COLIN MARSTON – Sometimes "incorrect is better"

In the mid 2000’s, while digging around the Internet and going to local shows in New York City, I started seeing Colin Marston’s name popping up more and more. It seemed like every other year he would join or start a new, phenomenal band: Krallice, Behold the Arctopus, Dysrhythmia, Gorguts. And then there was his work as a recording, mixing, and mastering engineer at his studio Menegroth: The Thousand Caves in Queens, where he was recording insane bands like Artificial Brain, Liturgy, East of the Wall, Cleric, Kayo Dot, and countless more. Colin’s projects were making this music that I just couldn’t wrap my head around, and each one was unique in its own way. These bands played by their own rules, as though the codes of conduct of both the mid-tier metal music industry machine and trendy underground scene-based music culture didn’t exist. They were making art for themselves. I connected with it instantly: this was really weird, cool stuff.

A few years ago I had the pleasure of meeting Colin and hanging out during the making of several albums, which basically meant I got to watch him work and talk shop about the craft. He’s a fountain of information and attitude: always building up and breaking down his own ideas, and never falling into the plastic trappings of recording that so many metal engineers fall prey to. But what struck me the most about him was his passion for passing on information, a trait that he learned firsthand from watching Steve Albini record with Dysrhythmia. When you’re first discovering music, there’s a mystical veil over how it is made and recorded. But while watching Colin work, it suddenly became simple. Attitude and artistic outlook came first. There were no rules other than the laws of physics; perfection was never as important as feeling good about a performance; and music that’s played, by a group of people together, is usually the best. 

I couldn’t have been happier when Colin and his Dysrhythmia bandmate Kevin Hufnagel were hand-picked by Luc Lemay to join Gorguts in 2009. Colored Sands was a breath of fresh air, and their upcoming, one-song album is yet another boundary-pushing piece of work from these musicians. It feels like these guys’ best work is in front of them rather than behind – a true rarity in extreme music.

Max Frank's picture

About Max Frank

Max is a writer and musician based in New York City.


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