As we were hitting Episode 200 and about to review the new Lamb of God (a band first heard about back in the radio show days) for Episode 201, it got me thinking about the effect this show has had on my life…

As many of you know, this podcast is the evolution of a radio show I started way back in 2003 at 98.1 WQAQ, then just “The Sideshow.” It was a rough start for me (you should hear that first show…oi!), but, specifically because of said rough start, I met Nick, he soon joined, and we picked up steam. When I graduated, I passed the show to Nick; when he graduated, he passed it to Kyle (aka The ROCK(Jock)). When Kyle graduated, he passed it down. Last I knew, The Sideshow was the longest running show in WQAQ history.

That show was priority for Nick and I when we were in school, many times to a fault. We spent far too much time meticulously plotting every show and building the brand. To be honest, it was just more fun than school work. It paid off, though…everybody who remotely cared about WQAQ (actually involved or not) knew who we were.  Even if they didn’t care, they saw the 5 foot chaos logo banner hanging in the cafe at various times.

The radio show was more than just fun, though. It actually changed my life, and had a lasting impact. It helped me become the Metal fan I am today, coming in at a time where I was ready to grow, musically speaking, introducing me to countless bands I may not have known otherwise. (Some of that was through Nick too.) I mean, ask anybody – I dove in as deep as I could and never came out. Arguably, I became obsessed…and still am. In turn, my lifestyle evolved to go with it all.

Most importantly, though, almost every friend I still have from college I have because of The Sideshow. Some I just keep up with mostly on social media, some I meet at shows, others I only get to see only a few times a year, and a few are some of my closest friends. (You all know who you are!) Without that show, I may not have met any of those people and have the relationships I do now. It seems weird to even think about that…

Also, that’s not to mention the people I didn’t keep in touch with who were part of my life then.  Whether it was having psuedo-philosophical discussions in the station lobby (where I spent a lot of time), going to Hartford or New Haven for a show (or that one time at the Elks Lodge in Hamden), or any other shenanigans that went down, these awesome radio people touched my life.

Even when I stopped doing the show after graduation (to which I did make one more appearance), it was still happening “underground” between Nick, Kyle and I via email. The podcast just brought it to the surface again. Like the radio show, this podcast is a labor of love to which we happily dedicate our time, working it in around full-time jobs, relationships, and the rest of our lives. We do it for the love of the music. We do it to keep the legacy alive…the legacy that forever impacted my life.*

So, to anybody who has ever listened to an episode, any band that has sent us their music, anybody who has taken the time out of their schedule to be on the show, everybody who has left a comment, liked s on Facebook, reviewed us on iTunes, said hi at a show…whatever you contributed, in any form…I sincerely thank you. It means the world.

– Brian

*I’m sure it impacted Nick’s too, but I am not going to speak for him.

This is a post for those that asked to see our individual year end lists. It is far too early on a Monday morning for me to justify why each of these albums is ending up where it is on the list, so I’ll just defend myself later in the comments if necessary.

1 Every Time I Die – From Parts Unknown
2 Black Crown Initiate – The Wreckage of Stars
3 Black Map – …And We Explode
4 Within The Ruins – Phenomena
5 Polar – Shadowed By Vultures
6 Mastodon – Once More ‘Round the Sun
7 Castle – Under Siege
8 He Is Legend – Heavy Fruit
9 Exmortus – Slave To The Sword
10 Machine Head – Bloodstone & Diamonds
11 At The Gates – At War With Reality
12 Ne Obliviscaris – Citadel
13 Fallujah – The Flesh Prevails
14 Dawnbringer – Night Of The Hammer
15 Killer Be Killed – Killer Be Killed
16 Allegaeon – Elements of the Infinite
17 Cynic – Kindly Bent To Free Us
18 Monuments – The Amanuensis
19 Unearth – Watchers of Rule
20 Serdce – Timelessness
21 Beyond Creation – Earthborn Evolution
22 Pet The Preacher – The Cave & The Sunlight
23 Revocation – Deathless
24 Gormathon – Following The Beast
25 Bury Tomorrow – Runes

For those of you who would like a reference of our year end picks, I decided it would make sense to take a couple minutes and post it up here for your perusal.  Feel free to tell us how wrong we are, what we missed, and what your picks would have been in the comments below!  If you need to hear us justify our decisions, you can get full explanations in Episode 118.


