crazy diamond.

Thursday, April 28, 2011


Welcome back to Gross Anatomy, all you Fiends and Monster Kids! Recently I was invited to contribute to the upcoming issue of Roctober, the magazine that celebrates "unjustly obscure musical icons, enigmas, and eccentrics." The theme for issue #49 is "living in the 80's" and editor Jacob Austen was tasteful enough to assemble a non-ironic tribute to Glenn Danzig's demoniacal contributions to that otherwise neon decade. If you read this blog regularly (or have had the dubious pleasure of drinking with me on Halloween), you already know that I worship everything Glenn Danzig created from his skeletal 1977 debut Misfits single Cough/Cool right through the magnificently muscular sophomore Danzig LP Lucifuge in 1990. After that my attention admittedly drifted but I was nonetheless delighted to offer my humble visual and literary gratitude to the man who wrote the soundtrack to my early teenage years. And the rest of my life. But who's counting?

First up was this title image for the article. I wanted to incorporate fonts that would reflect Danzig's evolution throughout the decade. The Misfits logo was originally swiped from Famous Monsters of Filmland magazine and the Samhain logo was stolen from a 1959 movie poster for The Giant Gila Monster, so at this point we're looking at several generations worth of "homage". There's so much great imagery to plumb from this fertile period of his career that the challenge was to employ a tiny modicum of discretion and not put the whole baby in the meat slicer (to paraphrase the man himself).

Next, I loosened up a bit with some aimless doodling and soon arrived at this playful caricature. I wanted to take a slightly more serious and reverential approach but this scribble contains a few key components that I decided needed to be featured in the actual drawing, like the Captain Harlock shirt and Unholy Passion succubus...

"I want your skulls, I need your skulls..." I found the perfect reference photo of a young Glenn Danzig in Eerie Von's fantastic photography book Misery Obscura and went to work. One of the things you immediately notice when you attempt to draw Glenn is that his bangs covered his face for almost the entire decade! I might ink this or hit it with watercolors in the future but for the current assignment I wanted it to remain raw and visually cohesive with this old pencil portrait I did way back in 1989...

Speaking of living in the 80's, this portrait remains one of my personal favorites. You can read more about this drawing in my "review" of the first Danzig record in my special column...

Featured in Roctober #49...COMING SOON!

Until next time...
tell your children not to walk my way.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Listen To The Germs.

I apologize for jumping on a bandwagon but OFF! rules.

"You're the pollution. You're the problem. We're the solution."

Here I am attempting to explain punk rock to Keith Morris. He was unimpressed.

Sunday, April 17, 2011


For those of you still grieving the recent anniversary of Pete Steele's untimely passing into the meat locker of the hereafter, I humbly present the following interview with Sean Taggart from Destroying Angels #6. It doesn't really have anything at all to do with Pete Steele but of course Taggart drew the cover art and insert for the debut Carnivore record and went on to draw some truly classic show flyers for the band over the course of his early career. I hope this little conversation will subvert your frown just a bit and remind you that not all of the good ones die young.

Dennis Dread and Sean Taggart moshing at Sean's home in New York circa 2003.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Joey Ramone Day

R.I.P. Joey Ramone
May 19, 1951 - April 15, 2001
"I'm against it."

Wednesday, April 13, 2011


Underground comix historian, collector, writer and badass champion of free expression Patrick Rosenkranz will be making a special appearance at Stumptown Comics Fest this Saturday afternoon! I realize most of you cretins will still be recovering from your own sex, drugs and insurrection at noon on a Saturday but if you can peel your face off the bathroom floor and get down to the Oregon Convention Center, I promise Mr. 'Kranz will teach you a thing or two about REAL underground art. Don't miss it! It looks like there will also be a panel discussion about horror comics on Sunday that could be interesting.