Interview – Phil Demmel of Machine Head

Phil Demmel is a guitarist that I have looked up to for quite some time. Demmel is the lead guitarist of one of my favorite bands, Machine Head, and I has been a massive influence my my musical writing style.


Demmel is also a massive inspiration to me for a very different reason. A few years ago, I was diagnosed with a heart condition called vasovagal syncope. Around this some I just happened to listen to Machine Head’s 2007 album, The Blackening, and found comfort in it. As I stewed in my own depression surrounding the difficulties of dealing with my heart condition, videos of Phil fainting on stage began to surface on YouTube. Machine Head would soon announce that Demmel’s condition was the same as mine.

Discovering that one of my musical heroes shared my condition made it much easier to deal with it. I had wanted to talk with Phil about it ever since.

On November 26, I got my chance to talk with him about the band’s recent tour difficulties, the band’s recent free agent status, and our heart condition.

Read and Listen to the full interview after the jump.

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CD Review – Storm Corrosion

After years of both hype and mystery, the long-awaited collaboration between the leaders of progressive giants Opeth and Porcupine Tree has surfaced.

Mikael Åkerfeldt and Steven Wilson have been in cahoots for many years, but until now,, the extent of their collaborative efforts has simply been the appearance on one another’s albums. While Åkerfeldt provided some backing vocals and guitar on The Porcupine Tree gem Deadwing, Wilson has famously had a hand in most of Opeth’s albums since Blackwater Park. To hear that they were joining forces in Storm Corrosion was not much of a surprise, but it was still something to get very excited about.
What was a surprise, was when the pair announced that the result of the collaboration included zero metal elements and barely any drums. Considering a third name in this project early on was Mike Portnoy, of Dream Theater fame, it’s not a shock, in hindsight, that his name was removed from the project.

The final product is still a very immersive and intense record  It is heavy in a different way, yet very beautiful and dark.

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