STEMM

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STEMM
Origin Niagara Falls, New York, United States
Genres Groove metal, metalcore, nu metal, rapcore
Years active 1998– 2012
Labels Catch 22 Records
I Scream Records
Associated acts Klear
5 Years Gone
Website Official Site
Members Joe Cafarella
Alex Scouten
Steve Crowl
Dan Nelligan

STEMM was an American metal band hailing from Niagara Falls, New York. STEMM's first concert was opening for major label recording artist Sevendust.[1] Their last performance was on December 1, 2012 located in their hometown of Buffalo.

STEMM was endorsed by ESP Guitars, Jägermeister and Mesa Boogie.[2][3]

They won the Buffalo Music Award for Best Hardcore/Metal act in WNY for 3 consecutive years. (2001, 2002, & 2003)

Former vocalist Tom "T.J." Frost was the vocalist for Buffalo NY death metal band Baphomet (later Banished). He also was a guitar tech for Chimaira and Ill Nino.[4]

Background[edit]

The early years[edit]

STEMM was formed in June 1998 by Joe Cafarella, Russ Martin and Jimi and Louis Penque.[5] All the members had come from various other local acts. By December the band recorded a two song "promo" disc. Within four months' time, the album had sold well over 600 copies.[6] Initially STEMM incorporated a hybrid of hardcore with rapcore much like the band E.Town Concrete. These sounds were very prominent on their first EP, entitled Further Efforts and also on their first independently released debut, entitled "Dead to Me" which was released in 2002.[7][8] In July 2000, STEMM would announce the addition of second guitarist, Rich Spalla.

UFC and The Fight Network[edit]

In 2002, STEMM also signed a licensing deal with the UFC.[9][10] STEMM's music has been incorporated in UFC television and live events since August 2002. Songs to date used by the UFC include, "Holding On", "Fallen", "Face the Pain" (which was used for the theme song and is featured on the UFC 2009 Undisputed soundtrack), which have been used on every UFC pay-per-view since 2002 and The Ultimate Fighter.[11] "Face the Pain" was also featured on the UFC compilation CD UFC Ultimate Beatdowns Volume 1 alongside such bands as Fear Factory, Slayer and Shadows Fall.[12] STEMM more recently also signed a licensing deal to feature their music on Canadian television station The Fight Network.[10]

Transition[edit]

In late 2003 and through most of 2004, the bands line-up would change. Jimi Penque left STEMM, citing creative and musical differences. A few months later Louis Penque left STEMM due to family reasons. This provided the bridge for the merging of local Buffalo metal act, 5 Years Gone and STEMM.[9] 5 Years Gone drummer Dan Nelligan and vocalist T.J. Frost of 5 Years Gone began filling in, while STEMM guitarists returned the favor by replacing the two guitarists that had recently departed 5 Years Gone. After bassist Russ Martin was fired, STEMM and 5 Years Gone would be combined as one. The combination saw the band take a different direction musically. Because of this, the band as a whole do not recognize the previous incarnation of the band and even contemplated changing the name of the band, but decided to keep on as STEMM due in large part to the UFC having already spent money on promoting the band.[4][9][13]

A new beginning[edit]

After reconfiguring the line-up, STEMM signed to Chimaira guitarist Rob Arnold's management label, Triple M Management.[13] With Arnold's help, the band recorded a 5 song EP entitled "5" in early 2004. On the song "13 Years", Chimaira vocalist Mark Hunter did a guest appearance.[10] The EP went on to sell over 1,000 copies in only a couple of months time. The band did local shows in support of the demo, opening for acts such as Sevendust and touring nationwide with Chimaira and Trivium.[14][15] STEMM would be the openers for Damageplan's "final" concert, as the next day, Darrell "Dimebag" Abbott would be murdered while onstage.[10][16] They also opened for Nuclear Blast artist Bleed The Sky at the legendary Whiskey A Go Go.[17] T.J. Frost along with Joe Cafarella would provide guest vocals on the Bleed the Sky track "Division" as well.[4] The band then participated in the 2005 installment of the New England Metal and Hardcore Festival with other notable acts such as Soilwork, Danzig, Dark Tranquillity and Mnemic.[18] In November 2005, the band released their second full length album, entitled "Songs for the Incurable Heart" independently. The album included four tracks from the previous demo, plus all new material, including a song that is a tribute to the victims of the September 11, 2001 attacks, which vocalist T.J. Frost survived entitled "The Day the Earth Stood Still" which clocks in at 9:11, in homage.[4]

Finally signed[edit]

In August 2006, the band announced on their MySpace page that they had officially signed a record deal with I Scream Records to re-release their second album "Songs for the Incurable Heart."[19] Though the contract was only to re-release "Songs for the Incurable Heart."[4] STEMM continued for the next year opening for bands such as Godsmack and Stone Sour.[4] On July 30, 2007, STEMM announced that vocalist T.J. Frost had departed the band due to "personal issues." With his departure, back up vocalist and guitarist Joe Cafarella changed to full-time vocal duty, while guitarist Alex Scouten formerly of 3 Minutes of Hate began filling in as a session member. Alex had previously worked with STEMM, when then vocalist T.J. Frost was injured in 2006 and also was the original guitar player for STEMM when they reformed with a different line-up in 2003.[20] Later on Scouten replaced former guitarist Rich Spalla.[4]

Catch 22 and Blood Scent[edit]

After securing a solid line-up the band began working on new material for their third full-length album "Blood Scent". The song "Poopmouth" which was later renamed "Broken Face Masterpiece" for the album was featured in the May edition of Metal Edge Magazine on a CD sampler that accompanied the magazine. In early July it was announced the new album was completed, but it wouldn't be until mid-October before the track listing and artwork for the new album, "Blood Scent" was confirmed. In the same news, the band also revealed that they had signed with Catch 22 Records, a subsidiary of MVD Entertainment and that they would handle the release of the album. In the words of vocalist Joe Cafarella, the new album is their "Vulgar Display of Power." Comparing the album itself not as a clone of the album, but as the way it represents them as a whole, saying "We just wanted to make a CD that would not pigeon hole us into a certain cliché sound. Let’s face it, Pantera made it on their live performances. While MTV was playing ‘Walk’ and ‘This Love’ us metal heads were cranking Fucking Hostile and Mouth for War."[21] Blood Scent was released on November 11, 2008. In a press release by the UFC, the company stated that the song, "House of Cards" from Blood Scent would be used as the theme song for UFC Wired.[22] The first single, "Awake" is accompanied by a video that was shot by GDM Video Production company.

