Lockjaw
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Lockjaw

Milwaukee, Wisconsin, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2002 | INDIE | AFM

Milwaukee, Wisconsin, United States | INDIE | AFM
Established on Jan, 2002
Band Metal Industrial

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"An Interview with Medavon DeRaj'e of Lockjaw"

The southern Wisconsin music scene breeds a lot of unique music, but when it comes to hard rock and metal, we have a vivid array of diverse musicians. LOCKJAW, out of Milwaukee, brings an industrial approach, which is often lost on the smaller scene, to bluesy metal.

With influences ranging from Fleetwood Mac and Elton John to NIN and Type O Negative and several years on the local scene, Medavon DeRaj’e (vocals and guitar) brands their music as “Hell Rock,” which explains their attraction to darker tones and intense dynamics. He explains, “[I have always] loved how early industrial bands combined synths and electronics in their music. I’m a huge fan of old school metal, thrash, and 80’s stuff. I find it very hard to digest most of the newer metal bands these days. If I can’t understand the lyrics, then I usually can’t relate. I love heavy but it also needs a groove.”

As the only constant member of LOCKJAW, Medavon’s writing process has changed over the band’s 11 years on the scene. “I will start by programming beats and adding synths and bass lines over them. Usually as I’m doing this, the lyrical ideas and vocal melodies start coming into my head and slowly the song comes into formation.” Through this process, music and lyrics are completed at the same time, which are later adapted to a live performance.

Medavon claims that the band is, essentially, two entities: a studio version and a live version. “The studio version is way more dynamic, but sometimes lacks the pure intensity we come across with, live. Some of our songs have up to four different guitar tracks going on. Live that is impossible to recreate, but with the presentation we give of in-your-face bludgeoning, it makes up for it and then some.” He explains that both have their advantages and disadvantages, but, “for me performing live is what it is all about. It is my release, my religion. The one place I feel like I am completely me.”

The landscape of the local scene in Madison and Milwaukee has changed over the years. “The music scene is nothing like it was 7 years ago. The bands aren’t as diverse. Not as many breaking out of the conformity of the genre they are in. It’s harder to get decent paying shows for all the work that is put in, as well. It is truly a struggle to be a musician in the Midwest and not let the despondency of the scene bring you down,” Medavon explains. Like any band in the realm of heavy music, LOCKJAW has been resilient. “Lockjaw has always had its own scene that we have built over the years.”

LOCKJAW’s music strives to represent the loss of inhibitions and living in the moment, according to Medavon. “You never know when it will be your last.” Pushing for a unique sound, the quintet strives to keep their sights on the next level. “The thing that inspires me most is being inspired. I try to stick to what I know and what I feel when writing. It used to be more of a way to expel the negativity in me, but lately it has been more about underlying positivity.” - Maximum Ink Magazine


"Album Review: Lockjaw – “The Dirt Road To Inspiration”"

Lockjaw
The Dirt Road To Inspiration
(Dark Drug Records)

Lockjaw is an industrial band that cites their sound as “hell rock” and I will admit that they’ve definitely got some promise on this new full-length album. One thing that I especially like about these guys is that they’re not afraid to show their metal roots, as covers of Metallica’s “Jump In The Fire” and Black Sabbath’s “Paranoid” both appeared on their earlier EP release, Undressed & Messed Up. Opener “Doom Patrol” continues that metal worship, as it’s a Marilyn Manson influenced industrial rework of the classic doom style. “Good Girls Go To Hell” kicks a bit more however, working in some eerie riff melodies and spooky synths. The vocal approach here is also quite venomous, flowing well with the music and providing a very strong piece that’s worthy of being a single. “Divine” brings back the doom melodies, yet I’m also a bit reminded of Tiamat. The electronic samples also work well to liven up the track. “Spell” has some interesting ideas, but I don’t feel it works as well for me as some of the others. It simply depends on how you like your industrial. “Earth Bound” offers new wave synths mixed in with a fistful of aggression, as “Passive Aggressive” offers a rougher approach to production, but with a certain degree of bite and some nods to extreme metal. The keyboards also sound a bit odd in the mix, but provide an interesting touch to the music. “Waiting Room” is a cold ballad that seems quite personal and reminds me much of Manson’s “Tourniquet” in its fragile display. The same can be said for the sloth-like pace of “Black Clementine,” which has a hook from hell laden within, as it provides plenty of atmosphere to further enrich the track. Given that this the longest track on the disc, it doesn’t seem to drag out too long due to the attention to detail used within the piece. Lockjaw is certainly trying for cold atmospheres with this one and they may have well succeeded. “The Great Oppression” comes across rather basic unfortunately, even though it’s nuances help to deviate the piece from other tracks of its type. It is a track that sees guitar and vocals in the forefront, with punchy beats providing the backdrop. “It’s Not Over” features a female vocal approach and interesting use of an almost solo-like electro guitar piece. It feels odd at the end of the disc and I’m still not sure what its purpose is. Yet it does show a band that’s willing to experiment, which is what I like to hear.

