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Alekhine’s Gun is an extreme metal outfit from Brooklyn, New York, who in a short time have changed the expectation of what is to come out of a heavy music scene rich in history. Combining insightful lyrics with poignant vocal delivery, raw yet tactful riffage, and an underlying groove that stretches beyond the walls of genre, the band has captured the attention of not just the metal community, but the music community as a whole.
In 2010, founding member and guitarist Jeff Martinez set out to put together a band that would challenge his own musical precepts. Working with darker progressions, faster picking techniques, and emotionally dynamic arrangements, the band that was to become Alekhine’s Gun was worlds away from his musical work thus far, New York hardcore mainstay, Desolate. Shortly after the bands inception, he approached Jessica Pimentel, a noted violinist, bassist, guitarist, and hardcore front woman most notably of Everybody Gets Hurt. Her varied musical background and versatile voice was a natural fit for the vision set forth by the arrangements.
Initial recordings of the band’s 4-song EP were raw. A drum machine was used in the interest of time. Let’s note that drummers of this ilk aren’t a dime a dozen in NYC. Vocals were laid down almost immediately after Jessica heard the tracks. The result was a harsh template that immediately grabbed the listener. Despite it’s effectiveness, they knew they would need a complete band to properly deliver the music live and on a professional recording.
After numerous drummer auditions, Jeff and Jessica were contacted by Angel Cotte. Angel has a deep and varied history in the New York City death metal scene, playing in bands such as Immortal Flesh and Eyes of the Sun. He offered to lend a helping hand until a permanent drummer was found. Picking up the songs immediately, he gave them his own flavor. After several shows, the chemistry was undeniable and Angel’s speed, precision, and voice became a natural part of the music.
Because Alekhine’s Gun not only delivers brutality and speed, but also groove and emotion, the rhythm section had to be rounded out by a bass player that could handle all these aspects. Daniel Martinez reached out to the band after hearing the tracks online. With his history in hard rock/ funk outfit King Hell and black metal band December Bride, he delivered the punch and dynamics necessary to round out the brutal sound that is Alekhine’s Gun.
A CD was recorded by the fresh line up, the result being an honest, gripping musical effort that engaged the listener both musically and lyrically. The arrangement and playing style keeps the listener on the edge of their seat with abrupt yet composed changes. The subject matter of the songs blends Buddhist concepts and real-life struggles to paint parallels that are shocking yet reassuring. After positive and enthusiastic reviews by Metal Army, Metal Injection, Skulls and Bones, and Horns Up Rocks, the music was thrust into the metal consciousness.
Once coming on to the New York City metal scene, Alekhine’s Gun was embraced with open arms and heavy mosh pits! From local shows at Trash Bar in Brooklyn, to opening for national acts such as Kittie at the Highline Ballroom, every show has been delivered with the same ferocious energy that had come to be expected. The stage is set to carry the music even further.
In an effort to reach audiences beyond the New York music scene, Alekhine’s Gun quickly hit the road for weekend stints, something few young bands attempt. After the North east, the band proved that it has the ability reach any audience available to them. That reputation has garnered excellent bills with national acts such as Sworn Enemy, Thy Will Be Done, The Ocean, and Revocation.
As the band moves forward, it will continue to expand its musical direction, covering subject matter that will challenge and inspire its audience. 2013 will see a new recording, increased touring, and new stories to tell. Stories that make up the history of a band that thrives on painting a picture of its life through extreme music.