After 10+ years of blazing trails in the psych/sludge/doom/metal scene, Boston rockers Ichabod had finally reached a plateau.
Hoping to continue their personal and musical ascents, the band began to experiment with new tunings, sounds, symbolism, and structures in their songwriting. As with most change, there came growing pains-original singer Ken MacKay and the band decided to gracefully part ways due to variance over the direction much of the new material was taking.
After four acclaimed studio albums (Living Through the End, Let the Bad Times Roll, Reaching Empyrean, and 2012), it appeared as if the sojourn was over.
Remaining members Greg Delaria(bass), Dave Iverson(guitar), and Phil MacKay(drums) did not want to see the fruits of their labor go to waste however. The band had recorded a 40+ minute composition that is a conceptual piece, a salutation to the prog-rock masterpieces of the seventies and more modern epics like Monster Magnet’s Tab, Sleep’s Jerusalem, and Iceburn’s Hephaestus. The musical movements are meant to mimic the movement of a mighty river, specifically the one to which the moniker was dedicated.
Ichabod had also penned another full length’s worth of original songs which were an artistic extension of all their preceding material. They did not want Merrimack and the untitled collection to go unheard, so decided to employ the talents of longtime friend John Fadden on vocals and complete the catalogue before decommissioning.
Ichabod saw the time of flux as opportune for adding to their sonic assault; guitarist and friend Jay Adam was recruited as a second guitar player to ensure the wall of sound would be complete.
Once Fadden and Adam came aboard, the new energy in the rehearsal room was palpable. The brilliant historical/metaphorical lyrics John scribed for Merrimack and the words and melodies he was imparting with the newest material, along with Iverson and Adams’ duel guitar mugging, caused an enthusiasm in the band that altered the plan to record their swan song(s) and fade into the sunset.
Ichabod is once again playing shows and actively documenting the newest music with a newfound vigor and earnestness. Both Merrimack and Dreamscapes from Dead Space (tentative working title) are being recorded/produced by Glenn Smith at Amps Vs. Ohms studios in Cambridge, MA and should be released within the year by Rootsucker Records.
The glory hath definitely not yet departed from Ichabod, nay, you could say it has begun anew.
“And she named the child Ichabod-Where is the glory? The glory – That is, the glorious type and assurance of God’s presence, the ark, which is often called God’s glory, which they could glory in above all other nations.” -1 Samuel 4:21
Ichabod was formed in May 1998 by ex-members of several Boston-area bands who decided to merge their creative energy together to form a new and exciting hybrid form of aggressive music.
For the original project Iverson sought percussionist Ron Dion, whose enthusiastic response prompted the two to enlist bassist Ken Joyner. After several months spent writing material together, the search for a vocalist led to MacKay. After playing for about six months together and recording their self-released debut/demo CD, “Living Through the End,” Dion had to leave the band for personal reasons. Without skipping a beat, MacKay’s younger brother Phil stepped in to fill the gap.
Ichabod then recorded the following four interpretive covers for different compilations: LaPeste’s “Better off Dead,” The Cars’ “Candy-O,” The Misfits’ “Horror Business,” and Faith No More’s “Absolute Zero.” The latter is included on the Faith No More tribute, “Tribute of the Year,” released by Martin Atkins’ (Killing Joke, PIL, NIN, Ministry, etc.) Invisible Records in July 2002.
In 2002, Ichabod landed a record deal with Black Locust Entertainment, on its Root Sucker Records label, after a number of high-profile MA based gigs (including main stage at the 4th annual New England Hardcore and Metal Festival) and relentless promotion of the band through touring and internet networking.
The new full length Ichabod CD titled, “Let the Bad Times Roll,” was recorded at Austin Enterprise Studio by Steve Austin (Today Is The Day), and released February 11, 2003. Shortly after finishing the recording, the band parted ways with bassist Ken Joyner, opening the door for Dellaria.
Two more recordings, “Reaching Empyrean” and “2012,” followed over the next 6 years with the same four man lineup. During the writing and recording of new material for the soon to be released “Dreamscapes from Dead Space,” the band parted ways with long time vocalist Ken MacKay, and brought John Fadden (ex. ) on board to finish the new tracks. During this time The band also asked Jay Adam to join the group on guitar.
Most of the members of Ichabod are indigenous to the greater Lowell, MA area, a city whose melancholy is evident in the landscape of mill husks and industrial scarring; where drab childhoods become drug habits and the complexities of immigration and postindustrial anxiety are forever immortalized in the intoxicated verse of Jack Kerouac. Although the four have lived or currently live elsewhere, their roots remain in the Mill City which continues to provide a backdrop for the Ichabod sound.
Ichabod has been described as everything from hardcore to hard rock, punk to psychedelic, crust to metal, doom to stoner rock, noise to spacerock, and seemingly all else in between. Though it has been difficult to commit this band to one genre, the common threads remain the organic atmospheres and claustrophobic energy that pervade the music, but never without a light at the end of the tunnel. So, if you can stand to let your eyes adjust to the blackness, look for the light in Ichabod’s epitaph for humanity…