Flotsam & Jetsam, War Cloud, OWL
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Flotsam & Jetsam is an American thrash metal and progressive metal band that formed in Phoenix, Arizona in 1981. The band currently consists of vocalist Eric "A.K" Knutson, guitarists Michael Gilbert and Steve Conley, bassist Michael Spencer, and drummer Ken Mary. Flotsam and Jetsam went through several lineup changes over the years, and Knutson has been the only constant member of the band. They are also notable for featuring bassist Jason Newstead, who left the band shortly after the release of their debut album to join Metallica as Cliff Burton's replacement.
Flotsam and Jetsam have released twelve studio albums in their career (the latest being 2016'sFlotsam and Jetsam), and have sold over one million records worldwide. Despite not achieving similar levels of commercial success as some of their thrash metal contemporaries, the band achieved minor success in America, with two of their albums (1988's No Place for Disgrace and 1990's When the Storm Comes Down) entering the Billboard 200 chart, and their fourth albumCuatro (1992) cracking the top 30 on the Heatseekers chart.
OWL was originally hatched in 2007, when the youngest Baechle brother, Axell, sprang from an egg (aged 13 years already and with a Gibson Les Paul in his hands) and began to compose original songs in the style of classic heavy metal (BlackZeppelinBudgieLizzyMotorVenomRamones). The middle brother K, disturbed from his book by the noise, soon decided to join in, adding his Fender Stratocaster, supernatural songwriting, composition and vocal skills to the mix. The Holy Trinity finally came together at Christmas 2009, when oldest brother Clint was summoned away from a three month tour with some other band. The trio met at the Baechle family mountain aerie, high in the Sierra Mountains, and the demo tape was recorded (Clint on drums). The demo was circulated, with some critical acclaim, and much curiosity as to the real age and relationship of the band members.
Unable to procure a fourth sibling to complete the lineup of the band, the brothers adopted an African child named Melanie to be their bass player and sister in March of 2011. The Stone Loner seven inch was recorded soon after. The band picked up steam, playing gigs around the Bay Area, and lumbering drunkenly up the West Coast for the first time in August 2011.
The Stone Loner seven inch finally came out (as a split label release with band’s own Magick Hermit Records, and Tombs In The Valley productions from Newcastle, UK.) in February 2012. This was followed by a second West Coast tour. The band continued to ravage the Bay Area throughout the Spring and Summer of 2012, building a reputation as a formidable live act. The first LP (a split label release with Magick Hermit and Lummox records) was released in limited quantity in November 2012, on the eve of the band’s first US tour, which carried them to the East coast and back, through an onslaught of crazy gigs (and crazy weather).
In August and September 2013 the band toured the West Coast and Southwest United States, and in November and December they toured Europe for the first time. In January 2014 Jamie Sanitate became the new bass player.