TONGUES OF FIRE, a post-punk 4-piece from Asheville, North Carolina, have got a new ferocious EP called Burn My Body Clean coming out on August 27th via Florida’s Godless America Records and today we’re stoked to announce it with the release of their single/video “Room”!
The overarching theme of the EP is the untimely loss of songwriter Lowell Hobbs’ mother to a lengthy cancer battle. He describes each of the 5 tracks as representing a different stage of his grieving process. A voicemail from Lowell’s mother is also sampled on the closing track, and her ashes are incorporated into the artwork.
“This was our first indoor show post pandemic and we wanted to capture the excitement of live music coming back.” – comments the band.
“Our professional editing team and camera operator had ended up bailing on us so we found someone local who had a fisheye lens, gave him some drinks and $100 then told him to go absolutely anywhere he felt like on stage and make the footage as hype as possible. I had no idea how to edit video but the deadline was in a day so I pirated premiere pro, watched some youtube videos and knocked this out in a single 10 hour session. We also went into a park and shot off roman candles with a camera from a yard sale because I’d just watched blair witch project and thought it’d be cool. I’m really hoping people assign some type of stupid deeper meaning to it.”
Location: Grey Eagle, Asheville NC July 6th
Lineup: Nordista Freeze, Tongues of Fire, Daddy’s Beemer, Cry Baby
Camera Operators: Kyler Vollmar(Main), Riley Rowland, Maryanne Morgan
Editing: Lowell Hobbs/Maryanne Morgan
Tongues of Fire is Lowell Hobbs, Maddie Kendrick, Eli Raymer, Brett J Kent
Tongues Of Fire also announce preliminary Southeastern US tour dates for this summer, with more shows likely to be added shortly. More details will be shared on the Tongues Of Fire social media channels as the final details are confirmed:
July 2 – Columbia, SC @ Curiosity Coffee Bar
July 3 – Chapel Hill, NC @ TBC
July 7 – Richmond, VA @ TBC
July 10 – Asheville, NC – House Show
July 25 – Charlotte, NC @ Milestone
“Room” is set in a period of depressive self-isolation that the group’s songwriter Lowell Hobbs entered following his mother’s untimely passing to cancer.
He notes “Believe it or not the song was written pre-pandemic. It was super cathartic to be able to express those feelings and it’s also kind of beautiful in a way that my very personal singular experience became a collective one because of COVID too.“
In recent years, the band’s hometown of Asheville, North Carolina, has built a worldwide buzz as a destination for Americana music, southern culture and artisanal crafts. What’s yet to gain the recognition it deserves is the counterculture of alternative rock that the city’s young are producing on the edges of town, far removed from the craft breweries and holistic health food markets.
Tongues Of Fire join a wave of exciting music makers that seem set to change that, including, Wednesday, Secret Shame and Ahleuchatistas. Burn My Body Clean is the followup to their 2019 debut album Everyone Hates Us and finds the group retooled as a four-piece and refueled by reflection on a crushing life experience.
The group’s songwriter, singer and guitarist, Lowell Hobbs, endured the loss of his mother after a gruelling cancer battle during the recording of Everyone Hates Us (2019), but it is on Burn My Body Clean where he had the opportunity to truly process and explore the experience. These songs represent five stages of the grieving process; each written at a different time and each contributing to the furious catharsis that is borne out in the arrangements.
Lowell’s mother is part of this record in more than just influence; her voice is sampled on the closing track “inst” and, in a profound symbolic act, her ashes are mixed with the ink that painted the EP artwork. Lowell explains, “I’d heard about human ashes being used in art and thought it’d be a really amazing way for my mom to be a part of the album because it goes out to her in so many ways. She was a huge supporter of the band and everything I did. I contacted local artist Victoria Arnish who takes care of her ailing mother and we had an instant connection. She understood exactly what I was going for and we’ve spent a lot of time listening to the music, talking and figuring out how to convey what we want to.”
“Room” is accompanied by a gritty visual that creatively twists live footage of the band into flashes of shapes, warped shadows, and bursts of action. All interspersed with shots of the band letting off roman candles captured by a yard-sale infrared camera. The show footage is pulled from the band’s first indoor show post-pandemic, at The Grey Eagle in their hometown. It’s fitting that the visual is so heavily influenced by live energy as the group’s commitment to harnessing the power of live performance is a defining characteristic of the cuts captured on the E.P. As the band readied to record this collection, Lowell was drawn to working with producer Dan Dixon, who’s experiences amongst the 90’s grunge movement, 2000’s garage rock revival and ongoing involvement in the Atlanta noise/sludge scene felt like a perfect match to the spirit that Tongues Of Fire sought to harness. Recorded live in-studio over 2 packed days, Burn My Body Clean offers a strident development on Everybody Hates Us.
Sonically, and emotionally, this record swoops through high and low, loud and quiet, and ultimately delivers the group at their most visceral yet. So, turn it up and tune into the raw heart of Appalachia, beating away in the chests of four twenty-somethings in The Land Of The Sky.
“There aren’t bands out there that are like Tongues of Fire. They are themselves and intent on moving the scene forward.” – NEW NOISE
“Fiery-crafted tracks of unrelenting distorted guitars surrounded by pummeling drums and bass.” – GHETTOBLASTER
“Deceptively complex, hard-hitting songs” – CULTURE ADDICTS