Joining forces with Trans-Fusion Entertainment[edit]

In late 2008 Stemm finally found a booking agency who was able to get them outside a regional market.[23] STEMM has been touring the United States in support of Blood Scent as the headlining act.

Ride Or Die Tour 2009[edit]

In June 2009, STEMM announced they would headlining the Ride Or Die Tour [24] with bands His Name Was Yesterday and Adakain.

The Last Show[edit]

On December 1, 2012, STEMM performed their last show and ended the band (the concert was located at Town Ballroom in Buffalo and they performed with His Name Was Yesterday and Whiskey Reverb). Former members Louis, TJ, and Stepehen played with them according to the eras they were with the band (i.e. Louis performed songs on Further Efforts). They all came together for Face The Pain and finally Monster. Currently Joe, Alex, and Mario are in a band called Mookie Blaylock, a Tribute to Pearl Jam. Dan drums for the band Everett Lee & Underground Stampede.

Band members[edit]

Final line-up[edit]

Joe Cafarella - vocals, guitar (1998–2012)

Alex Scouten - guitar, beat box (1998–2000) (2007–2012)

Dan Nelligan - drums (2003–2012)

Mario Nobilio - Bass (2011–2012)

Former members[edit]

Louis Penque - vocals (1998–2003)

Russ Martin - bass (1998–2003)

Jimi Penque - drums (1998–2003)

T.J. Frost - vocals (2003–2007)

Rich Spalla - guitar (2000–2008)

Stephen Crowl - bass (2003–2011)

Discography[edit]

Title Release date Label
Further Efforts EP 1999 None
Dead to Me 2000 None
5 2004 None
Songs for the Incurable Heart November 15, 2005
October 10, 2006 (re-release)
I Scream Records
Blood Scent November 11, 2008 Catch 22 records
Crossroads September 13, 2011 Catch 22 records[25]

External links[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "French review of STEMM's 5 EP". Retrieved 2007-07-28. 
  2. ^ "Artists endorsed by ESP". espguitars.com. Retrieved 2007-07-28. 
  3. ^ "STEMM Biography on I Scream Records". I Scream Records. Retrieved 2007-07-28. 
  4. ^ a b c d e f g Peter Failla. "Hollow Dream Records' 13 Questions With STEMM". Hollow Dream Records. Archived from the original on 2009-10-26. Retrieved 2007-08-04. 
  5. ^ "STEMM AIMS AT FLOWERING MUSIC SCENE". Retrieved 2007-07-23. 
  6. ^ "STEMM early bio". Retrieved 2007-07-28. 
  7. ^ "STEMM - Dead To Me review". Theprp.com. Archived from the original on 2007-10-16. Retrieved 2007-07-23. 
  8. ^ "STEMM music". emusic.com. Retrieved 2007-07-28. 
  9. ^ a b c "For Stemm, it’s family, friends and fun". Niagara Gazette. Retrieved 2007-07-23. 
  10. ^ a b c d "STEMM Interviewed by Undizcovered magazine". Undizcovered.com. Archived from the original on 2007-07-05. Retrieved 2007-07-28. 
  11. ^ "STEMM: FALLEN (played at all ufc events)". Ufc.tv. Retrieved 2007-07-23. 
  12. ^ "SLAYER, DAMAGEPLAN, SEPULTURA Featured On 'Ultimate Fighting Championship' CD". Blabbermouth.net. Retrieved 2007-07-23. 
  13. ^ a b Stephanie Stevens. "East Coast Romper Interview with STEMM". East Coast Romper. Retrieved 2007-07-28. 
  14. ^ "CHIMAIRA: Hometown Release Party And Columbus In-Store Signing Announced". Blabbermouth.net. Retrieved 2007-07-23. 
  15. ^ Chimaira.com. "Chimaira Tour Dates". Metal Underground. Retrieved 2007-07-23. 
  16. ^ "Buffalo DAMAGEPLAN Fans Stunned By DIMEBAG's Murder A Day After Local Show". Blabbermouth.net. Retrieved 2007-07-28. 
  17. ^ Nuclear Blast. "Bleed the Sky CD Release Party". Metal Underground. Retrieved 2007-07-23. 
  18. ^ "NEW ENGLAND METAL AND HARDCORE FESTIVAL: More Than 40 Bands Confirmed". Blabbermouth.net. Retrieved 2007-07-23. 
  19. ^ Stemm.net. "Stemm Sign with I Scream Records". Metal Underground. Retrieved 2007-07-23. 
  20. ^ Myspace. "STEMM Vocalist Leaves band". Metal Underground. Retrieved 2007-08-02. 
  21. ^ Stemm Discusses New Album, UFC To Use New Song "House of Cards" On Fox Program
  22. ^ STEMM To Release 'Blood Scent' in November
  23. ^ http://www.myspace.com/cincytransfusion
  24. ^ http://www.myspace.com/rideordietour
  25. ^ Stemm Pokes Fun At Core In New Music Video For "Left Behind"