This Weekend: Autumn Screams Doom Fest II
Doom Metal is a genre of metal with a long and storied association with this area, where bands like The Obsessed and Pentagram laid down a path that countless others would follow. With a style inspired by Black Sabbath, a slower tempo than most modern metal, down-tuned, distorted riffs, and a dark, sinister outlook, it’s a perfect match for the season – and this Friday and Saturday, just in time for Halloween, the Ottobar will host the second-annual Autumn Screams Doom festival, which celebrates all things Doom Metal. We met with Dan Petruccelli at his Hampden home to discuss the origins of the festival, this year’s line-up, and his plans for the future.
City Paper: How did Autumn Screams Doom get started?
Dan Petruccelli: There used to be a doom fest run by John Brenner every year – he did it six years in a row at the Sidebar – I used to work at Sidebar. And we hit him up to do it again, because it was a lot of fun. But I guess he just kind of fell out from wanting to do it, so I decided to carry it on. I thought it would be something fun to set up, I set up the first one last year… I kinda just wanted to set up a cool metal fest around Halloween, because there are things during the summer, or spring and there’s kind of a void in the fall. Just kind of a seasonal fest going in Baltimore that can get people excited and draw people in.
CP: What was last year’s experience like?
DP: Last year was a lot of ups and downs. Sometimes it’d be filled, sometimes it’d be empty. Last year the hurricane was supposed to be coming in the next day so I know that bands wanted to move their time to be earlier, so they could get home and lock down their house from having a hurricane strike. So the weather kind of screwed things a little bit for us last year.
CP: This year you have moved to the Ottobar, why is that?
DP: I wanted to book some bigger bands. Loss, I’m flying in specifically for this show. Most of the bands are coming in from out of town, so I wanted to have a bigger space, a bigger sound, I wanted to have more money to play with to bring in the bands and to pay them appropriately.
CP: What are some things you have planned for this year?
DP: Unholy Anarchy Records, this guy named Ryan Brassard, he’s going to be doing a live recording of the entire fest and releasing it as a live double LP. That’s gonna be a lot of fun. He’s going to record the entire thing, then send it off to the bands to choose one track to be on it. Since I own a screenprinting shop, I’m going to screenprint all the covers for it, it’s going to be really cool. He’s going to be flying in the guy who mastered Loss’s latest album, Despond, to record for it.
During the day on Saturday, we are having a pre-fest upstairs at Ottobar. We’re going to be showing Last Days Here [the documentary about Bobby Liebling of area doom metal band Pentagram], and two of the guys in Serpent Throne are the directors of that movie, so they are going to do a Q&A. I thought that’d be a lot of fun.
In addition to showing that and the Q&A, Mike Scheidt from Yob is going to be doing an acoustic set and this band Mount Salem is going to be playing. We also thought – it’s a doom fest with a lot of fat, bearded stoner dudes who love to eat food, so we’re doing a burrito eating contest!
CP: How long have you been planning for this year’s fest? Any plans for next year?
DP: We worked on this one since the last one ended, so a year. There’s things I’d probably do a little bit differently next year. I just had a meeting with Dom [Romeo] from a389 last night, he wants to help me out for the next year. We’ve already got some bands that are interested in playing.
Autumn Screams Doom Fest II takes place at The Ottobar (2549 N Howard Street) this Friday and Saturday, October 25th-26th. Line-up is below, or go to: http://www.autumnscreamsdoom.com
Friday October 25th
12:50 – 1:30 Sinister Haze
11:50 – 12:30 Negative Reaction
11:00 – 11:30 Weed Is Weed
10:10 – 10:40 Serpent Throne
9:20 – 9:50 Iron Man
8:30 – 9:00 Wizard Eye
Saturday October 26th
12:20 – 1:00 Loss
11:20 – 12:00 Satan’s Satyrs
10:20 – 11:00 Uzala
9:20 – 10:00 Churchburn
8:30 – 9:00 Druglord
7:40 – 8:10 Sunburster
2:00 Pre-fest party upstairs