While I’ve given this album the equivalent of a seven, keep in mind that the seven I’m giving the disc is quite high. It’s very close to what would be an eight or 4/5 in this case. The band definitely has some staying power and will only get better in the years to come. They’ve got more going for them than some other industrial acts I’ve reviewed (you only need to look at past reviews to see that) and I’d certainly like to hear how they progress with the next album. But to be honest, any band that has the balls to make industrial versions of “Jump In The Fire” and “Paranoid” gets my vote as an act to watch. (Eric May)

Purchase The Dirt Road To Inspiration here:
http://lockjawx.bandcamp.com/album/the-dirt-road-to-inspiration

www.facebook.com/darkdrugrecords - New Noise Magazine


""Off The Cuff""

For the last two years, Milwaukee’s Lockjaw has hammered out the kind of hard-core rock that has fans drenched in sweat before the set’s first song has even ended. The band has been busy making a name for itself both locally and regionally playing to frothing crowds. Friday, April 22, they’ll plug it in and turn it up at Club Anything with guests Anura and Grigori 3.

Brian Barney/David Luhrssen - The Shepherd Express


"Milwukee Sludge"

Milwaukee's Lockjaw has been pummeling the testicals of area hardcore addicts for some time now. With songs that feature delicacies like sex, drugs and debauchery, the band has made a statement: Rock is fun! Those seeking the old-school ethics of make-up, fog filled stages and antics that border on the opposite side of the law will find what they are searching for at every Lockjaw performance. The gang is currently in the studio putting the finishing touches on their new record Release and Rejoice. When attending their next performance, I might suggest a little eye-liner...and a lot of attitude. - Maximum Ink Music Magazine


"Lockjaw-"Dirty Minds and Smiling Faces""

Lockjaw - Dirty Minds and Smiling Faces
By Dr. Abner Mality

Just about every community has its Marilyn Manson-type band these days. Most are awful . Some, like Lockjaw, are actually pretty good. Hailing from the Milwaukee suburbs, this is a band fascinated by youthful decadence and societal decay. Much as I myself am. They describe their sound as a cross between Motley Crue and Nine Inch Nails and while that's fairly close to the mark, there's more to them then that.

First, hats off for the production. Excellent job by band mastermind Medavon S. All instruments come across with maximum punch and the electronics are not shoved into the background or the foreground too much. They are placed just right. All 8 songs here have a different sound and feel to them as well, which really helps, and while it's nothing you haven't heard before, it's performed competently and with some passion. Opener "Belligerent" is the perfect mixture of crunchy-riff rock and industrial noise. After that, I dig "The Love Parade" and "Sex on the Brain", both of which will get the eyeliner and dog collar crowd moving big time. "Blue" shows the more electronic side of the band, conjuring up some creepy synthetic tones. Medavon's voice is OK and hits the right tone of bored sleaziness but could use more range. "Angels Above" and "Whores" didn't do that much for me...just my personal taste.

Sgt. Deth tells me these guys kill live and I believe him. A corpse-raising experiment in the lab kept me away the night they were in town...a mistake I will not make again. Lockjaw is firmly in that Manson/NIN mode but they sound like they have what it takes to rise above the pack.



(Dark Drug Productions)

Lockjaw's Official Website

- Wormwood Chronicles, Illinois


"Saturday Afternoon Delight"

Now, I was on my own for the first half of the day. An all ages show at The Rock Shop starting at 3pm. The reason I was there was to see one of my original top fivers, Lockjaw! I LOVE to watch this band perform and on this afternoon they were in rare form. Their tightness both musically and showmanship wise just keeps getting better.The stage was bathed in fog and blue light. Made for some great pictures and an outstanding show. They are all mesmerizing on stage and I always get caught up in the magic created by Lockjaw.
- MKEmetal.com


Discography

"Drawn In Black"-2002

"Dirty Minds and Smiling Faces"-2004

"Hell Inside"-2005

"Starving For Salvation"-2006

"11:11"-2007

"The Soundtrack To The End"-2009

"Dopamine Avenue"-2011

"White Lies, Black Heart"-2012

"The Dirt Road To Inspiration"-2013

Photos

Bio

Lockjaw is bringing the Hell Rock revolution into the minds of the masses.  Abrasive vocals, dark chord progressions and machine gun like electronics define this bands sound. LOCKJAW has shared the stage with national acts including Mudvayne, Type O Negative, Damage Plan, Wednesday 13, Hell Yeah, Prong, KMFDM, Powerman 5000, Lords of Acid and multiple 4000+ shows with MARILYN MANSON. Lockjaw has also played The Rock Stage at Summerfest in Milwaukee, WI 4 different times. Lockjaw's "Bored Again" from the CD "Dirty Minds and Smiling Faces"(2004) can be found on the X-Box360 game "Dead Rising". Lockjaw's 9th studio album "The Dirt Road To Inspiration"(2013) on Dark Drug Records redefines the genre known as "Hell Rock". From the cold atmospheric dinginess of "Doom Patrol" to the synth layered single "Earth Bound" this album takes industrial metal to a new frontier. Led by MEDAVON on vocals and guitars with a live lineup filled by Baldii-rhythm guitars, Britt-bass and Hoss-drums. An over-the-edge stage show filled with all the necessary elements of sweat, smoke and unrelenting honesty adds to the live intensity of this band and keeps its loyal following coming back for more.


Band Members