  1. Nails – Abandon All Life (Southern Lord)
  2. Byzantine – Byzantine (independent)
  3. Norma Jean – Wrongdoers (Razor & Tie)
  4. Nero Di Marte – Nero Di Marte (Prosthetic)
  5. Amorphis – Circle (Nuclear Blast)
  6. Dead Letter Circus -The Catalyst Fire (The End)
  7. The Ocean – Pelagial (Metal Blade)
  8. Skeletonwitch – Serpents Unleashed (Prosthetic)
  9. Carcass – Surgical Steel (Nuclear Blast)
  10. TesseracT – Altered State (Century Media)
  11. Dark Tranquility – Construct (Century Media)
  12. Protest The Hero – Volition (Razor & Tie)
  13. Disperse – Living Mirrors (Season of Mist)
  14. Bring Me the Horizon – Sempiternal (Epitaph)
  15. Unhuman – Unhuman (independent)
  16. Soilwork – The Living Infinite (Nuclear Blast)
  17. Anciients – Heart of Oak (Season of Mist)
  18. Audrey Horne – Youngblood (Napalm)
  19. The Dillinger Escape Plan – One of Us is the Killer (Party Smasher/Sumerian)
  20. Lunarsea – Hundred Light Years (Punishment 18)
  21. Enshine – Origin (Rain Without End)
  22. Man Must Die – Peace Was Never an Option (Lifeforce)
  23. Weekend Nachos – Still (Relapse)
  24. DevilDriver – Winter Kills (Napalm)
  25. Old Gods – Stylized Violence (Forge Again)



1. Carcass – Surgical Steel
2. Nails – Abandon All Life
3. Dark Tranquillity – Construct
4. Amorphis – Circle
5. Byzantine – Byzantine
6. Nero Di Marte – Nero Di Marte
7. The Ocean – Pelagial
8. Norma Jean – Wrongdoers
9. Dead Letter Circus – The Catalyst Fire
10. Skeletonwitch – Serpents Unleashed
11. Unhuman – Unhuman
12. Anciients – Heart of Oak
13. Protest the Hero – Volition
14. Soilwork – The Living Infinite
15. Enshine – Origin
16. Weekend Nachos – Still
17. Devildriver – Winter Kills
18. The Dillinger Escape Plan – One of Us is the Killer
19. Chimaira – Crown of Phantoms
20. Bring Me the Horizon – Sempiternal



1. Norma Jean – Wrongdoers
2. TesseracT -Altered States
3. Byzantine – Byzantine
4. Nero Di Marte – Nero Di Marte
5. Nails – Abandon All Life
6. Disperse – Living Mirror
7. Dead Letter Circus – The Catalyst Fire
8. Skeletonwitch – Serpents Unleashed
9. Bring Me The Horizon – Sempiternal
10. The Ocean – Pelagial
11. Amorphis – Circle
12. Audrey Horne – Youngblood
13. Protest The Hero – Volition
14. Lunarsea – Hundred Light Years
15. Man Must Die – Peace Was Never an Option
16. The Dillinger Escape Plan – One of Us is the Killer
17. Soilwork – The Living Infinite
18. Old Gods – Stylized Violence
19. Unhuman – Unhuman
20. Anciients – Heart of Oak

Update: Today, June 13th, I received confirmation that my order finally shipped! Nick, however, still has not received a shipping notice. -B

Original post:

So, a few weeks back on the show I aired some grievances with a few pre-order packages I was waiting on and I forgot to give y’all an update on those during the last episode.

The first package I was waiting for was my Alice In Chains “The Devil Put Dinosaurs Here” shirt and CD bundle. The album shipped prior to its May 28th release date, but UPS estimated 11 days to bring it from North Carolina to Massachusetts (a trip that I noted could be made on foot in only 8.5 days.) Well, I’m happy to report that it only took about 9 days to deliver and it showed up last week Saturday (only 4 days late) leaving us plenty of time to listen to it and review it for this weeks show. All is well.

The TesseracT pre-order, however, is a very different story. I ordered the digipak and hoodie package as well as a few other shirts from At the time of placing the order, the website said for shipping info “This bundle will begin shipping shortly before May 28th, 2013.” As we all know, both Brian and I did not receive our orders in time for the review on Episode 87. I was understanding at the time that since Monday the 27th was a holiday that it added a degree of difficulty to coordinating deliveries to arrive on or before the albums release date, so I waited until the end of the day on the 28th to write a quick note to Merchconnection and inquire about the status of the order since I had still not heard anything on shipping confirmation. Here is their response:

“Hi We are still waiting for the shipment containing your CD digipak to come in from our suppliers. It should be coming in at any time. As soon as it does we will let you know and update you on your order immediately. Thanks!”

