The Machete Archive
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The Machete Archive

Lincoln, Nebraska, United States

Lincoln, Nebraska, United States
Band Rock Alternative


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Machete Archive blasts gritty sound in DN newsroom"

The working life got a little bit better Tuesday night in the Daily Nebraskan newsroom.

As editors edited, designers designed, cartoonists cartooned, and photographers did whatever it is they do after all photos are taken, The Machete Archive shook the walls with instrumental progressive rock. While the three-piece band received some guff here and there – “How long does this song last?” – the consensus seemed to appreciate having a let’s-make-a-newspaper soundtrack.

The Lincoln-based band played the DN’s first in-studio performance, which will be accompanied online by an interview. For an inaugural effort, The Machete Archive fit the bill quite well.

Since its inception, the local band has been drafting up songs named after Roman numerals. Without lyrics to serve as reminders, the system is necessary to keep track. At this point, the count is up to XVIII, or 18, with a few more on the way soon.

Early September saw the band’s latest album, “Tempus Omnia Vorat,” come to the fore. A nine-song effort with only one coming up shorter than five minutes, the record shows a dedicated work ethic across the board. As Saber Blazek, bassist, says in the interview on, he generally composes the songs’ early forms. From there, he presents the basic structure to percussionist Ian Francis and guitarist Ryan Thomas, so they can contribute their respective parts.

Fleshed out, The Machete Archive’s music sounds much like the front cover of “Tempus Omnia Vorat” looks: gritty with darker connotations. Musicality is at a fever pitch as Thomas and Blazek cut jaggedly across the bedrock set by Francis’ drums. - The Daily Nebraskan

"Lincoln Exposed continues this weekend"

GZO | Posted: Friday, February 13, 2009 12:00 am |

...The Machete Archive, 11:45 p.m. Duffy’s: This trio could be classified as progressive rock, math rock, or even dance/trance. These disciplined musicians are experimental by nature. Check out this band if you like: The Mars Volta, Led Zeppelin, King Crimson.... - Lincoln Journal Star

"Machete Archive"

There's something about The Machete Archive that sounds a little different from most bands.

One minute passes by as their beats and harmonies fill the air. Two, three, four and five minutes.

Maybe something's missing, you say.

Yeah. Something's definitely missing.

Then it hits you. It's the words.

There are none.

And you can stop waiting, because they're not going to come.

"How would anyone be able to sing to this without sounding like they're just making jibberish or high-pitched noises?" asked Saber Blazek, bassist of the Lincoln-based instrumental rock band.

They wouldn't be able to. And The Machete Archive doesn't need them to.

The three musicians — Ian Francis (drums), Ryan Thomas (guitar) and Blazek (bass) — craft moody instrumental arrangements that fill their songs with enough sound that a singer would only hinder their cause, not add to it.

"We've filled in these songs so much that we'd have to kind of make room for other melodies," Thomas said.

The band's nighttime aesthetic is heavy with delays and dissonance, creating a brooding atmosphere that at times has a sense of panic from Blazek's incessant plucking of his bass strings, Thomas' heavy riffs and the relentless forward motion set by Francis' beats.

It's a sound the trio has been tweaking and maturing since May, when they started jamming together in Francis' basement.

The group came together after Francis saw Blazek playing bass with his previous band, Hey Look It's a Superhero.

"He was just flopping himself all over the place, and that's when I knew I had to be in a band with that guy," Francis said.

One conversation about forming a band led to another, and soon enough Francis and Blazek were jamming with Thomas, who had played with Francis in an earlier outfit.

But before names were decided on and songs were fleshed out, the guys had to set a few ground rules. They wanted to know that everyone was in it for the long haul. Francis and Thomas had had their fair share of bands gone bad, and they wanted to be sure that this band would progress and not unravel immediately.

"We kind of framed this band around an idea and a series of conversations that made sure we were all on the same page," Francis said.

It didn't take long for the three to decide on a common goal: They wanted to be the greatest progressive rock band of all time.

They are well aware that claiming that title is a lofty goal, but they know that, in order to rise above the rest, they have to take themselves seriously.

"There are two different ways to look at it. You can look at it as an unachievable goal or that you're full of yourself to believe you could be one of the greatest things of all time," Francis said. "But to use a cheesy, clichéd saying, if you want to hang with the big boys, you have to be one of the big boys."

But the real question is, what does it take to be a big boy in the ever-expanding world of new bands who also believe they could be the next big thing?

The Machete Archive is hoping that innovation, a bold sense of independence and confidence to break the mold might be a part of it. And while the band in its young age hasn't hit its peak, it's on the right path.

They recently finished recording their EP, "Terra Incognita," with Ian Aeillo, a member of the now-defunct Lincoln group The Golden Age.

The EP showcases the interesting relationship that the three instruments have formed — it's a relationship that allows each instrument to establish its own voice by taking the lead at certain points, yet blending together to create a sound that is unified when it needs to be.

It's a sound without words, but not without feeling.

Because the three guys know that if they do it right, music by itself is almost more powerful than any word could ever be.

"I want it to be more about the feeling the music gives you and not so much about the words," Thomas said. "Music is about the notes and rhythm and textures, and it's not just about lyrics."

Reach Liz Stinson at 473-7254 or - Lincoln Journal Star.

"Machete Archive to take new CD songs on the road"

By LIZ STINSON For the Lincoln Journal Star | Posted: Thursday, September 3, 2009 11:15 pm |

The guys from The Machete Archive had their doubts when guitarist Ryan Thomas said he wanted to record their debut full-length in his basement.

"Everyone was really skeptical," Thomas recalled during an interview at drummer Ian Francis' house. "Everyone kept telling me that I couldn't do it - that it was going to suck."

"I had my doubts," chimed in Jeremy Wardlaw, booking and promotions for Duffy's Tavern, as well as Francis' roommate.

That was until the guys actually listened to the self-recorded demos and realized they didn't need to shell out their hard-earned band money to lay down tracks at a real studio.

The songs were clean. And they sounded good. Good enough that they decided to record all of "Tempus Omnia Vorat" (Time Swallows All) by themselves. Over the span of a few weeks, Thomas, Francis and bassist Saber Blazek holed up in Thomas' basement, carefully capturing the exact right takes for the album.

"We were very meticulous about what we were doing, and we took a great deal of concern to make sure it sounded as good as it possibly could," Francis said. "There was a lot of trial and error. We didn't want to just have to slap something together really quickly."

The guys debuted their relentlessly intricate instrumental rock on their 2007 EP. But their first full-length finds Machete with a more developed and dynamic sound.

"This CD is definitely more reflective of the sound that we have at the moment," Francis said.

"We figured out how we need to draw our lines in the sand," Blazek added.

The line usually starts with Blazek, whose ripping basslines often come to him as he's riding his bike around town.

"I'm really inspired by everything, and since I don't sing about it, I just write about how life is going up and down and slow and fast," he said. "It's like all music, but we're not telling you about the things that are going on. We're writing emotion and the progression of such things using sound instead of words."

With Blazek providing the backbone, Francis and Thomas are free to unleash on guitar and drums. Only it doesn't come so easily. Machete, who are known not only for their musical jockdom but also their musical knowledge, take the song-writing process literally seconds at a time.

"Saber comes up with a giant bassline, and we go through playing 15 seconds of the song at a time," Thomas said. "That's the tedium right there."

It has seemed to work for the guys, who have already started a face-to-face marketing campaign for the album.

"I'm excited to show it to other people. I have problems not showing it to people already," Blazek said. "My housemates hate me."

After Sunday's show, the guys will head out on their first tour through the Midwest in hopes of branching out from their supportive Lincoln cocoon. The tour will be a first for the band. But they're confident that waiting to hit the road until their full-length is out will prove to be worth the wait.

"We could've gone out on tours with the EP we had and been like, 'OK, here's 17 minutes of our stuff,'" Blazek said. "But now we have more than an hour floating around out there. Now I can ask myself, 'What do I really want to do on tour?' I want to dress up like a giraffe all the time and run around and freak people out." - Lincoln Journal Star

"The Machete Archive brings instrumental progressive rock to local audiences"

Ever since their formation in May of 2007, The Machete Archive has astounded Lincoln audiences with its distinctive style of instrumental progressive rock and explosive stage presence. With a nucleus made up of local guitarist Ryan Thomas (left), bassist Saber Blazek (right), and percussionist Ian Francis (middle), the members of this hometown phenomenon regularly use their undeniably evident talent and knowledge of their instruments along with a notable live performance to create an atmosphere throughout their music making it difficult to determine where one member ends and another begins. Regularly gracing the stages of Lincoln’s Bourbon Theatre, Duffy’s Tavern, and Zoo Bar has allowed the band’s popularity among the local musicians and concertgoers to do nothing but grow. “We’ve definitely increased our attendance over time,” Blazek commented, “but we see a wide variety of new people at each show. We have our dedicated few that show up to most shows, but it is always good to see new faces as well.”

With two albums under their belts, both the release of their debut, Terra Incognita,and 2009 release, Tempus OmniaVorat, has been well received by their fans. Such positive local exposure recently earned the band an invitation to Lincoln Exposed; a festival consisting of an array of local acts hosted in downtown Lincoln from February 10th-13th. Local acts making up the 2010 set list consisted of more than 60 bands, including the likes of Triggertown, Tie These Hands, Kill County, Son del Llano, Blazek’s other band The Show is the Rainbow, and the final performance of hometown favorites Jodie Loves Hinckley. An upcoming event for those looking to encounter “the true experience” includes the 90.3 KRNU 40th Anniversary Fundraiseron February 26thhosted by local indie radio station 90.3 KRNU. - Lincoln Local Music Examiner


Terra Incognita-EP-released December 2007
Tempus Omnia Vorat-LP-released September 2009



The Machete Archive is a 3-piece, instrumental, progressive rock band from Lincoln, Nebraska. The band formed in 2007 and soon became a local favorite due to an energetic live show that combines the energy and modern sensibilities of a band like At the Drive-In with a strong influence from the greats of the last forty years (Led Zeppelin, Rush, The Beatles, etc.). The music is very complex and dynamic frequently employing polyrhythms and asymmetrical meters to create a series of widely varying moods and soundscapes. Where some bands may choose to sacrifice listenability for a sense of emotional chaos, they can create any mood while still maintaining an aesthetically pleasing and listenable sound.