I forwarded that email along to Brian so he could share in my joy that we’d soon be receiving our orders and that there was a reason for the delay. Now, if they’d followed through on that, all would be well. However, the following Tuesday (June 4th) they sent this email to, supposedly, all customers that pre-ordered the TesseracT album:

“Hello, we wanted to send an update to all buyers regarding the purchase of the preorder bundles for the new Tesseract album. To put it briefly, distribution was unable to supply us with enough units to ship all packages for delivery by street date. This is incredibly unfortunate, but also something that we can not control as we are essentially left to wait on these units. Distribution has now sent us the remaining units needed to fulfill the rest of our preorders. Any remaining orders that have not yet been fulfilled will be shipped this week. We thank you kindly for your patience and understanding. If you are still waiting on a shipping confirmation email on your Tesseract preorder, please expect it this week.


And I did expect it. It never came though. I checked with Brian, who not only didn’t get a confirmation, but also didn’t get the courtesy email that I’d gotten. I sent them a follow up letter on Monday, June 10th (a day short of two weeks after the release date) and got this for a response:

“Hi These preorders are still being filled and shipped out. If you have not received tracking look for it this week. Thanks”

Look familiar? That was Monday. Still no news on shipping confirmation. Still no merch at my door.

As a side note, I did send a note to Century Media (TesseracT’s label) last week about the disappointing dealings with Merchconnection and they took the time to shoot me an email back right away, forward my message onto their promo and distribution teams about future dealings with Merchconnection, and also offered to send me a TesseracT shirt on top of that. Top notch dealings with a top notch company.

TesseracT Shirt

Let this be a lesson people: order from the label or band directly.


P.S. To further Nick’s commentary, I emailed Merch Connection yesterday (June 11), a full two weeks after Altered State‘s release, since I had yet to receive any updates directly from them.  I got the same email Nick received on June 4th.  As of this posting, I have not received any further word from Merch Connection.  In the meantime, I received today, a day after it’s release, my pre-ordered Black Dahlia Murder – Everblack (Metal Blade) box set, which was ordered through Indie Merch.  I also received my pre-ordered Scale the Summit – The Migration (Prosthetic) vinyl & t-shirt yesterday, release day, which was also through Indie Merch. – B


If you listened to the lengthy Episode 79, then you already have heard about this contest.  If you haven’t listened, well, you should do that, but you can also read on to learn how you can win your own copy of Killswitch Engage’s Disarm the Descent.

All you have to do is leave a comment here.  Any comment.  You can tell us how you feel about Killswitch,  who your favorite host is, or what kind of pie you enjoy the most.  Doesn’t matter.  Just do it before midnight on Sunday, April 14, 2013.  We will choose a winner at random and announce said winner right here on  Be sure to use a valid email address when leaving your comment so we can contact you to obtain your address so we can mail you your prize.

BUT WAIT!!  There’s a twist!

Do you really want this album?  Have you no shame?  Then you have a chance to automatically win!

As Kyle announced in the aforementioned episode, if you send us an “audition tape” of you trying out for the now-filled Killswitch Engage  vocalist position, you will automatically win a copy of the CD.  If we have have more than one audition submission, Kyle will buy the subsequent entries a copy of the CD, meaning there can be more than one winner…up to five, actually!  As a bonus (well, bonus to some) Kyle will also embarrass the hell out of himself and do his own audition in a future episode.  Here’s the rules and other important information for this:

– You must perform at least one verse and one chorus of a Killswitch Engage song.

–  The recording can be video or audio-only.

– All entries must be sent as links or attached files to, titled “Killswitch Audition Tape” or something equally identifying.

– Once an “audition tape” entry is received, this post will be updated to note such.  After the update, the contest will remain open for 24 more hours, during which additional “audition tapes” can be submitted.

– The first five (5) “audition tape” entrants that meet the above requirements will received a copy of Disarm the Descent.

– By submitting this “audition tape”, you consent to having it played in the podcast and/or on this website.

I think that about covers it!  Have fun, freaks!